Thursday, December 15, 2011

DaddyORadio Dedicates an hour to Cillini

December 15 a 1 hour IRISH Show starting at 9:00 Am E.S.T.for all listeners of DaddyORadio. It is being dedicated to Cillini. 
Send in your requests to 
Phone US (803) 661 3441 or 
E-Mail address: mailto:daddyoradio@juno.com
For those of you who may be tuning into DaddyORadio for the first time, read on to learn about Cillini. 
Thank you so very much from the H.U.G. Alliance to DaddyORadio for supporting such a worthwhile and important cause.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Update on Milltown Cemetery Investigation of Geophysical Anomalies

Joint Press Release by Trustees of Milltown Cemetery and
Northern Archeological Consultancy Ltd.

30th November 2011

Investigation of Geophysical Anomalies

Milltown Cemetery Belfast

In spring and early summer 2011, on the instructions of Father Martin Graham and on behalf of The Milltown Cemetery Trustees, a non-intrusive geophysical investigation was carried out by RSK STATS Geoconsult Ltd within an area of Milltown Cemetery and Bog Meadows, Belfast totaling 37 acres in size. Of this, 6 acres were located at the bottom of the current Milltown Cemetery, whilst the remaining 31 acres were within the Bog Meadows which is owned by the Ulster Wildlife Trust.  This survey was commissioned to determine the possible presence and location of graves in the vicinity of the current cemetery. In order to do this several geophysical techniques were utilised to provide the most reliable and complete information with regards to the possible presence and location of graves in the various ground types around the site.

It should be noted that while the geophysical surveys have provided some evidence for graves at the site it has identified some anomalies which may derive from other causes The survey was a highly specialised piece of work, but as noted throughout the report it cannot be definitive in asserting whether or not a specific location had been used for human burial. To confirm or refute the presence of burials it is necessary to investigate by trenching.

As a result of the techniques employed a combined anomaly map, illustrating areas of potential disturbance was produced and a series of recommendations made.

It was recommended that a representative sample of medium and low confidence possible graves indicated by the data be targeted in areas across the 6-acre and 31-acre sections to prove the nature of these obstructions. It was also recommended that broader areas within the resistivity data that potentially correlate with graves be investigated using appropriate forensic techniques. Where data suggests heterogeneous ground and where the geophysical signals from any graves present may have been masked the areas should be investigated in order to rule out the presence of graves. Where magnetic data show discrete signals that correlate with the location of anomalies indicated from the radar data all or a sample of these locations should be investigated. It was recommended to target a number of the anomalies that are in close proximity to anomalies considered to be more likely due to graves, and also a small representative sample of locations elsewhere in order to provide confidence that these anomaly types are not likely to represent graves.

Proposed works
Subsequent to a geophysical survey at Milltown Cemetery carried out in early Summer 2011, Northern Archaeological Consultancy Ltd were contracted, in September 2011, to propose a test trenching exercise to fulfill the recommendations of the geophysical survey and subsequently investigate a sample of recorded anomalies to determine whether or not they are burial related.

It was proposed that a series of test trenches be hand excavated through a selection of the anomalies to determine whether they are present as a result of burials and if not to establish, if possible, the cause of the anomaly. As well as this we have been asked to investigate two areas currently laid out as burial plots within the cemetery to establish whether or not there are burials present, and to investigate part of the area of the easternmost cemetery road as it appears that there are a series of anomalies running along it which suggest burials along its current length.  The 51 locations (3 in the area relating to the drainage works for the Ulster Wildlife Trust and 45 in the area relating to the area surveyed during the Phase 2 Survey have been chosen to examine a variety of anomaly types and as wide an extent of the site as possible, without disturbing more than necessary. As the area with the greatest concentration of targets has been returned to the cemetery with the assumption that the vast majority of contacts are burials it is been deemed unnecessary to investigate that section other than to investigate the former car park areas and the road, as well as the specific areas requested in the southern and northern parts of the cemetery. The trenches, will be laid out on the ground by the persons who conducted the survey; RSK.

A series of 51, 1m wide trenches, totaling around 585m in length, will be excavated by hand, to establish the underlying ground conditions and to locate the nature and extend of burials across the site.  Where appropriate, the excavation may require using a mini digger or other small mechanical excavator with a flat bucket (sheugh bucket), to remove rubble or lift hard surfaces but will not be used in locating burials. The sod and vegetation will be lifted, stored separately and re-laid after back filling to minimise disturbance after the investigation is over. To be certain if burials are present or absent the excavation will continue to the water table, undisturbed subsoil or to the surface of any burial or reason for the anomaly.  Manual techniques will be used where suspected burials are encountered, or if delicate work is required.  It is likely that most of the anomalies are visible or present within 1m of the surface, though this may not be the case if multiple burials are present.

Work will be carried out in three phases with trenching in Phase 1 being 9 trenches (Trenches 1 to 9) totaling around 220m located in the current cemetery and in the 6 acres returned to the Trustees of Milltown. 38 trenches total around 335m in length (Trenches 10 to 47) and are located in the land currently owned by the Ulster Wildlife Trust. A further 4 trenches 47-51, around 30m in length, have been requested following consultation with all concerned parties, these will be undertaken as Phase 3.

Trenches will be backfilled as the work progresses rather than left open to minimise potential for injury or further disturbance. This part of the work will be carried out using a mechanical excavator as will hard surface and rubble removal, under the direction and supervision of the archaeologist. 

Any burials or archaeological sites or features discovered during archaeological trial trenching will be preserved in situ. If it is deemed to be a potential grave it will be investigated to the level where it is possible to determine whether or not it is an actual human burial. If a burial is uncovered the relevant contacts will be informed. They will be located using GPS, and marked on a master plan created using an EDM.  A report detailing this information will be created and submitted to the relevant persons subsequent to the investigation.  Please note that no excavation or removal of burials and/or archaeological remains will be undertaken during this investigation and that no invasive archaeological excavation can be undertaken prior to NIEA consultation and approval of a scheme of works.

Unauthorised burials
There is the potential for burials to be uncovered during this investigation that were not sanctioned by the Catholic Church or the management and staff of the cemetery  If such  burials are uncovered within the area in the ownership or formerly in the ownership of the trustees of Milltown Cemetery it is an unauthorised burial. If this is the case the site investigation will be halted in that area, Father Martin Graham, and the other representatives of the cemetery and Ulster Wildlife Trust will be contacted and the PSNI will be informed.   Their requirements will then be followed.

For more information, contact

Fr Edward McGee
Down and Connor Diocese
Media Liaison Officer
Tel. 07811144268

Sunday, October 23, 2011

In memory of the Family of Babies Children and Adults who are Buried in The Bog Meadows area of Miltown Cemetery and Throughout the Island of Ireland

Written by Aine Mac Aohda


Sister Monica had a special box
sat on her wooden desk beside her cane
her roll book, rosaries and bible.
Collections for the little mites
limbo babies
pagan babies
lost souls
the unbaptised
Nothing more to be said.
At age six we prayed hard for the babies
nameless and godless and without
questioning the word of God
or Mother Monica we felt loss.
I held an image of a lost soul in my mind
carried it with me into secondary school.
In childhood overheard muttered prayers
A grandmother weeping
a trail of tears when thought un-noticed.
Visits to ancient church ruins
flowers laid by the old stones
prayers said while watching the invisible
blow leaves around the ruins.
Babies denied recognition
Buried on the outer edge of their parish churches
Babies who had no place in heaven.
Their sin, still born, unbaptised at the time of death.
Parents lost in the mire of faith, grieved alone.
Under the landscapes of boundaries
and fields many mass graves lie denied.
For them I mourn…

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

On the "Churching" of Women

I heard of this practice the other day so I "googled" it and saw that there is quite a bit of information on it (see

Churching is a blessing by a priest that is bestowed upon women who have just given birth. It was usually done forty days after the birth, that period of time given to the mother to rest in preparation for returning to Church and participation in the sacraments.

I was surprised to find out that my own mother had been churched after the births of my five brothers and sisters and myself in the 1950's and 60's. The daughter of Irish immigrants, the churching ritual was practiced mostly in the UK and Ireland and was continued in this country for many years. However, it is no longer practiced in mainstream Catholic Churches like it once was. 

According to Church laws, any woman who died within that 40 day time period following the birth, gave birth to a stillborn baby, was unmarried, or was otherwise not churched for whatever reason was seen in the eyes of the Church as unclean and therefore could be denied burial in consecrated grounds. For that reason, many of them are buried in the Cillini.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fiercely Protect Your National Heritage

As you may have heard, a proposal has been made by the Irish Department
of Arts, Heritage  the Gaeltacht to remove statutory protection from
archaeological and historical sites that post-date 1700.

This is a very troubling proposition. The Irish people have a right to
preserve and protect that which is important and dear to them. That includes
environmental protection and historic and cultural preservation. It is what makes
up their heritage and should not be left vulnerable or endangered.

The bodies discovered in the Cillini at Milltown alone may be the tip
of the proverbial iceberg . To suddenly leave them defenseless would be
nothing less than criminal.

Enough  injustices have already taken place.

Make sure that your voice is heard.

Don't let your heritage go unprotected.

Contact your government officials and let them know that you are against
this proposal.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Who Was Denied Burial in Consecrated Grounds and Why

Though the Catholic Church has changed it's stance on many issues, in the past the Church had complete power and the people were basically at their mercy. Catholic burials were denied to many groups of people.

Only baptized persons who have a claim to Christian burial and the rites of the Catholic church could obtain a Catholic burial. This obviously excluded unbaptized babies.

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia: “Moreover no strict claim can be allowed in the case of those persons who have not lived in communion with the Church according to the maxim which comes down from the time of Pope Leo the Great (448) “quibus viventibus non communicavimus mortuis communicare non possumus” (we cannot hold communion in death with those who in life were not in communion with us). It has further been recognized as a principle that the last rites of the Church constitute a mark of respect which is not to be shown to those who in their lives have proved themselves unworthy of it.”

Others who have historically and are today excluded from Catholic burial include pagans, Jews, infidels, heretics (and their adherents), schismatics, apostates and excommunicated persons. In fact, if an excommunicated person is buried in a church or in consecrated land, the place is thereby desecrated, and, wherever possible, the remains must be exhumed and buried elsewhere.

People who are of mixed marriages cannot be buried in a Catholic Cemetery unless the marriage is blessed by a priest. Therefore the Catholic spouse would have to be buried in a non-denominational cemetery if they wished to be buried next to their non-Catholic spouse.

Further, Catholic burial is to be refused to suicides except in case that the act was committed when they were of unsound mind or unless they showed signs of repentance before death occurred.

Criminals cannot be given a Catholic burial since they have mortal sin on their souls.

Perhaps one of the most difficult to justify is the denial of Catholic burial for the mentally ill (referred to as lunatics and possibly possessed by a devil). Given the fact that as many as one in four people suffer from some kind of mental illness, this could constitute a huge number.


Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Joyful Irish View of the Afterlife

An excerpt from a page created by M. Seaver. Last revised 3/28/00.

The world of the Irish afterlife is known by many names. The exact location of this wonderful land is not known. The one thing agreed upon by most is that it lies to the west of Ireland. Some of the names associated with it are:

  • Tir na n-Og
  • The Land of the Young
  • Hy-Brasil
  • the Isle of the Blest

Beyond all dreams my land delights,
Fairer than any eyes have seen,
All year round, the fruits hang bright,
As the flowers bloom in the meadows green.
Wild honey drips from the forest trees,
We have endless stocks of meadow and wine,
No illness comes from Across the seas,
Nor death, nor pain, nor sad decline.
No boredom comes to feast or chase,
The music plays as the champions sport,
The light and splendours all increase
Each day in the Golden Land of Youth. (qtd. in Delaney 87)

Everything in this land was beautiful, bright and colorful. Delaney notes that it is called the Land of the Young because in this paradise, the aging process is reversed, so the youngest are the wisest. Time has no meaning in this place, and day changes to night and then back to day for one person whenever they desired it to do so. Everyone's soul desired to get to this wonderful place, which was more like a dream world than a land for the dead (85-95). The land was full of color, it was a lively land, bright and cheerful. It was as large or as small of a land as they wanted.

Works Cited

Cerf, Bennet and Donald S. Klopfer. Bulfinch's Mythology. New York: Random House, 1960.
Delaney, Frank. Legends of the Celts. New York: Sterling, 1992.
Fitzgerald, Dominic. "Celtic Mythology." August 1998. Online. 21 Oct. 1999 <>
Severy, Merle. "The Celts." National Geographic 151 no. 5 (May 1997): 582-633.

History and Thought of Western Man
Rich East High School * Park Forest, IL 60466

Friday, September 2, 2011

National Suicide Prevention Week - September 4-10, 2011

Join us in changing the legacy of those lost to suicide this week during National Suicide Prevention Week.

It gives us all an opportunity to say a prayer or  simply think positive thoughts about those who may have lost that battle.

Acknowledge those who were denied a burial in consecrated grounds like the many who were buried in Bog Meadows.

Suicide is preventable and we can all play a role in raising that awareness.

Irish National Register of Cillini and National Marker for these Sites


Toni Maguire, the Milltown Archaeologist has just received a new survey of the Bog Meadows in Belfast. It was done with ground penetrating radar. Initially she estimated that there were 30,000 bodies buried there but the new survey has shown more mass graves.

Furthermore she believes a 3rd survey is in order on grounds where a motorway now stands. This is a huge issue as Ireland has thousands of Cillini sites all throughout the country.

We hope to achieve the right to a decent burial for stillbirths throughout the world, an Irish national register of Cillini and a national marker for these sites.

New Legislation Desperately Needed on Cillini

Following is an update on the cillini in Ireland, in particular, the Bog Meadows project. Parents and relatives are currently ignored by the Catholic Church and are unrepresented by society in general.

These sites are fragile and as history has demonstrated, easily destroyed as they usually remain unmarked in the landscape; the location is often remembered only by those who actually buried those babies in Cillini and the grieving parents of the babies.  

In the case of Milltown (as with other Catholic cemeteries across Ireland) those who were not baptised were considered to be unworthy of remembrance and assigned to an unmarked shallow grave in unconsecrated grounds, or mass Poor Ground graves, many times with hundreds of babies in one grave.

One of the main issues to be contended with is the fact that Catholic Cemeteries are private burial grounds, and as such are outside the legal legislation governing the management of council cemeteries.  This effectively allows the church complete autonomy to act as they wish without any regulation. We need new legislation that addresses all the issues surrounding burial practices. 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Project Update

Hello Ms. Maguire:
Thank you for  your post and for your interest in our project.
Of course, we are quite familiar with your name and your wonderful work, having done research on Irish Cilliní.
As you can see from our blog, our original goal was to produce a documentary on the subject, but then got word that the BBC was doing just that (a bit larger than our operation, as you might well imagine). However, we were not deterred, as what we lack in size, we make up for in commitment and perseverance. We continued with the listing of Cilliní throughout Ireland. After that we put together the Facebook Page and slowly, but steadily we are attempting to spread the word.
The tragedy of Milltown of course brought it to the forefront, but it's sad to think that there are so many more, and that behind the numbers are real families who have suffered unimaginable grief. We believe there is still a story that needs to be told.
As you said, there is no memorial to mark the locations, but there are those among us who possess the artistic ability to create something like that and those who have what it takes to bring it to fruition. If we can serve as the "convenors" of those who can accomplish projects such as these, then that will be a job well done. If we can possibly create a documentary down the road that tells the situation in the whole of  Ireland, that would be better yet.
In any event, we would absolutely love to have you involved in our project. Your expertise and knowledge would be most welcome.
Looking forward to hearing from you again.
Maryann Tracy
Belinda Weldon Evangelista


Friday, February 11, 2011

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Irish Cillini

Carrowkeel, Co. Galway
Corcullen, Bushy Park, Co. Galway
Ballintoy Co Antrim
Ballykissane Co Kerry
Ballinaboy Co Cork?
Fourknocks Co Meath
Knockane Co Kerry
Dunloe Co Kerry
Mainistir Chiaráin, Inis Mór
Quigley’s Point, Carrowkeel Co Donegal
Castle Carra, Cushendun Co Antrim
Kill, Monasterevin Co Kildare
Caher Point, Tonatanvally, Achill Island
Johnstown, Co Meath
Ross Co Waterford
Gneevebeg Co West Meath
Rahilly, Co Galway
Ballykilmore, Co West Meath
Templeteenaun, Ballinagee, Co Wicklow?
Celbridge workhouse graveyard, Co Kildare
Carrigatogher (Harding), Co Tipperary?
Milverton Golf Resort, Grange Co Dublin
Laurencefields, Loughrea, Co Galway
Doonties East, Co Kerry?
Johnstown Glebe, Co Laois"St Coey's Wells" Templecowey, Co

lackenavorna Co Tipperary?
Mackney, Co. Galway

Below is a list from Co Roscommon of Childrens burial
groundsTintagh CBG Tintagh Aghanagh Elphin
Church Hill BG & CBG Church Hill Ardcarne Elphin
Correal G'yard & CBG Correal Athleague Elphin
Ardkeenan CBG Ardkeenan Athlone Elphin
Clonellon CBG Cloonillan Athlone Elphin
Glebe G'yard & CBG Glebe Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Cloonlumney CBG Cloonlumney Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Ardkill CBG Ardkill Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Boghtaduff CBG Boghtaduff Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Creggan CBG Creggan Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Hawksford CBG 2 Hawksford Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Hawksford CBG 1 Hawksford Ballaghaderreen Achonry
Gortanure CBG Gortanure Ballaghaderreen (Carracastle)

Derrycoagh CBG Derrycoagh Ballinameen Elphin
Tonroe or Creen CBG Tonroe or Creen Ballinameen Elphin
Carrowreagh CBG Carrowreagh Ballintober Elphin
Lisnagavragh CBG Lisnagavragh Ballyforan Elphin
Turrock CBG Turrock Ballyforan Elphin
Feevagh CBG Feevagh Ballyforan Elphin
Curraghadoon CBG Curraghadoon Ballyforan Elphin
Doon CBG Doon Boyle Elphin
Ballindrumlea CBG Ballindrumlea Castlerea Elphin
Cloonbonniff CBG Cloonbonniff Castlerea Elphin
Clooncoose South CBG Clooncoose South Castlerea Elphin
Tarmon CBG Termon More Castlerea Elphin
Emlagh G'yard & CBG Emlagh Castlerea Elphin
Moor CBG Moor Castlerea Elphin
Attirory CBG Attirory Creagh Clonfert
Ballygortagh CBG Ballygortagh Creagh Clonfert
Kilhooly CBG Cureentorpan Fairymount Elphin
Tully CBG (Kilcorkey) Tully Frenchpark Elphin
Ballaghcullia CBG Ballaghcullia Frenchpark Elphin
Cornamucklagh CBG Cornamucklagh and Falmore Frenchpark

Portahard CBG Portaghard Frenchpark Elphin
Sheepwalk CBG Sheepwalk Frenchpark Elphin
Kilbegnet Old GY & CBG Kilbegnet Kilbegnet (aka Creggs)

Ballymoylin CBG Ballymoylin Kilglass Elphin
Brideswell CBG Brideswell Kiltoom & Cam Elphin
Carrick CBG Carrick Kiltoom & Cam Elphin
Lysterfield CBG 2 Lysterfield Kiltoom & Cam Elphin
Lysterfield CBG 1 Lysterfield Kiltoom & Cam Elphin
Coolnageer BG & CBG Coolnageer Kiltoom & Cam Elphin
Ballybane Upper CBG Ballybane Upper Kiltullagh Tuam
Castlequarter CBG Castlequarter Kiltullagh Tuam
Clooncrim CBG Clooncrim Kiltullagh Tuam
Meeltraun CBG Meeltraun (Denis Kelly) Kiltullagh Tuam
Stonepark South CBG Stonepark South Kiltullagh Tuam
Teampalin Mhuire CBG Pollanalty West Kiltullagh Tuam
Themhair GY & CBG Churchquarter Kiltullagh Tuam
Scrine CBG Skrine Knockcroghery Elphin
Carnagh East CBG Carnagh East Knockcroghery Elphin
Carrownaknockaun CBG Carrownaknockaun LoughgIinn Elphin
Cloonargid CBG Cloonargid Loughglinn Elphin
Clooncan CBG Clooncan Loughglinn Elphin
Gortaganny CBG Gortaganny Loughglinn Elphin
Tully CBG (Tibohine) Tully Loughglinn Elphin
Cloonfad CBG Cloonfad Moore Tuam
Cloonfad West CBG Cloonfad Moore Tuam
Newtown Kilcashel CBG 2 Newtown Kilcashel Moore Tuam
Newtown Kilcashel CBG 1 Newtown Kilcashel Moore Tuam
Highlake CBG Highlake Oran Elphin
Carrownageeloge CBG Carrownageeloge Oran Elphin
Carrane CBG Caran Oran Elphin
Rath- na-nEag CBG Kiltultoge Oran Elphin
Tonebane CBG Tonbaun Oran Elphin
Ardlagheen CBG Ardlagheen More or Highlake Oran Elphin
Ballinaboy CBG Ballinaboy Roscommon Elphin
Lisbride Tomb vault CBG Lisbride Roscommon Elphin
Kilkenny CBG 1 Kilkenny Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Cloonaddron CBG Cloonaddron Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Camlagh CBG Camlagh Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Cloonoghil G'yard & CBG Cloonoghil Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Tawagh CBG Tawnagh Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Castlesampson CBG Castlesampson Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Knock CBG Knock Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Killeglan CBG Killeglan Taughmaconnell Clonfert
Carns Burial G'd & CBG Carns Tulsk Elphin
Castleteehan CBG Castleteheen Tulsk Elphin
Bealadangan and Annaghvaan, Co Galway
Cillín lom Loscáin, or bare little church of Loscáin is

located just off Derrymore strand in Dingle, County Kerry
(for both unbaptised babies and men lost at sea)
Island Eddy, Co Galway
Croagh Patrick, Co Mayo
Tiermana & Moyglass, Co Clare
The Teampollin in Poolboy
Ballygortagh, Creagh
Grange just past Mackney
Lismurtagh in the Loughbown area and there is another one in

Mackney on Clarke's land. All in Ballinasloe Co Galway
ZDUNAFF, BINION and STRAID,Ballyliffen Co Donegal
Killeen and Kilbreedy, Kilcornan Co Limerick
Ballinastack,Glenamaddy, Co Galway

County Kerry (in the vicinity of Tarbert and Ballylongford)
Astee West
Tullahennel North townlands -
one in Kilcolman, one at Kilmurrily medieval church

BBC Doing Documentary Similar to Our Proposed Documentary

As we speak the BBC is producing a documentary with the emphases on Milltown. Therefore, the focus of this blog will change to reporting on Irish Cillini.

We are currently compilling a list of Cillini throughout Ireland.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

A cillín is an unconsecrated burial place for children unbaptised at the time of death. Suicides, the mentally ill as well as criminal were also buried in cillíns.

The word is thought to come from Latin cella [1].