Mass Rocks a humble start

Saskia AdystiAlbany Advertiser
Father Christian Saminal O.S.J pictured here at the heritage site, Mass Rocks where the first catholic mass was held 175 years ago.
Camera IconFather Christian Saminal O.S.J pictured here at the heritage site, Mass Rocks where the first catholic mass was held 175 years ago. Credit: Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

It has been 175 years since the first official Catholic Mass in WA was held at a rock formation in Albany.

On November 4, 175 years ago, Bishop John Brady was only a mere Catholic priest when he held his first Catholic Mass at Albany Mass Rocks.

He went on to become the first bishop in WA and established the Catholic religion in the State.

Holy Family Catholic Parish secretary Anne Smith said it was important to acknowledge Albany’s Catholic community’s role in establishing the religion in WA.

“The first Mass that Bishop John Brady held here in Mass Rocks should be recognised as the establishment of the Catholic Church in WA,” she said.

“There was no first official Catholic Church in WA until Father Brady set it up.

“It’s important to recognise Albany’s role in the establishment of Catholicism in WA.”

Before the actual establishment of the Catholic Church, an Albany resident by the name of Lawrence Mooney and his family were the first family who practised Catholicism in the region.

Ms Smith said he was an outstanding inspiration to the Catholic settlers of Albany.

To celebrate Albany’s role in the establishment of Catholicism in WA, Holy Family Catholic Parish will organise a celebratory mass on November 4 at the heritage-listed Mass Rocks.

The commemorative Mass officially begins at 10am with a welcome to country.

Ms Smith said that even though Albany’s role in establishing the Catholic religion in WA had not been properly recorded in Perth, she hoped the Mass could bring more awareness of Albany’s role in it.

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