St Ambrose Catholic Church, Newmarket
The St Ambrose' Story
In 1928 Archbishop Duhig announced the formation of the new parish of Kelvin Grove, later to be called Newmarket parish. The parish priest was Fr Brian Bolton who had previously acted as secretary to the Archbishop. The first Mass was celebrated on 10 March 1928 in the temporary church, “Corinthia” built in 1898, which had been purchased by the Archbishop. On 7 April 1929, Archbishop Duhig laid the foundation stone for the church; this was blessed and officially opened by the Archbishop on 8 July 1929.
The building was designed to act as a church and school, but was never used as a school. The school was opened in July 1936, staffed by Sisters of the Good Samaritan. “Corinthia” now became the convent; Father Bolton, who had been living in “Corinthia”, moved into a house which had previously been occupied by a Police Inspector, James O’Brien. This property had been purchased in 1936 by the Archdiocese of Brisbane and became the presbytery.
There were additions to both church and school in 1954 and to school and convent in 1970. In mid-1972 building commenced on a new church, designed by John Dawson. The first Mass in the new church was celebrated on 7 December 1972. The old church had to be demolished before the bell tower and the north porch could be completed. The double iron gates at the entrance to the church, built circa 1904, a gift from Archbishop Duhig to his former secretary, Fr Bolton, were the gates of “Dara”, former residence of Brisbane’s Catholic archbishops.
The Sisters withdrew from the school in 1977 and the convent was used as a pre-school and kindergarten run independently by the Creche and Kindergarten Association. The building was also used for Outside School Hours Care. It now contains the school administration and the pre-school.
In 1999, Newmarket joined neighbouring parishes in an extensive time of pastoral review from which eventually emerged its linking with the historic parishes of Rosalie, Bardon, Herston, Ashgrove and Red Hill. On the 9th of November 2006 these churches formally combined to form the Jubilee Parish with Fr Peter Brannelly appointed the first Parish Priest.
In 2008 St Ambrose church underwent a major refurbishment as part of the Newmarket church and school master plan.
The presbytery, which for several years had no resident priest, had been used as a parish centre, for Outside School Hours Care, and, for a time, as an outlet for the Good Shepherd Trading Circle. It was condemned in December 2009 and demolished in January 2010; it has now been replaced by the new multi-purpose Bolton Centre, named in honour of our first parish priest.
The St Ambrose is a busy, dynamic Catholic centre of education and faith and a warm welcome is extended to you and yours each Sunday morning to join us at our 9:30am Mass.
52 Enoggera Road
(*Please refer to the current week’s newsletter for the weekday Masses)
Ambrose, the son of a prominent Roman Christian family, was born circa 337-348 AD. He was educated in Rome, studying literature, rhetoric and law. In about 372 he was appointed consular prefect of Liguria-Emilia, with his headquarters in Milan.
At that time the heresy of Arianism was still active in Milan, although it had been condemned at the first council of Nicaea in 325. In 374 the bishop of Milan, an Arian, died; Ambrose although still a catechumen, was elected by popular vote. He was baptised by a Catholic bishop, and on 7 December, now celebrated as his feast day, he was consecrated Bishop of Milan. Ambrose fought not only against the persisting Arianism but also against the old state religion of paganism. Christianity was proclaimed the official state religion in 380.
St Ambrose was known for his ascetic lifestyle and his concern for the poor. He is also remembered for his contribution to church music. He was a noted preacher, converting Augustine of Hippo, whom he baptised in 387. Ambrose died in 397.
Together with Augustine, Jerome and Pope Gregory the Great, he was one of the first four Doctors of the Church.
[Note: Arianism asserted that God’s Son did not always exist and consequently was not divine by nature but only the first among creatures.]