St. Mary’s Catholic Parish is steeped in history. The first mass was conducted at the ‘old town’ in 1852 and by 1861 Maryborough had its first resident priest, Father Paul Tissot, who was a French national. The building of St. Mary’s Church at Maryborough commenced in 1869 and was officially opened in 1872. In 1878 the Sacred Heart Church at Tiaro was opened and Our Lady of the Way Church at Aramara in 1950. There have been thirteen parish priests since Father Tissot with the current priest being the reverend Father George K. Joseph.
The Parish is part of the Archdiocese of Brisbane and its governance under the parish priest consists of a Pastoral Council, a Finance Council and a Liturgy Committee. Other Parish groups include Saint Vincent de Paul; the Catholic Women’s League; the Fatima Prayer Group; the Mother’s Prayer Group; the Marian Movement of Priests; the Latin Rosary, SewPNG, and St. Mary’s Heritage Room. The parish is supported by a part-time parish secretary, and a Church and hall cleaner. The Parish has two schools – St Mary’s Primary and St. Mary’s College. In total, approximately 700 students attend these parish owned schools. ‘Outside School Hours Care’ is also offered at St. Mary’s Primary School.
St Mary's Catholic Community is a faith community of Service, Courage and Justice. St Mary's Catholic Community is committed to building a strong faith community guided by the Gospel values.
- create opportunities for all people to deepen and strengthen their relationship with Jesus Christ;
- empower our children and young people to encounter Christ through dynamic faith experiences;
- develop a culture that supports authentic Christian discipleship; and
- become parish that actively reaches out to evangelise our community for Christ.
About Father George
My name is George Kallarackal Joseph I was born in Kanjirapally, Kottayam District, Kerala, India to my loving parents Joseph Dominic Kallarackal and Mary Joseph Mullaikal (Pulluruthikary) Cherthala, Alleppy Dt. I have six brothers (two of whom have died) and three sisters.
I am a Missionary Priest of the Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament (MCBS).This Religious Order was founded in 1933 at Mallapaly, India, by Father Mathew Alakulam and Father Joseph Paredam with the approval of the Bishop of Changanachgerry, Bishop James Kalacherry. I entered the Seminary to become a Priest in 1971 and was ordained on 19th December 1981. Shortly thereafter, I was appointed the Secretary to my Order’s Superior General After six years, I became the Superior of an Orphanage at Anappara, Ernkulam Dt. Following that, I served as the Parish Priest of Sasimala Infant Jesus Church in the Diocese of Mananthavady, Kerala. In 1992, I came to Australia to work in the Diocese of Toowoomba, Queensland. In 1998 I returned to India where I was appointed as the pioneer Parish Priest of Karimpany in the Diocese of Pala. I have the credit of being the first Religious Priest to become a Parish Priest in this Diocese and while serving there I was instrumental in having the Blessed Sacrament Church built for the parishioners of Karimpany.
In the year 2000, I went to the USA to work in the Diocese of Marquette, Michigan where I was the Parish Priest of Baraga and Ewen Parishes. After four years in the States, I returned to India where I was appointed as the Mission Superior of the Order’s Missions at Satara and Solaur in the State of Maharastra (near Mumbai) for three years. While there, I was privileged to meet (Saint) Mother Teresa of Calcutta. The nuns from her Order worked with us in the missions.
In 2007, I was elected as a Councillor to the Provincial Council. In this role, I took care of the Order’s Missionaries, sought out new mission fields and organised missionary activities. I opened new missions in Tanzania, Africa and Arunachel-Pradesh, India.
In April 2011, I returned to my old Parish in Karimpany and stayed there until I left for Australia in February 2012. My appointments included Brisbane Parishes of Annerley Ekibin, Boonah, Wilston and then St Stephen’s Cathedral. During this time, I also served as Chaplain of Royal Brisbane Hospital.
On 4th August 2014, I was appointed the 13th Parish Priest of St Mary’s Parish and I am delighted to minister to the parishioners of Maryborough, Tiaro and Aramara.