Our Church of Ireland

An extract from Woodmartin's History of Sligo

The parochial district of Rosses Point owes it's formation mainly to the exertions of the late Mrs. E. J. Cooper of Markree Castle, who noticed the long-felt want of a place of worship for the many Protestant visitors to the seaside during the summer months. Originally The Rosses having formed part of the very extensive parish of Drumcliff, depended for the ministrations of religion on the services of the rector and his curate, by whom (during the bathing season) divine worship was conducted on Sunday afternoon in a room of some farmhouse, lent by the owner for the purpose.

At Elsinore, which was then the property of the Cooper family, the visitors to the seaside were invited to attend, and occasionally clergymen of the Diocese, who chanced to be temporarily lodging at the Point, held services and ministered wherever congregations could be brought together.

But the irregularity and inconvenience of these arrangements were keenly felt, when, as happened year by year, the number of Protestant visitors increased.

Therefore, with the consent of the Rev. Thomas Crawford, then Rector of Drumcliff, it was resolved, that a Parochial district should be severed from the mother parish, under what was known as the Peel Act of Parliament, and a church built in which an incumbent should conduct the services of the United Church of England and Ireland, and have spiritual charge of the new parish - the appointment to be placed in the hands of five trustees.

Appeals for aid towards carrying out the desired object were accordingly made, and a sufficient amount was raised for the erection of the church now standing at the entrance to the village of Rosses Point, and also for endowment of the incumbency, whenever a nomination thereto could be made. A sum of over 500 was expended in the building for fittings of the church and 1,395 was provided for endowment. The first stone was laid on the 14th August 1854 - the architect was William Dean Butler, and the builder, Henry Caldwell.

For some years after 1858, when the building was opened for Divine Service during the summer months, the clergy of Drumcliff officiated there on Sunday afternoons and conducted a school for the children of the coastguards and other residents of the district.

In 1867, the then rector, feeling himself unable, through infirmity of age, to keep up the summer service at the Rosses, secured for a short period, the aid of the Rev. Frederick Flood, A.B., Vicar of Kilmood, in the diocese of Down, who eventually accepted the incumbency of the church, and in August, 1869, he entered on the charge of the parish, in which he still continues to serve.