Heroism may he donned as enthusiasm sufficient in its intensity to impel man or woman to an extraordinary effort in tho accomplishment of a great purpose.
The Rev. F. L. Heriot, of the Australian Inland Mission, may therefore bo fairly described as a hero, and by his side thcro stands another, Mb wife, who specially desirves the designation. This pair ot pillant young Victorians and their in- fant have just arrived In Brisbane on route to Cloncurry, where Mr. Heriot will take over the spiritual charge of the Gulf country, with the copper centre as his headquarters, the area constituting a ¡parish greater in extent than the .whole I of too Southern State wherein both were I bom. There must have been something .very fascinating to the young clergyman and his wife In the thought of stepping from a small Melbourne suburban charge into this vast and wondcrlul territory, but the compelling factor, no doubt, was a realisation of the great field It ottered to- God’s work, and this eiulto overcame any consideration of tho personal dis- comforts and social deprivations which two years in tho Gulf might mean.
Mr. Heriot) bns tlio right meaBuro of enthusiasm without doubt; it flashes from his dark eyes and lights up his interest-ing face Bs ho talkB of the work of tho Inland Mission. “Seo here,” he said, tak-ing out a small map of the continent of , Australia. “Here aro the portions of the States of Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, and Queensland which aro under the caro ot tho Presbyterian Churches of each respective State. Hero is what the Australian Inland Mission bas to look after.” With a comprehensive swcop of the hand Mr. Heriot Indicated what probably amounts to 95 per cent, of Western Australia, the whole of tho Northern Territory, and the l great west and north of Quinnsland, taking in all tho Diamantina, Gulf, and Capo York country. Continuing, ho said: “The
Australian Inland Mission is aiming at placing l8 ordained ministers in various parta of tho great territory which is let to their care, besides establishing medical hostels at points where they seem most urgentlv nefdod. We have ministers at Port Darwin, Broome, and Port Hedland in Western Australia, two of them married men, accompanied by their wives.
Wo havo a layman working at Alice Springs, the centre of Australia, and with the Congrogationalists and Methodists we share In the maintenance of a man on the Transcontinental railway ‘ino. We have medical hostels at Port Hedland and Oodnadatta, and another is being opened at Alice Springs, each under the caro of a deaconess, who is a nurse qualified in all kinds of nursing.
“Mv appointment to Cloncurry was the noxt step,” Mr. Heriot continued in response to further eiucstions, “but there arc many other steps to take, There are a number of places of importance through- out the A.I.M. territory that want our attootion as soon as possible. There aro already preaching places at Cloncurry and Friezland, where I will operate. Consideration is boing given to the matter of working the outlying stations from these points by motor car. Later there will bo a man nPPolnW to take churgo of tho contre of population about Cloncurry, leaving me free to work the outlying nrea up to tho Gulf. It is hoped subsequently to havo two of us working this outlying area.”
In the establiFhmcnt of medical hostels Mr. Heriot thinks the Presbyterian Church is doing a national work, relieving sickness and stress in districts where tho Governments have not as yet established proper hospitals, and where the population has not warranted medicalmon entering into practice. It is, Indeed, pioneering work amongst the pioneers, and work of a splendid character. When Mr. Heriot volunlecrcd for the work at Cloncurry he was in charge of tile parish of Thornbury, near Northcote. Ho was bom at Caulfic’el, and lind completed 10 years service ,’or the Church when he volunteered for inland mission work. Last night, in St. Andrew’s Church, Creek street, he was given a public welcome, and to-day he will leave by the steamer Cooma for Townsville, on route to Cloncurry.
Source : http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/20064458 National Library of Australia Trove digitised Newspaper – further editing of the scanned document is required.
John Flynn’s associates
Fredrick Heriot – First Minister to be appointed by Reverend John Flynn to Cloncurry area, 1915; first Member of Australian Inland Mission to use car for patrol work; set foundations for Australian Inland Mission work in Gulf in far western areas of Queensland where later the original experiment of flying doctor work and pedal radio communication were carried out.
Above image John Flynn Place Museum and Art Gallery in Cloncurry
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