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Vol 32 No 11

05 June 2022


 

  • RELIGION

    What can we expect from the Plenary Council? A Roundtable

    • Geraldine Doogue, Greg Craven, John Warhurst, Julian Butler
    • 17 June 2022
    2 Comments

    After four years, the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia is nearly at a close with the second and final assembly in July. So what has been the significance of the Plenary Council so far, and what can we expect from the final session? In this Roundtable, Geraldine Doogue, John Warhurst, Greg Craven and Julian Butler reveal their hopes and expectations for the process and discuss likely outcomes.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The exile of place and time

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 16 June 2022
    4 Comments

    Writers are not only preoccupied, among other things, with the concept of place, but also with the matter of time and its passing. Novelist L.P. Hartley famously wrote that the past is a foreign country: they do things differently there. Cretan Nikos Kazantzakis considered that ‘the face of Greece is a palimpsest bearing twelve successive inscriptions,’ and he went on to list them, from the 1930s, when he wrote these words, to the Stone Age.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Deliver us from our necessities

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 16 June 2022

    After the Election media focus has now switched from the fresh personalities and style of the new Government to the difficulties that face it. These include the financial pressures created by heavy debt and inflation, the constraints imposed by pledges made before the election, an energy crisis, international conflicts and their effects on trade, and differences within the Party. Faced by such challenges the Government is unlikely to be able to fulfil its promises and its supporters’ hopes.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The justice of Sir Francis Gerard Brennan

    • Michael Kelly
    • 16 June 2022
    1 Comment

    The Court in Mabo, where Brennan J led majority, put an end to the notion of Terra Nullius, by which the British could claim that land in Australia was ripe for the picking because it belonged to no one, and opened the claims to land ownership to a much wider group including the traditional owners. The follow-up judgement in Wik took that understanding even further.

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  • RELIGION

    Should women be deacons? The stories behind Motion 54

    • Elizabeth Young
    • 15 June 2022
    2 Comments

      Should women be considered for ministry as deacon? Should Pope Francis authorise such ministry? This topic often raises emotions, and strong views either for or against. This is one of the questions posed by Motion 54 to the Church’s July Plenary Council session, where members will amend and vote on 105 motions, prompted by the question, ‘What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?’ Motion 54 is one to watch.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Wit, irony and the Australian vernacular: Remembering Brian Matthews

    • John Schumann
    • 15 June 2022
    4 Comments

    Most of us, when pushed, can name a couple of teachers who had a profound influence on our lives. For me, Brian Matthews was one such teacher. I enrolled in English at Flinders University in 1972. On asking the enrolling officer whether anybody was ‘doing anything about Lawson’, I was directed to the office of Brian Matthews, a recent appointment to the English Department. ‘I hear you know something about Lawson,’ I said, leaning in his doorway.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A pro-life crossroads in Australian politics

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 15 June 2022
    4 Comments

    One would assume that the Victorian Liberal Party has looked at the numbers, and believes that religious conservatives no longer make up a significant proportion of their constituency. Certainly, the moral authority of the Catholic Church and other Christian denominations has taken a battering in the state over the last decade, with many remaining openly hostile to religious perspectives. If the pro-life movement was ever a significant force in Australian politics, that’s no longer the case.

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  • RELIGION

    East Timor’s cardinal leap forward

    • Pat Walsh
    • 15 June 2022
    2 Comments

    While the church in East Timor has its hands full serving its large membership, a big challenge is to work out what its role should be in post-war Timor. Rather than entrench its comfortable status quo, Cardinal Virgilio, educated in the Philippines and from an order skilled in youth education, must ensure that the church’s new status is used to move it towards the model advocated by Pope Francis.

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  • RELIGION

    Stray thoughts: On pronouns

    • Michele Frankeni
    • 14 June 2022
    1 Comment

    On social media, business cards and the bottom of emails nowadays you will often find a bracket with people’s preferred pronouns (he/him or she/her or they/them). Without fanfare, gender neutrality has slipped into our 21st century speech and our unconscious, and it is only when we are confronted with the gender specific language that we realise how we’ve changed. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The true quiet Australians: 10 of the best of Brian Matthews

    • Brian Matthews
    • 09 June 2022
    2 Comments

    Brian Matthews, academic, award-winning columnist and biographer, and Australia's foremost scholar on Henry Lawson and his mother Louisa, died last Thursday 2 June following complications related to lymphoma, at the age of 86. Brian first wrote for Eureka Street in February, 2002 and continued to contribute his monthly column for 20 years.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    From the archives: Dad's army

    • Brian Matthews
    • 09 June 2022

    It was Christmas morning of... many years ago. I was about eight years old but, despite my advanced age, I remained a dogged believer in Father Christmas. This belief was maintained in the face of cynicism and derision from the youthful toughs I consorted with and despite my own unspoken qualms in moments of inconvenient rationality. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Back to Bilo: The Murugappan family and Australian refugee policy

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 09 June 2022
    4 Comments

    In Australia’s treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, notably those arriving by boat, compassion and fairness have rarely threatened a policy deemed cruel, costly and ineffective. The fate of the Muragappan family has been a continuous, scandalising flashpoint about the nature of Australia’s border protection policies. 

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Wanted: A liberal dose of climate action

    • Stephen Minas
    • 09 June 2022
    4 Comments

    The Liberal wipeout in inner-city electorates is without precedent in Australian politics. For the Liberal Party, ‘existential crisis’ is not an overstatement. As the party founded by Robert Menzies finds itself in the hall of mirrors, climate policy should be a major focus of critical self-appraisal.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    On remembering the forgotten

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 June 2022
    1 Comment

    In his initial speech as leader of the Liberal Party Peter Dutton committed himself to care for the forgotten voters, echoing a foundation document of the Liberal Party: Robert Menzies’ speech after an electoral defeat in 1942 refers to forgotten people to point the way forward for the new party. The phrase was central to a re-imagining of Australian society. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Stray thoughts: A moment to dream about

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 07 June 2022

    Before the game, Richmond players of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent were encircled and then honoured by their teammates. The sight of non-indigenous Richmond players on their knees while their teammates stood proudly before them was powerful and moving. It felt like a significant moment in the club’s history. To get to that moment, authentically, was not easy.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Received lives

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 07 June 2022
    6 Comments

    I admit to a weakness for pomp and pageantry. I am, after all, a child of Empire, and swore allegiance to Queen Elizabeth II every Monday morning for years on end. So I watched the recent Trooping of the Colour, part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, and thoroughly enjoyed it, admiring the military precision and all the discipline required, the glitter, the splendour, the dashing aristocrats of the equine world, the sheer vividness of the unrolling scene. And all in honour of the Queen’s birthday.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    'Part of a Pacific family': Australia to re-focus aid budget

    • Joe Zabar
    • 07 June 2022
    1 Comment

    The Asia Pacific region has some of the world’s poorest and most disadvantaged communities. Supporting our regional family through increased aid and development will be important, but so too is the respect we show to the leaders of those nations which surround us. 

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  • FAITH DOING JUSTICE

    Surviving the cold, small hours

    • Barry Gittins
    • 07 June 2022
    3 Comments

    There’s nothing wrong with us enjoying a quiet breakfast and admiring the beauty of a winter city steeped in recovery. If we can’t also see the people sleeping on cold concrete, or sitting half-dressed, with no hope, peering through unfocused eyes, then we’re not getting the whole picture. 

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