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St Paul's Cathedral
Church of England
The history of the Church of England in Rockhampton dates back to 1862, when Rev. T. Jones sponsored the erection of a church. Previously services were held in an East Street building, which was destroyed by a cyclone. The church was built on the site now occupied by St. Paul's parish hall. For many years the need of a more commodious church was keenly felt. In 1873, when the Rev. Richard Leigh was incumbent of the parish, an appeal for funds resulted in £1 300 being collected.
On September 16, 1879, the cornerstone of St. Paul's Cathedral was laid. the ceremony being performed by Bishop Stanton. The cathedral was completed in October, 1883. The first confirmation in the new church was on Saturday, October 20. The cathedral was crowded the following day, one of the interesting parts of the service being the ordination of A. C. Yorke to assist Rev. W. A. Diggens in the parish. The octave of services in connection with the opening was completed by the holding of a torchlight procession in which the Fire Brigade, Oddfellows, Protestant Alliance and Foresters' Lodges participated led by the Town Band.
In 1888 a conference was held in Rockhampton and the desirability of forming a diocese was affirmed. It came into existence with the enthronement of Rt. Rev. N. Dawes on November 30, 1892. The creation of the diocese of Rockhampton made the 14th in Australia in 1892.
As the town developed Anglican churches were established in the suburbs and a
school and orphanage were established.
The Rockhampton Diocese was involved in two distinct spheres of missionary work, one with the Australian Aboriginals and the other with the South Sea Islanders.
Woorabinda Aboriginal Settlement was established c1932 when the Queensland
Government moved a native settlement from Taroom to a 53,973 acre property at
Woorabinda, about a hundred miles south west of Rockhampton. The Diocese was
granted £25 per year to help with the cost of ministering to the natives. Some
The South Sea Islanders were brought to Queensland by the Government to work mainly as slaves on the sugar plantations. In 1896 there was a large Islander community in North Rockhampton and Rev T.H. Pritt reported that of the 45 parishioners who attended his Xmas service in the little chapel on Kalka Road, twenty were South Sea Islanders.
The foundation block for St John's Mission Room in Ford Street, North Rock-
hampton was laid on 25th May 191 2 by Bishop Halford, G. H. Rogers, C. H. Lewin
and Adrian Stokes. Hilda Ward was a well known Sunday School teacher there,
followed by, Miss lda Kent and Arthur Green.
THE FIRST C. of E. BISHOPS OF ROCKHAMPTON
Nathaniel DAWES - enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, November 1892.
George Dowgiass HALFORD - formerly head of Bush Brotherhood, enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, February 1909.
Philip Charles Thurlow CRICK - enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, 27th February 1921. Remembered mainly for his work in establishing a boys school, St Peter's, in Barcaldine and a girls school, St Faith's, in Yeppoon.
Fortesque Leo ASH - enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, 2nd February 1928.
James Alan George HOUSDEN - enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, 2nd November 1947. Well known for his friendliness and his pastoral work in the country.
Theodore Bruce McCALL - enthroned Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's Cathedral, 19th February 1959. Was instrumental in purchasing Tannachy Hospital for the Diocese.
Donald Norman SHEARMAN - enthroned as Bishop of Rockhampton in St Paul's
Cathedral, 2nd March 1964.
CHURCH OF ENGLAND RECORDS
J.C. Tyler (legal
G.M.L. Lester (Mitchell) 1893
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