Parish History

St Mochta's Stain glass window

ST MOCHTA: THE MAN AND THE LEGEND

Born 445 died.circ. 535. Feastday August 19

St Mochta was born in Britain but was brought to Ireland as a child by his Christian parents. There he became a disciple of St. Patrick. Legend says that Mochta was educated and consecrated first bishop of Louth in Rome by Pope St. Leo I. However scholars say that it was St. Patrick who consecrated him. Legends also say that Mochta lived to be 300 years old and numbered 200 bishops among his disciples.

He first established a monastery at Kell Mor ydan (unidentified location) in County Meath and then moved north - because of local opposition - to Louth monastery with twelve companions where he founded a large monastery, which soon enjoyed a nationwide reputation. There is also a tradition that he founded a monastery in Kilmore Co. Armagh, but little is know of this and nothing remains

Legendary elements in his Life include a mutual agreement with Patrick that each would look after the others community after the founders death: that he lived for 300 years because he doubted the ages of the Old testament patriarchs, and even that he had 300 hundred bishops as his disciples.