Jenolan Caves

Go Ye Therefore Into All the World

March 30, 2016

On Easter Sunday, deep underground at Jenolan Caves, Dwayne Jeffries shared the Easter message with a congregation of 115 worshippers.  The huge, eerie cavern was full for Underground Church, the annual non-denominational church service in the Cathedral Chamber of the Lucas Cave.

Dwayne Jeffries is the Content Director of Sydney's most well known Christian radio station, Hope 103.2.  He also hosts national talkback program, Open House, which explores life, faith and culture through in-depth interviews with inspirational guests from Australia and all around the world. 

Dwayne's fascinating talk was about doubt, worship and discipleship - that yes, the Resurrection was the extravagant miracle that Jesus foretold, but it was also a reminder that Christians must share the Good News that not even death can separate us from God.

If you would like to hear the full, inspiring talk, click on this link:

After the service, Dwayne said, “I don't know that I've had a more memorable Easter both in spirit and location.”  It is hoped that Dwayne will be available to give the talk next Easter.

To reach the Cathedral Chamber, visitors had to climb 252 steep stair steps into the limestone mountain. Once inside, they joined in singing some well-known Christian songs, in the acoustically perfect chamber.  Talented soloist, and former cave guide, Annelise Van Den Elzen, gave a soulful performance of ‘How Can it Be?’.

Barry Richard, cave guide for 45 years, gave the congregation a brief history of Jenolan’s church services and described some of the main features of the Cathedral Chamber.  As Jenolan's early cave explorers mapped their way through unfamiliar passages and caverns, they named a multitude of formations after things that were most familiar to them. Jenolan's Cathedral Chamber was named not only because of its huge dimensions (54 metres high), but because its massive formations reminded explorers of church features - the 'baptismal font', the 'pulpit', 'the organ', 'the belfry', 'the organ pipes' and 'the cathedral windows'.

Until the late 1960s, underground church services were held weekly. In the 1870s, the services were Methodist. But over the years, the Cathedral Chamber was used by other denominations. Amazingly, in the 1960s, services were broadcast regularly from the Cathedral Chamber and aired live on Sydney radio station, 2GB! In 2008, World Youth Day saw the Cathedral Chamber used for Catholic Mass, approximately 50 times, over 8 days - each Mass accommodating a full busload of pilgrims!  Wedding services are held in the chamber frequently.  Starting several years ago, the annual Underground Church is independently organised by members of Jenolan staff. 

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