Our home away from home

The Monastery

Music Ministry Together is held on the campus of Mount Saint Joseph Abbey. Mount Saint Joseph Abbey, Roscrea, was founded by the Cistercians of Mount Melleray Abbey in County Waterford. The property known as Mount Heaton Demesne had been purchased for them by Arthur J. Moore MP of Mooresford House near Tipperary town. Moore was a devout and committed Catholic landlord, who was to become a Papal Count. He was well known to the monks at Mount Melleray and even though he was a very young man, was desirous of establishing another Cistercian monastery in Ireland. The property cost £15,000, £10,000 of which Arthur Moore paid himself. The remainder was raised by mortgage by the new community.

In 1879, the year after coming to Roscrea, the building of the new monastic church was commenced. The architect was William H. Beardwood, who practiced in Dublin and Manchester. The stone for the Church was quarried on the land. Several of the monks , as well as a large contingent of outside masons and labourers, worked on the building.

On 18 September 1881 the Church was dedicated and opened to the public – an extraordinary achievement in such a short period. Only three years later, 9 August 1884, the Church was solemnly consecrated, by which time altars, choir stalls, and rood screen were all in place.

Mount Saint Joseph was constituted an Abbey at the end of 1886, and in August 1887 the monastery buildings were completed and the fine farmyard begun. From the beginning, farming provided the main source of income for the Community, many of the monks being deeply involved in this work.

As time went by the strength of the community at Mount Saint Joseph led to the foundation of other monasteries not just at home, but also much further afield. The first foundation was made in 1946 at Nunraw, on the slopes of the Lammermuir mountains, about 25 miles from Edinburgh. This was the first Cistercian house in Scotland since the Reformation. Roscrea achieved another ‘first’ in 1954, when a foundation was made in the archdiocese of Melbourne, Australia. Bolton Abbey, Moone, County Kildare, became Roscrea’s first Irish foundation in 1965.

The School

Our home for the course is the beautiful campus of Cistercian College, Roscrea. The school is an ideal setting for the course with many breakout rooms, rehearsal rooms, spaces for entertainment and relaxation, a swimming pool, playing fields (although they don’t get used much as we are too busy singing), the dorms and how can we forget the wonderful canteen where you will be fed like Kings and Queens. CCR is an idea setting where you will be welcomed and cared for by the wonderful staff. For more information on CCR check out their website.



There are two options for accommodation in Cistercian College Roscrea. The school offers dormitories which is the main accommodation. Dorms vary in size from 4 – 7 beds per room to the large dorms of around 20! The dorms have recently been renovated and each bed is contained in its own cubicle. Participants staying in dormitories will need to bring bedding with them as this is not provided. Please note you need to also bring your own pillow.

The second option for those who would prefer a private room with ensuite, accommodation is available in the monestary guest house at an additional cost of €15 per night.


During the week our liturgies will mainly take place in the college chapel which will become our prayer space. Participants will be encouraged to help with preparing the space and will work with our liturgy team to enhance our liturgies and learn skills to use in their own ministry. We will also have the opportunity to join the Cistercian Community for prayer in the Monastery Chapel.


The participants will get opportunities to relax and enjoy the extensive grounds and facilities which the Cistercian College has to offer. There will be time to explore the extensive wooded grounds and use the facilities which include outdoor pitches, tennis courts, an indoor swimming pool and chill out areas which are supplied with tea making facilities and televisions. Anna and her team are putting together a programme of fun that will ensure each day you will be both physically and spiritually fulfilled!!!