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Category Archives: Religion and Faith
“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
The biggest error Catholic leaders have made regarding the church’s response to priests abusing children has been the exclusion of women leading the policy-making and reform process.
A few days ago I drove with a friend from Sydney to Leura in NSW’s Blue Mountains. We were heading towards a meditation centre and on the way shared views about social justice and most especially peace activism. As long-time … Continue reading
The Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse spent five years interviewing over 8,000 survivors, their abusers and personnel from institutions that had covered up the abuse. The Commission found that 61.8% of all survivors within religious … Continue reading
2018 will be a fateful year for the Catholic Church in Australia as Melbourne gets a new archbishop. This appointment, if successful, offers some hope for the Church; if a failure, it will hasten the Church’s decline into insignificance. Here’s … Continue reading
At first I was angry and irked by Sydney Catholic Archbishop Anthony Fisher’s linking of an annus horribilis with the passing of marriage equality laws in Australia. Now, a few days later, I feel saddened that the leader of the … Continue reading
FRANCIS SULLIVAN. Australian Catholic Church must take abuse commission report seriously or risk irrelevance A REPOST
After five intense years of inquiry and more than 400 recommendations — with 20 new recommendations specifically relating to the Catholic Church — the report of Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is due a considered … Continue reading
Early on Wednesday morning, hours after Cardinal Bernard F. Law died in a Rome hospital, a priest unlocked a small chapel at the Basilica of St. Mary Major and pointed to the spot under the marble altar and life-size crucifix … Continue reading
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis strongly defended immigrants at his Christmas Eve Mass on Sunday, comparing them to Mary and Joseph finding no place to stay in Bethlehem and saying faith demands that foreigners be welcomed.
I believe it is time to address the elephant in the room, now that the Royal Commission has presented its findings. Last weekend’s Saturday Age had a dark front-page image of a large cross with claw like hands descending from … Continue reading
The Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse’s report and its recommendations are essential for the care and protection of children and care of victims and their families. They are also important steps in preventing the perpetuation of the destructive … Continue reading
MARK METHERELL and JOHN WARHURST. Royal Commission provides almanac for what Catholic bishops should do now.
Our group, Concerned Catholics of Canberra Goulburn, was formed back in April 2017 in response to the tide of evidence of child sex abuse that has swept the church. Our motivating concern was to press for reforms in our church, … Continue reading
When we see the images of Mary and her child this Christmas, may we pause and think of Maya and the countless victims of sexual exploitation, writes Sister Patty Fawkner.
Media attention has been drawn to the recommendation in the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse that religious confession should not be exempted from civil law requirements to report child sexual abuse. However, … Continue reading
The powerless Jesus of the Christmas Gospel stories offers a tutorial on power in the Church today.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is testament to both the evil in our society and to the courage and determination of many of the victims. But we need to be aware that most child sexual … Continue reading
Here’s a quick Christmas quiz. (Warning: it’s not a very merry quiz.)
Christmas is the celebration of a story. A story told in the gospels by two storytellers – Matthew and Luke. It’s a tale told and retold, and often so badly that, should the original storytellers be alive today, I could … Continue reading
Communities throughout the world are torn by religious divides. Persecution of Christians, concentrated in but not unique to the Middle East, is commanding relatively little attention.
The Christmas stories were not written for children but as preludes to the adult message of God in Jesus walking in solidarity with the entire human family.
DES CAHILL and PETER WILKINSON. Clericalism, celibacy and child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church in Australia
The Final Report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse was published on 15 December 2017. Among its 409 recommendations was one which is proving controversial, namely, the introduction of voluntary celibacy for diocesan priests. There … Continue reading
We now have the recommendations of the Royal Commission (RC) to the Catholic Church. Many of them request the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) to take specific issues to the Vatican requesting that they be implemented. The question immediately arises: … Continue reading
There is a time for everything …a time to be silent and a time to speak…Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 Today the Royal Commission came to an end. I feel as if I have lost a friend. It seems somehow improper to say … Continue reading
An attitude of superiority on the part of a priest or other religious functionary carries with it the distinct possibility that they will abuse their position by taking sexual advantage of someone less powerful. On the other hand, if they … Continue reading
JOHN MENADUE Repost of a Submission to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse
In November 2013, together with colleagues, I made a submission to the Royal Commission on the governance and systemic problems which lead to an abuse of power in the Catholic Church. That abuse of power is not limited to sexual … Continue reading
The damning findings of the Royal Commission on Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in the recent reports on the Catholic dioceses of Melbourne and Ballarat seem to have elicited a standard Church response: 1. Accept critical findings; 2. Express … Continue reading
When Pope Francis avoided addressing the Rohingya genocide directly during his recent Myanmar visit, questioning his silence is missing the crux of the problem.
On Friday, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which has been part of the Australian political and ecclesial landscape for the last five years, will cease to exist. The commission will present its report to the … Continue reading
The findings of the Commission have sent shock waves through the institutional Church and generated disgust in the wider community. Is there any good news, any reason to hope for something better?
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has recommended to Australian federal and State governments, that the Catholic ‘seal of confession’ should not exempt priests from a proposed offence of ‘failure to report’. The response of some … Continue reading