The former oratory of the Brigidine Convent in Tullow was recentlypassedby the Brigidine Sisters into the care of Tullow Parish.

St Brigids Oratory, as it is now called wasformally handed over in a ceremony on 25th November 2007 attended by Bishop Jim Moriarty and Sr Anna Creagh, Brigidine Provincial Leader along with Mgr Brendan Byrne, Parish Priest of Tullow.

During the ceremony, Sr.Creagh presented Mgr Byrne with the key of the oratory to symbolise the transfer of its custodial care.

This transfer coincides with a renovation project undertaken by the Parish so that the oratory can serve for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and for various small group liturgies.

The oratory can be accessed from the main Church, this access further enchanced by addition of a lift.

The striking feature of the oratory is the rose window which has even greater impact due to the earlier division of the original chapel into two levels (see fuller history below). The lower level underneath the oratory now includes aMuseum.

History

Bishop Daniel Delany, founder of the BrigidineSisters,began building the little Chapel, in 1814, the year of his death, but nothing had been done towards funding it, as the income was considered too small to allow the Sisters to continue the building.

Having obtained permission from Bishop Doyle (JKL) in 1822 to continue, they did so, curtailing as much expense as possible and the Chapel was nearly finished by the end of the year.

Dr Doylecelebrated the first Mass in it on 21st April 1823. He placed it under the protection of St Brigid.

On 3rd October 1875, feast of the Holy Rosary, Cardinal Cullen solemnly dedicated both the Parish Church and the Convent Chapel. At this time the Convent Chapel was dedicated to St Joseph. This solemn dedication was a continuation of the Dedication ceremony begun in the Parish Church.

(The Annals state: there is no certainty that His Eminence dedicated the Convent Chapel to St Joseph, the probability is in favour of its being, as the Parish Church, dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary. (The Carlow Post gave fuller particulars)

In July 1976 the possibility of renovating the Chapel to bring it into line with Liturgical requirements was suggested, and work began. A concrete floor was put in to divide the building in two. The work was completed in 1977.

The upper part of the building now became the Convent Chapel and the lower level was divided into three rooms: library, community room and Heritage Room.