Development of Convents for the Sisters of Charity of St. Paul in Ireland
Development of Convents for the Sisters of Charity of St. Paul
Our first community in Ireland was established in Kilfinane, County Limerick, where the Sisters opened a convent in October 1903. Their intention was to take over the national school, to establish a secondary school and to undertake visitation of the sick. The Sisters continued teaching in the Primary School until 1996 when a lay principal was appointed. A new primary school was opened in 2014. The secondary school, Scoil Pól, was added in 1928 and boarding facilities made available as the pupils were drawn from a large area. The school became co-educational in 1968 and a new school was built in 1987. Sisters continued to work in the school as teachers until 2014. One of the Sisters works as a teacher in the Primary School in Croom. Presently there are Sisters on the Board of Management of the Secondary School and also work in parish ministry, St Vincent de Paul, Red Cross and are on the Housing Committee and voluntary organisations
In Kilmallock, County Limerick, in 1927 Canon (later Archdeacon) Begley invited the Sisters to provide primary and secondary education for girls. One of the Sisters became the Principal of St Peter and St Paul Girls’ Primary School in Wolfe Tone Street. In this school, boys and girls shared the same building with boys being educated on the ground floor and the girls upstairs. A new school was built in 1929, named Scoil Ui Eilí agus Uí Ruairc. A secondary school for girls was opened the following year. A vocational school was opened in Kilmallock in September 1964, this later became co-educational. In 1966 a new primary school for boys – St Peter and St Paul was opened. In 1998 both second level schools amalgamated to become Coláiste Iosaef, under the Vocational Educational Committee with three representatives from the congregation on the Board of Management. In 2004 both the girls and boys schools amalgamated and formed Scoil Mocheallóg. There are no Sisters from the congregation teaching in any of these schools and their role is either as members of Boards of Management or in a support capacity with the teachers. There are two nursing homes situated in Kilmallock where the Sisters visit and offer pastoral support. Today one of the Sisters is involved in the alcohol and drug recovery unit based in Cuan Mhuire, Bruree.
In 1956, the Sisters established a residence in Bushmount, Clonakilty, to care for elderly priests and others. Over the years it was developed and was registered as a Nursing Home. The Sisters withdrew from this ministry in 2009 and the Nursing Home continued under new ownership.
In 1964, a girls’ primary school and a voluntary secondary school for girls were established on the outskirts of Dublin at Greenhills, to serve the needs of the growing population in suburban housing estates. A convent and church were built on the campus. Both schools became popular so extensions were soon necessary. A lay principal was appointed to the secondary school in 1993 and in the primary school in 2014. The Primary school is being transferred to the Diocese and the Secondary school has been transferred to the ‘Le Chéile Trust’.
As well as being involved in education the Sisters have always been involved in visiting and supporting families in the parishes in which they live. They have supported and helped the sick and offered pastoral support to those bereaved.
Overview of our Ministries in Ireland Today
The Sisters in Ireland work alongside many lay colleagues, women and men who share our vision. We are involved in a variety of work as our way of living out our commitment today to being a Sister of St. Paul.
Mainstream Education in schools
Care of the elderly
Visiting the elderly in Nursing Homes
Meals on Wheels
Working in addiction centre
In all our ministries - either school or community-based, parish or the wider community, the Sisters reach out to others in a spirit of kindness and compassion, co-operation and collaboration. Our aim is to carry out the mission and ministry with which we have been entrusted as Sisters of St. Paul - the living out of Gospel values according to the needs of our particular time and place. The Sisters are also involved with religious and priests throughout Ireland in the promotion of vocations.
For further information about the work of Vocations Ireland go to: