The Catholic Parish of Forster-Tuncurry officially came into being with the arrival of its first Parish Priest, Father Daniel Linehan in January 1957, who, on 18 March 1957, officially notified Stroud Shire Council that a new Parish to include the district of Forster and Tuncurry had been formed.
Prior to the formation of the new Parish the districts of Forster and Tuncurry formed part of Krambach Parish, and for some years prior to that, the spiritual needs of Forster-Tuncurry Catholics were attended to by the Parish Priests of Krambach, Father James Bernascone being the last Priest to carry out these duties.
On 14 May 1952 Father Bernascone had already purchased two blocks of land in Lake Street Forster, and on 25 June 1953, applied to the Lands Department for this land to be set aside for school and church use. Father Bernascone also applied for land, which is now the present site of Holy Name School.
The old wooden church at Kent Street Tuncurry had been established around about 1908 and served Tuncurry parishioners, whilst Forster parishioners used the School of Arts Hall at Forster for Mass.
Our older parishioners recall how they would take it in turns to prepare evening meals for Father, and how at one stage he was nearly on the point of despair at his inability to obtain a suitable residence.
Help finally came when Mr and Mrs Bruce Wright of Tuncurry made a house available at 16 Manning Street Tuncurry, which is now St. Joseph’s Convent
In June 1957, Father Linehan purchased land in Lake Street Forster, on which the church hall was erected and consecrated by Bishop Toohey on 23 December 1957.
This hall was used for the celebration of Mass and other church activities until it was converted to a school in March 1959, upon the arrival of the Sisters of St. Joseph from Lochinvar in that year. The Forster Presbytery was built on land adjacent to the church hall and consecrated by Bishop Toohey on 4 January 1959.
The Sisters of St. Joseph then took up residence at 16 Manning Street Tuncurry, which became St Joseph's Convent, the three original Sisters being Sister Francesca, Sister Hilda and Sister Florence Mary.
The Sisters then continued to conduct classes in improvised classrooms in the new church hall until the new Holy Name School was opened and blessed by Bishop Toohey on 1 January 1961.
The Parish continued to grow rapidly under the spiritual guidance of Father Linehan and as a result it became necessary to pull down the sixty year old wooden church of “Our Lady Star of the Sea”, with a new church dedicated to “Saint Mary Star of the Sea” being subsequently erected and duly consecrated by His Lordship Bishop Toohey on 16 February 1968. Prior to this event the bridge linking Forster and Tuncurry had already been opened on 18 July 1959, which now made the new church readily accessible to Forster parishioners.
Father Harry Fenton succeeded Father Linehan as Administrator in January 1971, remaining until August 1973, in which time Lots 9, 10, 17 and 18 Section 10 were purchased for Holy Name School.
Under the administration of Father Tony Brady a new church was eventually erected on land adjoining the Presbytery in 1980, and consecrated by Bishop Clarke on 15 August 1980, and dedicated to the “Holy Name of Jesus”.
Father Kevin Corrigan became Parish Priest following the departure of Father Tony Brady.
On 2 March 1983, His Lordship Bishop Clarke also opened and blessed new extensions at Holy Name School, which celebrated its Silver Jubilee on 29 June 1986. Further extensions incorporating two classrooms and a toilet block were blessed and opened in September 1993.
Due to the financial support of the Federal Government, our Parish and our parent body we completed an extension and refurbishment project valued at around $2 million that has provided the school with superb facilities that will further enhance the quality education that is provided at Holy Name School. These extensions were opened in 2006 by Bishop Michael Malone, Dr Wayne Tinsey and Mr Peter Leunberger. This was followind in 2010 - 11 with further extensions and refurbishment as part of the Federal Government's 'Building the Education Revolution'. This project valued at $1.75 million was opened by Mr Ray Collins, Director of Schools in November 2011.
Father Andrew Doohan took over the role of Parish Priest for three years. In 2015 Father Greg Barker was appointed Parish Priest. In 2015 the St Joseph's Convent was sold and Sr Kathryn and Sr Louise moved to a smaller residence. In 2016 the role of the Tuncurry Church was negotiated and the one Church Community formed in Forster. Strong and positive connections between Parish and School, support our current 2 streams school of 350 students and staff.
Holy Name Primary School recognises the traditional owners of the area, the Worimi people.