Catholic Health Australia is part of a diverse coalition of aged care providers, unions, health professionals and consumer groups who are calling on candidates in the May 18 federal election to commit to “getting aged care right for everyone”.
Earlier this week, the National Aged Care Alliance, which comprises 52 national organisations, launched the Age Well Campaign, in anticipation of the election and in response to a disappointing Budget week for the sector. Continue reading →
Ashleigh Green participated as an Australian representative in events preparing for the Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment
Pope Francis’ recent letter to young people, Christus Vivit, reveals the Pontiff’s preparedness to listen to the needs of young Catholics while providing guidance for all on vocations.
The apostolic exhortation, released last week, covers nine chapters that provide guidance to young people and the entire people of God on vocations and how to welcome young people more fully into the life of the Church. Continue reading →
Twelve young women from across Australia are “Reimagining Leadership” as part of a two-year program to help develop a new generation of Catholic leaders.
The women have just completed the third unit in the Leadership for Mission program. The unit – “Theology for the Future: Reimagining Leadership” – saw the students visiting different workplaces across Sydney to speak with women leaders in business, Church and the media. Continue reading →
A new peak Catholic social service providers’ group for New South Wales and the ACT aims to enhance collaboration while renewing their mission focus.
Speaking at the official launch at Mary MacKillop Place recently, inaugural chair Michael Austin said the association had replaced the original branch structure and now represented 16 Catholic social service organisations from dioceses and congregational orders. Continue reading →
The Australian Catholic Marriage and Family Council, an advisory body to the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, is offering sponsorships for couples or individuals to attend this year’s Renaissance of Marriage conference.
As the peak gathering of professionals in the field of marriage preparation, support and enrichment in Australia, Renaissance of Marriage provides an opportunity to be part of the national dialogue on marriage and relationship education for the Catholic Church in Australia.
Alice Springs parish is planning to mark two historical milestones while strengthening the fruits of reconciliation Pope Saint John Paul II spoke about during his visit there three decades ago.
Parish priest Fr Asaeli Raass SVD said the parish had much to celebrate this year with the 50th anniversary of their church – Our Lady of the Sacred Heart – and 90 years since the parish’s first priest, Fr James Long MSC, celebrated the first Catholic Mass on the land of the Arrernte people. Continue reading →
Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Mark Coleridge says it would be “naïve” to ignore the role the child sexual abuse crisis has played in a slight drop in Mass attendance figures in recent years.
But Archbishop Coleridge said it is also important to consider other reasons affecting the number of people regularly attending Mass across the country. Continue reading →
Plenary Council 2020 president Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB says he and his fellow bishops have been “amazed” by the engagement of people across Australia in the Council’s opening stage.
The Plenary Council’s Listening and Dialogue phase ended earlier this month, concluding a period of almost 10 months for people to share their stories and consider the question “What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?”
The National Centre for Pastoral Research has compiled statistical data and reported that more than 222,000 people participated in the Listening and Dialogue phase and made either individual submissions or had their voices captured through a group response.
“The bishops knew the time was ripe for a defining moment in the life of the Church like a Plenary Council. What we didn’t know is how the people of Australia would embrace a process that hasn’t taken place for more than 80 years,” Archbishop Costelloe.
“We have been thrilled and amazed by the generosity of people and their willingness to speak about their experiences within the Church – both positive and negative – and to invest such energy in this first stage of the process.”
Plenary Council facilitator Lana Turvey-Collins said while she observed enthusiasm for the Council when she visited communities across Australia, she couldn’t have predicted that would translate into 220,000 people participating in the Listening and Dialogue phase.
“From the beginning, it has been clear that the success of the Council would depend largely on people’s level of engagement, but equally on the movement of the Holy Spirit,” she said.
“This unprecedented – and quite overwhelming – level of response shows the people of God in Australia are deeply interested in shaping the future of the Catholic Church in this country.”
National Centre for Pastoral Research director Trudy Dantis said the process of analysing the more than 17,000 individual and group submissions is under way. It will be completed over the next two months, with the national themes for discernment that have emerged to be announced in early June.
“Each submission will be read and analysed by our team of research experts and we will use some of the best research tools available to assist that analysis,” Dr Dantis said.
“Prayer and discernment is at the core of this process, particularly in this next stage of the journey, ensuring the Plenary Council is guided by the Holy Spirit.”
Ms Turvey-Collins said once the national themes for discernment have been identified, working groups will be established – following an application process open to all – to consider the submissions and help prepare discussion papers that will be published.
“Listening has been a critical part of this opening phase and as we move into the ‘Listening and Discernment’ phase, it is necessary that we all continue to listen to God and listen to each other to allow the Council to be a pivotal moment in the life of the Catholic Church in Australia,” she said.