Priest, professor Fr Shane Mackinlay named Bishop of Sandhurst

Pope Francis has this evening appointed Fr Shane Mackinlay, currently Master of Catholic Theological College Melbourne and a parish priest in Ballarat, the next Bishop of Sandhurst.

Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Mark Coleridge recalls teaching Fr Mackinlay and said the qualities he observed then have developed in the years since. Continue reading

New guidelines will inform Church’s response to abuse

The Catholic Church is developing new national policy guidelines to strengthen and standardise Church authorities’ responses to historical and contemporary concerns and allegations of abuse of children and vulnerable adults.

Archbishop Mark Coleridge, president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, said the development of the guidelines is a critical step forward in the Church’s ongoing response to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Continue reading

Christian Brother’s love of language honoured

Gary Williams and Br Steve Morelli. Br Steve has been recognised for his efforts to keep Indigenous languages alive. (Photo supplied)

Preserving and promoting the languages of Australia’s First Peoples has been at the heart of the ministry of a New South Wales Christian Brother recently recognised with Australia’s premier award in teaching languages other than English.

Br Steve Morelli is one of two teachers of Australian Indigenous languages to be jointly awarded the Patji-Dawes Award in this, the International Year of Indigenous Languages. Continue reading

150 days until 2019 Australian Catholic Youth Festival

About 5000 young people are expected to attend ACYF19/Giovanni Portelli Photography

The countdown is on with only 150 days until doors open on the fourth Australian Catholic Youth Festival, to be held in Perth from December 8-10.

With an anticipated 5000 young people taking part in ACYF19, groups from every Australian state and territory have begun registering and preparing for an incredible and unique encounter of the Church in Australia. Continue reading

Canberra hosts international meeting of general secretaries

General secretaries of the bishops conferences of France, Australia, Germany and England and Wales at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra

The general secretaries of the bishops conferences of England and Wales, Germany and France have completed a three-day visit to Canberra that examined key issues facing the Church in Australia and globally.

Fr Stephen Hackett MSC, general secretary of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, said he was “delighted” to host the “very beneficial” gathering, which moves from country to country each year. Continue reading

Pope urges greater support for ministry to seafarers

Sea Sunday will be celebrated in Australia this Sunday, July 14.

In the lead-up to Sea Sunday on July 14, Pope Francis has urged chaplains and volunteers to redouble their efforts to support those working on the high seas.

The Sea Sunday Appeal offers the Church in Australia the opportunity to show its continued support for the ministry to seafarers provided by the Apostleship of the Sea and Stella Maris centres. Continue reading

Applications open for Plenary Council discernment groups

On July 1, the Plenary Council opened applications for the Discernment and Writing Groups that will play a critical role in helping the Catholic Church move forward in considering the Council’s six National Themes for Discernment.

At Pentecost, the Plenary Council announced that after almost 17,500 submissions reflecting the views of more than 222,000 people were assessed, reflected upon and prayed about, the National Themes for Discernment had emerged. Continue reading

Sr Anne Derwin’s leadership and faith remembered

Sr Anne Derwin greets Pope Benedict XVI as he arrives at the chapel in North Sydney that houses St Mary MacKillop’s tomb

Catholic leaders have paid tribute to Sr Anne Derwin RSJ, the former congregational leader of the Sisters of Saint Joseph and president of Catholic Religious Australia, who died earlier this week.

Sr Anne died peacefully at the Mater Hospital in North Sydney on June 23. She was 69. Continue reading

Faith-filled Australian lives celebrated during Ad Limina visit

Eileen O’Connor’s cause for canonisation was discussed during the Australian bishops’ Ad Limina Apostolorum visit yesterday (Archdiocese of Sydney photo)

Australian bishops are hopeful that a number of Australians could follow in the footsteps of St Mary of the Cross MacKillop and enter the Church’s Communion of Saints.

As part of their Ad Limina Apostolorum pilgrimage, which commenced on Monday, bishops met Wednesday with officials from the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, including its prefect, Cardinal Giovanni Becciu.

Continue reading

New coordinator appointed for women’s leadership program

Sr Ruth Durick OSU

There is a “crying need” for the voice, intellect and compassion of women to engage in the mission of Jesus through the Church, according to the newly-appointed coordinator of a peak Catholic leadership program for women.

Sr Ruth Durick OSU, who facilitated The Young Catholic Women’s Interfaith Fellowship from 2006 to 2009 and has been provincial of the Ursuline Sisters, has just been appointed to the role of coordinator for Leadership for Mission. Continue reading

Bishops tackle big issues on Ad Limina visit

Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP (right) celebrates Mass at St Mary Major, as Bishop Chris Saunders concelebrates

The Australian bishops have commenced a series of meetings with departments of the Holy See by visiting the influential Congregations for Bishops and for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The bishops are in Rome for their Ad Limina Apostolorum pilgrimage, which commenced on Monday with Mass at the tomb of St Peter and a two-and-a-half-hour conversation with Pope Francis – St Peter’s successor. Continue reading