The Foundation Stone

Ad Majoren Dei Gloriam   

'To the Greater Glory of God.'

Lapidem Hunc - In Memorium

Ecclesiac Saint Brendani 
(For the Church followers of Saint Brendan.)

Foundation Stone laid: 29th March 1925.

Laying & Blessing of Foundation Stone of St. Brendan's Church, Mt. Bryan.

On Sunday, 29th March, the ceremony of blessing and laying the -foundation stone of the new Catholic Church at Mt Bryan was performed by the Right Rev. Dr. A. Killian, Bishop of Port Augusta. It was an occasion long looked forward to by the Catholic people of Mr. Bryan. For the last couple of years they have directed all their efforts towards this end, and Sunday's ceremony was the beginning of the realization of their hopes. A large crowd awaited the arrival of the Bishop, who motored from Peterborough. Friends and well wishers from Kooringa, Booborowie, Hanson, Hallet, and surrounding districts cheered and encouraged by their presence the small local congregation. At the blessing and laying of the stone Dr. Killian was assisted by the Ven. Archdeacon. Doyle (Jamestown), Father McEvoy (Adelaide), and Father Nesdale. When this impressive ceremony was concluded, Fr. Nesdale read the following financial statement: Contract price for building church, according to plans, £001 14/-; estimate for necessary furniture, £120; expenses already incurred, stone; etc., £36 17/6; total cost, £l,05S 11/6; funds already raised, £414 0/8. Commenting on the balance sheet he said it was one of which a congregation of ten families, and less than 50 persons all told, might justly feel proud. In addition to raising £414 the congregation helped by their friends in Willalo, supplied, free of cost, all the sand, gravel, and water, and carted over a distance of sixteen or seventeen miles all the stone necessary for the building. When endeavoring to raise funds the Mt. Bryan Catholics resorted to bazaars — necessary evils — and always received the support and encouragement of Kooringa. Twenty pounds had been secured as a result of a concert given by the Terowie Convent school children, and for this their best thanks was due to the children and their parents, also to Sisters and to Fathers Doyle and Henschke, of Jamestown. The record success of the last bazaar was in a large measure due to His Lordship the Bishop, who had generously offered to donate £20 if the bazaar realised £80. The Mt Bryan Catholics thus encouraged worked hard and netted £126. His Lord ship's donation bringing the total for that effort to £146. On rising to speak Dr. Killian received a great ovation. 'He said it gave him the greatest pleasure to be with the people of Mt. Bryan that day. He admired the faith, generosity and courage of the congregation of fifty souls, who undertook such a work costing them over £1,000. He knows no parallel for it in all his missionary experience in Australia. Last week he had been present at the opening of the Cathedral at Wagga, N.S.W. Nineteen Archbishops and Bishops of the Catholic Hierarchy of Australia were present, a great number of priests and up to ten thousand people. It was a magnificent demonstration in every way. The Cathedral of Wagga: was one of a number of such beautiful and imposing monuments to the faith of the Catholic people of Australia. But the ceremony performed today and the little church now being built at Mt. Bryan was no less useful and necessary in its own way. His Lord ship compared the church to a great forest where one finds not only giant trees but also small shrubs and beautiful flowers.' He admired the beautiful shrubs and flowers of the forest as much as the great trees. Similarly, he admired and was interested in the small churches which administered to the wants of small congregations such as that of Mt Bryan, and similar ones in the back blocks of the country, as well as the great cathedrals of Australia. His Lordship spoke of the life of St. Brendan, to whom the Church had just been dedicated, whose memory is still revered in Ireland, especially in Kerry his native country. He hoped that St. Brendan's Church would be to them what St. Brendan was to the people of Kerry, and having adopted him as their patron that they would emulate his virtues and incrinctity of life. The prayers recited at the blessing of the stone included a prayer for all who helped in any way the building of the Church. This Church would bring a blessing on the people of Mt. Bryan. It was a place set apart for prayer and the true worship of God, where they and their children would be taught and practice the truths of their holy religion, and to live in peace and fraternal charity with their neighbours. Archdeacon Doyle moved that a collection be made. He warmly congratulated the Catholics of Mt Bryan on the success of past efforts in raising funds. He hoped that a generous response would be made by all present. Father McEvoy, O.P., supported the motion, and in a humorous speech remarked that although the Bishop admired the small shrubs and flowers of the forest as much as the giant trees, it did not follow that he liked small cheques as well as big ones on an occasion like this. A collection was then taken up. Mr. W. H. Quinn and assistants were very busy for some time. Dr. Killian read the names of the subscribers, and his announcement that, in addition to his own donation of £10, he would lend the Church, free of interest, for three years £250, which was greeted with loud applause. Mrs. D. Meers, An old resident of Mt. Bryan, now re tired to Adelaide, gave the handsome donation of £60. AH the Catholics of Mt Bryan were represented on the list, and for exceptionally generous donations. The subscriptions o£ the visitors were very generous also, and considerably swelled the total, which reached the magnificent sum of £352 17/-. The Catholics of Mt Bryan much appreciate the compliment paid them and their distinguished visitor, Dr. Killian, by the presence of the Mayor and Mayoress of Burra, Mr. & Mrs. Maurice Collins, at Sunday's ceremony. A delightful afternoon tea, served by the ladies in the Soldiers Memorial Hall, brought the day's proceedings to a close. Incidentally, £5 9/6 was by this means added to the funds.

Shane Badman.    Copyright 2012.    Country I.T. Services