Focus on human dignity – 3rd National Conference on Pastoral Care of Migrants and Refugees

Media Release, October 4, 2012

The Third National Conference on the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Refugees will be held from 6-7 December at St Patrick’s Campus of Australian Catholic University, Melbourne.

The conference carries the theme “I have heard them crying out” (Exodus 3:7) and is run by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) through the Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office (ACMRO) and endorsed by the Pontifical Council for Migrants and Itinerant People.

The conference is designed to shed light on the forces driving asylum seekers from their homes, their journey to Australia, and their reception once they arrive.

Director of the ACMRO Fr Maurizio Pettena CS said that the conference is timely, and will consider the recent developments in refugee and asylum seeker policy in this country.

“News headlines speak daily of the situation of refugees and asylum seekers and many Australians urgently wish to see better solutions to their plight. Opinions vary about how this could be achieved, and this conference aims to bring together people for both dialogue and information about this complex issue”, he said.

This year delegates can register for the Third National Conference online at  Alternatively, registration forms are available by phoning the Australian Catholic Migrant & Refugee Office on (02) 6201 9848.

The Third National Conference is preceded by the National Migrant Chaplains Day Wednesday, December 5 also held at St Patrick’s Campus ACU Melbourne.

The National Migrant Chaplains Day is for all those working in the Migrant Ministry under authority of a Catholic Bishop. The National Migrant Chaplains Day will explore topics such as Australia’s multicultural landscape, mission of the church to migrants, as well as emerging issues in the migration Ministry in Australia.

For more information about the Third National Conference and Migrant Chaplains Day please visit

For media enquiries or to arrange an interview with Fr Maurizio Pettenà please contact Joe Moloney on (02) 6201 9848.