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Our Parish Team
Fr. Kevin Fay, Administrator
Fr. Peter Okpetu, CC
Fr. Brian McElhinney, CC
Fr. Charlie O’Gorman, CC
Jenny Harte, Pastoral Assistant
Contact phone numbers 049 4331404 and 085 8887484
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CHURCHES IN OUR PARISH
Cathedral of SS. Patrick and Felim
The patron saint of the diocese of Kilmore is St. Felim who lived in the 6th century. Little is known about him except that he is said to have founded a church at Kilmore near Cavan, which subsequently gave its name to the diocese.
Bishop Andrew McBrady 1445-55 rebuilt the ancient church and received permission from Pope Nicholas V to raise it to the status of a cathedral. The cathedral was confiscated as a result of the Reformation and the diocese had no cathedral for 300 years.
The six splendid stained glass windows in the nave and the one in the south transept come from the studios of Harry Clarke. They were added in 1994. In 1774 a new chapel was built at ‘Skelton’s Ford’, which later became the site of the old cathedral. In 1823 this chapel was rebuilt and slated while Fr. Patrick O’Reilly, a native of Killann parish, was parish priest. In 1862 Bishop James Browne had the Cavan parish church extended and it became the cathedral of the diocese of Kilmore and it was dedicated to St. Patrick.The present Cathedral of Saints Patrick and Felim was built between 1938 and 1942 during the episcopacy of Bishop Patrick Lyons. The architect was W.H.Byrne & Son and the contractor was John Sisk & Son. It was dedicated on 27 September 1942. It cost £209,000 to build. The cathedral is neo-classical in style with a single spire rising to 230 feet. The protico consists of a tympanum supported by four massive columns of Portland stone with Corinthian caps. The tympanum figures of Christ, St. Patrick and St. Felim were executed by the Dublin sculptor Edward Smith.
The 28 columns in the cathedral, the pulpit and all the statues are of Pavinazetto marble and came from the firm of Dinelli Figli of Pietrasanta in Italy. The fine work of George Collie can be seen in the stations of the cross and in the mural of the risen Christ on the wall of the apse. Directly above the mural are 12 small stained glass windows from the early studios showing the heads of the twelve apostles. The high altar is of green Conemara marble and pink Middleton marble while the altar rails are of white Carrar marble. The apse has two side chapels on the north and two on the south. The Blessed Sacrament is now reserved in the south chapel closest to the altar.
St. Aidan’s Church,
was built between 1861 and 1863 on a site given free by the Earl of Lanesboro. The architect was William Hague, jnr and built by William Hague, snr at a total cost of £1,400. The Hague family came from the townland of Plush and St. Aidan’s Church was dedicated on 14 June 1863 by Bishop James Browne.
It is situated on the bank of the Annalee river. Throughout the intervening years the church has been renovated. In 1972 restoration work incuded the repositioning of the altar, new heating system and new sound system. In 2008 more extensive renovation work was carried out under Architect Pat Gaffney and Administrator Fr. John Gilhooly.
New roof insulation, slates, restoration of bell and bell tower, cleaning of stonework, a new wall along the river Annalee, new ash ceiling and restoration of stained glass windows to mention just some of the improvements made which has resulted in St. Aidan’s Church being one of the most beautiful churches of its size and structure in Ireland.
St. Brigid’s Church
Dublin Rd., Cavan
is another church designed and built by the Hague family in 1868. The imposing site of this church is on the summit of a drumlin hill on the Dublin side of Cavan town and it is surrounded by a square graveyard.
St. Brigid’s Church like all those designed by William Hague, is a fine cut-stone building in the Gothic-revivalist style. It was dedicated by Bishop Nicholas Conaty on the 2 February 1868.
Further repair work was done in 1969 and it was re-roofed in recent years and in 2005 new seating was installed.
St. Clare’s Church
is situated right in the centre of Cavan town, just off the main street. Given the close connection between St. Francis and St. Clare it seems appropriate that the church built closest to the medieval Franciscan Friary of Cavan should be St. Clare’s Chapel. The Poor Clare Order was founded in Asissi in 1212 and they had a convent in Newry. It was a contemplative order though some of the sisters were involved in teaching and caring for the destitute. In 1861, at the invitation of Bishop James Browne, they moved to Cavan and set up a convent there. On 2 July 1881 the foundation stone for St. Clare’s Chapel was laid by Bishop Nicholas Conaty.
There was an orphanage attached to the convent and the nave of the chapel, which is quite large, was designed to make place for the orphans and for the locals who wished to attend Mass there.
Tragically on 23 February 1943 thirty-five children and a woman carer died in a fire at the orphanage.
St. Clare’s Chapel, though almost hidden from view, is a fine gothic-style buiding with cut-stone walls and stained-glass windows.
In 1981 the Poor Clare Community sold the convent and the chapel was given to the diocese of Kilmore.