Author Archives: ACBC Communications

Cardinal Parolin joins Bishops of Oceania Assembly in Port Moresby to discuss climate changes and human rights

The four-yearly Plenary Assembly of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conferences of Oceania has commenced today in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. The Assembly’s theme is ‘Care of our Common Home of Oceania: A sea of possibilities’.

Human rights and environmental care and protection will underlie the Assembly’s discussions, with particular focus on displacement, social unrest, climate change and looking at harmful environmental practices such as deep-sea bed mining and overfishing. Continue reading

New program launched to form young women in Leadership for Mission

Thirteen young women from across Australia gathered in Sydney recently as part of the inaugural intake for an inspiring new education and formation program called Leadership for Mission.

Leadership for Mission, which was launched at a special event at Mount St Benedict, Pennant Hills on April 5, is an initiative of the Council for Australian Catholic Women (CACW) with the support of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC), Catholic Mission, Australian Catholic University (ACU), and Catholic Church Insurance. Continue reading

New website helps people with disability access the sacraments Media Release - March 23, 2018

The Australian Catholic Disability Council has launched a new website to help ensure people with disability can prepare for and participate fully in the sacramental life of the Church.

Bishop Terry Brady, Bishops’ Delegate for Disability Issues, said the website is an extension of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s foundational document Celebrating the Sacramental Life from Birth to Death: Guidelines for the celebration of the Sacraments with People with Disability. The website will help the Church better understand how it can support people with disability, he said. Continue reading

Port Pirie and Broome Dioceses lead the way for Plenary Council Media Release - March 22, 2018

Port Pirie and Broome Dioceses lead the way for Plenary CouncilMore than 200 people from remote and rural parts of the Diocese of Port Pirie in South Australia have gathered together under the theme ‘Looking forward in hope towards 2020’.  This was the first major gathering in Australia since the announcement earlier this week of the 2020 Plenary Council.

The two-day assembly was attended by parishioners and clergy from all parishes across the vast geography of Port Pirie Diocese as well as the diocesan and state leaders of Centacare, Catholic Education, St Vincent de Paul, Catholic Women’s League and other diocesan ministries. Continue reading

Address to the Pre-Synod Gathering of Young People

Written by Angela Markas (Australian Delegate)

My name is Angela Markas and I feel very humbled to be representing Australia here in Rome. With all of my heart, I would like to thank Pope Francis for this invitation and everyone who made this happen. This event in itself, stands strong in its message to youth all across the world, and my only hope is to give it all we can.

I would like to begin by sharing with you a little about the region of Oceania. There are several delegates here from our region and I know together we will share the diversity of our lifestyles and the issues we all encounter, but also our common faith. Continue reading

New report reveals realities of religious vocation in Australia today

A new report on recent religious vocations in Australia has uncovered some common characteristics of religious orders that are attracting new women and men, which could help strengthen religious life in Australia and overseas.

Understanding Religious Vocation in Australia Today was commissioned by Catholic Vocations Ministry Australia (CVMA) and carried out by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference Pastoral Research Office. Continue reading

Pope Francis backs decision to hold Plenary Council in Australia

Pope Francis has given his approval for the Catholic Church to hold the first Plenary Council – the most significant national gathering that can be held – in Australia in more than 80 years.

“The Australian Bishops are deeply grateful to Pope Francis for affirming the decision and we ask all people to join in prayer as we embark on this journey together as God’s people in Australia,” said Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Brisbane, chair of the Bishops Commission for the Plenary Council. Continue reading

Roman Reflection: We cannot lose our smallness Office for Youth

Melbourne’s Angela Markas is the official Australian Catholic Bishops Conference delegate to the gathering of young people at the Vatican before the Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment. She shared this reflection en route to this week’s meeting.

Here I am, waiting for my last flight to get to Rome. And as I sit here, and watch people begin to line up for the flight, it hits me — this is real.

I never thought for a single moment that I would have this kind of opportunity. It is beyond me that I have been found worthy of it, and no matter how much time may pass, I don’t think I could ever understand. Continue reading

International Women’s Day shines the spotlight on rural women Office for the Participation of Women

Catholics across Australia are being invited to join with people around the world in considering the particular challenges women face when they live outside metropolitan areas.

International Women’s Day, which is celebrated each year on March 8, this year has the challenging theme “Time is Now: Rural and urban activists transforming women’s lives”. Continue reading

Bishops: Religious freedom is critical in a pluralist Australia

Bishop Comensoli

Bishop Peter Comensoli

Religious freedom must be enshrined in Australian law and recognised as a right, rather than an exception or an exemption, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) has explained.

In its submission to the Religious Freedom Review called by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and chaired by the Hon Phillip Ruddock, the ACBC has tasked the Review to recognise the increased need for a framework to support all people of faith as Australian society continues to evolve. Continue reading

Next decade must deliver more for Indigenous Australians, Catholic leaders say Bishops Commission for Relations with Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Peoples

Darwin Bishop Eugene Hurley and the chair of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council have lamented the slow progress – and lack of progress in some cases – in the 10 years since then-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd delivered a national apology to Indigenous Australians.

On February 13, 2008, Mr Rudd apologised for the treatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the policies that caused pain, trauma and suffering for those peoples. It was hoped it would usher in a new age for relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and help “close the gap” on a range of measures, including health, education, employment and incarceration rates. Continue reading

Local, international research to help guide youth ministry Office for Youth

Fr Chris Ryan MGL, chairman of the Australian Catholic Youth Council Research Task Group, will speak at the research seminar.

Researchers from Australia and the United States will present their findings on how young people perceive and engage with the Catholic Church during one of a series of significant events that will be held during the Year of Youth.

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s Office for Youth, in partnership with the Archdiocese of Brisbane and the Australian Catholic University, will host the two-day youth and youth ministry research seminar in Brisbane next month. Continue reading