Category Archives: Press Releases

Australians journey to Ireland for World Meeting of Families World Meeting of Families

Mark and Tink Boyd

A large contingent of Australian couples and families have made their way to Ireland to participate in the World Meeting of Families.

Mark and Tink Boyd, from Yeppoon, in central Queensland, are leading a group of almost 40 pilgrims from Queensland, New South Wales and the ACT. Continue reading

Bond strengthens between Church and Australia’s First Peoples

A connection between Gospel values and the core tenets of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander life – family, spirituality and culture – is attracting more of Australia’s First Peoples to the Catholic faith.

Australia’s First Peoples now constitute more than 130,000 of all Catholics in Australia and the numbers are increasing, according to the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council (NATSICC), a peak advisory body to Australia’s bishops. Continue reading

Geraldton Diocese gives strong country voice towards Plenary Council Plenary Council 2020

Catholics in the Western Australian diocese of Geraldton have provided a strong rural voice during the preparation phase of the three-year Plenary Council 2020 process.

The Geraldton Diocesan Conference 2018, drawing on Psalm 118, adopted the theme of “Lamp for the Steps and Light for the Way: Listen to God and each other as we light the way forward.” Continue reading

Catholic communicators to focus on hope-filled message Australian Catholic Media Council

Catholic News Service editor-in-chief Greg Erlandson, a keynote speaker at the Australian Catholic Communications Congress

Restoring hope and trust in the world, the Church and the media will be the focus of a gathering of Australian Catholic communicators in Brisbane in September.

The Australian Catholic Communications Congress, an initiative of the Australian Catholic Media Council, will draw delegates from across the Church – communications professionals, journalists, priests and parish pastoral workers, but also members of the lay faithful. Continue reading

Survey explores young people’s hopes and challenges Office for Youth

Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP, the Bishops’ Delegate for Youth, says the largest survey of young Catholics ever conducted will further shape the Church’s engagement with young people and help the bishops tackle some of the many challenges young people face in contemporary society.

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference last year initiated a survey of people aged 16 to 29 as part of international preparations for the Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment, which will be held in October this year. Continue reading

Momentum building as Plenary Council marks two-month milestone Plenary Council 2020

Thousands of people from across Australia have taken time in the two months since the Plenary Council 2020 officially launched at Pentecost to consider the future of the Catholic Church.

In May, the Listening and Dialogue phase of the Plenary Council began, with resources created to help people across the country participate in a prayerful conversation to consider the question: “What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?” Continue reading

Seafarers’ welfare must be supported: Cardinal Sea Sunday

As the Catholic Church in Australia and many other countries prepares to celebrate Sea Sunday on July 8, Cardinal Peter Turkson has called for international labor agreements aimed at supporting those who work on the seas to be upheld.

Cardinal Turkson, prefect of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Human Integral Development, said some companies are not allowing seafarers time ashore when their vessel is in port, while others aren’t allowing chaplains and other support personnel to visit the ship.

He said that such behaviour is in breach of the spirit of aspects of the Maritime Labor Convention aimed at improving the wellbeing of seafarers.

“Crews should not be denied the freedom of coming ashore likewise chaplains and ship visitors should not be denied the right to go on board of vessels,” Cardinal Turkson said.

Cardinal Turkson said those who work on the seas — on merchant, fishing, passenger or war vessels — are also often subject to considerable dangers, not least from piracy.

He said piracy is inevitably related to political instability, but added that changes in a number of maritime industries, including fishing, had allowed “unscrupulous individuals” to convince people who were unemployed to become pirates.

Cardinal Turkson also lamented statistics that point to an increase in the number of seafarers who are abandoned. Statistics show more than 1,300 people were abandoned for a variety of reasons in the five years till 2017 — often without having been paid their wages, without food and without supplies for an onward journey.

In many such cases, Cardinal Turkson explained, the Church’s ministry to seafarers through its Stella Maris centres has been critical in providing material, spiritual, legal and psychological support.

Sea Sunday, celebrated on July 8 this year, includes an appeal to support the work in those centres and the chaplains and managers who work in Australian ports.

Many parishes will hold special collections on Sea Sunday for that purpose, or people can visit the Apostleship of the Sea website for information on the ministry and how to support its work.

Last month, Bishop Bosco Puthur, the Bishop Promoter for the Apostleship of the Sea in Australia, spoke about the critical work carried out in and from the Stella Maris centres.

“The men and women who spend weeks or months on end travelling the oceans have often left family and other loved ones behind, and they often don’t have access to their religious practices,” Bishop Puthur said.

“For those people for whom faith is integral to their life, being helped to access the sacraments after a long journey is a source of great comfort and joy.”

 

Adelaide priest Fr Charles Gauci named Bishop of Darwin

Darwin Bishop-elect Charles Gauci

Pope Francis has this evening appointed Fr Charles Gauci, currently administrator of St Francis Xavier’s Cathedral in Adelaide, the seventh Bishop of Darwin.

Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Mark Coleridge welcomed the appointment of a man who is known for his deep spirituality and real commitment to evangelisation. 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

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

Youth Council offers prayer, encouragement to youth delegate Office for Youth

Archbishop Anthony Fisher with Ashleigh Green, left, and Angela Markas

Melbourne’s Angela Markas has been encouraged to “be yourself” as she prepares to represent young Australians at a Vatican gathering next month that will help inform this year’s Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment.

Miss Markas, 22, met with members of the Australian Catholic Youth Council this week and shared the story of her faith journey and the faith of the Chaldean Catholic community of which she is a member. Continue reading