Image of St Colmcille's Well

St Colmcille's Well


Ballycullen Road


Media Library - St Colmcille's Well 2


About 200 yards from the front gate of Orlagh is St. Columba's Well on Ballycullen Road. There are many holy wells around Ireland associated with Irish saints. We know that St. Columba (or Colmcille) lived in Dublin at the monastery of St. Mobhi in Glasnevin. There are many reminders of him today in Dublin, e.g, churches dedicated to St. Columba in Iona Road and in Knocklyon, and St. Columba's College about three miles from Orlagh. Little is known about this well. Tradition tells us that St. Columba stopped to rest here and blessed this Well, on one of his visits to Glendalough.


In 1914 a local postman, Jimmy Murray from Rathfarnham re-discovered St. Columba's Well and set about cleaning up the area around it. Soon people from the city and the surrounding area returned to pray at the well. Later students from the nearby Augustinian novitiate undertook to care for the Well. A new entrance was opened and a new wooden bridge was constructed over the stream. In 1919 the statue of St. Columba was brought from Italy and erected over the Well, while a granite shrine was built around it. The stones were transported from an old mill in nearby Old Bawn.


Over the years many people have come on pilgrimage to this Well. Celebrations are held each year on the Sunday nearest the Saint's Feast on June 9th. In recent years this has taken the form of an Ecumenical Prayer Service.


For many years, care of the shrine and the surrounding area had been in the hands of the Augustinians and this transferred to Knocklyon Prish upon their departure from Orlagh. Paddy Joe Cassidy with other members of his family and volunteers continue to ensure that the site is ready to receive the pilgrims who come to honour the saint at the annual pilgrimage.


Please email all enquiries concerning St. Colmcille’s Well to Knocklyon Parish Office:


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