The Church of England Deaconess Institution was a women's religious order that operated the Deaconess Children's Home and Domestic Training School, in Balmain, Ashfield and Annandale, from 1893-1914. They also operated Lisgar Training Service for Domestic Servants from 1893-1909 and Lisgar Children's Home, in Harrison Street Marrickville, from 1914 to 1929, and at a property called Agincourt in Strathfield from 1929 to 1935. They operated Pallister House at Strathfield and Greenwich and Pallister Young People's Unit and Special School, and Lisgar Hostel at Arncliffe. Around 1981 Church of England Deaconess Institution was renamed Anglican Deaconess Ministries Ltd.
The ministry of deaconesses is an international movement that began in the 19th century to foster the Christian ministry of women to the sick and needy. Florence Nightingale was particularly influential in bringing the deaconess movement from Germany, where the diaconate of women had been revived by Pastor Theodore Fliedner, to England.
The Deaconesses in Sydney date back to 1891, when they were founded as the Church of England Deaconess Institution. The Ministry of the Deaconesses in Sydney was encouraged by Mrs Martha Archdall (nee Karow), who was familiar with the German model and, with her husband and the support of the Church of England Sydney Diocesan Synod, founded The Church of England Deaconess Institution Sydney on 17 August 1891. Deaconess House, on the grounds of Sydney University in Newtown, is now Mary Andrews College at St Andrews House.
1980s - Anglican Deaconess Ministries Ltd
1891 - 1980s Church of England Deaconess Institution
Sources used to compile this entry: 'Anglican Deaconess Ministries History', Anglican Deaconess Ministries Ltd, 2009, http://web.archive.org/web/20140225231547/http://www.deaconessministries.org.au/history/history; 'Other Ministries Begun By Sydney Anglican Deaconesses', http://web.archive.org/web/20140309214733/http://www.deaconessministries.org.au/history/other-ministries; Quinn, Peter E, Unenlightened efficiency: the administration of the juvenile correction system in New South Wales 1905-1988, University of Sydney, History, 27 March 2006, http://hdl.handle.net/2123/623.
Prepared by: Naomi Parry
Created: 22 December 2013, Last modified: 15 May 2017