Chapel of the Annunciation

The Chapel of the Annunciation is our centre of worship, encouragement, learning and faith exploration at CGGS. As a Christian community which upholds the values, traditions and teachings of the Anglican Church, chapel is an essential part of the Canberra Girls Grammar School experience.

Embracing our school values of Inclusion, Courage and Integrity, we promote an inclusive spiritual environment and welcome students from all faith backgrounds to our chapel. We believe that spirituality should be a central part of our students’ lives and we nurture and value exploration of all belief systems, encouraging a deeper understanding of the spiritual self.

Chapel is an integral part of daily life at CGGS. A range of services are held for students, staff and the School community each week, with services often planned and run by students. The School hosts yearly Easter and Christmas services, and offers Grammarians the chance to return to their former school for weddings, baptisms, confirmations and the funerals of loved ones.

The Chapel of the Annunciation building started life in 1972 as the CGGS school gymnasium. Architect Brian Dowling converted it into a chapel and it officially opened as the School’s place of worship in 1988.

The School Prayer
Chapel Services
School Chaplain
Old Grammarians' Window

The School Prayer

Almighty God

In whom we move and live

And have our being

Make this School as a field

Which the Lord has blessed

That whatsoever things are

True, pure, lovely and of good report

May here forever flourish and abound.

Preserve in it an unblemished name

Enlarge it with wider usefulness

And exalt it in the love

And reverence of all its members

As an instrument of your Glory;

For the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen

Chapel Services

Chapel worship occurs regularly across our Early Learning Centre, Junior School and Senior School environments. With support from the Chaplain, House Captains, Heads of House and House Tutors, we encourage our students to lead chapel services, creating positive worship experiences for all ages and powerful, life-changing liturgies.

We embrace fun and uplifting chapel services, with music regularly provided by student performers in the Bella Voce Chapel Choir, The Gabriel Singers, Cantantes, Minisingers, and Junior and Senior School instrumentalists.

Our Senior School multi-faith prayer room, located at the back of the Chapel, is open for students of all faiths every morning between 8am and 8.50am, and also during recess and lunch.

You’re always welcome to access the Lady Chapel for personal prayer and reflection at any time.

School Chapel Services

Early Learning Centre

11.30am on Wednesday and Fridays

Junior School

2.15pm on Fridays

Senior School

8.50am – days allocated by house group


School Chaplain

Father Christopher Lewis is the current School Chaplain.

Father Chris, as he likes to be called, arrived at CGGS after a rewarding career in the Royal Australian Navy, where he served in a variety of ships and establishments.

A graduate of St Mark’s National Theological Centre, the Anglican Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn is Father Chris’ “home” diocese, where he was formed in the Anglo-Catholic tradition and was ordained in 2016.

Father Chris is married to Rebecca and they have four children, Georgina, Benjamin, Annalise, and Beatrice. He loves spending time with his family, and enjoys reading and meditation. A Canberran at heart, he and his family are avid supporters of the Canberra Raiders.

Father Chris’ life was changed by the Gospel and he seeks to journey with others as they each run their own race of faith. Theologically generous, Father Chris seeks to grow the Kingdom of God through peace, love, hope, joy, inclusion, and forgiveness.

Old Grammarians' Window

Old Grammarians' Window

Designed by Grammarian Ede Horton (1971), the Window is sympathetic to the architecture of the Chapel. Ede chose the theme of Proverbs 8 as she felt it related to school life at CGGS. This Chapter in Proverbs is imaginative and open to broad interpretation, like the stained glass window itself. Central to the window is the sign of the Cross, linking it to the Christian tradition. St Paul states explicitly that in Chris the power and the Wisdom of God are to be found in human flesh (1 Corinthians 1, versus 18-31 i.e.. He is God in action.

The Window is divided into three sections with broad panels at the top and bottom and detailed panels in the centre.

Bottom Panels Left and Right

“Is not Wisdom calling,

Knowledge raising her voice?

On the high ground by the roadside,

In the streets she takes her stand.

Listen to instruction and get Wisdom,

Do not refuse my counsel.

He who finds me finds life,

And, he wins favour from the Eternal.”

This double panel depicts Wisdom calling to all people. Wisdom has the secret of effective living, characterised by truth and righteousness.

Top Panels Left and Right

These panels symbolise aspects of the creation story with Earth surrounded by heavenly bodies.

The rivers of life flow around a globe.

Central Panels

The bottom right hand panel in this group represents a symbolic maze standing for the complexity of human knowledge. The panel above depicts a teacher giving instruction to students:

“My lips open with right words,

I utter what is true”.

In the panel above, the symbolic lips and cactus represent insincere words and actions:

“False lips I loathe; All I say hones.”

In the top left hand panel of this central group, we see the falling figure of a young woman seeing the world upside down. Below this are the scales of justice which remind us of the choices which we make in life. Acquiring Wisdom outweighs the material enjoyment of gold, silver and jewels. The figure below is seen reaching for these things, a reminder to “Choose instruction rather than silver, and knowledge rather than rare gold; for Wisdom is better than rubies, no treasure is equal to her.”