Office: 028-22828, Open: Tues, Wed, Thurs from 10.00am to 12.00.

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Catholic Faith Communities of Skibbereen, Rath and the Islands

Rath Accounts Skibb Accounts


Feasts this week

22nd: St John Paul 11 was pope for over twenty-six years from 22 October 1978 until his death on 2 April 2005. Ordained Bisnop of Krakow in 1958 and played a significant part in the Second Vatican Council. As Bishop of Rome visited almost all of the Roman parishes and made apostolic journeys to one hundred and four countries, including Ireland, 29 September-2 October 1979.

23rd:  St John of Capistrano, 1386-1456, studied civil and canon law and joined the Franciscan Order. A faithful servant of four popes, he attended the Council of Florence, went to Jerusalem as apostolic emissary, and, in 1451, set out on a preaching tour through the German provinces and Poland. In a battle at Belgrade ne contracted fever and died there. Patron saint of jurists and military chaplains.

24th: St Anthony Mary Claret, 1807-70, founded the Claretians in Spain for missionary work. Archbishop of Santiago, Cuba, then returned as chaplain to the Queen of Spain, and built schools and museums, before being exiled with the monarchy.

25th: Bl. Thaddeus MacCarthy was born in 1455. His appointment as Bishop of Ross was opposed and Innocent VIII then appointed him Bishop of Cork and Cloyne. He set out as a humble pilgrim to Rome where he was confirmed as Bishop of Cork and Cloyne. On his return journey in 1492 he died at Ivrea in Italy


The month of October has been designated by the diocese of Cork and Ross as Safeguarding month.  

The Diocese ensures that all children involved in parish activities are safe and cared for. We have in place; parental / guardian consent forms for all activities, code of conduct for both children & adults, sign in and out registers, gardai vetting for all adult helpers/leaders every 5 years. Visit www.corkandross.oru safeguarding to find out more. As part of Safeguarding Month, there is a Safe Guarding Newsletter available at the back of the Church.

Blessed Thaddeus MacCarthy: Mac Cárthaigh was born in 1455 almost certainly at Innishannon, Co. Cork. His father was the lord of Muskerry and his mother was reputedly the daughter of Edmund Fitzmaurice, ninth Lord of Kerry. It is probably the case that he belonged to the sept of the MacCarthy Reagh of Carbery. Laurence Rehenan, Professor of Ecclesiastical History of Maynooth College, suggests that he was educated by the Franciscan Friars of Timoleague.

Mac Cárthaigh studied for the priesthood under an uncle, Canon Thady Mac Cárthaigh and continued his studies in Paris with another relative, Professor Don Raymond, at Paris University. He was ordained in Cork by Bishop William Roche and travelled to Rome afterwards to continue his studies.

While in Rome, his many qualities made a deep impression and although only 27 years old, Pope Sixtus IV appointed him as Bishop of Ross in Cork, which see had become vacant upon the death of Bishop Donald. On 3 May 1482 Mac Cárthaigh was consecrated archbishop by in the Church of Santo Stefano del Cacco in Rome by Stephen Teglatius (or de Taleazis), Archbishop of Antivari (the modern Bar), assisted by Daniel, Bishop of Rhosus in Cilicia, and by Julianus de Matheis (or de Maffei de Vulterris), Bishop of Bertinori. When he returned to Munster Mac Cárthaigh discovered that the see was already in the possession of Hugh O'Driscoll, who had been appointed to the see in 1473 by the same Pope Sixtus. At this stage in Irish history there was no single political entity. There were Gaelic kings and Anglo lords. It may have happened that news had reached Rome of the death of Bishop Hugh either innocently or through political intrigue.

A lengthy dispute broke out between the Mac Cárthaigh and O'Driscoll dynasties over who was the rightful bishop of Ross, during which the O'Driscolls made many false accusations against Mac Cárthaigh. Bishop O'Driscoll assumed Thaddeus was an imposter and complained to Rome. In 1485, Henry VII became king of England, Ireland, and Scotland, and his party wanted to have its own representative as bishop of Ross. Mac Cárthaigh was declared an intruder and excommunicated. In 1488 Pope Innocent VIII confirmed the excommunication, at which time Mac Cárthaigh appealed the decision and a commission was set up. The commission found in his favour, and the excommunication was nullified. He was then appointed Bishop of Cork and Cloyne on 21 April 1490.

Bishop of Cork and Cloyne.

Returning to Munster, Mac Cárthaigh found that Gerald FitzGerald had usurped the Diocese of Cork and Cloyne with support from local rulers. Opponents of the Mac Cárthaigh dynasty included the corporation of the City of Cork, and the Earl of Desmond. Gerald Fitzgerald had the backing of leading landowners in the county.

Armed men took possession of the cathedral preventing Mac Cárthaigh from entering. For two years, he travelled from town to village armed with the papal documents announcing his rightful appointment and absolution from any criminal charge. Having opposed any retaliation by his own lineage, they too abandoned him. Without dynastic support, status or security, Mac Cárthaigh once again set off for Rome to plead his case to the Pope. Pope Innocent XIII gave him another document dated 18 July 1492. It ordered that Gerald, Earl of Kildare, at that time, one of the most powerful figures in Ireland, should, with his army, protect and restore Mac Cárthaigh to his rightful place as Bishop of Cork and Cloyne.

Fearing danger to his life from his enemies, Mac Cárthaigh set out for Ireland as a pilgrim. Fourteen weeks later, Mac Cárthaigh arrived at Ivrea having presumably walked from Rome. On the evening of 24 October 1492, a lone pilgrim arrived on foot at the hostel for pilgrims. Dressed in a coarse habit and hood and wearing the oyster shell emblem that ensured safe passage, he appeared to be very weak and worn out by fatigue. The warden of the hostel gave the exhausted traveler a hospitable welcome and a place to rest for the night. At dawn, a strange and mysterious light was observed coming from his room. On entering, the warden discovered the body of the pilgrim illuminated by a beautiful radiance of light. Tadhg Mac Cárthaigh was 37 years old.árthaigh

The priests of the parish are available to visit the sick and the housebound on the first Friday of each month.  If you would like a visit or you know someone who would like a visit, please make contact with the parish office on 22828.

The heating has just been turned on in the Cathedral. Let’s try to keep the place warm by closing doors as we leave. It’s a gesture towards conservation of energy, not to mention saving a few euro and a nod, at least, in the direction of climate change and the environmental crisis looming. We’re all in it together!!


The Skibbereen Town Stations for Autumn 2018 will be held on:

Friday, 25th October 2019 @ 7:30 pm at Cara House on Market Street for – Bridge St, Ilen St, Upper Bridge St, Assumption Place, Ilen Villas, Flaxmills, Patrick’s Place, Blackthorn Place, Riverdale, Coronea – Shelley’s Road, Newbridge, Newbridge Park, Inse Alainn.  High St, Sycamore Heights, Gortnaclohy Heights, St Fachtna’s Terrace, Hill Crest, Pound Hill, Ard Carraig, Chapel Lane, Home Rule Terrace. Market St, Warner’s Lane, Cois Caol, The Mills, The Hawthorns, Gortnaclohy Rd, North St, The Square, Main St.

Tuesday, 29th October 2019 @ 7:30 pm at The Rugby Club on the Bypass Road for – Lurriga, Mill Rd, Milland, Russagh, Assolus, Cork Rd, Gortnaclohy North, Gortnaclohy South.

Wednesday, 30th October 2019 @ 7:30 pm at Co-Action on Mardyke Street for – Baltimore Rd, Abhainn Beag, Townsend St, 98th St, The Orchards, Mardyke St, Mardyke Court, Mardyke Park, Coronea Lower, Coronea Upper, Coronea – The Hill, Coronea Court, Coronea Drive, Carrigfadda.  

Donation envelopes will be available at the door on the day.  The Station Mass will be followed by tea/coffee and an opportunity to meet and chat with neighbours.  We look forward to seeing you at the Autumn Town Stations 2019.


First Holy Communions–


The next sacramental mass will be in the Cathedral in Skibbereen on Sat the 9th of Nov and will be the enrolment mass for Holy Communion.  (Note change of date from the 2nd to the 9th of November.)


Rath: Wed 13th May at 10.30am

Holy Communions

Skibbereen: Saturday May 9th at 11.00am

Rath and the Islands: Saturday May 23rd at 11.00am

Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults: RCIA: is an opportunity for those who as adults wish to receive the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation.

Training for leaders is provided by the Diocese.

Thursdays 24th October and 21st November at 7:30pm to 9:30pm  in the Clonakilty Parish Centre

To download a RCIA Course application form, click here

RCIA Application Form Return to Home Page

Understanding Yourself, a Talk for Autistic Teens & Their Parents. This talk is suitable for teens with a diagnosis of autism or Aspergers. Bru Columbanus, Wilton, Sat Nov 2nd 12-2pm. More info under Autism Training on

New Rotas for the Ministers of the Word and Eucharist are available in the Sacristies.

The new Parish Assemblies will be commissioned this weekend as part of our Sunday Celebrations.


Take the TRIP of a LIFETIME to the HOLY LAND, June 8th-18in 2020

Group Leader, Micheal de Barra and Spiritual Director, Fr. John Newman (Bible Scholar)

in association with Premier Travel, Cork

Contact Micheal at 0868337681 or email

(See also our website:

Highly recommended!


I am contacting from a charity called SERVE. We are an overseas volunteering and development organisation based in Scala,
Blackrock, Cork.
Fr. Gerry O’Connor CsSR is the Chairperson and the founder of SERVE.

We have launched our recruitment for the 2020 Summer Volunteer Programme and would love to let more people in Cork know
about it. Would we be able to help us promote it amongst the Diocese of Cork and Ross?

If you would like to know more about our volunteer programme please visit our website

volunteer-programme-2020/ or my contact details are below too.

Thank you for your help!

Kind Regards,

Paula Quigley

Programmes and Administration Manager

Scala, Castle Road, Blackrock, Cork

P:+353(0)21 435 8800 Ext. 204

M; +353 (0) 83 8593606