Castle Archdale Parish Celebrates the centenary of St Patrick’s Church
Castle Archdale Parish celebrates the centenary of St Patrick’s Church
Sunday 9th March was a special day for the parishioners of Castle Archdale.
Plans and preparations had been made for a special centenary service celebrating
St. Patrick’s Church’s 100th birthday. Every contingency had been
taken care of except the weather. The morning brought storm force winds and
wintry showers but by early afternoon, as people began to arrive, the sun came
out, the winds abated and the whole event was, after all, bathed with spring
A new visitor’s book, which was the gift of Mrs Lorna Meissner, was
signed by everyone present and the church was filled to capacity. The evening
service was conducted by the Rector Rev. Glenn West with readings by Lynda
Noble and Ian Barkley. The choir included many former members who are now choir
members of neighbouring parishes, Derryvullan North and Killadeas. The organist
was Mr William McBride and the soloist was Mr William Caulfield, another former
choir member of Castle Archdale. The special collection was for the Organ Restoration
Gifts given to mark the occasion were a special parish register from the Select
Vestry and a display case from Church Wardens, Bobby Beacom and Wendy Armstrong.
The gifts were dedicated by the Bishop, the Rt Revd Dr Michael Jackson, who
gave the address.
In his address, Bishop Jackson made reference not only to the 100 year history
of this beautiful and intimate church of St. Patrick but also to Church of
Ireland history which goes right back not just to the reformation but to the
very beginning of Christianity in the land which was pioneered by St. Patrick
and by his follower St. Macartan, patron saint of this diocese. He reminded
us that among the ruins of that history lie the building blocks of tomorrow.
In the words of the Psalmist, “Take the past into the future.”
The Sunday School children did a wonderful display of the church and its stained
glass. Flowers in shades of white and gold included 100 tulips in the font.
After the service a delicious afternoon tea was served in the nearby Oaks
Restaurant by owners Jim and Eileen Maguire. A special birthday cake was made
and tastefully decorated by Sarah Jane Baird to reflect the Arts and Crafts
style of the church. The cake was cut by the Bishop and Rachael Archdale Norman
who had travelled specially from Cornwall with her mother Mary, widow of Denis
Archdale, the last Archdale owner of the estate. Also present was Francis Harvey,
grandson of James Harvey, whose firm had built the church 100 years previously.
The chairman of Fermanagh District Council, Cllr Alex Baird, gave a brief history
of the church and the parish.
Bishop Jackson presenting a Diocese Plaque to Mr Robbie
Haire in recgonition of 57 years service on Castle Archdale Select Vestry
Several presentations were then made. The Bishop, on behalf of the diocese
gave Mr Robbie Haire a special commemorative plaque in recognition of his 57
years service on the Select Vestry. Mrs Una Bourke, parish secretary, gave
Mrs Mary Archdale a bouquet of flowers and to the Bishop, a slate wall hanging
by Dara Hand depicting the ancient carvings on White Island (part of Castle
Members of Castle Archdale Select Vestry along with Bishop
Jackson and the Revd Glenn West
Date: 15 Mar 08