Celebrating St John’s Eve at Doonpeter

Fr Denis Cotter PP addressing the crowd at St John's Holy Well last week in Doonpeter. (Picture: Kevin Egan)

By John Arnold

When the combined forces of O’Neill and O’Donnell, on their way to Kinsale in 1599 burned the Church at Doonpeter to the ground because Lord Barrymore wouldn’t assist them, little did they realise how special this site is to the people of Glenville and surrounding areas.

A Papal decree from Rome in the year 1189 mentioned the Church of ‘Dunpeter’. That was all of 832 years ago and yet the tradition of making ’rounds’ at St John’s Well continues still, in spite of dungeon, fire and sword.

On Wednesday night of last week, June 23rd the Eve of St John’s Day, in age-old fashion they gathered once more at Doonpeter.

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