St Michael's has always been a place of consistent Bible preaching and heartfelt prayers, with conversions to Jesus as Lord and Saviour; with favourite hymns, marriages celebrated, babies welcomed, dearly departed farewelled, and lasting friendships made.
The Bible still plays a big part in Australian culture. It's valued by a diverse range of Australians including singer Nick Cave, author Christos Tsiolkas, actress Anna McGahan, cartoonist Reg Mombassa (with 'Mambo Jesus'), Indigenous leader Noel Pearson, Doctor Catherine Hamlin, and Governor General David Hurley.
It's a driver of personal faith, a source of moral guidance, an artistic inspiration, and a sparring partner in the search for meaning.
The Bible is central to the ministry of St Michael's, where public readings from both Old and New Testaments occur in their five services every Sunday.
"Our newest 11am Easy English Congregation has a reading from it in a different language every week," Rev Sandy Grant said. "At every service, we preach the meaning of its age-old message and Jesus' continuing relevance to daily life.
"Every Tuesday during school term, St Michael's provides free English conversation lessons for people new to Wollongong from non-English speaking countries.
"Most of the 40-50 who attend also delight in learning Bible stories and we welcome them regardless of their belief or background."
Each week in local public schools, many parents freely entrust their children to teachers from St Michael's and similar churches for half an hour of 'Scripture' (others go to different religions or ethics or private reading).
The children explore issues such as What does the Bible say about God, Who is Jesus and the ethics Christians try to live by.
At senior and junior high youth groups on Thursday and Friday nights, young people can study the Bible and build strong friendships.
The church members volunteer at Anglicare, serve tea and coffee in the Court House over the road, run a 'Mini-Mikes' play-time for parents and toddlers, and an afterschool kids' club (both on Thursdays).
And there are multiple opportunities to join a small group throughout the week for personal growth, to study the Bible, support one another and pray together.
"We want people to develop a big picture of themselves, the world and the society in which we live," Rev Sandy Grant said. "We want people to discover Jesus and find a faith in an eternal God to help them through the ups and downs of life in a rapidly changing world.
"Too many people rely on fading Sunday memories or second-hand opinions filtered through Hollywood. Why not join St Michael's during their 160th anniversary celebrations and over Christmas, or any Sunday, and discover how the Bible can change your life now and forever." See wollongonganglican.org