"'If you want to become my followers, you must deny yourselves and take up your cross daily and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it. What does it profit you if you gain the whole world, but lose or forfeit your very self?'" (Luke 9:23-25)

News

Homeless Services Guidebook

JHomelessness

Sydney Homeless Connect is a group of passionate and dedicated volunteers who donate their time, energy, love and resources to making a positive impact on homelessness in Australia. Learn more about them by visiting their online Guidebook which shows 60 pages of helpful information for both those who are homeless and those who want to help.

Information Evening: Pilgrimage to India, February 2017

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Photo: Bede Griffiths
Aquinas Academy, Tuesday 5 July 2016 at 6pm

After three successful pilgrimages to India led by Fr Michael Whelan SM, Marie Fonseca is now organising a fourth spiritual tour, "Abide in My Love" with Sr Valda Dickinson RSM as Chaplain. Tour dates are 7 - 28 February 2017.

Read more ...

Words, words and holy words in Shakespeare

JShakespeare and the Bible

‘The size of Shakespeare’s vocabulary was a direct reflection of what he wrote about – which was virtually everything.’ For the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death, David Crystal explains why counting the number of words in the Shakespearean canon can never be an exact science. Nevertheless, we can still identify the semantic field of which Shakespeare made more use than any other: religious language. Read more ...

Book Launch - Aquinas Academy 1945-2015: A very personal Australian Story

Author Julie Thorpe
JAquinas Academy Book

To be launched by Geraldine Dooge.
Where: The Crypt of St Patrick's Church, The Rocks
When: 1:30pm, Sunday, 1 May 2016
All Welcome!

Father Jens Petzold, monk, builder, refugee worker

JFather Jens Petzold

Fr Jens Petzold. (Photo: Christian Aid UK)
When Zurich-born Father Jens Petzold arrived at Souleymaniye, a relatively quiet town in Iraqi Kurdistan, in spring 2012, little did he imagine that he would soon be sharing his daily life with dozens of refugee families.

Read more ...

Top Ten takeaways from “Amoris Laetitia”

JPope Francis with families

Pope Francis’s groundbreaking new document “Amoris Laetitia” (“The Joy of Love”) asks the church to meet people where they are, to consider the complexities of people’s lives and to respect people’s consciences when it comes to moral decisions.  ...  Here are ten things to know about the pope’s groundbreaking new document. Read more ...

Inside Pope Francis’ Statement on the Family

jPope Francis with a family

In Pope Francis’ long-awaited apostolic exhortation — “Amoris Laetitia,” or “The Joy of Love” — he urges church leaders to serve as nurturing pastors, not as rigid enforcers of doctrine. 
Read more (1).  
Read more (2).      
Read more (3).

Click here for the full text of Amoris Laetitia.

For those who appreciate (love?) Flannery O’Connor

The Barber
JFlannery OConnor 1947

In October 1970, six years after Flannery O'Connor died, The Atlantic surfaced one of her unpublished stories and ran it beneath an almost apologetic preface from her literary executor: "I have consented to this publication with a note making clear ... the earliness of the story and its apparent standing in the estimation of the author." Its standing was, apparently, not very high: Read more ...

No, Not Trump, Not Ever

JDonaldTrump

The voters have spoken.

In convincing fashion, Republican voters seem to be selecting Donald Trump as their nominee. And in a democracy, victory has legitimacy to it. Voters are rarely wise but are usually sensible. They understand their own problems. And so deference is generally paid to the candidate who wins.

And deference is being paid. Read more ...

How an atheist became a leading Christian scholar

JMike-Bird-Winter

As a young teenager, Michael Bird was so anti-religion he would write poetry mocking belief in God. He saw Christianity “as a way of oppressing people, a purely human construct.” He has travelled so far from this view that he is now a heavy hitter in the world of New Testament scholarship, an expert in the origins of Jesus’ divinity. Read more ...

Embracing Our Limits

The Lessons of Laudato Si' 
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Perhaps the first thing that needs to be said about Pope Francis’s encyclical on the environment is that it is an entirely natural development not only of the theology of Evangelii gaudium but also—as the extensive citations show—of the theology of Pope Benedict, especially as found in Caritas in veritate. Both the pope’s critics and his supporters have often missed the point: Read more ...

Between the Knower & the Known

JFrancisAssisi Main

... Laudato si’  highlights three manifestations of how we moderns relate to the natural world: first, our economic exploitation of raw materials and labor-power; second, the technological imperative to transform the “raw resources” of nature according to our own wills and fantasies; and third, the very assumptions about human knowing and desiring that shape the methodology of modern science. It is this final dimension of the critique that is most difficult to hear, especially Read more ...

Cultures of accountability for clergy and celebrities

Andrew Hamilton, Editor Eureka Street

Jandrew hamilton

At the recent royal commission hearings Cardinal Pell was pressed on how much he knew of cases of abuse in the Melbourne Catholic Church. His response was that he knew very little,  Read more ...

A year after riots, Baltimore leaders unite for Rome pilgrimage

JArrest the police Credit Dren Pozhegu via Flickr CC BY NC 20 CNA

Rome, Italy, Mar 10, 2016.- Nearly a year after violent riots erupted in West Baltimore following the death of Freddie Gray while in police custody, religious leaders from across the city have banded together for a pilgrimage to Rome which they hope will help them to build bridges in their community. Read more ...

Putuparri and the Rainmakers

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Our neighbour up at Nazareth – Paul Eliot – has made a remarkable documentary on an Aboriginal man and his life journey in two cultures. The film is premiering on NITV Sunday 13th March at 9:30PM. For more information on the film see ...

Pope asks indigenous Mexicans for forgiveness

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Pope Francis asked Mexico's indigenous population for forgiveness over the exclusion they have suffered as he led an open-air Mass in native languages in impoverished Chiapas state, reports AFP on Seven News. The Pope said a short phrase in one of the southern region's native tongues in a sign of his effort to reach out to indigenous communities of the country's poorest and least Catholic state. (Note additional links at the bottom of the feature article.)  Read more ...

At US border, Francis pleas for mercy

JPope Francis at Mexico-USA border

Standing less than a football field away from the southern side of the U.S.-Mexico border, Pope Francis launched anew the biblical cry of Jonah -- heart wrenchingly pleading for mercy and conversion of hearts towards migrants who he said suffer "grave injustices."  Read more ...

Pope Francis in Mexico: discourse to bishops

JPope Francis in Sombrero

"... Only a Church able to shelter the faces of men and women who knock on her doors will be able to speak to them of God. If we do not know how to decipher their sufferings, if we do not come to understand their needs, then we can offer them nothing. The richness we have flows only when we encounter the smallness of those who beg and this encounter occurs precisely in our hearts, the hearts of Pastors. ..." (An extract from the Pope's speech) - read more ...

Pope invites divorced, remarried Catholics to Vatican audience

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ROME — As the countdown builds toward a major document in which Pope Francis is expected to address the controversial issue of Communion for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics, the pontiff has invited a group of divorced and remarried believers to a private audience. Read more ...

Spotlight - The Film

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The buzz around Spotlight started almost immediately after its release in America late last year. Critics hailed the film, which tells the story of The Boston Globe’s investigation into the cover-up of clerical abuse in the Archdiocese of Boston. Abuse survivors also applauded the movie and box office figures proved very decent. Read more Read review by Jim McDermott. Read also Richard Leonard's review. And finally Michael Kirwan SJ's review.