Category Archives: Religion and Faith

MASSIMO FAGGIOLI. ‘La Civiltà Cattolica’ rails against prosperity Gospel and its support for Trump.

The article is not shy about making the link between the prosperity gospel and the crisis of globalization — political, social and economic. 

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MALISE RUTHVEN. God on Our Side.(New York Review of Books)

A comment by a young Muslim man who had studied at an American university sets the tone for the impressively far-ranging Crusade and Jihad. “The bottom line,” he tells William Polk, “is that no Muslim ever tried to enslave or … Continue reading

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PATTY FAWKNER. How power has hijacked the parable of the Good Samaritan.

We can easily highjack the parable of the Good Samaritan, says Sister Patty Fawkner, if we don’t see it within the context of the overarching message of the Bible.

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ANTHONY HOGAN. Law and the seal of Catholic confessional.

I continue to be concerned by the public positions taken by various Catholic Arch-Bishops (Prowse, Canberra Times, June 7, 2018; Coleridge Canberra Times, 11 July, 2018) with regards the Catholic confessional and the mandatory reporting of child abuse. The Church’s … Continue reading

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JOHN GEHRING. Catholic evolution on L.G.B.T. rights (New York Times International Edition 07/07/18)

Pope Francis has struck a more welcoming tone, but the church still needs tangible institutionalized reform.

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PETER DAY: The Endarkenment

“God is dead, God is Dead!” A new Enlightenment has dawned. Bow to its three pillars: Reason, Science, Humanism.

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JOHN HANNON. Where and who are the prophetic voices today? (a homily)

The old adage is that familiarity breeds contempt;  alternatively, absence makes the heart grow fonder! But the the truest of all relating to today’s Gospel is that a prophet is not accepted in his own country, perhaps less so because … Continue reading

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JOHN WARHURST. Major Catholic church consultation ambitious – but will it succeed? (Canberra Times 5/7/2018)

The huge Australian Catholic community, the largest, the most clerical and the most hierarchical of our Christian churches, has just embarked on a potentially defining internal consultation process, the Plenary Council 2020, to discuss the future of its church. While … Continue reading

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MICHAEL KELLY. Change of era in Oz.

In a revealing throwaway line, Pope Francis captured something that is true for the Church across the world but most especially for the Church in Australia. The pope described our time in the church and wider society as “not so … Continue reading

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FRANK BRENNAN. The sentencing of Archbishop Wilson. (Eureka Street 3/7/2018)

Philip Wilson has been sentenced to 12 months imprisonment to be served by way of home detention. It’s very likely that he will appeal his conviction and sentence. An appeal may well succeed, but that’s not the end of the … Continue reading

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ERIC HODGENS. Storms and Synods.

The Catholic Church is facing a perfect storm. How well will an Australian National Synod deal with it?

Posted in Religion and Faith, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

PATTY FAWKNER. Silence is golden – and it also kills.

Will we be loyal to the silence or will we interrupt the silence that has left many Catholics feeling disenfranchised within their own Church.

Posted in Religion and Faith | 5 Comments

GARRY EVERETT. Archbishop Coleridge and the culture of confusion.

It was disappointing to read the latest comments of Archbishop Coleridge of Brisbane on the topics of sexual abuse and the culture of the Church. The comments convey a certain confusion, which could imperil any attempts the Church might make … Continue reading

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ROSS DOUTHAT. ‘#Me Too’ comes for the Cardinal (New York Times)

The first time I ever heard the truth about Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, D.C., finally exposed as a sexual predator years into his retirement, I thought I was listening to a paranoiac rant.

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JOANNE McCARTHY. Bishop breaks ranks on church report into child abuse royal commission (SMH 21/6/2018)

Bishop of Parramatta Vincent Long Van Nguyen has broken ranks with the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference to join reform groups and politicians calling for public release of a church report responding to the child abuse royal commission.  

Posted in Religion and Faith | 8 Comments

GARRY EVERETT. The Catholic Church at the crossroads.

The cross has long been a radical and confronting symbol among religious groups. In a similar way, at the crossroads of life, we are challenged by choices which will lead us to either good or ill. The Catholic Church in … Continue reading

Posted in Religion and Faith | 7 Comments

MICHAEL KELLY SJ. Bangladesh wake-up call on sexual abuse for Asia’s bishops.

The case of Father Walter Rozario bears all the hallmarks of denial, cover-up and silencing victims seen in the West. 

Posted in Asia, International Affairs, Religion and Faith | 4 Comments

HANS ZOLLER SJ. Protecting children in the Catholic Church

The issue of sexual abuse of minors committed by clergy is constantly returning to the forefront of media attention. 

Posted in Religion and Faith | 3 Comments

JOANNE McCARTHY. Australia’s bishops still don’t get it – things have changed (SMH 13/6/2018)

Everything changed on December 15, 2017 when the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse presented its final report and recommendations to the Australian public. It’s a shame Australia’s Catholic bishops missed the memo.  

Posted in Religion and Faith | 10 Comments

GARRY J. EVERETT. The culture of the church – some personal experiences.

Currently the Catholic Church in Australia, and in a number of overseas countries (e.g. Chile and Ireland), is experiencing a crisis in its culture. In Australia the Royal Commission into sexual abuse of minors has described this culture as toxic. … Continue reading

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ANTHONY HOGAN. Religion and the question of voluntary assisted suicide.

Across Australia, various jurisdictions are beginning to address the question of whether or not to legalise voluntary assisted suicide for people who are terminally and extremely ill. By 2019, legislation approved in Victoria will come into effect while legislation previously … Continue reading

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KIERAN TAPSELL. The ball is in Pope Francis’s court over the culture of cover-up.

Pope Francis’ letter to the people of Chile over child sexual abuse in that country and its cover-up would suggest that he might have read the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Instead … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Religion and Faith | 4 Comments

ROBYN WHITAKER. Christians in Australia are not persecuted, and it is insulting to argue they are.

As Australians wait to hear the government’s response to the Ruddock review of religious freedom (and indeed, the content of the report itself), it is worth considering exactly how the two intersect in this largely secular society. Australia has neither … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Religion and Faith | 5 Comments

RYAN DAGUR. Indonesia won’t revoke list of approved Islamic preachers.

Indonesia’s Ministry of Religious Affairs has ignored the protests of Muslim groups and continues to list and publish the names of preachers who are qualified to give religious instruction, in a bid to counter rising radicalism. Mastuki, the ministry’s spokesman, told … Continue reading

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BRUCE DUNCAN. A stringent critique of financial abuse.

The Vatican has launched a stringent critique of widespread abuses in global economies, abuses that are driving astonishing inequality, threatening ecological sustainability and unleashing powerful reactionary political forces.

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PETER JOHNSTONE. Bishops in the headlights.

Catholic bishops throughout the world should regard themselves as on notice following the dramatic offer of resignations by all the bishops of Chile. There are already calls (Paul Collins) for Australian bishops to emulate the Chilean bishops in light of … Continue reading

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ROBERT MICKENS. Chile’s bishops offer their resignations en masse.

The question is did they all decide to jump together or were they pushed? It can be called nothing less than cataclysmic. The Catholic bishops of an entire national hierarchy have offered to step down for their negligence in handling … Continue reading

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MICHAEL MULLINS. Wilson conviction exposes Australian bishops’ lack of contrition

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

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CHRIS GERAGHTY. The Plenary Council.

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

Posted in Religion and Faith | 9 Comments

PETER DAY. An Open Letter to Pope Francis

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

Posted in Religion and Faith | 13 Comments