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Keywords: Acbc

  • 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

    Open government for the Church

    • John Warhurst
    • 10 February 2022
    21 Comments

    The Church in Australia has taken a step towards greater transparency with the release by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) of its first ever Annual Report-this one for the 2020 year. This step is welcome, but there is more to be done. Synodality and co-responsibility presumes that those who are walking together have equal access to information upon which to discern the future of the Church at all levels. 

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  • RELIGION

    When synodality confronts hierarchy 

    • John Warhurst
    • 14 December 2021
    3 Comments

    Synodality confronts the traditional practice of hierarchy within the church. When the ACBC responded last December to The Light from the Southern Cross report, which promoted synodality and co-responsible governance, it re-stated its position that hierarchy was embedded in the church’s approach to governance. This immediately set up a potential tension between episcopal authority and participation in governance by the People of God. 

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  • RELIGION

    Evaluating plenary: One journey ends, another begins

    • John Warhurst
    • 28 October 2021
    11 Comments

    Ten days after the conclusion of the first Assembly of the Plenary Council each member was sent an Evaluation Form to complete. As well as reflecting on our experience we were asked to consider how we would complete the phrase ‘It would have been good if…’. The authorities told us that our responses would help to plan the second Assembly. 

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  • RELIGION

    Raising women’s voices

    • Tracy McEwan, Patricia Gemmell
    • 06 October 2021
    15 Comments

    Annabel Crabb’s ABC TV documentary series Ms Represented had us gasping, laughing and raging all at once. The series struck an achingly familiar chord as women from different political parties and generations voiced their common experience of sexism and misogyny in Australia’s parliament, elucidating just how hard it is for women to have a voice at the table in Australian institutions of power.

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  • RELIGION

    The Plenary Council must address structural inertia and church decline

    • John Warhurst
    • 25 February 2021
    56 Comments

    Two documents from and about the church in Australia issued in December last year should be compulsory reading for all Plenary Council (PC) delegates. They offer crucial insights into the state of the church in Australia, and taken together they paint a picture of church inertia and decline.

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  • RELIGION

    Patchwork quilt church inhibits national action

    • John Warhurst
    • 05 November 2020
    67 Comments

    There is a good reason why the term Australian Catholic Church is frowned upon in official circles. It does not exist. Instead, it is a patchwork quilt of fiefdoms called dioceses. It lacks an energising central authority which, when it needs to, can generate and shape a national church response.

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  • RELIGION

    Factions and ginger groups within the church

    • John Warhurst
    • 10 September 2020
    66 Comments

    What is happening at the moment is that certain bishops are condemning members of the church renewal movement as pressure groups pushing an agenda, while ignoring the well-known fact that groups with other agendas are widespread within the church.

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  • RELIGION

    Mental health as a gift

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 September 2020
    10 Comments

    The Catholic Social Justice Statement embodies this generous vision. Its title emphasises the gift that each human being is, and the blessing that is mental health. Health is not to be taken for granted as an entitlement but accepted and nurtured as a gift.

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  • RELIGION

    Who speaks for the Catholic church?

    • John Warhurst
    • 18 June 2020
    27 Comments

    Discussion of church life in Australia is incomplete without consideration of who speaks for the church at the national level. The answer to the question 'Who presides over the Catholic church in Australia?’ is more complicated than you might think.

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  • RELIGION

    Australian bishops have a transparency problem

    • John Warhurst
    • 28 January 2020
    57 Comments

    Australia's bishops have yet to demonstrate the new openness to the Catholic community necessary for a successful Plenary Council. Their inclination to secrecy remains an impediment. They just don't get transparency as a virtue and they have twice demonstrated their adherence to old ways of doing things in recent months.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Allies keeping faith despite Medevac blow

    • Carolina Gottardo and Nishadh Rego
    • 12 December 2019
    6 Comments

    Outside, a Martian-red haze kisses the windows. An ode to the future perhaps. Most of the people present are already aware of the Medevac repeal decision. The room is heavy with silence, the mood is sombre, but far from resigned. We want change, and are willing to have a crack at demanding it.

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