Special Mass for seafarers and their support crew

The Catholic community in Australia with responsibility for outreach to those who work on the seas will come together for a live-streamed Mass this week to renew themselves in their ministry.

Bishop Bosco Puthur, the Bishop Promoter for the Apostleship of the Sea Australia, said the distancing protocols in ports across the country caused by COVID-19 have had an impact on people on land and those on board.

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Bishop Long calls for ‘solidarity in time of distancing’

The chairman of the Bishops Commission for Social Justice, Mission and Service has used the annual message for the feast of St Joseph the Worker to call for “social solidarity in a time of social distancing”.

Bishop Vincent Long van Nguyen OFM Conv said the May 1 feast day has taken on additional meaning as millions of Australians face job insecurity and financial stress.

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Church’s seafarer support continues during pandemic

The Ruby Princess is seen during its ill-fated trip to New Zealand last month (Rebecca Comini photo)

The Ruby Princess’ much-maligned status in the country’s COVID-19 story didn’t stop the Catholic Church offering pastoral care to the crew and seeking to ensure they got the help they needed.

Bishop Bosco Puthur, the Bishop Promoter of the Apostleship of the Sea ministry to seafarers, wrote to New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian, calling for the state authorities to ensure the welfare of the crew was not forgotten.

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First assembly of Plenary Council postponed

In response to the dramatic changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the bishops of Australia have made the “difficult, but necessary” decision to postpone the first assembly of the Plenary Council.

Changes in the ways people live, work and communicate due to the pandemic led the Bishops Commission for the Plenary Council to consult with the advisory and planning teams, as well as the wider Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

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Catholic Church playing its part in COVID-19 response

The Catholic Church is inviting its various agencies across the country to consider what facilities could be made available to support national efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19 within the community.

“The Catholic hospital and aged care network is at the forefront of the Church’s response, offering high-quality, compassionate care to those currently suffering from COVID-19,” said Archbishop Mark Coleridge, president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

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Delegates named for celebration of Plenary Council

Plenary Council president Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB has written to more than 250 other Catholics across the country, calling them as delegates for the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia.

“At a time in our Church’s history we’ve not seen before, with the suspension of Masses across the country and around the world, the announcement of our Plenary Council delegates is a source of great joy for the People of God in Australia,” Archbishop Costelloe said.

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Strained Budget must still tackle disadvantage

by Joe Zabar

With the 2020-21 Federal Budget less than two months away, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Treasurer Josh Frydenberg have been softening up the public for the potential political fallout if they fail to deliver their much-touted Budget surplus.

The coronavirus, this summer’s bushfires and the ongoing drought have the Government justifiably nervous about what this might mean for the Budget and its reputation as strong economic managers.

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March 8 a day to thank exceptional women leaders in the Church

The Leadership for Mission program for young Catholic women is one local initiative to help support the role of women in the Church.

The chairman of the Bishops Commission that supports women’s participation in Catholic life says the Church should celebrate its many outstanding female leaders on International Women’s Day.

Archbishop Christopher Prowse, who leads the Bishops Commission for Evangelisation, Laity and Ministry, said March 8 will be a day to particularly recognise the irreplaceable role of women in the Church.

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Assisi conference beckons for Melbourne woman

Melbourne’s Natalia Teguhputri is preparing to take her knowledge and passion to Italy as one of 2000 young entrepreneurs, economists and change-makers attending the Economy of Francesco summit.

Miss Teguhputri, who was born in Indonesia and now works in finance, is deeply committed to various community development causes, including in the provision of clean water, sanitation and hygiene in developing countries.

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Clara Geoghegan joins Bishops Conference as executive secretary

A researcher, educator and Church historian with a deep commitment to the empowerment of lay people in the Church has joined the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference as an executive secretary.

Clara Geoghegan has this week taken on responsibility for two of the Conference’s episcopal commissions: the Bishops Commission for Evangelisation, Laity and Ministry, and the Bishops Commission for Relations with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

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Querida Amazonia offers guidance and challenge for Australia

Archbishop Mark Coleridge says Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation Querida Amazonia (Beloved Amazonia) is not just for a distant and alien part of the world, but has much to offer the Catholic Church in Australia.

“The Amazon is remote from us but the issues are not,” the president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference said.

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