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Keywords: Us Bishops Conference

  • RELIGION

    Navigating between the perfect and the good at the Second PC Assembly

    • John Warhurst
    • 23 June 2022
    6 Comments

    The week of the Plenary Council's Second Assembly, unlike the First Assembly, will largely be devoted to voting. My best guess is that there could be about 100 rounds of consultative votes (including amendments and then thirty amended motions) during the week. This will be followed by deliberative voting by the bishops and their proxies. Before voting there will be many short, sharp speeches from among the 280 members interspersed in the program. This will make for an extremely tight timetable. 

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  • RELIGION

    Plenary Council fails to embrace Pope Francis’s wider social vision

    • Bruce Duncan
    • 21 June 2022
    3 Comments

    Some 278 Catholic bishops, clergy, religious personnel and lay people will meet as members of an unprecedented Plenary Council during 3-9 July to finalise the resolutions of their first assembly last year. However the May working document ‘Framework for Motions’, despite much worthy content, especially on Indigenous affairs, relies on a narrow notion of mission overly focused on inner-church issues at the expense of the wider social engagement that Francis emphasises.

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  • 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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  • 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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  • INTERNATIONAL

    In the name of Kyrill

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 31 May 2022
    4 Comments

    Patriarch Kyrill of Moscow has received much justified criticism for aligning his Church alongside Vladimir Putin in the invasion of Ukraine. If we are to understand how he could think it is right to do so, however, it is helpful to know how he came to be Kyrill. The story of his earlier namesakes illuminate the conduct of the present Patriarch of Moscow. 

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  • RELIGION

    Roe vs Wade: The Bishops’ dilemma

    • Miles Pattenden
    • 26 May 2022
    5 Comments

    News leaked earlier this month that the US Supreme Court plans to overturn its most famous decision, that in Roe vs Wade (1973) which protects a pregnant woman's freedom to choose to have an abortion without excessive government restriction. The decision has attracted much criticism both in the past and now on account of its dubious legal reasoning – in particular, its attempt to link the right to abort to a right to privacy which itself was notional and not specified in the US Constitution.

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  • EDUCATION

    Teal candidates and the Catholic vote

    • Chris Middleton
    • 23 May 2022
    3 Comments

    Perhaps the most dramatic individual result of the Federal election was that Menzies’s seat, Kooyong, has fallen to a Teal independent, Dr Monique Ryan. Xavier College sits in the Kooyong electorate, and Dr Ryan is a parent at the College. Dr Ryan proved to be an impressive candidate who ran as a good a local campaign as I have ever seen. It was marked by a strong engagement by many locals, and especially among professional women, and older residents.

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  • RELIGION

    I am unashamedly pro-life, but let me tell you what that means

    • Beth Doherty
    • 19 May 2022
    4 Comments

    I have always considered myself pro-life. It’s not something I’ve felt a need to wear as a badge of honour, rather it has always been a default position. But terminology matters. Indeed, frequently, calling myself pro-life has drawn the derision or raised eyebrows of people around me, nuns and priests and radical ratbags alike, it has connotations.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    An Australian Pacific tale: Climate security, sovereignty and neglect

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 10 May 2022
    3 Comments

    On May 3, the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands, Manasseh Sogavare, vented his fury in parliament at ‘the continual demonstration of lack of trust by the concerned parties, and tacit warning of military intervention in Solomon Islands if their national interest is undermined in Solomon Islands.’ The targets of the speech — Australia and the United States — were clear enough.

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  • RELIGION

    Elections and the Episcopal gaze

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 May 2022
    6 Comments

    We should not underestimate the difficulty that people who represent independent branches of the same organization face when drawing up an agreed statement on contentious issues. Even the widely applauded Uluru Statement from the Heart did not secure the support of all Indigenous groups. If the Bishops Statement was to be effective it had to be supported, or at least tolerated, by all members of the Conference, despite their differing views about political and church issues and the priority that should be given to them in advocacy. 

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  • RELIGION

    Distinctive Catholic voices in the election campaign

    • John Warhurst
    • 26 April 2022
    10 Comments

    The Church must speak up to be relevant, but those who seek to ‘speak for the church’ must be brave. They risk exposing themselves to claims of bias unless they stick to a very narrow agenda and speak in extremely measured terms. Yet if they are too bland they risk being irrelevant to the sharp end of political debate and their intervention becomes little more than a symbolic ritual.   

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  • RELIGION

    Forward to the Second Plenary Council Assembly

    • John Warhurst
    • 05 April 2022

    The 280 Plenary Council (PC) Members have just taken another major step towards the Second Assembly in Sydney on 3-9 July. Yet it is difficult to have a proper public conversation about this step because it has taken place behind closed doors. Towards the Second Assembly comes a long way under the guidance of the four writing groups, whose membership has not been made public. Though it is a mixed bag, it is probably the best document emerging from the PC, making it even more frustrating that it is not in the public domain. 

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