All Saints' Church, whose story is presented in these pages, was built in the pathless bush, and in seventy-five years has seen a great city grow up around its walls. In that three quarters of a century, it has been the spiritual home of generations of Queenslanders, who have found their devoted priests ministering to them, guiding them along the path of duty and holiness from the cradle to the grave. By reason of personal associations alone, it is inevitable that All Saints' Church should have become an object of love and veneration, and this history, itself the product of that love and veneration, would need no other justification.
Yet the historic appeal of All Saints' is based on more solid and enduring grounds than those of sentiment, however praiseworthy or even noble. As one of the oldest churches and parishes in Brisbane, its story is a vital part of the story of the growth of the Church in the diocese. Unless and until the history of each of the historic parishes of the diocese is adequately written, no adequate history of the diocese itself is possible. Hitherto, no exhaustive survey of the history of any parish has been made; nor anything been done to preserve a knowledge of the lives and work of any of the churchmen, some of them great churchmen, archbishops, bishops, or priests, who have guided the destinies of the Church of England in Queensland. It will surely be accounted a matter of duty, and a labour of love, that they shall not be forgotten to whose life-long labours church people of to-day owe the privileges they enjoy.
The Queensland historian is severely handicapped by 'the difficulty of gaining access to the records necessary for an adequately documented history of any phase of the State's development. The State possesses no official records office; the accumulation of textbooks, works of reference, and private records is of so recent growth that it is as yet necessarily far from complete; while private and semi-public institutions have set about the preservation of their records either of recent years only or not at all. That these difficulties can be overcome by patient research is demonstrated by Miss Kissick's comprehensive and authoritative history of All Saints'; both the subject of her work and the manner in which it has been accomplished constitute an indubitable service to Queensland history.
This narrative of All Saints' will not only be treasured by the parishioners of All Saints', but will also be read with gratitude and interest by generations of students in Queensland and elsewhere; with the fullest sympathy, if not always the complete agreement, of those who worship at other altars.
H. J. J. SPARKS.
Brisbane, December 10, 1937.