Our History

These excerpts were taken from The OLR Story (1996) and reprinted with permission from the parish.

Queensland had been a separate colony for only one year when James Quinn became the first bishop of the new diocese, covering the whole state with its sparse scattered population. St Stephen’s was the center of church life (no parishes were established) and priests were sent from there to mission stations. Archbishop Dunne took over in 1882 and by 1887 there were eight churches in Brisbane and 27 stations ‘having no church at present but attended at fixed dates’. Parts of the current parish surrounds were among the stations visited every three months.

The first Catholic church in our area was St Lawrence, Fig Tree Pocket, and Mass was also celebrated in the Pacey home at Brookfield. This was visited by priests from Sacred Heart Church, Rosalie, who also attended St Michael and All Souls (Toowong) and St Lawrence’s. Mass in private residences at Upper Brookfield, Pullenvale and Long Pocket continued as well.

The Jesuits arrived in Toowong in 1916 and for almost ten years ministered in an area covered by the present parishes of Toowong, Kenmore, Indooroopilly and St Lucia. The last three of these became a separate parish in 1924, and the first Catholic chuch in the Kenmore area was the original St Catherine’s on the corner of Grandview and Moggill roads.

Archbishop Duhig purchased the current OLR site in 1958, when the new parish of Kenmore, under the guidance of Fr Gerry Nichol, was cut off from Indooroopilly. In 1961, Fr  Tom Carroll came to the Kenmore parish and so began the rapid development of the parish we know today. A school and temporary church were opened in 1963. The school grew at an amazing rate, initially under the guidance of the Brigidine sisters from Indooroopilly. Soon the need for a new, larger church was painfully obvious and the efforts of Fr Carroll ensured that sufficient money was raised so that the new church was opened in July 1969.

In 1993 a steering committee was formed and a master plan was developed to build St. Catherine’s at Moggill. The new Mass and Community Centre was opened on 22 May 1995 by Archbishop Bathersby. 

The timeline below gives an out outline of our parish development, but says nothing at all of the strong community spirit that has grown. Ours is still a very large parish indeed. In his foreword to The OLR Story, Fr Neil writes :

‘Often imperceptibly, perhaps at  times unwittingly, OLR has been transforming itself into the kind of people-oriented parish envisioned by Vatican II. Now is the time to name that identity and to celebrate it.’

1860

Brisbane became a diocese, Bishop Quinn first Bishop

 

1873

Opening of St Laurence's, Fig Tree Pocket

 

1880

Masses advertised in The Australian  at Indooroopilly and Seventeen Mile Rocks

1887

Catholic Directory lists Mass Stations at Gold Creek,Brookfield and MacAlroy's at Moggill

1893

Floods

 

1915

Rosalie parish looked after St Laurence's and St Michael and all Souls Toowong

1916

Toowong became separate parish under the Jesuits and takes over this area

1926

Indooroopilly becomes separate parish which includes this area

 

1920's

Closure of St Laurence's

 

1952

Opening of St Catherine's, Pullenvale

 

1958

Archbishop buys land at Kenmore

 

1961

Father Gerry Nichol arrives
First public mass at the house/church - 2 April
Father Tom Carroll appointed Parish Priest - September
Five children receive their first communion
First Marriage in OLR parish
First Baptism in OLR parish

 

1962

St Vincent de Paul starts
Foundation stone of church/school laid - 3 November

 

1963

School opens - Official opening 3 March.
Grades 1-4 and Pre-school. 

 

1964

School Grades 1-5; New Classrooms and Swimming Pool

 

1965

School Grades 1-6; French School

Our Lady of the Rosary Kenmore
Our Lady of the Rosary Church - opened 1969

1966

School Grades 1-7

1969

Opening of Church - 13 July

1973

Mother de Montford leaves

1974

Father Egan assistant priest
Floods

1977

Ladies' Conference of St Vincent de Paul starts
25th anniversary of Father Carroll's ordination

1978

Father Bill O'Shea assistant priest

1979

Father Carroll receives recognition at New Year Honours List

 

1982

First RCIA
Paul McGrath becomes principal of School.
Last of the religious sisters leave.

 

1983

Father Flynn arrives

 

1986

Silver Jubilee of Parish

 

1989

New School wing - December.
Sale of St Catherine's

 

1990

Father McKeon arrives - January.
Father Wagner replaces Father Carroll - August

 

1991

Father Flynn leaves for Adelaide

 

1994

Thirtieth anniversary of the ordination of Father Wagner. 
Father McKeon leaves for Redcliffe. Father Michael Campbell arrives

1995

Father Neil Byrne replaces Father Wagner
St Catherine's Mass & Community Centre opened in Moggill on 22nd May by Archbishop Bathersby

2009

Father Francis Onwunali replaces Father Byrne

 
2016

Fr Mark Franklin replaces Father Francis

 

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