Lion of the Fold
Archbishop John MacHale of Tubbernavine Addergoole 1791 - 1881
Archbishop MacHale is considered one of the most remarkable men of his time. Born in 1791, in Tubbernavine, his father was Pádraig Mor MacHale, and his mother was Mary Mulhern. He had five brothers and two sisters. Their names were Thomas, Martin, Myles, Patrick, Edward, Ann and Mary.
John MacHale went to the hedge school in Lahardane at the age of six or seven.
As a child, John MacHale witnessed two events which had a major effect on his life. He saw the French march up by his house in 1798. He also saw local people carrying Father Conroy's body, the priest he had served Mass for, down from Castlebar where he had been hanged for treason because he had shown the French the short way up to Castlebar- through the Windy Gap.
Archbishop MacHale was a great friend of the statesman Daniel O'Connell. He gave the Archbishop the title "Lion of the fold of Judah".
In 1981 the Centenary of Archbishop MacHale's death was celebrated with special ceremonies in Lahardane and Castlebar. The people of Addergoole are still very proud of their illustrious Churchman, who was a brave and courageous leader when times were hard and the people needed a voice to speak on their behalf.