ST. PETER & PAUL’S CHURCH, BALLYMACWARD
The foundation stone of St. Peter and Paul’s (the parish church) was laid in 1851 to replace a thatched church on the same site. The bell tower was added in 1894. When completed, the church was outstanding among rural parish churches in all of Connacht.
ST. MICHAEL’S CHURCH, GURTEEN
The foundation stone of St. Michael’s in Gurteen was laid in 1931. Under the protection of St. Michael, the archangel, this church is dedicated to the memory of Fr. Michael Griffin, a native of Gurteen and a priest of the diocese of Clonfert, who was murdered by forces of the Crown in 1920.
LOCAL NATIONAL SCHOOLS
There are two Primary Schools in the parish, St. Peter and Paul’s, Ballymacward and St. Kerrill’s in Gurteen. St. Peter and Paul National School, was established in 1974 and St. Kerrill’s National School in 1982. Both re co-educational schools and are under the patronage of the Catholic Bishop of Clonfert.
There once lived in the half-parish of Gurteen a saint known as Saint Kerrill. He is the patron saint of the parish and is still venerated by the parishioners. He lived with a community of monks in a monastery situated in the village of Cloonkeen-Kerril which takes its name from the saint. He lived sometime between the sixth and ninth centuries and the ruins of the monastery are still to be seen in Cloonkeen-Kerril.