keywords: St Vincent De Paul Society

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My Baghdad dreams

    • John Falzon
    • 02 February 2016
    1 Comment

    I bite on life. The bitterness will daunt but not defeat me. And I hear you. I can never give you voice. My dreams take speed. My Baghdad dreams take speed. My rest my head against the pillow of the west ... Exclamation bombs my Baghdad ... You don't have long to live sweet parliament.

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  • RELIGION

    Pope Francis and the face of mercy

    • Frank Brennan
    • 09 December 2015
    2 Comments

    'I joined the Jesuits in 1975 just as the previous 32nd General Congregation (GC32) was concluding. Pedro Arrupe was at the height of his powers. That Congregation asked the question: 'What is it to be a companion of Jesus today?' and answered unequivocally, 'It is to engage, under the standard of the Cross, in the crucial struggle of our time: the struggle for faith and that struggle for justice which it includes.' I have always regarded myself as a GC32 Jesuit. Many of those who gathered for GC33 thought that the GC32 mission was a little too one-dimensional. I suspect Bergoglio was one of those.' Frank Brennan on the eve of the Catholic Church's Jubilee Year of Mercy.

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  • If Ignatius hadn't missed the boat ...

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 30 July 2015
    3 Comments

    Ignatius of Loyola, whose feast day is on 31 July, is remembered for founding the Jesuits, for his Spiritual Exercises and for the effect Jesuits had on European history and in overseas missions. He was a man who made a difference. But during his life that reputation was not a done deal. One often overlooked event, more accurately an event that failed to happen, shaped decisively how he has come to be remembered.

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  • Maintaining the humanity of the public square

    • Greg O'Kelly
    • 01 July 2015
    3 Comments

    The phrase 'the public square' is peppered throughout Frank Brennan's work. The 1988 film Cinema Paradiso depicts the public square in a Sicilian village over 30 or so years, and its slow and subtle change from a place where human beings gather to laugh, play and discuss. Billboards and garish signs appear and it becomes a car park bereft of its humanity.

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  • RELIGION

    A messy birth and a vulnerable baby

    • Richard Leonard
    • 18 December 2014
    21 Comments

    At a Christmas party, I met the charge nurse of the maternity ward. Pleading that because I was a celibate I would never be at a birth, I enquired if I might be allowed to come and see'. … Mary and I met six hours into her labor, which was an unusual circumstance within which to meet your birthing partner.' She had very little small talk, maybe because she had no breath at all.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Long-grassers seen as blight on Darwin's iconic foreshore

    • Mike Bowden
    • 28 November 2014
    7 Comments

    Darwin has a group of homeless people who live rough in the vicinity of the beautiful and iconic Esplanade, close to the city centre. The Vinnies SOS van has been servicing their needs for many years, but the decision has been taken to move it several kilometres away, out of the sight of the residents and tourists. This contrasts with Pope Francis' installation of showers for the homeless on the edge of the tourist mecca of St Peter's Square.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Young people can't live on fresh air and sunshine

    • John Falzon
    • 13 October 2014
    35 Comments

    During Anti-Poverty Week we're asked to take the side of the people who are made to feel like they are nothing. We join those of us who believe in working towards the kind of society where vulnerability is respectfully shared and supported rather than brutally exploited. We believe that humanity will win against humiliation. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A case of the Ramadan blues

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 11 July 2014
    12 Comments

    We’re in Ramadan, a time when you’re supposed to be nicer than you normally are. In recent times my mob hasn’t received much niceness from certain quarters. Some of the nasties have been inspired by hysteria related to a proposal to build a mosque in Bendigo. I’m not quite sure what Bendigo’s largely university-based Muslim community did to deserve so much vitriol. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Emergency relief fall guys for a heartless government

    • Mike Bowden
    • 30 June 2014
    37 Comments

    A week ago I get a phone call from the CEO of Northern Territory Vinnies, for whom I am council secretary. Could I come in and sign a letter about emergency relief before the next council meeting? 'Of course.' The letter is produced and, being conscientious, I actually read it. The Federal Government is offering Darwin Vinnies additional ER funds for the rest of the year. And I stop. I am not comfortable.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Grinding the face of the poor

    • John Falzon
    • 29 May 2014
    67 Comments

    The Budget was one of most vicious attacks on ordinary people that we have seen in recent Australian history. We are not in the throes of a fiscal crisis but if we embark on this treacherous path we will be staring down the barrel of a social crisis. But we have a secret weapon. It is called solidarity. Even though we name it openly and proudly, it remains a secret weapon because those who do not practise it can never understand it.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Cruelled by the Budget

    • John Falzon
    • 15 May 2014
    4 Comments

    'You don't help young people, or older people, or people with disabilities, or single mums, into jobs by making them poor. You don't build people up by putting them down. And as even the OECD acknowledges, you don't build a strong economy by increasing the level of inequality. You don't create a strong country on the backs of the already poor.' Statement by John Falzon

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What's killing the charities regulator?

    • Michael Mullins
    • 31 March 2014
    5 Comments

    The Federal Government is moving to abolish the body set up to protect and regulate the non-profit sector. Vinnies CEO John Falzon describes the action as 'ideological', while Melbourne Catholic education chief Stephen Elder sees it as an opportunity to spend more time raising money and delivering services. The Government must explain the policy imperatives driving it to dismantle such an extensively considered piece of legislation.

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