Reflection Garden 'Magnolia Place' at All Hallows' School Dedicated and Blessed
On 10 September, All Hallows’ School’s new reflection garden, Magnolia Place, was dedicated and blessed. This garden, situated on the land of Adderton, the convent of the Brisbane Sisters of Mercy, provides space for quiet reflection and prayer and is a place where we remember past All Hallows' students who have died while still students at the School.
Magnolia Place was an idea born from the profound grief our School community experienced in 2017 when we lost our AHSisters Emily DelDot and Emily Pham. The garden was named by the Seniors of 2019 after the floral symbol of the School, the magnolia. The magnolia flower has a special place in the All Hallows’ story as it was referenced in a letter written by Mother Vincent Whitty on 2 December 1875. Mother Whitty wrote:
I am sure you are very busy in your department with chickens etc, etc. Here we are eaten up by goats and their kids. Yesterday when in the reception room (of Adderton) what did I see, but a goat tearing and eating a lovely magnolia – if it survives the tearing it got, it will be a wonderful plant.
Magnolia Place was dedicated by All Hallows' Board Chair, Adjunct Professor Iyla Davies OAM and blessed by Brisbane Congregation Leader, Sr Catherine Reuter. The garden was blessed with the waters taken from the rill which is modelled on the water feature in the garden in Mercy International Centre.
During the liturgy the names of each of the students who has died while a student of the School, were read and a flower presented in the girls’ honour. Twelve names appear on the plinths ranging from Ellen and Mary Drew who died in 1877 to Emily DelDot and Emily Pham who passed away just days apart in 2017.
The garden contains a number of significant features including the water rill lined with mosaic work constructed out of ceramics from the School’s teacup collection. Magnolia flowers mark each of the names of the girls and a beautiful statue of Mary comforting 2 young girls looks over the entire garden. Our School’s Mercy Charism Coordinator, Mrs Angela O’Malley observed that the Magnolia Place garden “completes our community of a communion of saints – those still living and those who have passed on.”
Messages to: Claire Easton- Director of Mission