This year marks the 150th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone at St Ignatius’ Church in Richmond, Victoria.
The parish celebrated the occasion with a Mass on Sunday 30 July 2017 with Jesuit Provincial Fr Brian McCoy as the main celebrant.
Concelebrants were the Jesuits of the parish, Fr Nguyen Viet Huy SJ, Fr Tro Tran Van SJ, and Fr Ferruccio Romanin SJ and a number of other Jesuits.
At the Mass, parishioner Dr Therese Keogh shared a reflection on the Church’s history.
‘No matter the occasion, alone or in congregation, one cannot step into this Church without a sense of amazement and thanksgiving for those who had the vision, the courage, the tenacity, the generosity and the skill to build this magnificent structure – a landmark on the top of Richmond Hill, its spire dominating the surrounding landscape’, she said.
‘We give thanks to God for those who have gone before us and bequeathed us the treasure of this wonderful Church – an inspiration and encouragement for ongoing love and service.’
A photographic book was also launched to commemorate the anniversary.
A People’s Faith Enshrined in Stone: St Ignatius’ Church Richmond, was edited by Patricia O’Halloran, and features a commemorative essay by Michael McGirr. It also features original photographs of the church by Andrew Esposito, Shayarana Gooneratne and Fr Nguyen Viet Huy SJ.
These photographs show the fabric and shape of the building, as well as the glorious decorative features, both inside and out. The photographs are enhanced by selected quotations from scripture and from other writers, together with reflective comments from parishioners themselves.
The production of the book was supported by St Kevin’s College, in gratitude for the school’s long association with the parish.