St Gerard Majella
146 Maundrell Terrace Chermside West
The Church of St Gerard Majella is situated at 146 Maundrell Terrace, Chermside West and is easily accessible by public transport (Bus 345).
As development spread to the Chermside West area during the 1950’s and 1960’s, Masses were first held in a house bought by the church near the Chermside tram terminus and then, on the sale of the house to help fund the new St Paschal’s Church, at the Lillis home in Decker Street, Chermside West.
In 1962, a new church was built on a site in Pullford Street, Chermside West. As the congregation grew, this building was extended but soon became too small.
After much agitation and consultation, Chermside West became a separate Parish on 1 January, 1975 with Fr Bernard (Barney) Wilson as the First Parish Priest.
The current church was opened and blessed in 1977. Fr Des McQuaid became Parish Priest in 1981 and served the parish with compassion and generosity for 20 years until he became ill.
Fr Gerard McMorrow was appointed as Administrator in 2002 as the Parish prepared to celebrate 25 years in the ‘new’ church. It was extensively renovated in 2003. The conversion of the front veranda to a glassed-in atrium and the extension for the parish centre and administration building were completed in 2008. These improvements have made parish life much more comfortable and efficient. The Car park was upgraded in 2014 and further renovations in 2015 have included the realignment of the ceiling and replacement of the Altar, Font and Lectern and the updating of the sound system.
Led by Fr Gerard, the Church community is strong and vibrant. There has been a long history of parishioner involvement, with many having actually worked together to build the church, presbytery and hall. Today, numbers of these long-term parishioners are still living in the area and are committed, with newer members, to our current projects, the largest of which is the annual Christmas Festival during December. The parish is truly blessed by the abundance of talent so generously and enthusiastically shared with the community.
St Paschal Baylon
30 Warraba Avenue Wavell Heights
The Church of St Paschal Baylon is situated at 30 Warraba Avenue, Wavell Heights, and is easily accessible by public transport (Bus 320 from Pfingst Road or in walking distance of the 599 Great Circle Bus).
The original church was opened and blessed by Archbishop James Duhig on 8 August 1937. The Franciscan Fathers from Kedron gave wonderful spiritual guidance to the community until the mid 1940’s. The community became a separate parish in 1946 with Rev Dr Geoffrey O’Donoghue being the first Parish Priest.
As the original church became too small for the growing community, a new building was built which would house the church on the lower floor and a school above. This opened in January 1950 and the Fransciscan influence continued with the naming of the school, “Our Lady of the Angels”. The Presentation Sisters arrived to run the school and commenced their long association with the Parish (until the mid 1990’s). The original church was moved to the western boundary and had many uses over the years, including school and meeting rooms, as a hall and pre-school centre. However, in 1978, it was destroyed by fire.
The Presentation Convent building was opened in1953. Since the sisters left, the building has been used by the Seminary and now houses The Loft, a residential facility for students and young workers.
The current church was opened and blessed in July 1961 as a War Memorial Church
The Presbytery was built in 1967 and extended later when Bishop John Gerry became Parish Priest following the retirement of Fr Michael O’Connell.
The inside of the church was altered over the years with the Altar being moved forward in response to Vatican II. The Tabernacle was moved to the Blessed Sacrament Chapel on the west side of the church. Later the sanctuary was extended into the body of the church and the Altar was shortened and moved with the Lectern to the new platform.
One of the first major works undertaken under the administration of Fr Gerard McMorrow following his appointment in 2010 was a renovation of the church which reversed some of these changes. The beautifully refurbished church was dedicated by Archbishop Mark Coleridge on 17 October 2014.