Church marks 160 years

June 29, 2022 BY

Milestone: Reverend Tracey Wolsley said she’s extremely grateful to those who have helped out during St Mary’s Anglican Church’s 160 years of service. Photo: JONATHON MAGRATH

ST MARY’S Anglican Church of Kangaroo Flat will celebrate one-hundred-and-sixty years of service in a special celebration this Sunday.

A service of thanks will take place at 10am led by Bishop Matt Brain followed by a morning tea and the opening of the Edith Perry Archives Room, displaying the church’s history.

Reverend Tracey Wolsley said it’s a time to reflect on the people that have come before as well what current members of St Mary’s will leave behind.

“I’m extremely grateful to those who’ve done sausage sizzles, baked cakes, ran parish fairs so we today have what we have,” she said.

“I liken it to a bit of a relay, they’ve carried the baton and passed it on to us. We’re part of a story, our chapter’s now and we’re going to pass it on to someone else.”

On 30 June 1862, Bendigo gold miners built the St Mary’s church, which Rev Wolsley said was the first brick building in the area.

In 2008, a fire destroyed the old church, and a new modern place of worship was built and opened in 2014.

Rev Wolsley said while times are different to all those years ago, the underpinnings of the church remain the same.

She said write-up from the minister when the church celebrated its 110th anniversary 50 years ago read “the world’s a hard place nowadays we really need to be looking at how we reach out to the people in the community.”

“It’s the same thing we say today,” she said. “Outreach should always be present. I don’t think you can love God without loving your neighbour and that means reaching out to the most vulnerable.”

St Mary’s Anglican Church assists with grocery drives for Uniting Emergency Relief and helps run the Bendigo Winter Night Shelter, providing temporary housing and services for the homeless.