BALLYMURN CHURCH

 

 

A church in Ballymurn, built in 1774, was burned on 21st June 1798, the day of the battle of Vinegar Hill. 

 

The present Church of the Assumption and St. Malachy was opened in 1832, but was not dedicated until 13 October 1900.

 

Externally the Church is a plain rendered (cement covered) single cell rectangular building, with a porch, pointed windows, Y-Mullions (vertical posts dividing the windows) and raised granite coigns (design around the windows).  The interior has a stone floor (now carpeted) pedimented reredos (decorated screen) with two handsome Corinthian columns and a late 19th century altar with a Pietà.  The Pietà incorporated into the altar is a most remarkable feature.  It is by celebrated sculptor John Hogan (1800-1858) in conjunction with equally celebrated architect Daniel Robertson.  This was presented in memory of Margaret Maher of nearby Ballinkeele House, who died on 2nd September 1838 at the age of 30.  A tablet to her memory can be seen to the right of the altar. 

 

The gallery is supported by four plain Doric columns, has a fielded panelled front, and two staircases.

 

A window of the Assumption, from the Meyer studio of Munich, dates from 1911, and a two-light window on the gallery was installed in 1993 and commemorates the Wexford martyrs of 1683 and some of the Priests of 1798, including Fr. Clinch. Two other windows depict St. Brigid and St. Thérèse of Lisieux, St. Patrick and St. Malachy.

 

A brass plate commemorates Rev. Edmund Canon Doyle who died on 20th September 1893, the first Parish Priest to reside in Ballymurn and who spent 34 years as Curate and Pastor in the Parish. Over the high altar is a copy of one of Murillo's paintings of the Assumption, surmounted by a classic pediment supported by two Corinthian columns.

 

Adjoining the Church is the Maher Mausoleum or Chapel, a tiny mid 19th century plain Gothic building, full of memorials to the Maher family.  It is built of granite ashlar with a stone roof, and very good detailing.  It is one of the smallest churches in Ireland.

 

In Kilmallock there is a well dedicated to Our Lady, while adjoining the road from Crossabeg to Ballymurn is a well called Tobar Chillín.