Names of Sisters:
Sr Vera Kelly. Sr Christina Cunningham, Sr Declan O’Callaghan, Sr Máiréad Ní Fhearáin, Sr Mercedes Coen, Sr Thecla McPolin
History of the Community in the Parish:
On July 20th 1871 Archbishop Cullen asked Canon Kelly PP to get Sisters to instruct and teach children and girls in his parish. Canon Kelly approached the Poor Clare Sisters in Newry on this matter and his request was granted. Five sisters were sent from Newry on the Keady foundation. At that time there were no schools on the parish so the sisters renovated vestments and church linen and trained a church choir. They gave Religious Education instruction to girls aged 14 – 17 years each Sunday afternoon in the church, later the boys joined the class. Shortly afterwards the sisters started night classes teaching the 3Rs, Needlework and Music to the girls who worked in the Mills and the Factories. In 1872 a new school was opened and this school was replaced by a more up to date building in 1967. The first convent was built and opened in 1879. Education has continued to the present day. Several sisters ministered in the primary school from the beginning to 1999.
In September 1970 St Patrick’s High was opened to accommodate the children from 11 – 18 age. Two Sisters of St Clare were among the members of the first staff, since then a number of sisters have ministered in St Patrick’s High school and one sister is a member of the present staffing complement.
What type of Ministry (work, activities etc) is/are the Community/Sisters involved in –
Prayer Ministry, Eucharistic Adoration, Parish Ministry, Spiritual Direction to the Secular Order of Franciscans, Board of Governors, Safeguarding, Pastoral Visits to schools & Hospitals, Armagh Diocesan Church Music & Liturgy Commission, U3A, Sacramental Preparation for Baptism, Sacramental Talks to parents and children, Pastoral Council, Pioneer Council, Act to prevent Human Trafficking (Apt), Involvement in Ulster Colleges’ Camogie, Vocation Promotion, Liturgy Mission Awareness, Religious Education Diocesan Advisory Work, Adult & Children’s Retreats, NAPDA and CORI NI.
On the 27th August 2015 ‘The Pilgrimage to Medjugorje’ group celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving in the convent chapel and afterwards had refreshments during which they had time to meet and talk and renew friendships which began in Medjugorje.
26th October 2015 the Parish Pastoral Council prepared a Mass to celebrate the Year of Consecrated Life in particular to acknowledge with gratitude the religious Sisters, Brothers and Priests (Religious & Secular) who have ministered in the parish or who were born in the parish and have ministered in other areas. This was a wonderful occasion after the celebration of the Eucharist the congregation were invited to refreshments in the Primary School hall which gave an opportunity for people and religious to meet again after many years
The sisters are currently preparing for the Sisters of St Clare Congregational General Chapter which will take place in SMA Conference& Retreat Centre from July 3rd – 11th 2015
Who to contact for information or to request prayers-
Any of the following sisters –
Sr Vera Kelly.
Sr Christina Cunningham.
Sr Bronach Meehan.
Sr Declan O’Callaghan.
Sr Máireád Ní Fhearáin.
Sr Mercedes Coen.
www.keadyparish.com Parish Website
www.archdioceseofarmagh.org Armagh Archdiocese Website
www.southernareahospiceservices.org Newry Hospice Website
www.dromorediocese.org Act to prevent Human Trafficking(Apt)