Welcome to Our Lady of the Rosary parish, The Entrance. Our parish has its'
origins back in the 1860's when Mass was first celebrated at Long Jetty. The area was a popular tourist and camping holiday spot on the southern shores of Tuggerah Lake where the lake and the Pacific Ocean meet.
Today The Entrance and its surroundings is one of the premium holiday spots on the Central Coast and is the home of some 10,000 Catholic families.
Since its inception in 1947 the parish has grown and today boasts one of the most beautiful and prayerful Churches in our Diocese. Substantially designed by Fr Reg Reynolds, the parish church caters for the permanent Catholic population as well as the many visitors who holiday here.
The Parish Centre is a more recent addition which houses a multi purpose
function centre and offices to deal with parish business and the administration of the parish properties. A feature of the parish centre is the unique formed and stained glass shrine of Our Lady of The Entrance, a beautiful image of Our Lady of the Rosary casting her mantle over the dominant geography of our area - the Pacific Ocean and Tuggerah Lake.
The rise in population has seen the need to relocate the Primary School,
which was originally behind the Church. Today, a modern K-6 Catholic Primary School is on a new site on Shelly Beach Road. The old school buildings have been redeveloped as a cultural/education centre to serve the parish.
Rev Fr William C Stevens
More about our History
The first Holy Mass celebrated at The Entrance was in the 1860’s at the home of Mr George Taylor who lived at Long Jetty. The priests travelled from Gosford until 1914 when Wyong became a parish, which included The Entrance and the whole of the Lake Macquarie area.
The foundation stone for the first church at The Entrance was laid by Archbishop Kelly on 4 October 1925 and the church was opened Christmas Day 1925. During 1935 to 1937, under the leadership of Father O’Flaherty, the church was remodelled and doubled in length.
In July 1947 The Entrance became a parish in its own right. The first Parish Priest was Father Patrick Brennan who served the parish until September 1953 when Father Reg Reynolds who served the parish until his retirement in January 1980 succeeded him. Both these men, were far more than excellent administrators, both were truly Priestly men, gifted in many ways. They each showed great foresight.
Father Brennan set up the first presbytery and a convent for the Sisters of St Joseph whom he invited to start the first Catholic School here in 1952. Father Reynolds completed his work and built additional classrooms and a library and a new school on the Shelly Beach site. The Sisters of St Joseph laboured for forty very fruitful years in our parish school and in the parish generally, a contribution for which the parish is most grateful.
Father Reynolds also directed the building of a new presbytery, the Catholic Carnival Hall, Reynolds Court Retirement Village and the present beautiful church in which we worship today. This church was blessed and opened in December 1962 by Archbishop James Carroll. Father Reynolds, together with our parish members, was also responsible for the development of Catholic high school education on the Central Coast.
Father Robert Brogan came here in 1979 and made further additions to the Primary School at Shelly Beach and was responsible for coordinating the financing and building of the Mater Dei and Corpus Christi Colleges (now St Peter’s) at Tuggerah.