Ballykinler Catholic Church
Church of St. Patrick & St. Joseph
on the Ardglass to Clough Rd
, North Tyrella BT30 8DF
Tel; 4485 1221
This chapel was built in 1782-4 by Rev. John Macartan on the
site of an earlier Celtic church . Prior to this, Mass was celebrated
every alternate Sunday at the four roads of Tyrella and at the
four roads of Carribnab. There is a tradition which says that
Mr Craig, a Protestant farmer, used to keep watch on a hill in
his farm in order to give notice of the approach of the priest-hunters.
The land was presented to the by Samuel Gibbons Esq. the owner
of the Ballykinler Estate. The site had an old graveyard called
lnish Lochaculin and was on an island in a drained lough. The
parish priest 1814-1832 was Rev. Hugh Macartan then Rev. Michael
O'Hagan until 1835 and Rev. Patrick Curoe in 1832 & again
in 1839. A new chapel was built in 1855 with the foundation stone
being laid by Right Rev. Dr. Denvir on 17 Jul 1855. It was soon
obvious that the original site would not bear the weight of the
intended church and the Marquis of Downshire granted a new site
on an adjoining hill across the road where the present church
was erected. On 17 June 1860 it was solemnly dedicated by Dr.
Denvir with the sermon preached by Dr. Dorrian of Loughinisland.
The church cost £1,600 of which £400 had been given
by the late Nicholas Magraw Esq. of Liverpool, who was from North
Tyrella. It was built in Lancet-Gothic from plans by Rev. Jeremiah
It is to be regretted that in order to get stones for this chapel,
the Catholics blasted with powder and carted off a stone circle,
one of the ancient pagan megalithic monuments which had stood
for three thousand years in the townland of Tubbercorran.
In the graveyard is the old Mass Rock with the inscription, "This
Mass Rock served the people of this locality during the Penal
Days. Originally situated on Robert Hogg's farm in Carricknab,
it was removed to this place for safe keeping in 1984."
Newspaper articles from Down Recorder;
consecration of the new church of St Joseph, Ballykinler 26 May
1860; gossipings about parish 4 Jan 1862; death of parish priest
Rev. P. Curoe 18 Oct 1873; concert, participants named 6 Jan 1900
PRONI & NLI have baptisms & marriages 1854- 1881; UHF
has baptisms & marriages 1854-1900 ,graveyard nearby gravestone
inscriptions available UHF Vol 9 ; email me for a gravestone look-up