The first Mass in Highett was celebrated by Father O'Hanlon from Mentone in 1948. Masses were originally celebrated in the now Parish Hall.
Father Gerard Quilter was appointed as the first Parish Priest for St Agnes in the May of 1951. The Parish originally took in Cheltenham and East Hampton.
Our Church is located at 25 Spring Road, Highett.
A Convent for Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Sisters was built in 1968, followed by St Agnes' Church in 1969. The steel cross forms the centre point of the Church. The Church can seat up to 400 people.
In the last 20 years there has been substantial renovations and additions which include the entrance foyer, the kitchenette, a new sacristy, balcony, reconciliation room and toilet. In 1998 a new steel roof was installed, stain glass windows, a new sanctuary and a Memorial Garden. The Church also has audio-visual capabilities which include a projector and screen, sound system and computer.
Environmental concerns have seen the installation of water tanks, solar panels and energy-saving lighting.
The Presbytery is located at 6 Clyde Street, Highett and consists of 3 bedrooms, lounge room, family and dining room, recently renovated kitchen and two bathrooms.
Our Parish Office is located at 9 Centre Dandenong Road, Cheltenham and is open Monday to Friday between 9:00 am and 3:30 pm .
The Parish Hall has a modern kitchen and has had new toilet facilities added. It is used by the community for various functions including wedding anniversaries, funerals, baptism and birthday celebrations and a venue for State and Federal Elections. It is currently not for hire.
Volunteers cover many areas: Sacristan, Special Ministers of the Eucharist, Readers, Servers, Cleaners, Counters, Musicians and Garden Maintenance. There is a Financial Council, Social & Fundraising Committee, Care & Concern Group and St Vincent de Paul Conference. As well, there is Sacramental preparation for Baptism, Reconciliation, Holy Communion, Confirmation and Weddings. Paid personnel cover secretarial and administration.
Mass Times are at 6pm Saturday Vigil at St Agnes, 9am and 11am Sunday morning at Our Lady of the Assumption, Cheltenham. Weekday Mass: Tuesday and Friday 9am at St Agnes. We have an average of 45 Baptisms a year approximately 8 Funerals and 1 Wedding.
There are two Homes for the elderly in the Parish. Mass is celebrated once a month at one Home. Special Ministers attend both Homes as well as others who are house-bound, weekly.
St James College
St Agnes' was a founding member and financial contributor to St James Regional College at East Bentleigh. The Parish Priest is a Canonical Administrator.
The Parish has a regular Thanksgiving Campaign and has met all Parish obligations as well as being a generous contributor to the Missions, Project Compassion, St Vincent de Paul as well as major disaster relief.
“A brief history.”
Some important dates for our Parish:
May 13th 1951:
St Agnes’ Parish Highett is officially recognised as an independent parish at an official grand opening ceremony on Pentecost Sunday.
Aug 30th 1953:
Official opening and blessing of new school-hall by Archbishop Mannix.
First sacrificial giving campaign conducted
School opens with 356 pupils in new separate classrooms.
Mar 10th 1968:
Convent blessed by Archbishop Knox.
Sep 10th 1969:
New church blessed by Archbishop Knox.