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A multifaith place for Docklands?

02 Oct 2012

A multifaith place for Docklands? Image

Docklands could become home to Australia’s first public multifaith facility.

In August, Places Victoria called for expressions of interest from parties interested in developing a place of worship in Docklands.

The Faith Communities Council of Victoria (FCCV) is currently preparing its expression of interest, outlining a plan to build a multifaith facility.

The FCCV is a Victorian multifaith organisation and includes representatives from each of the peak faith bodies in Victoria including the Islamic Council of Victoria, the Hindu Communities Council, Baha’i Victoria, the Victorian Council of Churches and the Jewish Community Council of Victoria.

FCCV multifaith officer, Sandy Kouroupidis, said multifaith prayer rooms could often be found in places like hospitals and universities, however the proposed multifaith facility would be the first public, stand-alone facility.

Rabbi Jonathan Keren-Black said he believed the FCCV would be the only multifaith organisation to submit an expression of interest to build a place of worship.

If its tender is successful, the organisation hopes to provide a facility that caters to a wide range of faiths while, at the same time, providing community facilities for Docklands.

Father Bob Maguire, while not directly involved with the FCCV bid, supports the idea.

“I’ve been thinking about this for years and years and years,” he said.

Ideas for the space include at least two rooms for religious activities, theatre seating to provide opportunities for faith and community theatre groups, a cinema, childcare facilities and a peace garden, possibly on the roof of the building.

Freeman Trebilcock, FCCV multifaith youth consultant and CEO of youth organisation Interaction, said the space would add value to Docklands and to the wider Melbourne community.

“I imagine this would also cater for people of no faith as well, for example the garden for quiet reflection. These are facilities that I think people would find useful no matter their background,” Mr Trebilcock said.

Before submitting its expression of interest the organisation is seeking feedback from the local community about what they would like to see in a Docklands place of worship.

“We want to make sure we’ve got input from the people who are already living in Docklands who don’t currently have a place of worship,” Rabbi Keren-Black said.

You can submit your ideas for a Docklands multifaith facility by emailing (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or calling 0407 082 607.

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  • Guy Parish at 11:02pm on 05/10/12

    The peace garden could be arranged to represent every major faith.i.e . Lotus ponds and bodhi trees for Buddhists.
  • Annie Whitlocke at 7:36am on 06/10/12

    Congratulations to the persistence of faith networks, leaders and foresight of councils and governments to see the potential and huge benefit to the close and far community.
    A peaceful community requires acceptance of everyone's culture, rituals and practices, this faith centre will be a beating heart of peace and wisdom for all.
  • Simon Brisbane at 8:50am on 15/10/12

    Will there be a room/space for those without faith? Or will the non-religious be excluded?

    Will there be a Jedi room?
  • Mark at 5:40pm on 15/10/12

    What about the non relgious people. The people who do not believe in a big daddy in the sky. Why is public money going in to religious sites when we are supposed to be a secular country?

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