St Thomas More Church, Petrie Terrace
|The St Thomas More Story
Petrie Terrace is a suburb that adjoins the north-western end of Brisbane's central business district. It was named after the main thoroughfare, Petrie Terrace, which runs from Upper Roma Street to the Five Ways at Musgrave Road. Andrew Petrie was a pioneer of Brisbane and his son, John, was the first mayor of the town of Brisbane in 1859. The narrow streets and lanes of Petrie Terrace originate from the first subdivision of the area after 1861. By the 1880s Petrie Terrace was intensively inhabited with the Petrie Terrace State School having an enrolment of 300 when it opened in 1868. The Catholic Church’s connection with Petrie Terrace goes back to 1870 when the Sisters of St Joseph opened a school in rented houses on Caxton Street, approximately across the street from the current church. The school, which was called the St John the Baptist School, was closed in 1878 when the sisters withdrew.
The current church site was purchased after this date and served as a mass centre of St Brigid’s until 1951 when it was made a parish in its own right. The current church of St Thomas More, which was blessed and opened by Archbishop Duhig on the 6th of July, 1952, served the mainly migrant population that crowed into the suburb after the Second World War. Petrie Terrace was a primarily working class suburb that provided relatively inexpensive housing especially for migrants. With the changing demographics and the demolition of many houses with the Hale Street Bypass the population dwindled and in 1982 St Thomas More came under the pastoral care of the Sacred Heart parish. In 2006 Petrie Terrace joined with the Catholic Communities of Bardon, Red Hill, Newmarket, Ashgrove, Herston and Rosalie to form the Jubilee Parish. Every Sunday morning at 8:30am there is mass in Italian.
Petrie Terrace QLD 4000
Sunday: 8:30am (Italian)
(*Please refer to the current week’s newsletter for the weekday Masses)
Saint Thomas More, was an English lawyer, social philosopher, author, statesman and noted Renaissance humanist. He was also a councillor to Henry VIII, and Lord High Chancellor of England from October 1529 to 16 May 1532.He also wrote Utopia, published in 1516, about the political system of an imaginary ideal island nation.
More opposed the Protestant Reformation, in particular the theology of Martin Luther and William Tyndale. More also opposed the King's separation from the Catholic Church, refusing to acknowledge Henry as Supreme Head of the Church of England and the annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon. After refusing to take the Oath of Supremacy, he was convicted of treason and beheaded. Of his execution, he was reported to have said: "I die the King's good servant, but God's first."
Pope Pius XI canonised More in 1935 as a martyr. Pope John Paul II in 2000 declared him the "heavenly Patron of Statesmen and Politicians."