2. Father Thomas O’Brien served from 1875 – 1878. His first official duty seems to have been the opening of St Mary’s Church of the Holy Rosary in Bundaberg. He took the choir from Maryborough with him. At about the same time, he was reprimanded by Bishop Quinn for writing to the Pope asking for financial help for the education problems here. Early in 1878, Fr O’Brien opened the Sacred Heart Church at Tiaro. A lot of his time was taken up with trying to keep the schools in the region financial so that the children could receive a good education. In June of 1878, Fr O’Brien paid a visit to Bundaberg where he took ill and died within a week from heart disease at the age of 36. He was buried in the Church grounds there.
The parishioners of Maryborough held a meeting to request that Fr O’Brien’s remains be brought back for re-interment. It wasn’t until early in 1881 that his body was exhumed and brought down by the steamer “Lady Bowen” and laid to rest in St Mary’s Church.