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Explore Our Iconic Heritage

Siena College invites our neighbours and the community to come and explore our iconic Convent and Cloisters. 

DATE:  Saturday, 21 July 2018
TIME:  10.00am to 12.00pm
WHERE:  Siena College  •  815 Riversdale Road, Camberwell 3124
COST:  Admission is free and a complimentary Devonshire tea will be provided

THE SIENA STORY

On 11 February 1939, the first sod was turned for the building of the new ‘Siena Convent’ and secondary school.  Fr Crofts, Vicar Provincial of the Dominican Fathers, and the Sisters in the community, wrote their names and placed them in a bottle which, legend has it, was placed under where the chapel altar stands today.  

The extraordinary building plans were drawn up by Hameleto Agabiti, a young Italian architect and civil engineer, who tragically died in a motor accident on his way to Siena in November 1938.  The project was completed by Bolton Millane on 14 October 1939 and the Convent was blessed and opened by Archbishop Mannix on 17 December 1939.  The building remains a wonderful testimony to Mr Agabiti.

Now, in 2018, we invite you to walk through the arched cloisters that surround the idyllic garden courtyard and lead to the circular, five domed chapel.  The interior of the chapel is based on the shape of a Greek cross and the walls are adorned with hand painted Stations of the Cross. The chapel continues to serve as a place of prayer and contemplation for the Siena community. 

A stunning spiral staircase leads you to the Convent’s upper level where you will see the floor indentations which mark the former walls of the Sisters’ cells and the recreation of the cell for the Prioress.

So come along and explore, discover and experience the timeless serenity of the Convent and Cloisters that is the spiritual heart of Siena College.

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