THE FABULOUS BELL CATHOLIC CHURCH - Just a half hour drive from Dalby

THE FABULOUS BELL CATHOLIC CHURCH - Just a half hour drive from Dalby
 

This yarn is about the Bell church, an absolute must-visit when you’re staying at the Country Pathfinder Motor Inn in Dalby.

The Our Lady Help of Christians Community Group, a group of dedicated Catholics who worship regularly at the 100-year-old Bell Catholic Church and have between them created a miracle in this small town.

           bc 1         bc 2                    bc 3                    bc 4

Artist Megg Cullen lives next door to the Catholic Church.

Megg has lived in Bell for about 20 years. Amongst the many passions that occupy her time (including her art), she has taught religious education for more years than she cares to admit to. Her knowledge of the Old and New Testaments is encyclopaedic, the story as it rolls off her tongue a captivating rendition of the history of civilisation.

For some years now Megg, with the support and assistance of the other parishioners of Bell, has combined her Biblical knowledge with her artistic skill to create two extraordinary things; a small-town, brightly coloured church decorated inside with beautiful murals telling the stories of the Bible, and a church garden illustrating the 14 Stations of the Cross.

The centrepiece of this miracle, the church itself, stands out bright yellow against a backdrop of brilliant blue Darling Downs sky.

Inside, Megg’s huge murals (like Michelangelo, she stood on a ladder to complete them) depict the 6 covenants between God and Man, and all the major Christian events. By the time you have absorbed this pictorial bible – stories whose repercussions still resonate loudly in the Middle East - the final covenant, the Last Supper, gives rise to the final work of art – the garden below the church.

The creation of the Biblical Garden was a community Here too biblical reality shines through. Mosaics and sculptures by Megg Cullen, Ron Lloyd, Wayne McGuire and Michael Walsh adorn the nooks that honour the Stations of the Cross.

There are olive trees (the garden of Gethsemane); a carob tree (the prodigal son); wormwood (sin) ; hyssop; a date palm; grapes; bay, fig, pomegranate, apple, almond and mulberry trees; even the Cedars of Lebanon.

‘Lillies of the Field more beautiful than Solomon and all his glory’ – and indeed here, they are. All combine in a lovely symbiosis to tell a story as old as time, the one at the root of the Christian faith.The church and garden are open all year round. Ity’s worth making the pilgrimage to Bell just to wonder at the devotion that produced this remarkable aggregate work of art.

The church and garden are open all year round. Ity’s worth making the pilgrimage to Bell just to wonder at the devotion that produced this remarkable aggregate work of art.

About the Author

Jane Grieve

Jane Grieve

Former columnist for Queensland’s Courier Mail, is a freelance journalist for several current magazines.

She has written two books, Slippin’ on the Lino and In Stockmen’s Footsteps.


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