No. 174 - St Peter's at Youngtown - Missionaries of the Sacred Heart

In 1957 the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart were asked by Archbishop Guilford Young to look after St Peter’s Church at Youngtown. This followed the establishment of a new parish to serve Launceston’s southern suburbs. The Missionaries of the Sacred Heart of Jesus are a missionary congregation in the Catholic Church that was founded in 1854 by Jules Chevalier in France. The 'Sacred Heart Fathers' had reached Tasmania by the late 19th century and had a strong presence in the Northern Midlands and the Fingal Valley.

The original St Peter’s Church was opened in Youngtown in 1952. [see blog entry 28 February 2018] The driving force behind the building of the church was Monsignor William Upton, the Dean of Northern Tasmania. There were great hopes for the new church in the rapidly growing suburbs of Kings Meadows and Youngtown. The newly established Kings Meadows parish owned four acres of farmland opposite the weatherboard church and the intention was to develop this for a parish school and a modern church. This was partially achieved in 1977 when modern brick church was opened. Although the proposed school was never built, the parish has developed a close association with Larmenier School at nearby St Leonards.

Archbishop Guilford Young consecrated St Peter’s on November 6, 1977. The old church was then used as a parish centre until it was sold in 1986 to assist payment for alterations to the new church and a new parish centre.

The Missionaries of the Sacred Heart still serve St Peter's and the parish of Kings Meadows was later extended to include Longford where Father Louis Cochard, an early French MSC, cared for Longford between 1906 until 1917. 

Links of Interest:

Missionaries of the Sacred Heart

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

The foundation stone from the original church. Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018

The original St Peter's at Youngtown. Photograph: Duncan Grant 2018


Fr. Terry Southerwood: Launceston's Catholic Story (1838-2001); 2001 Launceston.


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