Thursday, 9 January 2014

Parish of Church Hill

Two exterior shots of St Philip's

During 2013, something of significance, ecclesiastically speaking, went under the radar here in the centre of Sydney.

I have mentioned before how in about 1802 the new colony was divided into two parishes - St John's Parramatta and St Phillip's Sydney - both presided over by The Rev. Samuel Marsden who had arrived in the colony in 1794 as underling to the first cleric, Rev. Richard Johnson. The first church in the colony was St Phillip's and its third incarnation (1856) stands today at the top of Church Hill, on York Street. About a kilometre away, much closer to the harbour bridge, stands the Church of the Holy Trinity, more well-known as The Garrison Church, which was established in 1840.
An interior shot of St Philip's which is far nicer than either of our cathedrals

In 2013 these two parishes combined to form the Parish of Church Hill. This is a wonderful gesture to the history of this part of Sydney.

St Philip's is a puzzlement to me. The Australian History Society maintains that it was named in honour of Governor Phillip, and hence the double-L. However, the current building uses only a single-L. Was there a Saint Philip? St Philip's also likes to label itself "York Street Anglican". Now it is part of this new parish. I guess they fit together well, noting the double name of The Garrison church mentioned above. And that is another puzzlement. Why did Holy Trinity come to be known as "Garrison" when at that time the troops were garrisoned at the George Street Barracks (Wynyard) which is alongside St Philip's!
Two exterior shots of The Garrison, the interior of which I find a smidge gloomy
I have posted about St Philip's York Street before.


Joe said...

Intriguing puzzlements Julie. If a church was to be named after our esteemed Governor they should have got the spelling of his name right. Perhaps this honour does belong to another Philip.

Joan Elizabeth said...

I enjoy your puzzlements and have no idea as to the answers.

Matthew Moffitt said...

Whilst the parish was originally named St Phillip's Church Hill after the first governor, I understand that when a new church building was consecrated in 1810 Samuel Marsden took the opportunity to rename the church after St Philip, the evangelist.