The History of St Mary’s Anglican Church began in April 1834 when the schooner Ellen arrived in Geographe Bay from Augusta. On board were the Bussell brothers, John, Charles, Lenox, Vernon, and Alfred. Accompanying them were Phoebe Bower and George Layman. After finding the conditions for farming at Augusta to be unsuitable, the brothers were granted approximately 3,573 acres surrounding the Vasse River. It wasn’t until June 1839, that Captain John Malloy, his wife Georgiana, and their children arrived from Augusta and settled in the Vasse region also.
Throughout the years at Augusta and at the early days of settlement at Vasse, one of the main stalwarts of the Bussell brothers, back in England, was their cousin Elizabeth Capel Carter. Prior to his departure to be part of a new colony in Western Australia, it was John Bussell’s desire to follow his father into the life of ministry. In fact, he departed England before his ordination could occur. (His father was Reverend William Marchant Bussell, Curate St. Mary’s, Portsea, England. Died 1820).
Elizabeth Capel Carter shared John Bussell’s desire for religion to be an important part of the new settlement’s development in Augusta. So, she organised a fund, 'for the erection of a church and parsonage at Augusta, Swan River, Western Australia’. This fund raised a total of two hundred and eighty pounds. Twenty of which came from Queen Adelaide via her godmother, Lady Elizabeth Capel, a Lady-in-waiting at the Court. However, as by now most settlers had made their way to the Vasse region, the Bussell family advised their cousin, that Augusta was virtually deserted and the church should be built at the new settlement, close to the Vasse River.
A lady who is a relative of a family residing at Augusta,
feeling the great disadvantage which that sequestered settlement
labours under, for want of a provision for public worship,
has set on foot a subscription, limited to a very small
sum, for the erection of a church and parsonage, which, it is
hoped, will meet with encouragement. The plan will be
found in the Appendix. * 2
*APPENDIX, No. VI.
PROPOSALS FOR THE ERECTION OF A CHURCH AND PARSONAGE AT
AUGUSTA, WESTERN AUSTRALIA. - CONTRIBUTIONS SIXPENCE EACH.
" A LADY, warmly interested in the welfare of relations and friends,
settled at the above-named Colony, is extremely anxious that they, and
the respectable community to which they belong', should not, in giving
up the many advantages of their native land, be deprived of its most
precious privilege-the means and opportunity of religious worship
and instruction. In order to promote their attainment of this blessing,
she has undertaken to raise a subscription for the erection of a
Church, on the principles of the Establishment and under episcopal
jurisdiction, and a residence for a minister of the Church of England.
She has limited the sum to be contributed to sixpence, not only
because she trusts to find it sufficient, but that it overcomes any
reluctance she might otherwise experience in making her solicitations for
this distant though promising part of our empire-to feel she is asking
for that which it can inconvenience none to bestow, however numerous
and extensive may be their charities.
It is calculated that 5001. will be sufficient for the above-mentioned
Subscriptions will be received by the Rev. Thomas Dale, M. A.,
Minister of St. Matthew's Chapel, Denmark Hill, and Evening Lecturer
of St. Sepulchre's, London; and by John Cole Symes, Esq.,
Fenchurch Street, London; by Lawrence Desborough, Esq., Grove
Hill, Camberwell; and George Spence, Esq., Jesus College, Cambridge."
 THE STATE AND POSITION OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA; COMMONLY CALLED: THE SWAN-RIVER SETTLEMENT.
By CAPTAIN FRED CHIDLEY IRWIN,
OF H.M. 63RD REGIMENT; LATE COMMANDANT OF THE TROOPS, AND ACTING GOVERNOR OF THE C0LONY.
 CATTLE CHOSEN: THE STORY OF THE FIRST GROUP SETTLEMENT IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA 1829 TO 1841 By
E. O. G. SHANN, M.A. University of Western Australia. p73.