Youth Festival will conclude Jubilee Year celebrations in 2025

Australia’s premier gathering for young Catholics, the Australian Catholic Youth Festival, will now conclude the Church’s celebration of the international Jubilee Year in December 2025.

At the November 2022 plenary meeting of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, the Archdiocese of Melbourne was selected as the host city for the next Festival.

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St Joseph the Worker message urges action against sexual harassment

In a message for the feast of St Joseph the Worker, Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv has called for the Church’s workplaces to be “characterised by respect and freedom, by mutual esteem and kindness”.

Each year, the Bishops Commission for Social Justice, Mission and Service releases a message for the feast day, which falls on May 1.

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General secretary elected provincial, to leave Bishops Conference

Fr Stephen Hackett MSC has been elected provincial superior of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart in Australia, and will conclude him time as general secretary of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference in July.

Fr Hackett’s ministerial background included appointments within secondary and tertiary education, as a parish priest in several Australian dioceses and as vicar general in the Diocese of Darwin.

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New report reveals makeup of Australian Catholic population

A new National Centre for Pastoral Research report published today provides a comprehensive snapshot of the millions of people who identified as Catholic in the 2021 Australia Census.

The Social Profile of the Catholic Community in Australia is the latest in a series of reports published following each national Census, providing extensive demographic information on Australian Catholics.

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Bishops: Urgent action needed to address cost of living

Financial pressures on low- and middle-income families have made responding to the cost of living one of the country’s most important and urgent policy issues, Australia’s bishops told the Senate Select Committee on the Cost of Living.

“Every day, thousands of Australian families feel the effects of international crises, insecure job markets, inflation, rising interest rates and slow wage growth,” Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv, chair of the Bishops Commission for Social Justice, Mission and Service, said in a recent submission to the Committee.

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Oceania bishops publish response to Synod of Bishops document

The bishops of Oceania say their people’s reflections for the global Synod of Bishops for a Synodal Church left them feeling “peace and joy”, but also called them to be prophetic and ready to “model ourselves on the love we proclaim”.

The bishops, in Fiji for the quadrennial assembly of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conferences of Oceania in February, spent part of that gathering considering the region’s response to the Synod’s Working Document for the Continental Stage, titled Enlarge the Space of Your Tent.

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Catholic Church backs 7.2 per cent minimum wage increase

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has told the Fair Work Commission a 7.2 per cent increase in the minimum wage is needed to protect workers at risk of poverty – and analysis shows it is affordable.

The Bishops Conference has made submissions on the national minimum wage for decades, arguing consistently that working people and their families living in poverty is inconsistent with principles that see the minimum wage as a “safety net”.

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New document highlights Catholics, Jews ‘walking together’

Jillian Segal, Bishop Michael McKenna and Teresa Pirola at the launch of Walking Together

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference today launched a new document to highlight Christianity’s unique relationship with Judaism and the celebrate the positive relationship the two faiths enjoy in Australia.

Walking Together: Catholics and Jews in the Australian Context comes 30 years after the Bishops Conference published a set of guidelines and recommendations to enhance Catholic-Jewish relations.

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Bishops Conference’s spirituality day explores integral ecology

Fr Kimi Vunivesilevu (left) and Fr Stephen Hackett led the spirituality day

Staff from its General Secretariat have extended the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s commitment to its Laudato Si’ Action Plan with a spirituality day focused on “An Integral Ecology of the Heart”.

Fr Kimi Vunivesilevu MSC and fellow Missionary of the Sacred Heart priest Fr Stephen Hackett, the general secretary of the Bishops Conference, guided staff through a four-part program.

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Bishops outline dangers in proposed discrimination reforms

Archbishops Peter A Comensoli and Anthony Fisher OP

Senior bishops have warned law changes proposed by the Australian Law Reform Commission would prevent Church schools from being authentically Catholic, arguing they would discount the rights of people with a religious faith.

The fears were raised in the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s submission to the Law Reform Commission’s Inquiry into Religious Educational Institutions and Anti-Discrimination Laws.

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Lenten prayer resources published for Synod of Bishops

People following global progress towards the two assemblies of the Synod of Bishops for a Synodal Church are being invited to participate in Lenten prayers to support the ongoing journey.

The Synod’s General Secretariat has published Lenten resources in multiple languages for use around the world as the continental stage of the Synod continues.

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