I had been looking forward to visiting Echuca for a while because it’s the site of one of the greatest of Australia’s invisible faith stories. Back in the 1870’s Daniel and Janet Matthews, without support from any church or society, created a sanctuary for the suffering and hunted Aboriginal people. They called it Maloga.
Located on a beautiful bend of the Murray River, this traditional ceremonial ground saw leaders emerge from the Yorta Yorta people who learned to make the teachings of Jesus a launching pad for the civil rights movement that finally gave them recognition as citizens in their own country.
I discovered that John Dickson, the author of Bullies and Saints, had written an excellent version of Daniel and Janet’s story so I’m simply providing the link. (https://www.publicchristianity.org/indigenous-rights-before-their-time/) Daniel could be paternalistic, but he and his wife had a deep and lasting love for the indigenous people and John tells of their heroic faith in a way that’s worth reading. It’s a great Australian story.
Join The Outback Historian, Paul Roe, on an unforgettable journey into Australia's Past as he follows the footprints of the Master Storyteller and uncovers unknown treasures of the nation.