Category Archives: Religion and Faith

Catholic bishops’ opposition to Donald Trump emboldens church liberals.

They may be disappointed. 

Posted in International Affairs, Religion and Faith | 2 Comments

PAUL COLLINS. Breaking the Seal.

Recently we’ve seen a slew of articles in the media, both informed and otherwise, on the question of the seal of confession. Already a couple of Australian governments have acted to enforce mandatory reporting on priests when sexual abuse of … Continue reading

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FRANK BRENNAN. A planet to heal (Hiroshima Remembrance Ecumenical Service, Adamstown Uniting Church, Newcastle, 5 August 2018).

I join with you in acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which we meet. This weekend at the 20th Garma Festival held on Yolgnu lands in Arnhem Land, the acclaimed Tasmanian author Richard Flanagan spoke. Having disclosed his … Continue reading

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ERIC HODGENS. Humanae Vitae – A 50 Year Odyssey.

Paul VI had no idea what he was setting loose when he published Humanae Vitae.

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BERNARD MOYLAN. Scandals In The Church.

I am not attempting to whitewash the Church. It must take its proper responsibility for any abuse of power, learn something from its self-abasement and work even harder to implement gospel values wherever they are most needed. It may take … Continue reading

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GOOD READING AND LISTENING FOR THE WEEKEND

A regular collection of links to writings and broadcasts covered in other media.

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VINCENT CHEOK. If spirituality or religion has a bearing on geopolitics then Australia needs to understand what moves the spirit and soul of India and China for our Asian neighbours will be the new global superpowers in a new multipolar multilateral world.

This post is prompted by the release of the final draft of the National Register of Indian Citizens in Assam Province on 30/7/18. This verification exercise was made in accordance with the terms of the Assam Accord of 1985. Not … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Religion and Faith | 2 Comments

ROBERT MICKENS. The Pope’s long, hot summer. (La Croix 27/7/2018)

Will Francis make the necessary and radical changes needed to save the Catholic Church from its ongoing meltdown?  

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CHRIS BONNOR. Catholic schools’ funding: here we go again.

I have a great idea to fix the drought. Give farmers drought relief, extend it to better-endowed areas with access to water – and continue it long after the rain returns. The farmers I know would be horrified if this … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Religion and Faith | 6 Comments

MURRAY HEASLEY. On witch-hunts and the Kiwi way: the proposed New Zealand Historical Abuse in State Care Royal Commission.

The New Zealand government is currently evaluating the terms of references and scope of its royal commission into child abuse. It is likely to exclude faith-based institutions on the grounds that the State was not directly involved in their operations. … Continue reading

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SUSAN RYAN. The Irish teaching orders in Australia.

For over a century many children, particularly from poorer families, in cities and country areas, and indeed a good number of indigenous children, got a sound basic education in schools established throughout Australia by the Irish orders. As well, students … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Religion and Faith | 8 Comments

JOHN WARHURST. Let’s talk about the Catholic bishops.

While knowledge of individual bishops is helpful, what is more useful is a sense of how they operate and where they stand collectively. 

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ERIC HODGENS. Spare A Thought for the New Archbishop.

A bishop’ job is part shepherd, part leader, part ruler, part manager. Pope Francis insists that pastoral care is the primary role. The Melbourne Catholic Church is getting a new bishop. At 54 he can look forward to 21 years … Continue reading

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FRANK BRENNAN SJ. Woe to the shepherds (Homily, 22.07.18 at St Michaels’ Church, Kaleen)

Sometimes the lectionary throws up a reading from scripture which just hits you in the face given what’s been going on in your world the previous week.

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PETER JOHNSTONE. Breaking the seal for the common good.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has recommended that the Catholic ‘seal of confession’ should not exempt priests from a proposed offence of ‘failure to report’. That offence would apply to any failure to report to … Continue reading

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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. 

Posted in International Affairs, Politics, Religion and Faith | 1 Comment

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