keywords: Plenary 2020

  • RELIGION

    Cultural questions for getting back on mission

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 09 October 2019
    11 Comments

    For Catholics who are interested in the Australian Church, its future and the Plenary Council, this is essential reading. Given its focus on governance, it may also be of interest to a wider audience. Many of the strains of dysfunction it finds in Church governance are similar to those in public life in Australia and internationally.

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  • RELIGION

    Lay community key to reforming Catholicism

    • Paul Collins
    • 04 September 2019
    42 Comments

    Anyone in the past who called attention to these issues was accused at best of exaggeration'. Getting Back on Mission points out that until the church accepts good governance characterised by accountability, transparency, inclusion and a recognition of the equality of women, it will continue its culture of clericalism and secrecy.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The west's fossil fuels problem is strategic, too

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 08 July 2019
    5 Comments

    When discussing climate change, it's easy to depict the world's reliance on fossil fuels as primarily a technological problem, to be resolved by new methods for harnessing renewable energies. But that's only part of the story, as the example of Saudi Arabia shows.

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  • RELIGION

    Church reform must increase transparency

    • John Warhurst
    • 02 May 2019
    26 Comments

    Those holding church authority should show the Catholic community that they have learnt the lessons offered by the royal commission by undertaking reforms as soon as possible and by telling us all about them in a spirit of transparency.

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  • FAITH DOING JUSTICE

    Parsing the Catholic bishops' election advice

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 02 May 2019
    11 Comments

    The Australian bishops' statement on the federal election is significant as much for the fact it was made as for its argument. Given the polarisation of public debate, they might well have thought it wiser to remain silent. For them the greatest success of the statement may be that, when they spoke of public issues, the sky did not fall in.

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  • RELIGION

    Australian Catholics take stock as Pell falls

    • John Warhurst
    • 06 March 2019
    61 Comments

    A conservative within a conservative church he was a divisive figure, not just because of his orthodox views but because of the unbending and assertive style with which he promulgated them. Something died in Australian Catholicism with this verdict and Australian Catholics will have to live with that whatever the future turns out to be.

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  • RELIGION

    Church reform scorecard

    • John Warhurst
    • 11 December 2018
    53 Comments

    Scoring the performance of the Australian church is a complex task at any time. Dioceses and congregations vary enormously. The mission of church agencies continues unabated in education, health, social services and aged care. But by any measure 2018 has been a big year.

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  • RELIGION

    What it will take to prove the Church gets it

    • John Warhurst
    • 02 September 2018
    47 Comments

    The question of the seal is seen as proof that the church leadership is still resisting the royal commission recommendations. That impression can only be allayed if the church's record in a decade's time can be shown to be impeccable in responding to the other 98 per cent. Already 98 per cent has been shown to be a rubbery figure.

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  • RELIGION

    Let's talk about the Catholic bishops

    • John Warhurst
    • 17 July 2018
    28 Comments

    The constitutional position of bishops is best illustrated by the Wilson case. The media releases of the hierarchy revealed their impotence. They explained their inaction by pointing out that only the Pope could force a bishop to resign and were reduced to conveying the impression of working behind the scenes to influence Wilson's decision.

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  • RELIGION

    Leading in diverse times

    • Frank Brennan
    • 16 July 2018
    3 Comments

    'Kristina Keneally was unapologetic in putting the place of women in our church front and centre. And so we should.' Tropical and Topical, 2018 National Catholic Principals' Conference, Cairns Convention Centre, 16 July 2018.

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  • RELIGION

    Mud-wrestling the Catholic elephant

    • John Warhurst
    • 01 April 2018
    26 Comments

    The size and complexity of the church has bedevilled the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Church reformers face the same dilemma. The church is big and slippery, with numerous opportunities to engage but equally numerous veto points and dead-ends when it comes to getting action.

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  • RELIGION

    Catholic citizens needed within the Church

    • John Warhurst
    • 23 May 2017
    54 Comments

    Catholics have a proud record of exercising their democratic rights within Australian democracy as voters, members of political parties and lobby groups, and as elected representatives. But within their own church they have been taught to leave their democratic rights at the door. Now is the time to challenge that norm in parishes, dioceses and the wider church. In responding to the royal commission the church needs an infusion of democratic values, including transparency and accountability.

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