The Priory Church of St. John the Evangelist (St. John’s Church), John Street, Kilkenny will celebrate its 200th anniversary on Friday at 7.30pm.
Extensive renovations and redecorating have been completed recently for the worship service and celebration to commemorate this anniversary.
The Right Rev Michael Burrows, the Church of Ireland Bishop of Cashel Ferns and Ossory, will preside.
All members of the Kilkenny community are welcome to join the congregation on this festive occasion.
St. John’s is a thriving Church of Ireland parish church in the heart of the city in which the parishioners gather to worship on Sundays and Holy Days.
St. John’s Church has played a significant role in the history of Kilkenny. In 1211, Earl Marshall, the Norman lord who built Kilkenny Castle, gave an endowment to the Canons Regular of St. Augustine and land “beyond the bridge of Kilkenny to the East and adjoining the same bridge” (referring to what is known today as John’s Bridge).
On December 27, 1220, the feast of St John, Mass was celebrated for the first time on the high altar of the new abbey.
The church was adapted in 1817 from the Lady Chapel of the more extensive Priory whose medieval ruins dating to 1220 are still there. Renovations included substantial improvements to the famous coloured-glass windows on the south side through which sunshine streams and enlivens the interior in a unique and vibrant way. This is reflective of the church’s longstanding title as “The Lantern Church of Ireland” because of the magnificence of its window formation and lighting interior.