This photograph continues my social history project documenting both the mundane and the interesting in the City of Fremantle and surrounding areas through the medium of Waymarking .
The Basilica of St Patrick’s Fremantle was established around 1850, the third Catholic Community in Western Australia after St Mary’s Cathedral Parish Perth and the Benedictine community of New Norcia. Till 1894 the parish was served mainly by Diocesan Priests with the exception of the 1850s when it was served by a number of Benedictines who each came for a short time.
Since 1894 the parish has been entrusted to the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. It was their first foundation in Australia and they have now been responsible for its pastoral care for 102 years.
In respect to why it is a Basilica, Wikipedia and Fremantle Stuff are helpful here . There are four major basilicas, all in Rome, and over 1600 minor basilicas elsewhere, of which this is one. It means that this parish is obliged to fulfil certain liturgical obligations, and: 'It should be sufficiently large and with an ample sanctuary. It should be renowned for history, relics or sacred images, and should be served by a sufficient number of priests and other ministers and by an adequate choir.'
It does not appear to be a heritage-listed building which is curious.