Naas parish church has reopened to the community following a major refurbishment project and a rededication ceremony led by Rev. Denis Nulty, Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin on Sunday, November 24.
A substantial amount of work was undertaken at the historic building, which dates back to 1827, forcing the closure of the church for a period.
The final bill for the work is expected to be well in excess of €1m., and close to €1.5m.
“We are glad to be at the point of completion of the project; it has gone well for us and hopefully the completed work will be uplifting for everybody,” Fr. John Brickley, Parish Priest, told the Leader.
He added: “Every generation has to do something to look after the church building and hopefully the work we have undertaken will be up to the mark. The church is a hugely important place for so many people.”
Masses normally celebrated at the Church of Our Lady and St. David moved to other locations as the work progressed, notably the CBS secondary school, the former Nuns’ Chapel nearby and the Church of the Irish Martyrs in Ballycane.
The renovation project embraced roofing repairs, re-rendering and re-pointing of external walls and work to leaded and stained glass windows which amounted to conservation, repair or reconstruction.
It was also necessary to undertake other internal work and redecoration.
The need to do the work was apparent in 2009 but delays followed as precise plans were drawn up, efforts were made to protect the archaeological importance of the building, and wedding ceremonies either took place or were re-arranged.
Among the first work projects were making the lower public gallery safer and ensuring that the stairs was safe.
The last major renovation project at the church took place in 1985.