St Philip's is the oldest Parish in Australia, together with the Parish of Parramatta. In January 1788 eleven ships carrying around 1400 people, including 786 convicts, arrived from England on the east coast of Australia to establish a penal colony. The Chaplain of the First Fleet was the Rev Richard Johnson and he conducted the first Christian service in Australia on 3 February 1788.
The wattle and daub church built by Johnson in 1793 was burnt down in 1798. A new stone church, named St Philip’s, was opened in 1810, and this was replaced by the current building in 1856.
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This photo Copyright © Rodney Campbell.