by Desley Malone

The first Presbyterian Church Service was held in Maleny in the Union Church in Bunya St in 1907. This church was also used by the Baptists, Methodists and Anglicans. Mrs Cole used to ride to Maleny to conduct the services for the Presbyterian parishioners, side-saddle from either Nambour or Palmwoods.

In circa 1930, Mr Thomason, a local dentist, donated a block of land in Cedar St to the Presbyterian Church. This land was directly behind his home and had a garage on it.  

The garage became known as “The Manse” and was home to numerous Home Missionaries who shared it with the Ladies Guild, PFA, Fellowship, Committee of Management and Sunday School. Several weddings were also held there.  

In 1938 the Church Elders decided to build their own church, similar to the plan of the Bli Bli Church, and donations of labour and materials poured in. The appointed builder was Mr Patterson from Nambour and the cost of the building was estimated at £350, with furniture £100.  

Gittens Bros were to fell timber, Hamilton Saw Mills offered a loan of a tractor, free, to haul timber, Tesch Bros were to supply cut timber. The names of the local guarantors were: Messrs Hunt, Thomason, Alcorn, Mathie, Gibson & G Thomason.  

The Committee of Management decided that the outside walls be chamfer boards and Mr Hunt moved that the windows be lead light with diamond shaped panes.  Some sort of ornamentation was wanted for the front gable.  

The community rallied with fundraising occasions and donations, and the church was officially opened on Sunday March 25, 1930 with 200 people in attendance. During the opening service the window, pulpit, communion table, minister’s chair, baptismal font, organ, collection plates and hymn board were dedicated.  

Within seven years the church was debt free, and in 1940 electric lights were installed. During the War Years there was a very strong Fellowship group and locals Isabella and Phyllis Bryce were very involved with the Sunday School. 

The first wedding after the opening of the new church was that of Rixon Burnett, son of the publican, to Peg McLean, officiated by Rev Ken Stevens.

In later years the garage became the church hall and a manse was later added adjacent to the church.

This characterful, heritage-listed building celebrated its centenary on August 25, 2007 with a ThanksGiving Service. The Maleny Presbyterian Church is a fine example of a small timber church in a country town.

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