Queensland Religious Places

Opening celebrations - new churches

The opening of new churches was often a significant event - not just for the local parish but the whole community.

Goombungee Methodist Church - 1903 

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Goombungee Methodist Church c. 1910
Goombungee is a town on the Darling Downs that was established in the late 1880s. It is situated about 25 km northwest of Tooowomba. In 1901 the population was 125 and in 1903 a Methodist church was opened  
The Darling Downs Gazette reported 
Goombungee presented a very lively appearance on Wednesday the 7th. In all directions people could be seen wending their way towards the Town Hall. Buggies, carts, sulkies, and waggons crowded with people, also were seen converging towards the same place. By half-past 12, the time appointed for the lunch, fully 300 people were in the enclosure waiting for the doors to open. The resources of our Goombungee friends were taxed to the utmost, and amid genial feelings and expressions of congratulation, the tables were filled four times in succession. About this time other contringents began to arrive from Plainly, Crow's Nest, Merritts Creek and even Toowoomba. 
The church was crowded in every part and many could not possibly gain admission, remaining around the porch and windows. An adjournment was then made to the Town Hall for tea. and fully 400 people sat down in turn at the well-provided tables. 
For the opening of the church the population of the town increased four-fold temporarily. And the church was not large - probably would have only accommodated 50-60 people.

St Oliver Plunkett Catholic Church, Cannon Hill

St Oliver Plunkett Church c. 1923

St Oliver Plunkett Catholic Church, Cannon Hill was opened on 6 August 1921. Cannon Hill lis located approximately 5 kilometres east of the Brisbane CBD. The area was transformed from farms to a suburb following the construction of a large meat works in 1913 and livestock sale yards. By 1921, the population had reached 721. 

The church was opened by Archbishop Daniel Mannix from Melbourne, who ‘lent additional interest and lustre to the proceedings. The Brisbane Courier (8 August 1921) reported

Special trains conveyed passengers from as far as Gympie to the North and Toowoomba to the south and intermediate stations and the assemblage was estimated at about 10,000.

Archbishop Duhig, of course, was present, as were the bishops of Ballarat and Sandhurst from Victoria, and another nine senior clerics from New South Wales and Queensland. The Queensland Premier, Edward Theodore, was in attendance, and formally welcomed Archbishop Mannix to the occasion. The crowd was suitably inspired by the speeches and gave £2000 towards the cost of the building which totaled £5000.

Undoubtedly a major event when the suburb of Cannon Hill was overwhelmed by 10,000 visitors.