The book "Reflections on New Farm", written by Gerard Benjamin and Gloria Grant and published by the New Farm & Districts Historical Society Inc, mentions the beginnings of this local church. Originally a Wesleyan Methodist Church, it began in 1888 in a different location, but moved here when the land, on the corner of James and Annie Streets, was purchased. A new church building was erected in 1926 and dedicated in July 1927. Here is a photograph of that church, and if the vintage of the Renault sedan motoring past the building is a guide, it was probably taken in the late sixties or early seventies.
In 1977, the Methodist, Presbyterian and Congregational Churches in Australia came together to form the Uniting Church. As a result many parishes combined and some church buildings became redundant. As we saw with the former Methodist Church in Brunswick St, some were converted to other uses.
Parishioners from this church moved to new Uniting Church premises in Merthyr Rd in 1979, and this building was sold in 1981. It then became... another church! The new owner was the Macedonian Orthodox Church, and the church building was reincarnated as St Mary's. Here is a photograph from 1989.
From a selfish viewpoint, I am delighted to see the church remain in an area that has lost many of its older buildings to units and other dwellings. Although other church structures have been converted to shops, restaurants and residences, this one has remained a spiritual place. Here is today's photo of it.
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