Father Paul Kelly and his congregation gather at the little church on Aramara’s hill to celebrate the birth of Jesus.
Father Paul Kelly and his congregation gather at the little church on Aramara’s hill to celebrate the birth of Jesus.

Aramara church holds Xmas Eve mass

THE RAIN pelting down on Cloudy Creek and Charley Hart’s bridge didn’t stop the loyal flock getting to Christmas Eve Mass in the little church on Aramara’s hill.

“Well I prayed for rain,” Father Paul Kelly said with a huge beam as he stepped out of his car into a mud puddle.

“Saint Nicholas couldn’t make it so Father Paul brought bon bons, and the rain, and look everyone, the Chronicle’s little reporter.”

The 50-strong congregation, some from as far as Maryborough, and Mungar, some from “a fair bit of a drive out that way”, a handful from Aramara itself, packed the 59-year-old little wooden church for the 3.30pm service.

It’s a long tradition in this once dairying community of perhaps 30 people, halfway between Maryborough and Biggenden.

“I have pictures of the church being built,” Margaret Ford nee-Hodges said.

Margaret, 80, is the sacristan, looking after the church and getting it ready for Father’s visits every second Sunday of the month.

“My parents Agin and Margaret Hodges lived here most of their lives. I grew up and went to school here and then to the convent in Maryborough.

“Then after working in Brisbane I came home and now I live in North Aramara.”

“Margaret’s sister Monica, who did a lot for the village, has the park across the road named after her,” Father added.

The church was originally called Our Lady of the Way, became St Mary’s and now has reverted to Our Lady of the Way.

The worshippers launched into a lusty O Come All Ye Faithful and Father gave the message of Jesus being born in tough times as many of us are going through today.

“So we need Jesus more than ever.”

The service rang out joyfully across the cluster of Aramara’s houses as the rain continued to splash down on to the only steeple in the entire Catholic parish of Maryborough.



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