Rush Chapel Consecration
The Rush Chapel was consecrated and the Elizabeth Irwin Centre was blessed on Friday 2 September 2016 by the Right Reverend Bishop Allan Ewing, a beautiful service at which we were joined by invited guests including the School Council, executive staff, local priests, and school principals and chaplains. It was a moving experience and my thanks go to all involved, particularly the students who assisted and participated.
Some of the features of the Rush Chapel tie us to our history in that it was Frederick Irwin and his troops of the 63rd Regiment who built the first Anglican Church, the Rush Church, in the Swan River Colony (1829). The walls of the Rush Church were constructed of rushes and thus you will see etched into the panelling of our Rush Chapel a depiction of rushes. Outside of the original Rush Church was a jarrah tree from which a bell was hung to call people to worship. Symbolically, at the back of our Chapel is a candle stand made from a solid piece of 100-year-old jarrah, aptly named ‘Community’. The sanctuary furniture and cross have been crafted from a tuart tree which grew where our present Year 6 block is found, while many of the stones in the gabion walls outside the Chapel and those which clad the sanctuary wall have been taken from the ground below the Chapel itself, tying us not only to our history, but also to the very land on which the Chapel stands.
We are most blessed to have this wonderful Chapel in the heart of our School, representing our Anglican ethos and providing many generations of Irwinians with a sacred space and a special place for worship.
Thank you again to all those who made the Rush Chapel possible, from the builder to the architect, to supportive community members, and the staff, students and families who will visit and worship in the Chapel for years to come.
Ms Kerry Robertson