News

Restored Victorian mosaic.

October, 2015

The beautiful Victorian mosaic discovered under the church floor during the renovations has been restored and is now displayed under a glass cover. Click here to see a photograph of it.

Parish Office relocation.

April 26, 2015

The Parish Office has been relocated back to the Presbytery in North Square. The new entrance is at the side of the building, adjacent to the bottle banks and e-car charger. Telephone: 087 348 0050. The office hours are Tuesday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m..

St. Michaels' Rededication DVD.

December 14, 2014

A DVD is available of the Rededication Service. It costs €10, and is available from Sneem House, DJ O'Sullivan's, An Post and Christian's Mace. Orders may also be placed via +353873480050 (0873480050 in Ireland), or sneem@dioceseofkerry.ie.

Address/Appeal.

church

The following address was delivered on the occasion of the rededication mass and ceremony presided over by Bishop of Kerry, Ray Browne on June 4th in St. Michael’s Church in Sneem. Included is an appeal for donations from Sneem folk and friends of Sneem worldwide to help defray the costs of the renovation of the church.

 

Rededication Address - June 4th 2014.

church( Tim O Sullivan, Chairman of Church Renovation Committee.)

Bishop Ray, Fr. Liam, Former Parish Priests and Curates of Sneem, Lady Dunraven, Invited Guests and fellow parishioners, ba mhaith liomsa fíorchaoin fáilte a chur rómhaibh go léir go dtí an t-Snaidhm tráthnóna inniu i gcóir an ocáid stairiúil seo do shéipéal agus do mhuintir na Snadhma.

On behalf of our Parish Council, our Renovation Committee and all parishioners, I would like to extend a very special welcome to our last P.P. Fr. Pat Murphy. We are truly delighted Father, that you are back with us in Sneem this evening because were it not for your vision some years ago there would be no need for a rededication ceremony. It was you Father who first realised that we needed a fitting place for divine worship as we moved into the 21st century ,just as Lord Dunraven had felt some 150 years earlier. You took the initiative and engaged the services of Tim Murphy and Co. of Castleisland and you had had the planning process well advanced prior to your unfortunate illness some 18 months ago. However it is wonderful that you are back with us in Sneem this evening and hope that you approve of our efforts to implement your plans. We hope that you will enjoy your trip and that it will be one of many in the years ahead.

In Fr. Murphy’s absence the Diocese appointed Fr. Michael Moynihan, P.P. of Glengariff to oversee our renovation project. This proved to be an inspired appointment. Fr. Moynihan displayed an indebt knowledge of all construction matters, was a tough financial negotiator as Tim Murphy and Griffin Bros would no doubt testify and was totally committed to ensuring that the highest possible standards were achieved. Indeed he quite literally went to great heights to ensure this. Fr. Michael was very unhappy with the height of the newly installed lightning rod attached to the cross at the top of the spire as he quite rightly felt that it totally distorted the cross. Following a meeting one morning to try to rectify the problem he left us all in a state of shock when he himself hopped into the crane basket , ascended to the top of the Church spire and personally helped to modify the lightening conductor and in doing so restored the cross to it’s original glory. I doubt that even Sneem’s most colourful clergyman, Fr. O Flynn would ever have attempted such an audacious move. In addition, Fr. Moynihan, has clocked up huge mileage when attending the very many meetings held in Sneem and elsewhere during the renovation. We are genuinely indebted to you Father, for your massive contribution. We wish to pay tribute to our affable chartered surveyor Tim Murphy and his design team of Pat O Leary and Jim Kennedy from Malachy Walsh and Partners. Tim and Pat were always willing to accommodate the suggestions of our local committee. Likewise we also wish to acknowledge the excellent work of sub-contractors Raymond Downing ,Plumbing and Heating, Rio Electrical and Palmer Stain Glass . We also wish to recognise the artistic and aesthetic contributions made by Fr. Pat Ahern and by James Scanlon who, in the late 1980s also designed and supervised the construction of Sneem’s Pyramid Garden . Likewise we wish to pay tribute to our efficient building contractors ,Griffin Bros. of Castleisland. Ger Griffin and his foreman in Sneem Jim McAuliffe were always professional , co-operative and flexible during the renovation work.

I wish to thank all members of our local Parish Council who have helped with the renovation. However, one member has to get special mention because his contribution can only be described as immense. I refer to our local builder , Noel O Sullivan of West End. Though not on anybody’s pay roll Noel has put in a huge number of hours, right from the planning stage to completion over the last number of years. His suggestions, advice etc and his ability to solve teething problems with some of the newly installed technologies have made a huge contribution to the success of the project. It was fitting that he had the privilege to be the first person to walk up the aisle of the renovated church with his daughter Hazel on February 1st, on the occasion of her wedding to Dave.

The beautifully landscaped Sneem Community Car Park , adjacent to the Church has provided us with the perfect example of what can be achieved by co-operation and goodwill . Though included in the original plans drawn up by Tim Murphy there was considerable concern that we would not be able to afford to proceed with the car park. However Joe Murphy , one of our renovation committee members suggested that we should investigate the possibility of securing grant aid from the South Kerry Partnership company. He received great help and encouragement from Clare Thoma and Pat Everett of SKDP who explained that the proposed car park area which was owned by St. Brendan’s Trust would have to be leased long term to Sneem Development Co-Operative. This request was made to St. Brendan’s Trust and was granted. However an emergency arose one Monday morning when Clare Thoma told us that all the legal documents would have to be in place prior to a meeting of the Partnership Board that was due to take place that very same evening at 8.00 p.m.. I immediately called Mr. Michael Larkin, solicitor for St. Brendan’s trust and informed him of the terrible dilemma facing us. He told me that Monday was his day off and that such legal work would normally take well over a week to finalise. Michael, however performed what can only be described as a miracle that day as he had everything signed and sealed by four o clock that evening. Later that night the Board of the South Kerry Partnership approved a very sizable grant which has enabled us to provide not only a valuable Community Car Park but also a lovely amenity area where people can relax and admire Sneem’s most iconic building. We are most fortunate to have Joe Murphy and our excellent Community Scheme employees available to maintain it to a very high standard. Again our sincere gratitude to Michael Larkin and St. Brendan’s Trust, to Vincent O Leary and Sneem Development Co-Op.and to all associated with the SKDP .

I would also like to pay tribute to Drew Borrett of Letterfinish who set up a very fine website free gratis for us in which the history of St.Michael’s and indeed the renovation project is beautifully documented. I likewise wish to acknowledge the publicity we have received from our fortnightly Community Newsletter.

The total cost of the Renovation project is 1.2 million euro, a very considerable sum of money for a small community like Sneem to raise. The very encouraging news however is that by the end of this year we will have slightly less than €400,000 left to repay. Prior to the commencement of the Renovation project the parish had accumulated a substantial sum of money which was available. Credit for this goes to Sneem Parishioners and our Parish Priests down through the years.

HUGE credit is also due to the present mass goers of the parish who WEEK AFTER WEEK are contributing ever so generously since the current fundraising campaign was launched some four years ago. I also wish to acknowledge some very substantial donations made both by some people from the parish and by some with strong parish connections. They are greatly appreciated. I would also like to encourage people who were baptised and perhaps confirmed in St. Michael’s but are now scattered worldwide to consider making a donation to help our local community to defray the renovation costs. All bank details are available just above the photographs on the Renovation page of this website.

8. Safe Home.
Finally after the opening of the Community Car Park, you are all invited to pay a visit to the marquee adjacent to Sneem House where a cup of tea and some tasty treats are being served. And should we run out of supplies, Fr. Moynihan has promised that , just as in Cana long ago, he won’t see us embarrassed.