A small mission that exploded

Our parish was established as a mission in 1993 to serve the need of the faithful community of Western Sydney. Up until this point, the only parishes in Metropolitan Sydney were in Redfern (St. George Cathedral), and St. Nicholas in Punchbowl.

Starting as a community group, mostly of members from large Lebanese village associations, along with faithful members from the Syrian, Palestinian, Jordanian, and Egyptian communities. This mission would gather in the current “St Raphael’s Slovenian Catholic Church” on Merrylands Road, Merrylands. It is from the times where the parish would pray here that the parish became affectionately known as “Saydey Merrylands”, that is, Our Lady of Merrylands.

The parish although now referred to as St. Mary’s, Mays Hill, is more correctly to be honoured as the Parish of the Nativity of the Theotokos. The patronal feast day of Septemeber 9th, commemorates the miraculous birth of the Ladder to Heaven, our most pure Mother, Saint Mary, by St. Anna and St. Joachim.

The move to establish a mission in the Western Suburbs of Sydney was a blessed decision. The community quickly grew, and by the immense generosity and unquenchable zeal of the broad community, a permanent location was revealed and quickly established.

Merrylands to Mays Hill

The name remained, but the location changed! God presented an opportunity to purchase government-owned land at the present location of the parish of the Nativity.

Currently our parish is celebrating in the joy of all cultures and communities being united in Christ.


Because of the selflessness and guidance of great clergy, the parish grounds quickly grew with a further parcel of land, directly next to the church was purchased. With the additional land for parking and expansion, the original car-park was flattened and a childcare centre was established and built! This centre is part of the parish and is an opportunity to share Christ with even the youngest of our flock.

Looking to the Future

If you have visited the parish, you will certainly have noticed the vacant gravel lot which provides us plenty of parking for Sundays. This will be the site for a future Community and Youth centre and will be a centre for education, welfare services, youth curriculums, and a multi-purpose space to be able to return the good Grace of God to the greater Community.

We would love your help!

Do you want to share your story? A greater collection, celebrating the history of the parish is being developed. Feel free to email your memories, photos, experiences, and momentoes through to fr.john@saintmary.org.au.