Passionists of St. Patrick’s Province
Saint Paul of the Cross lived all his life in Italy, but he always had a special interest in “England and the neighbouring kingdoms” and he prayed continuously for these lands. His desire to see his community established there came to pass in 1841 when Father (now Blessed) Dominic Barberi established a Passionist community at Stone in Staffordshire.
Fr Dominic brought the ministry of the Passionists to Ireland in 1848. He preached the first Passionist Mission in Dublin at Saint Audeon’s, High Street together with Father Ignatius Spencer and his early companions. Fr Ignatius preached the first Passionist Mission in Scotland at Saint Andrew’s, Glasgow, in 1850.
The first Passionist monastery (or ‘Retreats’ as the Founder called them) was opened in Ireland at Mount Argus, Dublin in 1856, and in Scotland at Saint Mungo’s, Glasgow in 1865. Other Retreats were soon set up across the two countries as well as in England and Wales. In the 1970s the Province took over responsibility for the English speaking parish in Paris at St Joseph’s, Avenue Hoche, which the Passionists had founded in 1863.
In 1952, the Province took on responsibility for the missionary Church in Bechuanaland (now Botswana), and soon developed in South Africa as well. Today, the Passionists in southern Africa developed by St. Patrick’s Province thrive in these countries as well as in Zambia and are moving ever closer to autonomy.
At the present time the Passionists of St. Patrick’s Province have communities, and also run parishes, at Mount Argus in Dublin; St. Mungo’s in Glasgow; Holy Cross, Ardoyne in Belfast; and St. Joseph’s in Paris; as well as a Retreat Centre at Tobar Mhuire, Crossgar in Co. Down; and a house of Formation at Ealing in London.
As well as our work in parishes and in building up the local community in the areas where we live, our communities are also available to people to celebrate the sacrament of reconciliation, and for counselling and spiritual direction. Some members are involved in conducting parish missions and retreats, others in various chaplaincies, the academic world, and in publishing and the media.