The unwanted church in one of Australia's most Christian suburbs

In one of Australia’s most Christian suburbs, the development of a new church has been challenged.

The most recent Census data reveals that 87.7 per cent of residents in Horsley Park in western Sydney identify as Christian. In contrast, only one in two Australians living in capital cities identify as Christian.

An application has been lodged by Christ the Good Shepherd Church with Fairfield Council, to develop two rural lots in Horsley Park.

The Assyrian Orthodox church wants to convert a shed into a place of worship for more than 300 people.

Anna Cindric told Fairfield Advance that despite attending another mass in the area, she didn’t want Christ the Good Shepherd’s expansion plans to go ahead.

“I don’t object to the church itself because that would be against my own faith but I just don’t think this block is suitable.” Cindric and other residents believe that traffic and noise issues will result if the church is built in their semi-rural suburb.

“If they have mass at 8am that’s going to create noise when I wish to sleep in,” Cindric said.

To date, Fairfield Council has twice recommended that Christ the Good Shepherd Church’s development application be withdrawn. The Council’s senior development planner previously noted the “site was unsuitable for the proposed development”.