Category Archives: Religion and Faith

A Warrior Culture

The Prime Minister warned us that we would be in for some shocking reading as the report into Australian war crimes in Afghanistan was released. That there were 39 alleged murders, and 19 Australian soldiers involved, is indeed shocking.

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We are called to be ‘Neighbours without Borders’

In his encyclical Fratelli Tutti Francis says that being a neighbour without borders is how Christians are called to respond to the challenges faced by our world.

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Does the McCarrick report exonerate Pope Francis? Yes and no.

Though Pope Francis was vaguely aware of rumors of sexual misconduct against former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick back in 2013, a Vatican report released on Nov 10 says Francis believed his two predecessors had properly handled the matter and that there … Continue reading

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Singing outside the chorus on “Fratelli Tutti”

I suspect that I may be singing outside the chorus, but I must confess that I was a little disappointed in the recent Encyclical of Pope Francis, “Fratelli Tutti.”

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Many of Trump’s supporters feel disempowered by the elites

We’ve all been doing quite a deal of waiting of late – whether it be for the lifting of lockdown restrictions at a time of pandemic, or for the outcome of this week’s US presidential election.  And all the time, … Continue reading

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Hand Washing or Social Distancing in the Time of Pell

The parish priest, Jorge Bergoglio could afford the luxury of welcoming with open arms an old colleague whom he believed to have been falsely accused of sexual abuse. Even as Pope Francis he could have indulged himself with warm greetings … Continue reading

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Vote for the Trump vision and not the person! (National Catholic Reporter Oct 26, 2020)

No one ever said Michael Warsaw was stupid. The chairman of the board/CEO of EWTN and publisher of the National Catholic Register penned a column about the forthcoming election entitled, “Voting for a Vision, Not a Person.”

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Pope Francis’s rejection of ‘neoliberal’ economics

The new social encyclical of Pope Francis is a cry for those oppressed by poverty, hunger and exclusion, protesting against the injustice in a world with so much wealth. Not surprisingly Francis drew from the parable of the Good Samaritan: … Continue reading

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‘Fratelli Tutti’: Papal dreams or Vatican diversion? (Global Sisters Report Oct 19, 2020)

The encyclical aims to promote a universal movement toward fraternity and social friendship grounded in compassionate love, following the parable of the good Samaritan (Luke 10:29-37)….How do we make sense of this in a church that does not regard women … Continue reading

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Pope Francis on just wars, capital punishment and voluntary assisted dying

Pope Francis and his Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith have recently made pronouncements on these life and death issues. The Church’s teaching on the taking of human life has never been particularly coherent.

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Pope Francis’s new encyclical On Human Fraternity and Social Friendship

The new social encyclical of Pope Francis not only renews his strong critique of ‘neoliberal’ forms of capitalism which result in growing and extreme inequality but is a plea for a return to the ideals of fraternity and solidarity, invoking … Continue reading

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The Beginning of the End?

Is Pope Francis running out of steam? Will we ever see an end to Vatican financial scandals? And where is George in all of this?

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The Catholic Church: who needs reform?

There are many aspects to reform in the church. Different people and different reform groups, have their own take on what, or who, needs reform the most urgently. I must admit the recent article by Antonio Spadaro on Pope Francis … Continue reading

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Short-termism is the enemy of good governance

Deeper thinking, even during this critical impasse we are facing, must underlie the monumental decisions being made about where to splash the cash, where to invest in skills development, which industries to encourage and which to phase out.

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Baptizing White Supremacy. An interview with Robert P. Jones

White Christians are not simply complicit in racism and white supremacy, argues scholar Robert P. Jones. They’re actually culpable. Without their deliberate consent, white supremacy in America could never have been built.

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Grieving for the Lost Parish.- an institution on its knees.

Some church groups are pressing for a post-pandemic opening up, others, who have already opened up, are sounding a lament as they find it is not business as usual. There are signs of grieving for the parish – an institution … Continue reading

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Pope Francis on preparing a better future for humanity and our planet

Pope Francis is sharply challenging powerful sectional interests in his new social manifesto being released on 4 October. The new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti (All Brothers and Sisters), will outline his vision of a more just, peaceful and sustainable world, and … Continue reading

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Islam in Australia survey results (Australasian Muslim Times Sep 19, 2020)

The results of the Islam in Australia survey are in and they counter many of the stereotypes and misinformation concerning Islam and Muslims in Australia.

Posted in Politics, Religion and Faith | 15 Comments

The Catholic Church and Modern Science: From Contraception to the Covid Vaccine

In a letter to the Prime Minister on August 20th, co-signed by the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, Dr Glenn Davies, and the Greek Orthodox Primate, Archbishop Makarios, Archbishop Fisher suggested that the use of a Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine might cause … Continue reading

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Holy See response to Child Sexual Abuse Royal Commission: another example of clericalist obstinance

It is almost three years since the Royal Commission inquiring into child sexual abuse recommended that the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) request from the Holy See responses on 14 matters. The Holy See responded in February 2020 with ‘observations’. … Continue reading

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Father Glen Walsh paid a heavy price

The revelations never end about priests and brothers, of monsignors and bishops with their secret sexual lives, masturbating, buggerizing, sodomizing and raping boys and girls – protected by an amoral hierarchy and a few corrupt members of the upper-echelons of … Continue reading

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The 2020 presidential campaign: a theological observation

It will probably be at least two more months before we know the winner of the US 2020 presidential election. So far the campaign has broken all historic records with its promotion of polarization, violence, and deceptive rhetoric. So far … Continue reading

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Pro-Trump Catholicism and the political consequences of a theological crisis (La Croix Sep 3, 2020)

The theological trajectory of conservative US Catholicism is one of the proofs that Trump’s America is not just a parenthesis.

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Pope Francis: We need to get serious about climate change and unfair economic systems

Here in Australia, we need to make a bigger contribution to the fight, given our abundant resources and expertise.

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Archbishops, vaccines and COVID-19

The recent letter of the Sydney-based Catholic, Anglican and Orthodox archbishops on the ethics of the Oxford University COVID-19 vaccine has left many believers and the general community gobsmacked.

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Consumatum est: is the Australian Catholic church finished?

Can we save Jesus from the Church?

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The Polding House Push and The Catholic Weekly Bugle.

Over the past year in particular, Australian Catholics have become convinced that their bishops, with some exceptions, are playing games with them in the lead up to the national Plenary Council which is now scheduled to start in October 2021. … Continue reading

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The effect of COVID-19 on religious habits

Church life will need to rebuild anew in the midst of a culture whose habits have been shredded by COVID 19. And God only knows where that will take us. But that’s the exciting part: we can discover it.

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The Australian Catholic Church’s silent treatment

Changing the culture of the church should be the major task for the Australian Bishops. After all, the first and only independent assessment of that culture, by the Royal Commission into the sexual abuse of minors, described the culture as … Continue reading

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Endemic secrecy in the Catholic Church

Throughout the child sexual abuse Royal Commission the inquirers regularly asked why institutions not only tolerated child abusers but actively concealed their crimes. Secrecy was endemic in the culture of these institutions.

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