Christ Church, Yankalilla
Built in 1857, and one of the earliest churches in South Australia, Christ Church was consecrated by Bishop Augustus Short, the first Anglican Bishop of Adelaide, in the same year. The bell tower and bell were added in 1892.
The church has much artwork, both inside and outside, including Stations of the Cross, beautifully crafted by Mark Pearse. A small window above the door into the nave was painted by Pro Hart. Many paintings by local artist, the late Barbara Robertson, are in both the church and the hall.
There are several stained glass windows in the church, including one of St Elizabeth of Hungary, a champion of the poor in her country. Others commemorate the families of past parishioners.
The church hall was built in 1872 and was the second community school in the area.
The church has its own cemetery, in which many past church members are buried.
Christ Church also incorporates the Shrine of our Lady of Yankalilla (see below).
The church is open from 9-5 every day for those who wish to visit the shrine or to use the church for prayer and meditation.
The Strawberry Fair, held each year in mid-November, always draws a good crowd and helps with funds. An Op Shop in Normanville is run by the parish, in conjunction with the local Uniting Church. This also helps to maintain contact with not only locals, but also the many tourists who visit this district.
SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF YANKALILLA
This shrine is in the grounds of Christ Church, Yankalilla, and has become an important place for pilgrims from all over Adelaide and even further afield.
On August 24, 1994, a parishioner saw what appeared to be an image of the Virgin Mary high on the back wall of the church. The Virgin was veiled and leaning over the child standing on her lap.
The incumbent priest, Fr Andrew Notere, informed Bishop Graham Walden, and the shrine was dedicated by him on December 15, 1996.
The vision later changed to show Mary tending to Jesus after the crucifixion. This is known as a “pieta”, the most famous of which is by Michelangelo, in Rome. There is also a small statue of the Virgin in the garden of the church and work is in progress to make that a place for pilgrims to sit and pray or meditate. There is a stand for votive candles in the church. A book and cards are also available for people to write their own prayers, and these are included in the intercessions at every service in the church.