St Paul's Anglican Church is donating a rare wartime artifact to the Australian War Memorial at a service at St Alban's Cathedral on the 20th of April.
The Coventry Cross of Nails, widely recognised as a symbol of peace and reconciliation, is made from three iron nails, with the original being made from salvaged nails from the Coventry Cathedral after it was damaged by bombing in 1940, giving the cross it's full name.
Modern replicas use other nails, however it's unclear whether the one being donated has used original nails from the cathedral due to it's significant age.
Reverend Canon Robert Murphy from St Peter's Anglican Church in Leeton suggests that the cross may have come to St Paul's through the work of Reverend James Hardingham, who served as an army chaplain in the 1940s and ministered to prisoners of war at the Hay internment camp.
"...While his son was a POW, Hardingham commissioned six candlesticks to be made by Italian POWs at Hay, empathising with the prisoners' situation... If I had to hazard a guess, I would say that Reverend Hardingham was the one who lobbied for the Coventry Cross of Nails to come to St Paul's."
The cross is only one of two in Australia, with the other being held at St David's Cathedral in Hobart.
The Australian War Memorial are appreciative of the gift and are keen to use it to continue their goal of informing and understanding the Australian experience of war.
Emily Gibbs, the Assistant Curator of Military Heraldry and Technology at the Australian War Memorial, said that they were delighted to have a Coventry Cross in their collection.
"Given the strong and direct connections to Australia and the war's enduring impact on our society, we're delighted that the Coventry Cross of Nails will be preserved for posterity at the Australian War Museum."
The gifting service will take place at 2:30pm on Tuesday at St Alban's Cathedral, and is open to members of the public to attend.