History of the Church of St Thérèse of the Child Jesus, Beauty Point

The Parish was established in October 1955 with Masses celebrated in the presbytery for ten years until the church was erected in 1965.

The church was designed by Donald Maclurcan, a well-known architect and member of the parish. The foundation stone was laid and blessed on May 10th 1964 by Cardinal Gilroy, Archbishop of Sydney, who also officially opened it on January 10th 1965.

The Patron saint of the Parish is St Thérèse, the Little Flower. She is the Patron Saint of Missions. Her feast day is celebrated on October 1st

St Thérèse, who was born as Thérèse Martin at Alencon, France on January 2nd 1873, entered the convent at Liseux at the age of 15, and was professed in 1890. She died of tuberculosis in 1897 when she was only 24. Pope Pius XI beatified her in 1923 and canonized her two years later when he made her the special Patroness of the Missions.

The first parish priest of Beauty Point was Father Francis Tosi who remained until he died February 19th 1987. Fr Wim Hockstra, Fr Patrick Ryan and Fr John King, were administrators of the Parish in 1987. After Father Tosi’s death the parish was run jointly by two priests in residence, both on the staff at Manly College – Father Terence Goodall, and Father Peter Lynch who is the Parish Priest at Brighton-Le-Sands Church of St Thomas More.

After their departure in 1993, Father Joe Higgins was the parish priest until 1995, when he was succeeded by Father Vince Finnegan. Sadly, Father Finnegan died in 2000. Since then Father Terry Bell, National Director of Catholic Mission, was the priest in residence until Beauty Point Parish joined the Parishes of Sydney Harbour North with Father Philip Linder as the Parish Priest in March 2008.

Contributions by Peter Golding and Denise Playoust