Rector welcomed to Allora area
LAST Saturday the community of the Anglican Parish of Allora/Clifton gathered at Allora’s historic St. David’s Church to celebrate the commissioning of Father Andrew Baldwin as Rector of the Parish by Western Region Bishop Robert Nolan.
More than 80 community members attended the service, which was followed by a luncheon in St. David’s Hall, welcoming Father Andrew and his wife Trissie to the Allora/Clifton area.
Father Andrew has filled the Rector position at Allora after a lengthy vacant period since Father John Pattison was the Parish Rector.
It is somewhat of a homecoming, given wife Trissie was raised in the Allora area, her father the former local Rector’s Warden, Peter Easton, the Baldwins actually married in Allora’s St. David’s Church.
The new Rector comes to Allora from Oakey where he spent the past two years as the priest in charge, a secondment in recent years also saw him in Killarney for six months.
He also spent time in Warwick from 1982 to 1984 as Curate at St. Marks Church, meeting his wife-to-be who was a church organist at the time.
Well-travelled, Father Andrew also brings the experience from ministries in South Croyden, Victoria, Maroochydore and Chinchilla, not to mention many brief appointments to other Anglican Parishes.
Born in County Kent, nine miles from Canterbury in England, Andrew Baldwin attended teacher’s college in Derby, and after graduating headed to Queensland in 1973 as part of a teacher recruitment program.
He taught at Bundaberg State High School until 1978 and, as a member of the church choir in Bundaberg, where he began future involvement with the Anglican Church.
The thought of taking up the vacancy in Allora was bred in January this year, and the offer came in April, the Baldwin’s feeling very confident they have made the right decision.
Allora’s spiralling temperatures of late are no deterrent, the town’s newest family having experienced the chilly weather of Chinchilla.
Father Andrew has considerable admiration for his parishioners, who are so active within the community, and is looking forward to providing the necessary support.
While he enjoys camping and travelling, the former hockey player and junior soccer coach is keen on sport, especially tennis, and is the founding member of the Bundaberg Canoeing Club.
One of great attractions of a move to Allora was the opportunity for Andrew and Trissie to be close to their family.
They have four daughters and a son and their families in the local area, another son at the Sunshine Coast, along with ten grandchildren.
Father Andrew believes his appointment will provide “stability and provide for parish growth and consolidation” after a lengthy period without a permanent Rector at St. David’s.
He considers the Parish facilities are more than adequate, especially with a new hall under construction in Clifton.