Bishops congratulate, welcome new Catholic Religious Australia president

Sr Monica Cavanagh RSJ

Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Mark Coleridge has congratulated Sr Monica Cavanagh RSJ on her election yesterday as president of Catholic Religious Australia at the group’s National Assembly.

Sr Monica, currently congregational leader of the Sisters of St Joseph, was elected along with a number of other religious women and men to the Catholic Religious Australia Council. Continue reading

Townsville locals see great potential in Plenary Council by Neil Helmore, Diocese of Townsville

Lana Turvey-Collins explains the Plenary Council 2020 process to Townsville locals.

The northern Australia tour continued for Plenary Council facilitator Lana Turvey-Collins recently when delivered five sessions over three days in the Townsville Diocese, presenting to more than 130 people.

Geoff Gowdie, Church life and mission services director for the Diocese, saw the opportunity to gather as many people as possible together from a wide range of ministries to gain an understanding of how the Plenary Council will work. Those people can then serve as leaders in their specific ministry or parish.

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Spirit of welcome imbues 2018 Sea Sunday celebration Apostleship of the Sea

Roslyn Rajasingam, national director of the Apostleship of the Sea

Dozens of Catholic chaplains and managers who work in Australian ports – and the tens of thousands of people who support their work financially – are being reminded of the scriptural imperative to “always welcome a stranger” in the lead-up to Sea Sunday next month.

On July 8, the Catholic Church will celebrate the work of those men and women who work on the seas and those Catholics across the country who minister to seafarers by providing spiritual, social and material support. Continue reading

PROCLAIM sells out weeks ahead of conference National Centre for Evangelisation

The organisers of the 2018 PROCLAIM Conference have posted the “Sold Out” sign for this year’s event, with more than 600 people to come together in Brisbane for the biennial gathering.

Being held in Queensland for the first time, this fourth PROCLAIM conference is organised and hosted by the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane, in partnership with the National Centre for Evangelisation – an agency of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. Continue reading

Educator joins Bishops Conference in executive secretary role

Louise Zavone, who has spent the past three decades teaching in Catholic schools and in leadership roles within Catholic education, has joined the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference to serve as an executive secretary to a number of bishops commissions.

Mrs Zavone, who most recently worked as a religious education officer for Sydney Catholic Schools (formerly the Sydney Catholic Education Office), will support the work of the Bishops Commission for Doctrine and Morals, the Bishops Commission for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations, and the Bishops Commission for Family, Youth and Life. Continue reading

Dozens gather in Cairns for Plenary Council conversation Plenary Council 2020

More than 70 people from across Far North Queensland came together in Cairns last week in the latest of regular diocesan gatherings that are helping local communities commence the three-year Plenary Council process.

Plenary Council facilitator Lana Turvey-Collins, who has attended many such gatherings across the country, introduced the Cairns locals to the listening and dialogue process that will help groups — large and small — participate in the preparation phase of the Plenary Council. People’s dialogue sessions, which can inform submissions to the Plenary Council, will help shape the agenda for the Council sessions in 2020 and 2021.

Centacare FNQ executive director Anita Veivers attended the first session in Cairns. Ms Veivers said she enjoyed the opportunity to be part of such an authentic communication process.

“Profound societal change is a matter of fact. In order to remain relevant, this opportunity to dialogue in relation to Church renewal is welcomed and embraced,” said Ms Veivers,

“The Plenary Council is a celebration and opportunity for genuine listening and dialogue. I encourage wide participation and hope that we can all listen humbly with open hearts to each other.”

Ms Turvey-Collins said the level of engagement she observed in Cairns was impressive and encouraging.

“It was a great privilege to hear a few of the stories of people’s experience of faith and the Church from people in the Cairns Diocese,” she said.

“It was a first step on the journey towards the Plenary Council. All people in Cairns are invited to get together with other people — maybe in their workplace or at a local café — and share their thoughts with one another.”

Ms Turvey-Collins will attend a number of similar introductory and explanatory gatherings in a number of cities in coming weeks, including meetings with educational leaders, Catholic secondary school students, leaders of religious congregations and other diocesan groups.

Find out more about the Plenary Council on the Plenary Council website.

Pope Francis sends blessings as Plenary Council process begins Plenary Council 2020

Pope Francis has sent his support and blessings to the Catholic Church in Australia as it commences a three-year process to consider its future through the Plenary Council 2020.

The Church in Australia, on the feast of Pentecost, yesterday marked the official launch of the Plenary Council, which will culminate in gatherings in 2020 and 2021 to consider the Church’s governance, laws and practice. Continue reading

Adelaide will host opening Plenary Council session in 2020 Plenary Council 2020

The first of two historic national gatherings to consider the future of the Catholic Church in Australia will be held in Adelaide in October 2020, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has announced.

The celebration of the first session of the Plenary Council in 2020 will bring hundreds of Catholic leaders to Adelaide to discuss how the Catholic Church in Australia can continue its mission in a society that is changing and evolving. Continue reading

Catholic Church calls for boost in minimum wage Australian Catholic Council for Employment Relations

Images by Giovanni Portelli Photography © 2016

The Australian Catholic Council for Employment Relations has told the Fair Work Commission that the minimum wage is “manifestly inadequate” and hundreds of thousands of families are living in or threatened by poverty.

The ACCER, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference agency focused on employment matters, has told the Fair Work Commission that its view on wage levels is based on Catholic social teaching, which holds that workers “have the right to wages that will support themselves and their families at a decent standard of living”. Continue reading

Q&A with Archbishop Mark Coleridge

Earlier this month, Archbishop Mark Coleridge was elected president of the

ACBC president Archbishop Mark Coleridge. Images by Giovanni Portelli Photography © 2016

Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. Currently the Archbishop of Brisbane, he previously served as an Auxiliary Bishop in Melbourne and as Archbishop of Canberra-Goulburn.

In this conversation with the ACBC Communications Office, he speaks about his appointment at a critical time for the Catholic Church in Australia. Continue reading

Archbishop Coleridge elected president of Australian Catholic Bishops Conference

Archbishop Coleridge. Images by Giovanni Portelli Photography © 2016

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has today elected Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Brisbane as president of the Conference.

Archbishop Coleridge was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Melbourne in 2002 and later became Archbishop of Canberra-Goulburn. Since 2012, he has served as Archbishop of Brisbane. Continue reading

New advisory body to monitor Catholic reforms in response to child sexual abuse tragedy Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia have established a new advisory group that will play a crucial role in influencing and monitoring the Catholic Church’s ongoing response to the child sexual abuse scandal.

Archbishop Denis Hart, president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, explained that the new Implementation Advisory Group will monitor the response to the findings and recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Response to Child Sexual Abuse and the recommendations of the Truth, Justice and Healing Council, which led the Church’s engagement with the Royal Commission. Continue reading