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The Parish of Donagh, Clogher Diocese.
...last updated on the 6th September 2009.


The Parish of Donagh, situated in North Monaghan, has 138 townlands and is approximately 65 square kilometres in area. The Catholic population has been increasing for the past 40 years and now stands at about 2,400. There are 250-300 Protestants, mostly Presbyterian and Church of Ireland. Mainly a rural parish, it contains two picturesque villages, Emyvale and Glaslough, which are very different in character. There are two Catholic churches: St. Mary’s Glennan, (1837), two kilometres from Glasslough, and St. Patrick’s, Corracrin (1811), two kilometres from Emyvale.

St. Patrick’s, Corracrin (1811)

In Emyvale village there is an oratory; this building was a courthouse before Independence, following which it was a parish hall until it was converted into an oratory in 1971. It was completely rebuilt and dedicated by Bishop Joseph Duffy on the 19th March 2000.

Donagh Oratory at Emyvale.

The Old Donagh.
The townland of Donagh in the centre of the parish contains the ruins of an old church and a graveyard. This church site was an early foundation and remained in use until 1690. Here stands the Donagh Cross, made of stone. The National Museum houses an old bronze processional cross from the parish.
A Famous Pastor.
Canon Patrick Moynagh was Parish Priest of Donagh 1815-1860. In 1830 he organised an emigration to Prince Edward Island, Canada and 60 famililes took up the offer. There is still an ‘Emyvale’ and a ‘Donagh’ in PEI. After his death he bequeathed the interest of his property to the poor of Donagh; this money is still being allocated to the needy through the local St. Vincent de Paul Society.

St. Mary’s Glennan, (1837)

Historical Snippets.
Donagh Parish was the centre of McKenna power for 500 years, from the mid-12th to the mid-17th century. Their headquarters was at Tully Fort, two kilometres from Emyvale. The hill of Drumbanagher, facing St.Mary’s, Glennan, was the scene in 1688 of the first battle of the Williamite War. The novelist William Carleton (1796-1869) received his classical education at Fr. Keenan’s school in Glennan which was right beside the site of the present church. While in Glennan Carleton got the material for his story The Fair of Emyvale, based on the attempted abduction of a young Donagh girl. The Castle in Glaslough was the home of Sir Shane Leslie, author, poet and ardent nationalist.
Sporting, Cultural & Social Activities.
There are numerous sporting, cultural and social organisations which cater for all age groups. The Thursday Club for Senior Citizens, Faith and Friendship parties for the mentally-handicapped, their families and friends, and “Growing Together” for the younger teenagers are recent developments. Many young people are involved in Irish music and dancing and in church music. The Pioneer Branch celebrated its 90th Anniversary in 1998.


St. Patrick’s, Corracrin (1811) - rear view.



PARISH OF DONAGH, Glennan, Glaslough, Co. Monaghan. Tel 047-87221 | Fax 047-88520