There’s a lovely little church, contemplation garden, and graveyard at the Anglican Parish of Grovely in Brisbane’s inner North-West.
Located at 37 Church Road, Grovely (you can also find it listed under Mitchelton), St Matthew’s resembles an English country church, especially on a foggy morning, as you’ll see in the gallery.
Call me morbid, but I love a foggy graveyard. It’s quiet, calm, and restful – appropriate really, given its purpose. But equally, St Matthew’s is a beautiful church in its own understated way, and looks just as irresistible on a bright sunny day. It hosts movie makers and weddings, baptisms and funerals, in addition to its usual religious services. The garden is a place for reflection and meditation and City of Images recommends a visit if you’d like both a memento mori reminder, and a welcoming place of peace.
St Matthew’s was established in 1867, the same year in which writer Henry Lawson and artist Arthur Streeton were born. Also in 1867, Rookwood Necropolis in Sydney was established – a rather larger affair than St Matthew’s micro-village. 1867 was the year Robert Mackenzie became Queensland Premier, and Prince Alfred, the then Duke of Edinburgh, arrived for a royal tour of the colonies. Queensland’s population was estimated at 98,722 (currently it’s moving towards 4.7 million – for the geeks among us, and we are legion – the Queensland Population Counter estimates a total population increase of one person every 5 minutes and 34 seconds – no, you didn’t ask, but aren’t you glad you know now?!).
You can visit St Matthew’s by following Samford Road out through Alderley, Gaythorne, and Mitchelton, until you see Mitchelton State High School coming up on the left. Church Road is approximately opposite the school, so turn right when you get to the Samford Rd and Church Rd intersection, and before you know it, you’ll be able to imagine you’re in an episode of Midsummer Murders – without the murders, of course. And if it’s mid-summer, or mid-winter, take a picnic, take a seat, and spend some quality time with the collective ancestors.