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Category Archives: Religion and Faith
Recently a friend abused by a priest in Newcastle 40 years ago took his own life. Archbishop Philip Wilson was convicted this week for concealing sexual abuse in that diocese around the same time. Church leaders valued the institution ahead … Continue reading
After the Royal Commission in Child Sexual Abuse in Australia, the Irish child abuse commission 2009 on the other side of the world and the resignation of all the bishops in Chile, the Roman Catholic Church as we know it … Continue reading
Dear Papa Francesco, The Australian Catholic Church is in deep crisis and is in urgent need of your pastoral presence and leadership. Today, the former President of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, archbishop Phillip Wilson, was formally charged with covering-up … Continue reading
President Harry S. Truman promised that ‘the buck stops here’. Well, last Friday afternoon Rome time, the Chilean bishops—all thirty-four of them—decided to stop the buck-passing and ‘face the music’, that is confront the consequences of their pretty-much complete failure … Continue reading
The Vicar of Bray has become a cultural byword for political expediency, hypocrisy, and insincerity. He changed his allegiances time and time again. Can you think of an Australian Minister who reminds you of the Vicar of Bray?
For many of Australia’s Catholic bishops ‘business as usual’ meant denial that the culture, structures and processes of the Church were part of the problem. They had cut themselves off from the lived experience of ordinary Catholics and what they … Continue reading
Christianity is now 2,000 years old with a pre-history of a further 1,000 years Its stories are amongst its most prized possessions. Christians love their stories. Stories take pride of place in its liturgies. But for some they are a … Continue reading
The Catholic Church here and globally faces a crisis of loss of support arising especially from its deeds and omissions in relation to appalling sexual abuse of children. Our secular societies are experiencing a massive epidemic of allegations and charges … Continue reading
I have long been interested in why the officers of the catholic church have been so reluctant to consider involving women in the governance of their institution and in its sacramental ministry. So I decided to write a book about … Continue reading
In our 21st century, and even allowing for widespread secularism especially in the West, about 2.2 billion people still call themselves Christian. Of these, about 1.2 billion are Roman Catholic. This number is only slightly smaller than the total number … Continue reading
Funeral Homily for Barrie Dexter CBE. Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, 26 April 2018. Listen on SoundCloud [commencing at 2:00] In Australia, there have been many children of the manse who have gone on to be great contributors to … Continue reading
The Catholic Church in Australia is about to engage in a major consultation of its members. This is the first such consultation in almost 70 years. Why now? There could be any of a number of reasons. Nationally, Mass attendance … Continue reading
Failing to see or accept the big picture is a condition that is currently affecting many organisations in our world, says Garry Everett, and four particular organisations stand out as having significant problems in this regard.
Three patriarchs — two of them Orthodox and the other Catholic — have co-signed a statement strongly condemning the Western air strikes against Syrian government positions while reasserting their support for the Assad regime and its Russian and Iranian allies.
Pope Francis has apologized for underestimating the seriousness of the sexual abuse crisis in Chile, acknowledging that he has made “serious mistakes” in handling the issue.
In a recent ‘Eureka Street’ article, I remarked that in the Catholic Church clericalism is a pejorative term. I tried also to identify some of the attitudes and behaviour associated with people regarded as clericalist. The article sparked a lively … Continue reading
It is problematic when someone is described as a “devout Christian” because the term implies a person’s bona fides; it implies that a person is a ‘true’ follower of Christ and the Bible. Think Wallaby fullback, Israel Folau, who has … Continue reading
A few days ago, I told a friend that Gerard Henderson had just asked me to speak here tonight, to give, what he called, a ‘personal reflection’ on Cardinal Gilroy. ‘You should say,’ said my friend, ‘that you once wrote … Continue reading
The Catholic Church is so big and complex. That is one of its defining characteristics yet the media and society at large, much less the Catholic community itself, often fail to grasp its consequences.
I had the good pleasure of celebrating Easter masses out in the country — Adaminaby and Nimmitabel in the Snowy country. At Adaminaby we had a full church and a very happy baptism. At Nimmitabel, the numbers were very modest … Continue reading
The Catholic Church in Australia faces continuing decay unless bishops listen to grassroots Catholics. Some 50 representatives, women and men, of nine Catholic groups throughout Australia advocating for systemic reform of the Church, gathered in Canberra a few days ago. … Continue reading
ROBYN J WHITAKER. Jesus wasn’t white: he was a brown-skinned, Middle Eastern Jew. Here’s why that matters
I grew up in a Christian home, where a photo of Jesus hung on my bedroom wall. I still have it. It is schmaltzy and rather tacky in that 1970s kind of way, but as a little girl I loved … Continue reading
Australia is a commonwealth, where seeking the common good brings prosperity, unlike the fostering of division which leads to decline if not death. An object lesson in the meaning of Easter.
Turning Mary Magdalene into a sinner obstructed women’s place in the church.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse’s comprehensive and confronting final report rightly focuses on the Catholic Church, with one of the 17 volumes dedicated solely to that institution. The litmus test for the Church leadership in … Continue reading
Is Easter simply a relic from the past and a chance for a holiday break? Why have the dramatic events of Easter been so significant in our cultures, and why is Easter still so central to Christian belief?
The Plenary Council planned for 2020-21 gives rise to great hopes and some anxiety as the Catholic Church in Australia and indeed worldwide faces the greatest challenge of the modern era. As a church “always in need of reform” we … Continue reading
It is patently obvious that Australian Catholicism is in crisis. The usual analysis is that this has been caused by the appalling mishandling and cover-up of child sexual abuse and the subsequent investigations of the Royal Commission. However, this is … Continue reading
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and The Post have something important to say about ‘the what’ and ‘the how’ of the Church’s mission.
“The bond of trust between the laity and their bishops has been severely impaired…a serious erosion of trust in the hierarchical leadership of the church’’.- leading Australian Catholic theologian Professor Neil Ormerod of the Australian Catholic University in Fairfax papers … Continue reading