keywords: Synods

  • RELIGION

    Seeking a plenary council fit for purpose

    • Frank Brennan
    • 14 November 2018
    75 Comments

    What we need is a listening and inclusive Church — a plenary council at which the clergy and the laity have a proper place at the table, at which the voices of the ‘rusted-on’ and the ‘cheesed-off’ Catholics are heard and at which the bishops are respectfully listening as much as speaking. 

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  • RELIGION

    Family Synod neglects feminine genius

    • Beth Doherty
    • 29 October 2015
    28 Comments

    We can assume that despite the recent Synod's focus on families, most of the voters have never had any involvement in raising families, and certainly not of experiencing pregnancy and childbirth. None have directly dealt with an abusive spouse, struggled to regulate family size, questioned whether to stay in an unhappy marriage, or dealt with a child identifying as gay, lesbian or transgender. Last year, I spent time working in a parish in Paraguay, where, unlike the church more broadly, women run the show.

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  • RELIGION

    Betting on the Synod

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 29 October 2015
    6 Comments

    The journalist Claud Cockburn once said that Catholics could never bet on the election of a pope because they believed it was all up to the Holy Spirit. He was mistaken — many Catholics then and now would place a bet on anything and everything. His reasoning also overlooked the Catholic understanding that human beings cooperate with the Holy Spirit. But his association of God's action with the election and actions of popes provides a lens for looking at the recently concluded Synod on the Family.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Why Pope Francis is not an anti-Capitalist greenie

    • Frank Brennan
    • 23 October 2015
    4 Comments

    Francis knows there are all sorts of issues inside and outside the Church where for too long people with power have tried to keep the lid on, in the hope that the problems and complexities will go away, often by parodying those who see the problems or complexities as small 'l' liberals or cafeteria Catholics. He delights in being joyful and troubled while contemplating big problems, calling people of good will to the table of deliberation reminding them of the kernel of the Christian gospels. He has the faith and hope needed to lift the lid without fear and without knowing the answers prior to the dialogue occurring.

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  • Frank Brennan's 'fifth gospel'

    • William Morris
    • 15 June 2015
    7 Comments

    'Frank points out that the Church cannot credibly proclaim a message of social justice in a pluralist democracy when its own processes fall short of ordinary community standards of justice. It needs to turn its teaching about human rights and human dignity back on itself, the Church, insisting on due process within the life of the Church community.' Bishop William Morris helps launch Frank Brennan's new book Amplifying That Still, Small Voice.

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  • RELIGION

    Pope's vision for a bruised and dirty Church

    • Frank Brennan
    • 02 December 2013
    2 Comments

    How refreshing to have a pope write: 'It is not advisable for the pope to take the place of local bishops in the discernment of every issue which arises in their territory. In this sense, I am conscious of the need to promote a sound 'decentralisation'.' Vatican monsignori in long flowing robes will be troubled to hear him say, 'mere administration can no longer be enough. Throughout the world, let us be permanently in a state of mission.'

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  • RELIGION

    Democracy in the Church

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 July 2011
    30 Comments

    A petition circulating among Australian Catholics offers a sombre picture of the state of the Church. To some Catholics petitions seem inappropriate. But they have the value once attributed to canaries in the mineshaft: their witness is dismissed at the mine owners' peril.

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  • RELIGION

    'Divided' Anglicans dodge conflict

    • Andrew McGowan
    • 30 September 2010
    1 Comment

    The Australian Anglican Church is divided on questions of women's ordination, sexuality, lay presidency and liturgical texts. But the recent assembly in Melbourne was relatively polite, although the question of the conservative, evangelical Sydney Diocese's relationship with the rest was never far from the surface.

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  • RELIGION

    An eye for those who fall between the cracks

    • Bishop Pat Power
    • 25 October 2007

    There is a danger in today's climate with so many demands of compliance from government and even church that those in church welfare work can become so "professional" that they lose sight of the human persons involved.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Book reviews

    • Kirsty Sangster, Avril Hannah-Jones, Kirsty Sangster, Marcelle Mogg
    • 15 June 2006

     Reviews of Legacies of White Australia: Race, Culture and Nation; The Uniting Church in Australia: The first 25 years; Landscapes of Memory: A Holocaust Girlhood Remembered and A girl, a smock and a simple plan

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