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Mass Rock Sites of:


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Coolagh Mass Rock  (Crestwood)

On a strip of grass in Crestwood housing estate.


This mass-rock consists of a large limestone boulder (1.9m NW-SE; 1.7m NE-SW) that is pentagonal in plan.


The upper surface is flat and fairly even, sloping from 1m in height at E to 0.9m at W.

Co-ordinates: 53°17'27.2"N 9°02'59.7"W

The Coolagh (also spelt Coolough) Mass Rock was moved when the local Crestwood housing estate was built.  It is now situated within a boundary wall at the end of a row of houses.

The Coolough 365 People and Place Committee have erected a sign and information to aid a better understanding of both its spiritual and historical heritage.

Ballycolgan Mass Rock

Situated on Private Land.

The Mass Rock in Ballycolgan is located beside a ruined lime kiln. There are a number of boulders near the Mass Rock and these may be part of the ruins of St Patrick’s church (the name of the church is now preserved in the name of a nearby house).


The Mass Rock is about 1.5m in height and measures 0.6m wide and 2.7m long.


The Mass Rock is mentioned in the following book accessed at the Hardiman Library Archives at NUI Galway: Higgins, Jack (1990) The White Canons, Abbeytown Cill-na-Manach. A History of the Monastery of The White Canons and Other Historical Places in the District of Maigh Seola. Galway: Crowsrock Press.


Mullagh Mass Rock altar

The top of a Mass Rock altar may be located in the sacristy of St Brendan’s Church in Mullagh. It is inscribed with the name of the parish priest 'Father John Dolan' in the year 1760.


Sincere thanks to Father Niall Foley for allowing access to the sacristy and allowing photographs of the altar


Mullagh Penal Chapel

Built by Patrick Kirrilly and his son in 1762 St Brendan’s chapel has been altered since its original construction.


Father Niall Foley advises that, unusually the altar faces north as this was the only direction in which the church could be extended when it was enlarged due to its proximity to the road.

Co-ordinates: 53°13'13.37N -8°23'40.08"W


Mass Rock Sites beyond the Irish Borders

Slide show

Mass Rock


Mass Site, Claregalway Abbey

Mass was celebrated in Penal times in the ruins of Claregalway Abbey and continued to be celebrated there well into the nineteenth century.

The Mass site is mentioned in the following book accessed at the Hardiman Library Archives at NUI Galway: Hughes, Ml J (1997) History and Folklore of the Barony of Clare, Co. Galway. Galway: Connacht Tribune.

Co-ordinates: 53°20'49.0"N 8°56'38.4"W



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