keywords: Back In Time For Dinner

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Time for Labor to disown PNG solution

    • Tony Kevin
    • 28 February 2014
    22 Comments

    Over the past week of Parliament, we have seen the strange and distressing spectacle of Labor timidly criticising the Government's handling of the events on Manus Island. If it were brave enough, Labor could use these events as a trigger for policy change. To call for the Manus centre to close, and for detention and processing centres in Australia to reopen, would be the moral policy for Labor at this point.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Mistaken for Jewish in cold, grand Moscow

    • Howard Willis
    • 19 February 2014
    6 Comments

    On the occasions I got into detailed discussions with strangers in Moscow, a pattern emerged. Saying I was Australian prompted a polite request for clarification: 'But your ancestry?' The reply that I was fifth-generation Australian was treated as an evasion, or met with the assumption that my ancestors were 'bandits'. Generally, Muscovites took a second look at me and the box they ticked was 'Jew'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Time to honour Aboriginal frontier warriors

    • Paul Newbury
    • 21 January 2014
    23 Comments

    New Zealand, our partner in the Anzac legend, has no problem commemorating the Maori Wars of 1845–1872. Yet the Australian War Memorial refuses to honour Aboriginal warriors who fought and died defending their lands and their people against white invader settlers in the Frontier Wars of 1788–1928. This is a moral issue, and has the effect of excluding a whole people from commemoration based on a trifle.

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  • RELIGION

    Best of 2013: Advice for the Pope on reforming the Church

    • Geraldine Doogue
    • 14 January 2014
    13 Comments

    I wish he would invite me to be his temporary consultant, to offer him advice for his next 500 days. I'd begin by proposing a substantial Vatican-led inquiry, into why the Church has been so troubled by sexual abuse across various countries. Then I would point to the experiences of several large secular institutions, including the New York Times and US Army, that have rebuilt after crises.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: Transformed by a boring Brussels Mass

    • Benedict Coleridge
    • 07 January 2014

    The coughing is getting worse; it sounds like the pew behind me is hosting a cardiac arrest. English theologian James Alison described mass as 'a long term education in becoming unexcited', a state that allows us to dwell 'in a quiet place' that 'increases our attention, our presence'. In Brussels, becoming 'unexcited' seems important.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    They call him backflipper, but Gonski's still sliding

    • Ray Cassin
    • 04 December 2013
    9 Comments

    The Education Minister Christopher Pyne has spun the latest developments on education funding reforms as having saved Gonski and achieved what Labor could not. But it is an achievement derived from surrendering oversight of how the money will be spent. If public schools continue to be the losers in the battle for funds, the reversals of the past fortnight will be remembered as the start of a slow burn for the Abbott Government.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Trott a hero for quitting the Ashes

    • Michael Mullins
    • 02 December 2013
    2 Comments

    English batsman Jonathan Trott was pilloried in some media comments because he abandoned his team because he felt 'stressed'. We should be celebrating the fact that a high profile male sportsman finds that he can declare he has a stress-related illness and then seek help for it.

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  • RELIGION

    This time in the Church

    • Frank Brennan
    • 12 November 2013
    5 Comments

    'Having thrown off the shackles of compulsion endured by pre-Vatican II Catholics, we relish that we come to the table not because we are forced, not because of social expectations, not because of the mindset of the mob, but because we are graciously called and freely responding.' Frank Brennan's Camino Address, Parish of Our Lady of the Way North Sydney, 12 November 2013

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  • RELIGION

    Christian social thinking for Australia

    • Frank Brennan
    • 08 November 2013
    1 Comment

    'Many Catholics wonder how we can maintain our Christian faith at this time in the wake of the sexual abuse crisis and the many judgmental utterances about sexuality and reproduction. The Church that has spoken longest and loudest about sex in all its modalities seems to be one of the social institutions most needing to get its own house in order.' Frank Brennan's address to the Yarra Institute for Religion and Social Policy, 8 November 2013. 

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  • EDUCATION

    Advice for graduating health sciences students

    • Frank Brennan
    • 18 October 2013

    'My sixth piece of advice is for all graduates and not just those of you who are religious. We all need to develop a comprehensive worldview, nurturing the sense of the transcendent in the human spirit, and holding together in tension ideals and reality, dreams and our shortcomings.' Full text from Frank Brennan's La Trobe Graduation Address, Health Sciences, 18 October 2013.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Abbott's mixed messages for Indonesia

    • Pat Walsh
    • 03 October 2013
    15 Comments

    I suspect that Abbott's visit has left Indonesians with a poor impression of Australia. Dewi Fortuna Anwar, political adviser to Indonesia's Vice President Boediono, described the Abbott asylum seeker policy as 'callous'. Abbott's heavy handedness also contrasts sharply with the sensitive way Jakarta's popular governor, Jokowi, is managing complex change, for which Indonesians feel genuine enthusiasm.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Seven pointers for stopping the boats ethically

    • Frank Brennan
    • 01 October 2013
    35 Comments

    Last Tuesday, seven West Papuan asylum seekers reached Boigu Island in the Torres Strait. Without any determination of their refugee claims, they were removed to PNG. They were not engaged in secondary movement, they were in direct flight from persecution. The Abbott Government should recommit to our obligation under the Refugees Convention to grant asylum to refugees who have entered Australia in direct flight from persecution.

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