HOLY FAMILY SCHOOL – A SHORT HISTORY
Holy Family Catholic Primary School, Kelso forms part of the St’s Michael and John’s Cathedral Parish. A Catholic primary school was established at Kelso to support parents in the education of faith of their children in this growing residential area of Bathurst. The school has been established on the site of the original Marsden School. The school was established on 5th February 1979 under the care of the Sisters of Mercy. Sister Rosemary Mulvihill RSM was the founding school principal. Holy Family Catholic Primary School is today staffed by lay teachers. The school is one of the thirty four Diocesan Schools administered by the Catholic Education Diocese of Bathurst (CEDB).
The school community recognises the valuable contribution made by the Sisters of Mercy in the establishment of Holy Family Catholic Primary School as a Cathedral Parish Primary School. An important symbol in the school, is the hand-crafted, wooden Mercy Cross, which is in the general office. A portrait of Catherine McAuley is also evident in the general office. The cross and portrait serve as reminders of our “Mercy heritage”.
A weekly 'Spirit of Catherine McAuley Award' is presented to a student who has shown support to our Mercy heritage.
“Show fond affection every day,
and above all,
devoutly pray that God may bless the
charge He’s given,
and make of you their guide to heaven.”
The Cathedral Parish of Bathurst includes four Catholic primary schools and two Catholic secondary colleges. Holy Family Catholic Primary School Kelso is one of these schools.
Currently, Fr Paul Devitt is our Parish Priest. Fr Joshy is our School Chaplain.
Parish Contact Details:
Presbytery and Offices: 100 George Street, Bathurst, NSW, 2795
Phone: 6331 3066
Fax: 6332 2530
Cathedral Parish – A Short History (Source: Fr Tim Cahill)
The Cathedral Parish dates back to the pioneering times of the district with a Parish established from 1839. Bathurst was the earliest inland outpost of the Church, ministering to a couple of fledgling towns and a scattered, mostly poor rural Catholic population. St Michael’s church was opened by 1842, and served the district well for over thirty years.
The discovery of gold on the Turon in 1850 led to a massive influx of population into the Central West. Archbishop Bede Polding visited Bathurst and the goldfields in 1857. A new church (the present Cathedral) was built in 1853-1862. Bathurst became a diocese with the arrival of Bishop Quinn in 1866. With him came a few more priests and a band of Sisters of Mercy, who founded a Girl’s School that year and an Orphanage in 1867, the same year St Stanislaus’ was founded. The Perthville Josephites were founded in 1872, and the Vincentians took over Stannies in 1888, the Sisters of Charity opened St Vincent’s Hospital in 1926, the Dominican Sisters – All Hallows College in 1929, the De La Salle Brothers arrived in 1930.
By the time Bishop Thomas arrived after Bishop Norton’s death in 1963, the Parish boasted a range of schools and institutions, as well as churches at South Bathurst, Kelso, Raglan, Lagoon, Perthville, Brewongle, Peel, Eglinton and Gorman’s Hill and also West Bathurst and Vittoria, later separated into Assumption Parish. The first Planned Giving Program was started in 1959; and the Church looked strong and set for decades to come.
During the 1960’s and 1970’s, Australian society experienced many changes. Vatican II also realised changes within the Church during this time. During this time, we saw continuing consolidation within the Parish (eg. founding of Holy Family School and the new St Philomena’s School and Cathedral Buildings, along with the Diocesan Girls High School, now MacKillop College), we also saw many of the religious orders leave, closure of many outlying churches (and even parishes) and an ever-increasing role of the laity in the life of the Parish.
The institutions and styles of the Church continue to change to meet the needs of today’s world. Our calling, however, is still to proclaim God’s saving love present in our midst.