keywords: Joseph Ratzinger

  • RELIGION

    Ratzinger and Rowan Williams side by side

    • Andrew McGowan
    • 14 February 2013
    21 Comments

    Now that Williams has returned to academic life and Ratzinger has resigned, it is tempting to commit both their reigns to the category of failure, and debate mostly the nobility or otherwise of their inability to bend lurching structures or less gifted minds to their own wills. This would not, however, be the whole picture in either case.

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  • RELIGION

    The Catholic Church and modern science

    • Bill Uren
    • 15 September 2020
    138 Comments

    Whereas the Vatican II document sought to engage with, and to respect, the autonomy of the modern world and its science, only too many of the Vatican’s official statements over the past fifty years have effectively resiled from that commitment.

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  • RELIGION

    Best of 2017: Bishop Long at the Royal Commission

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 January 2018
    7 Comments

    Vincent Long's testimony was notable for its directness, honesty and the awareness it displayed of the importance of church culture. Long grew up in the Vietnamese Catholic Church and was afterwards chosen to lead the Australian Church. In his responses he focused on clericalism and its role in giving license and cover to clerical abuse.

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  • RELIGION

    Clarity beyond clericalism: Bishop Long at the Royal Commission

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 22 February 2017
    70 Comments

    The most thought provoking testimony given during the Royal Commission's Catholic 'wrap up' was that by Vincent Long, Bishop of Parramatta. It was notable for its directness, honesty and the awareness it displayed of the importance of church culture. Bishop Long grew up in the Vietnamese Catholic Church and was afterwards chosen to lead the Australian Church. In his responses he focused particularly on clericalism and its role in giving license and cover to clerical abuse.

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  • RELIGION

    Demystifying 'God's Rottweiler'

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 February 2017
    18 Comments

    The inflated image I once had of Cardinal Ratzinger, and that many Catholics have of cardinals and other authority figures, was shaped by fear. Fear hands over to the human beings behind the image a power they do not possess. Conversations always turn to them and inhibit the free and constructive living of faith. In helping to demystify such images Last Testament, the autobiography (written with Peter Seewald) of Pope Benedict XVI, serves us well.

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  • RELIGION

    Women deacons the solution to priestly power problem

    • Phyllis Zagano
    • 11 May 2016
    21 Comments

    Pope Francis may be interested in better situating women within Church governance and ministry, and there is sufficient theological evidence to readmit women to the order of deacon. Even so, significant curial roadblocks keep him from moving in the obvious direction. Women deacons could take up significant posts, at the Vatican and around the world, but in 2008 the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith decreed ordination of women a crime worthy of automatic excommunication.

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  • RELIGION

    Winds of theological change at the Vatican

    • Neil Ormerod
    • 13 March 2014
    10 Comments

    No one can deny the impact Francis has had. The question remains whether the differences between him and his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI are a matter of style or substance. Francis has downplayed the prospects of major doctrinal changes, yet the rehabilitation of liberation theology and the bringing in from the cold of outspoken 'extreme centrist' theologian Cardinal Walter Kasper do reveal a fundamental shift.

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  • RELIGION

    Show some respect when talking with homosexuals

    • Frank Brennan
    • 19 August 2013
    28 Comments

    During part of the conversation that was recorded by SBS but not aired, I told Penny Wong I thought her homosexuality was as natural, complex and mystical as my heterosexuality. It is time we dropped the unhelpful, judgmental language of intrinsic and objective disorder when respectfully trying to determine appropriate laws and policies for all people who want to support and nurture each other and their children.

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  • RELIGION

    Church and ordained ministry in the 21st century

    • Frank Brennan
    • 23 May 2013
    2 Comments

    Fr Frank Brennan's keynote address at the Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn Clergy Assembly, St Clement's, Gaylong, on 22 May 2013

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  • RELIGION

    Resignation of a teacher-Pope

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 13 February 2013
    25 Comments

    When Joseph Ratzinger was elected many Catholics were surprised, some alarmed. They identified him with the stern disciplinary actions and doctrinal intransigence of the Congregation for the Defence of the Faith, and assumed he'd bring the same narrow focus to his leadership of the Church. The reality has been different. 

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  • RELIGION

    Greater transparency will evolve the Church

    • Frank Brennan
    • 24 May 2012
    44 Comments

    Bishop Morris wrote at considerable length to Archbishop Chaput, in a highly respectful and fraternal tone. To be fair to Chaput, I will quote his breathtaking response in full. It illustrates what still passes for due process and pastoral care in the Roman Church. We have to insist on something better. And with greater transparency, we will get something better.

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  • RELIGION

    Human rights and Christian lawyers

    • Frank Brennan
    • 18 July 2011
    5 Comments

    When I appeared on Q&A with Christopher Hitchens, a young man asked whether we can 'ever hope to live in a truly secular society' while the religious continue to 'affect political discourse and decision making' on euthanasia, same-sex unions and abortion. Hitchens was simpaticao. I was dumbstruck.

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