Mary MacKillop Penola Centre

Limestone Coast

From $8.00
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The Mary MacKillop Penola Centre celebrates the life and legacy of Australia's first Saint, Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop.

It was here in Penola that Mary MacKillop and Father Julian Tenison Woods co-founded the uniquely Australian congregation, the Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart.

Experience history as you walk in her footsteps and gain a deeper understanding of her enduring impact on Australia's social, educational and religious landscape.

Begin your visit with a self-guided tour through the Mary MacKillop Gallery, which outlines significant events leading to her canonisation and sainthood. Father Woods was a remarkable missionary bush priest and scientist, and his achievements and legacy are on display in his gallery 'Priest and Scientist - 'a saddle for a pillow'.

Founder of Penola, Alexander Cameron and his wife Margaret engaged young Mary as a governess to her cousins in 1860. The reconstructed original two rooms of the homestead include displays on the family and provide a unique glimpse into the past. Saint Joseph's Catholic Church and MacKillop shrine are also on the site.

But the 1867 Schoolhouse is a must see. This State Heritage Listed building is a special place where Mary's youthful presence can still be felt. She taught and lived here ... and changed Australia's social, educational and religious landscape.


Coach Parking
Enquiry Desk
Interpretive Centre
Shop / Gift Shop


From $8.00 to $8.00
Discount for group bookings of 10 or more and school groups.


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