A parish is not primarily a place, but a people. As the above verse celebrates, our parish today is a continuation of the life of faith that has been lived here since the flame of faith was kindled by St Patrick on the Hill of Slane and seen on the Hill of Tara. The territory of our Parish is located in the hinterland of Navan, the County Town of Meath, 24 miles from Dublin, on the M3, near the Hill of Tara in the Valley of the Boyne and the Blackwater.
The Parish of Johnstown and Walterstown, created as a union in the early 19th century, was a rural-agricultural community around the tiny village of Johnstown. All of this changed in the 1990s with the building of many huge housing developments which saw the Parish population reach more than 10,000, based on the 2016 Census.
Diocese and Deanery
Our Parish is in the Diocese of Meath, under the spiritual leadership of Bishop Thomas Deenihan from the Cathedral Seat in Mullingar. We are one of eight parishes of the Deanery of Navan, who work together to serve the spiritual needs of the wider community.
The other Parishes of the Deanery are Navan, Skryne, Kilmessan, Bohermeen, Oristown, Castletown-Kilpatrick and Beauparc.
Johnstown church is distinguished by the series of windows commissioned by the Parish from the renowned stained glass artist George Walsh in the years leading up to the millennium 2000. The windows are to be seen on the pages of this website together with features from the church at Walterstown.
Now to be found in the sanctuary of Johnstown church and once again used, as intended, as a baptismal font, the Apostle’s Font is considered one of the most important medieval fonts of Meath, exhibited at the Great Exhibition in Dublin in 1853. First located in the medieval church of St Stephen in Kilcarne Cemetery, the font would originally had been more imposing most likely raised on three octagonal steps and surmounted by an elaborate canopy. Buried underground for many years until recovered and moved to Johnstown church in 1837, as seen today, the font displays a central panel of the Coronation of our Blessed Lady, and eleven panels, each depicting one of the apostles, with their distinctive and identifying emblem.
Home of the Columban Fathers and family since 1938. A witness in our Parish to the Irish missionary movement that has gone forth across the face of the Earth.