Parish Groups


The function of the Finance Committee is to advise and support the Parish Priest in areas relating to the financial management and administration of parochial property and goods. It is responsible for helping the parish priest to oversee the effective running of the Parish Finances.

The Committee meets every month and considers income and expenditure matters with particular attention being paid to the financing of all major projects and building works

The10 members of the Committee are drawn from a range of relevant backgrounds including those with legal, financial and technical and building expertise and experience.

The Draw Committee was set up in 2002 to raise money for major projects like the renovation of St Malachy's Church, the building of a new parish centre.

The members and their network of promoters rely on the support of parishioners and friends.

With the completion of the work of St Malachy's Church in 2005 the group intends to focus its efforts on raising finance for the Parish Centre. They are keen to enlist new members with fresh ideas and lots of energy.

To date the group had raised over £300, 000.

The committee is made up of eight members who are responsible for the Parish Cemetery in Aughlisnafin.

With the Parish Priest they decide on and plan improvements and maintenance of the cemetery.

They are responsible for the cemetery regulations and ensuring that they are being adhered to.

The committee also organise the annual open air mass  in the Cemetery on last Sunday in the June.

Members are interested in hearing any ideas for the continued improvements of the Cemetery.


Membership of the group, set up in 1992, is drawn from the Church of Ireland, Catholic, Presbyterian and Baptist Churches in the Castlewellan, Newcastle and Dundrum areas.

Meetings every Monday night, at 7.45pm in the Corncrane provide a friendly environment in which members can listen and:

Study scripture
Explore the differences and similarities between churches and cultures with a view to enriching their own faith
Support and Pray for each other and the local communities

Other activities include arranging Alpha Courses, hosting Irish School of Ecumenics talks and organising Lenten Lunches and the Good Friday walk.
New Members are very welcome.

The Kilmegan Lourdes Group set up in 1982 was formed out of an identified need among the sick parishioners to make pilgrimage to Lourdes in a safe, secure and friendly environment.

The group undertake to raise finances to subsidise the cost of pilgrimages.

The first pilgrimage took place on 17th May 1983.

The Kilmegan Lourdes Group, has been in operation for 24 years and has found the work very rewarding. Parishioners are encouraged to join the Lourdes Group.


The Castlewellan branch of the Young Priests Society was established on 19th March 2001.

At the monthly meeting prayers and reflection are the primary focus. The Society encourages prayer and devotion to the Blessed Sacrament every First Friday and each member recites the Society’s Special Prayer on a daily basis.

The Castlewellan Branch of the Young Priest’s Society has seventeen members and over sixty Associate members, so the branch is strong and thriving though there is much work to be done in the future.

Meeting take place the first Monday evening of every month.


The Legion of Mary is an association of men and women working under the leadership of Mary in the service of the Church.

The Kilmegan Legion of Mary group – Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Praesidium – was started in the parish by the late Canon James Duff back in 1952.

The work of the Praesidium is varied and includes (apart from praying )

Visitation of the sick, elderly and lonely in their own homes, in the Nursing Homes in the parish, in the local hospitals

House to house visitation

Religious instruction of those interested in the Faith

Helping in the St Vincent de Paul Holiday Home in Newcastle during the summer months

Helping with the Ministry of Welcome at weekend and Holy Day Masses and the daily recitation of the Rosary before Mass

Organisation of pilgrimages and retreats

The Praesidium has currently 8 Active and 70 Auxiliary Members. The main duty of Auxiliary Members is to support the work of the Active Members by prayer.

The Praesidium, which meets every Monday evening at 6.30 pm would welcome new members both Active and Auxiliary.

St. Vincent De. Paul Conference

The Society of St Vincent De Paul is a Christian voluntary organisation working with poor and disadvantaged people. It is inspired by its principal founder, Blessed Frederick Ozanam and its patron St Vincent De Paul.

Currently, there are nine active members in the Conference continuing the work of aiding the poor and needy. This involves helping young families, elderly people, those who have been re-housed in our area, those coping with illness, those needing help with Government agencies and those recently bereaved.

The Conference recognises poverty and need in other countries and donates money to some of these areas i.e. Ethiopia and Zambia.

Conference meets weekly on Wednesday evenings


Apostolic Work Society was founded in Down and Connor in 1923, the Kilmegan branch held its first meeting on Sunday 15th March 1953 at the invitation of Fr. Duff P.P.

The  methods of fundraising are the annual sale/display of work, collection of donations towards the cost of sacred vessels and door to door collections in the parish.

The society has nineteen active members at present sixteen of whom work in the Mission Shop. Since 1977 Displays and Collections have raised £95,819 to date for the Foreign Missions. Kilmegan is a  ‘missionary minded’ parish.
The Mission Shop first opened in No 41 Lower Square to raise money for the Foreign Missions.

Recruitment of new voluntary workers continues and today sixteen ladies are involved in the day-to-day running of the shop.

The shop takings in 1977 were £181 and since then £293,925 has been forwarded to Diocesan Headquarters for use on the Missions.

The group are hoping to move into newly designed shop in the Parish Centre by Christmas 2007.


Girl Guides/Brígíní/Cygnets

On September 1978 St Malachy’s Guides & Brígínís were formed in Castlewellan with 98 girls from the ages of 7 – 17.

Over the years the members have enjoyed trips to Paris, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Holland, Alton Towers and London.

Cygnets, Brígínís and Guides meeting start every Tuesday evening at 6.30pm.

St Mary's Youth Club

The Youth Club meets in Aughlisnafin Hall every Wednesday and Friday evening during school term time.
Friday - Juniors meet from 7 - 8.30pm and Seniors meet from 8.30 - 10.00pm.
Wednesday - Basketball practice, Junior Secondary School Members meet at 7.00 - 8.30pm and Senior Secondary School members 8.30 - 10.00pm.

Other activities include: leadership training, citizenship, sports activities and trips.

Altar Servers Group
Once children are in primary six they are offered the chance of becoming altar servers. Serving the altar is a great privilege, and everyone who serves the altar does so with great respect.

Canon Magee in is charge of the training and supervision of all Altar Servers.

Interested parents or children should contact one of the priests.



The Church has appointed a Child Protection Officer in each Diocese with responsible persons in each parish.

Every parishioner has a role in supporting this vital work.

Our parish representatives are Colm Crilly and Frances McNally who can be contacted via the Parochial House

For further details the relevant parish organisations involving children, young people and vulnerable adults please click here