- active 1950s-1980s
Len Abbott was ordained in Adelaide in 1961
Len Abbott was ordained in Adelaide in 1961
Mary Maria Andrews was born at Dry Plain Station (near Cooma, NSW) in 1915 to Albert and Ann Andrews. The family moved to Mittagong in 1925 then Sydney in 1927 for educational purposes following the separation of her parents. Mary was educated at Homebush Intermediate High School and later Hornsby Girls' High. She underwent training as a General Nurse at Gladesville Mental Hospital from 1933-1935, . studied at Sydney Missionary and Bible College from 1935-6 and was a resident at Deaconess house from 1937-8 at the recommendation of the Church Missionary Society of Australia (CMS), to which she had applied as a missionary to China in 1937.
Sailing to China in September 1938, she engaged in language learning at the College of Chinese Studies in Peiping (which was under Japanese occupation at the time) and later in Lin Hai, where she performed missionary work until she was forced to leave in late 1943 in fear of Japanese troops. She worked in Lahore, India, during 1944, and returned to Australia on furlough in 1946, during which time she was 'set apart' as a Deaconess. She returned to China in June 1947, working as a missionary in Shaohsing until she was forced to leave due to pressure from the Communist government in 1951.
Following her missionary career she continued to be heavily involved in CMS Candidates and General Committees and was a committed supporter of the South American Missionary Society (SAMS) and served on their Candidates and Pastoral Committee.
She began work as the Principal of Deaconess House in 1951, and was commissioned as Head Deaconess in the Diocese of Sydney in early 1952. As Principal, she oversaw a dramatic expansion of the institution in both physical size and occupancy. She held the position until her reluctant retirement in 1975. Many of the women who trained at Deaconess House continued to correspond with her, confide in her and shares the joys and trials of ministry with her until her life's end.
She then took on the role of part-time chaplain to three retirement villages - Goodwin Village, Woollahra (where she also resided); Elizabeth Lodge, Kings Cross, and St John's Village, Glebe. Not only did she conduct Bible studies and hold devotional meetings with the residents but she also encouraged them to give generously to missions, other Christian work and organisations for the aged. Additionally, she increased her involvement in a number of ecumenical and women's associations and was a fixture at these for the remainder of her life. Material found in her papers suggests that she supported the Healing Ministry at St Andrews Cathedral, Basilea Schlink of Darmstadt and that she attended the Billy Graham Crusade in 1979.
In 1980 she was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for her Services to Religion.
Mary Andrews throughout her career and ministry was a strong proponent of greater inclusion of women into church life. She was actively involved in the events leading up to a number of milestones, including an increased prominence of the Deaconess order, the inclusion of women in the Anglican synod, and the ordination of women as Anglican Deacons. Late in her life she was fiercely in favour of the ordination of women as priests, and was a member of the Movement for the Ordination of Women (MOW).
She had a healthy interest in a wide range of Christian beliefs and recorded broadcast interviews of Chrisians from Roman Catholic, Anglican, Pentecostal, and various other Christian denominations from Australia and abroad.
Recreationally she enjoyed traditional hymns, English Cathedral music and when time permitted attended performing arts particularly 'classical' music. In fact she entered into correspondence occasionally regarding the programs of concerts and the choice of operas if she thought they were unsuitable. She also had a life-long interest in photography and left behind an exhaustive documentation of the work of Deaconess House, the organisations that she was involved with, her many overseas trips, significant occasions in the ministry of former students and friends and of women's ministry in general.
She died on the 16th of October 1996, a few weeks after the 50th anniversary of her 'setting apart' as a Deaconess.
Mervyn Archdall was born in Clonmel, Ireland, and studied at Corpus Christi College Cambridge. He married Martha Karow in 1882 and they sailed to Sydney that same year. He served at St Mary's Balmain and in 1902 became Canon of St Andrew's Cathedral. He promoted deaconesses and founded 'Bethany' for their training in 1891. In 1908 he was appointed Rector of St Stephen's Penrith and served there until his retirement in 1913. He died of cardiac disease in 1917. http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/archdall-mervyn-5044
Stuart Barton Babbage was born in Auckland in 1916. He studied history and economics at Auckland University, then completed a PhD at London University. After ordination in 1939 he served in an Essex parish, then as RAF chaplain in Norfolk. He married Elizabeth King in 1943, and was then sent to Iraq and Persia. In 1946 he came to Sydney as diocesan missioner, then served as Dean from 1947-1953. In 1953 he became Principal of Ridley College and Dean of Melbourne (1953-1962). In 1959 he chaired the organising committee for Billy Graham's crusade. He went to America in 1963 to take up a position of professor Columbia Theological Seminary, Georgia. He established the Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts and was President from 1963-1973. Returning to Australia, he was Master of New College at the University of New South Wales from 1973-1983, and in 1995 was awarded the Order of Australia. From 1977-1992 he was also Registrar of the Australian College of Theology. He and Elizabeth had four children; she died in 1984.
Horace William Alexander Barder was ordained Deacon in 1915 and Priest in 1917. He was Rector of St. Michael's, Vaucluse, 1927-1938; Honorary Canon of St. Andrew's Cathedral from 1936; Rector of St. Mark's, Darling Point from 1938; and Rural Dean of East Sydney from 1942. Reverend Barder died in 1949.
Frederic Barker was born in Derbyshire, England, studied at Cambridge and was ordained in 1832. After a tour of Ireland for the Irish Home Mission Society he became Rector of St Mary's Edge Hill, near Liverpool (1835-1853). He married Jane Sophia Harden in 1840. In 1855 he was appointed Bishop of Sydney and Metropolitan of Australia, and he and Jane sailed to Sydney. He oversaw the foundation of Moore College and St Paul's College at the University of Sydney, as well as the formation of the Church Society in 1856. After Jane's death in 1876 he married Mary Jane Woods in 1878. In 1880 he travelled to England and then to Italy, in order to improve his health, but died in San Remo in 1882. Mary Jane died in 1910.
Jane Sophia Harden was born in Windemere, England. She married Frederic Barker in 1840 and travelled with him to Sydney in 1855 when he was made Bishop of Sydney. They had no children. Working alongside her husband in ministering to women, children and the poor of the diocese, she founded St Catherine's School in Waverley in 1856 for the daughters of the clergy. The climate affected her health and she died in 1876. http://webjournals.ac.edu.au/ojs/index.php/ADEB/article/view/1327/1324