St Matthew's Church Drumavaddy
was a medieval parish church in the townland of Carrickaboy, a short
distance away from the present day St Matthew’s Church.
The foundations of the church are still present in the old cemetery
there. This church was marked on William Petty’s 1685 General
Mapp of Ireland though
it was being used by the Established Church at that time.
A rectangular barn church was built on the site of the present day
church about the year 1770. This chapel doubled as a school during the
week. It is thought that Latin was taught in this school.
work was carried out on the church in 1865 when Fr Patrick Gilroy was
parish priest and Fr Patrick Daly and Fr Bernard Fitzpatrick were curates.
It was made into a cruciform shape in that year, a shape it still
retains today. Because part of
the old barn church was incorporated into cruciform church it can claim to
be one of the oldest churches in the diocese of Kilmore.
photograph of the church in 1947 shows it surrounded by trees with a bell
mounted directly over the main doorway and
1957, while Fr James O’Reilly was parish priest, extensive work costing
a total of £18,000 was carried out on the church.
The walls were raised by seven feet and a new slated roof was put
on. A new entrance porch, baptistery, gallery and sacristy were built. The
architect was Patrick Gaffney and the contractors were Smith &
O’Reilly from Ballyhaise. The church was rededicated by Bishop Austin
Quinn on 28 September 1958.
work was carried out on the Church in 2012 as it put in.
Three stained glass windows, which came from the convent of Mercy
in Dungarvan, were put in the sanctuary. An reredos and new altar, lectern
and presidential chair were added. The
old limestone baptismal font was restored. The sacristy was reordered and
is now suitable for Adoration and meetings. The main contractor was
Michael B. Hyland and the architect was Noel Smith. The work started in
April and was completed in November 2012. The church was rededicated by
Bishop Leo O’Reilly on 24 February 2013.