Kylemore Abbey has partnered with a top American university to create a spiritual centre where educational and cultural activities can take place.
The castle was chosen by the university Notre Dame as the perfect site to create a spiritual centre with the Benedictine community.
Kylemore Abbey, in Co Galway, was built by Irish politician Mitchell Henry as a romantic gesture for his wife. The stunning property has more than 70 rooms with dozens of bedrooms and offices.
It was bought by The Benedictine Nuns in 1920, after their abbey in Ypres, Belgium had been destroyed in the First World War.
Kylemore Abbey was as a Catholic boarding school for several years, with the country’s most wealthy families sending their daughters there to be educated.
The school closed in 2010, but Kylemore has remained a popular attraction for visitors to Ireland.
The partnership with Notre Dame and the new spiritual centre will be another proud feature in the Abbey’s history.
Maire Hickey, Kylemore’s abbess, said: “We have high hopes that this partnership will yield rich fruits for generations to come.”
A university spokesperson added: “The programmes will draw upon the rich tradition of Benedictine spirituality and the academic rigour of Notre Dame.”
The spiritual centre is scheduled to be open to student applications from next year.