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Sesquicentenary Mass 2022

The St Patrick’s Catholic Church, Rockley is part of the Cathedral Parish and the Diocese of Bathurst. It was established in 1869 and the building of the church began in 1870. Members of the Rockley community and the Parish recently marked the occasion of the sesquicentenary of the Church with Mass celebrated by Bishop Michael McKenna followed by a BYO picnic on the church grounds.

About the Church of St Patrick, Rockley

Dean Grant was the first known priest to visit the Rockley area. The first Mass said in the town was in a room at the “Star Inn” run by Mr Murphy. Prior to this, Mass had been celebrated at the residence of Mr Owen Quinn, along the Charlton road. Not long after arriving in Bathurst, Bishop Quinn visited Rockley and said Mass at Henry Quinn’s home. People came from as far away as Campbell’s River, Sewell’s Creek, Back Creek, Judd’s Creek, Swallow’s Nest, Caloola, Long Swamp, Triangle Flat, and Mountain Run. Bishop Quinn laid the Foundation Stone of the Church of St. Patrick Rockley, in 1869. In 1870 Rockley was made a Parish. For the next hundred years, Rockley served the following Stations: Tuena, Peelwood, Newbridge, Triangle Flat, Moorilda (Teapot Swamp), Burraga, Mount David,

Trunkey Creek and as far down as the Goulburn Diocese in the Abercrombie area. Later, Tuena & Peelwood were taken into the Canberra-Goulburn Archdiocese. Also amongst the Stations for Mass were: Hearne’s, Wren’s Nest; Wells, Mount Wells; Hearne’s, Horse-Shoe Bend; Fahey’s, Fish River; Cashman’s, Mountain Run,  Murphy’s, and  Campbell’s River; and in The Ordo’s of 1930 to 1975, Gilmandyke. As Rockley could no longer be sustained as a Parish, in 1975, it was amalgamated with the South Bathurst Parish, and a few years later, into Bathurst Cathedral Parish. Amongst the first Priests were: Father S Chastagnon, and Father P Davern, the first resident Parish Priest. The Church has been classified in the register of the National Trust of Australia.

“The Record” 15 July,189,p. 328-329; Bathurst Diocesan Archives