About our Parish

 

 St John the Evangelist - Soldiers Hill

 

                                               “In vital matters, Unity;

                                      in non essential matters, Liberty;

                                                in all things, Charity.”

 

In the beginning there was a goldfield. Miners came and as prosperity spread and business enterprises developed, families appeared and residential areas developed.

By 1861 the population grew and talk turned to the necessity for a church on Soldiers Hill (Ballarat North). A meeting was called at the Olive Branch Hotel – word spread and the talk turned to action. The first services were held in a tent and later in an old bar room moved from Bath’s Hotel.

Three years later plans were made for a brick building and the opening service was held on February 19, 1865.

In 1870 it was found necessary to enlarge the building and the sanctuary and chancel were added. 1891 saw the installation of a Fincham and Hobday organ. The music from this instrument and the choir have always enhanced our worship.

From these beginnings there have been 21 incumbents (Vicars and Rectors)

We are, today, a worshipping parish family and our prayer life is augmented by two Prayer Groups (one of these is a Sing and Pray Group) and a nineteen member Prayer Circle. We have 4 Eucharistic Assistants, a Sacristan and a roster for Servers, Lay readers and Welcomers.

Active organisations are:

•  a strong M.U. (Mothers’ Union)

• Anglican Womens’ Guild

• and an Anglican Men’s Society.

 

Social Dinners and Barbeques are a regular activity. St John’s conducts a very popular and successful Op Shop and help with many volunteers for Hospital and Nursing Home visiting and Anglicare. A bi-monthly Parish Paper is published and distributed to 250 homes.

Church grounds and properties are very well cared for by a group of willing and capable parishioners.

The Church interior has changed over the years, shape and size have altered, church furniture has developed a patina and beautiful windows have been introduced. You will notice that they are in biblical order and tell the story of Christ in a dramatically picturesque manner. Also notice the atmosphere of St John’s, an atmosphere not always felt in churches, but very evident in our church.

Come on in, the air is beautiful.”