St Columba’s Church
This church is located in Ennis, principle town in County Clare. There is a service held here every Sunday at 11.30am. The service form alternates between Morning Prayer and Holy Communion. Other services are arranged for feast days and special days as desired locally. A feature has been made of Easter week worship involving prominent people from the town who participate in reflections and readings. Soup and sandwiches are served afterwards. There are two parish readers active in St. Columba’s church who assist the minister by leading worship in his absence. Select vestry meetings are held regularly and are well attended.
There is an excellent two manual pipe organ in the church, fully exercised under the skilful and long-standing control of Mr. Nigel Bridge. This beautiful instrument inspires weekly worship and the naturally excellent acoustics of the church also allows for occasional other musical and cultural events.
The church hall is accommodated in the rear of the building. This was constructed around 1982-3 during the ministry of the former Dean of Limerick Maurice Talbot. A foyer and meeting hall, with kitchen and toilets are wonderful additions to the Church. These were constructed from space at the rear of St Columba’s, adding to, rather than taking away from the ambiance of architect Francis Bindon’s compelling design.
The rectory is a 1960’s style building situated beside the church. It is spacious and comfortable but currently needs some refurbishment.
Ennis is the administrative town for County Clare and the municipal offices for the county are based here. The population of the town is 25,000 plus which makes it a busy town with expanding commercial enterprises. Ennis hosts major festivals and events making it a thriving outgoing community. Fringe events and recitals during these festivals are welcomed in the church. The town is centrally located not too distant from Limerick City to the south and Galway City to the north. Shannon Airport is only 28km away.
There are a number of hospitals in Ennis including Ennis General Hospital, St. Joseph’s Community Hospital and Cahercalla Hospice. Hospital visitation is a necessity in the parish grouping.
In recent times St. Columba’s has been host to persons doing community service who have been referred by the district court. They are working with church representatives to clean, maintain and refurbish areas of the church. This has been a beneficial development for the church.