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Bicentenary reunion


Former Catholic primary principals and leaders of SA schools hope to gather later this year to celebrate 200 years of Catholic education in Australia.

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The bicentenary commemorates the anniversary of the first official Catholic school in Australia, founded in October 1820 by Irish Catholic priest Fr John Therry. The school, which Catholic historians believe was located on Hunter Street in Parramatta, taught 31 students.

An Irish Catholic convict George Marley (also identified as George Morley), who was sent to the colony, opened the school for Fr Therry and ran it for three years. This school was transferred to the site of the present St Patrick’s Cathedral in 1837 and was entrusted to the care of the Marist Brothers in 1875.

In South Australia, Catholic education began in November 1844. One of the first acts of Bishop Francis Murphy, after becoming the first Catholic bishop of Adelaide, was to ask Mr and Mrs William James from Sydney to establish the first Catholic school in a temporary chapel on Pirie Street, Adelaide.

The Adelaide reunion of former SA Catholic education leaders is proposed for Term 4 or early next year.

Anyone interested in receiving more information should email their contact details to Kevin Clancy


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