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St Fabian’s El Alamein Memorial ChurchPrint Page Print this page

18-January-2017
18-January-2017

Photographs supplied by John Huth

A church commemorates the servicemen buried in the El Alamein War Cemetery in Egypt.

Father Denis Byrne, who was the Parish Priest at the time of the building of the church had served in the Australian Imperial Force (A.I.F.) with the 9th Division in the Western Desert and El Alamein along with some local parishioners.

 

Location

Address:6 Lake Street, St Fabian`s Catholic Church, Yeerongpilly, 4105
State:QLD
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -27.522305
Long: 153.015214
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Structure
Monument Theme:Conflict
Sub-Theme:WW2

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 23rd May, 1965
Front Inscription

St Fabian’s El Alamein Memorial Church

Plaque :

Alamein : Symbol of enduring unity 

At Alamein, Indians-Pakistanis and Ghurkas keep their famous ranks with British, Canadians, New Zealanders, South Africans and Australians.  Our flags break out together above that company.  There - is the memorial of an Empire past ; there - is the symbol of community enduring.  Most of our cemeteries are in garden places, but at Alamein, justly ; the tone of the gaunt desert has been permitted to prevail - save for Bougainvilleas and a few scattered acacias.

One looks across the graves to a landscape which is still as the soldiers saw it - These slow folds, the grey stone, the shallow depressions, the brown sand, the vast sky.  "It certainly isn`t of much use for anything else but war",  and Indian Colonel said.

Sacrifice

The men there died for may causes - among them the defence of the Egyptains themselves from an imperialism which surely would have used them rudely had it won that battlefield.  Perhaps the Egyptians remember as they leave to the Commonwelath this space of ground enriched.  Alamein has 7,227 graves.  There being 1,202 Australians.  They are of the men who died between they first days of July 1942 at Tel El Aisa, at Alam El Halfa is September 1942 until November 4th when the Germans began from El Alamein their long retreat.  

Above the arched entrance to the cemetery is an inscription on which we may still ponder for our instruction.  "Within this memorial are inscribed the names of the soldiers and airmen of the British Commonwealth and Empire who died fighting on land or in the air where two continents meet and to whom the fortune of war denied a known and honoured grave. "   With their fellow who rest in the cemetery, with their comrades of the Royal Navy and with the seamen of the Merchant Navy they preserved for the west the link with the east and turned the tide of war.

It is to the memory of these men that this church was dedicated on 23rd May 1965.  Lest we forget that the united dead of the Commonwealth should represent a trust which we must carry into the future.

 

Back Inscription

Plaque :

St Fabian’s El Alamein Memorial Church

This foundation stone laid on 6 December 1964 was solemnly blessed by Most Rev. Sir James Duhig DD., K.C.M.G., Ll. B Archbishop of Brisbane

Rev. Denis Byrne P.P.

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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