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Author Archives: Mark Bowling

Cooking up a fresh start – New bakery offering refugee chef a chance to begin again

By Mark Bowling  A REFUGEE chef from war-torn Syria is working towards a fresh start in Australia by sharing his culinary skills and culture at a new bakery-cafe south of Brisbane. After fleeing Aleppo with his young Catholic family two years ago, George Tabbakh, a third-generation baker, is now making Lebanese bread and Middle Eastern treats in suburban Underwood, with ... Read More »

Nudgee College and Australian media honour top achiever Sean Dorney

ACCLAIMED foreign correspondent Sean Dorney remains firmly in the limelight, picking up two major awards recently despite his daily struggle with motor neurone disease. Diagnosed with the debilitating disease last year and with specialists predicting two years to live, Mr Dorney now finds himself growing weaker, with even simple movements requiring energy-sapping effort. He returned to his old school Brisbane’s ... Read More »

Brisbane archdiocese awaits acceptance into the National Redress Scheme after lodging application

THE Brisbane archdiocese is awaiting its acceptance into the National Redress Scheme after completing its application to the Federal Government. Archbishop Mark Coleridge said Brisbane was among more than 30 archdioceses, dioceses and eparchies to have submitted all paperwork to the Department of Social Services to begin participation in the scheme. The Government will give final approval to all institutions ... Read More »

Sexting common among teens – ‘Parents have to play their part in the responsible use of phones’

PARENTS must take responsibility for young people using their smartphones, including cracking down on rampant teen sexting, a Catholic education leader says. “Phones are here to stay so how do we use them properly?”  Catholic School Parents Queensland executive director Carmel Nash said. “Parents have to play their part in the responsible use of phones. “Schools can’t be responsible for everything.” ... Read More »

Brisbane parish group empowered a remote, war-torn Catholic region of East Timor

BRISBANE parishioners have celebrated a mission accomplished after 18 years supporting projects in East Timor that have empowered a remote, war-torn Catholic community and yielded lifelong friendships. In 2000, parishioners of St John’s Wood/The Gap first heard about the plight of impoverished villagers in the mountainous region of Atabae, home to about 10,000 people in the west of East Timor. ... Read More »

‘Devastating’ fires hit region, Rockhampton bishop praises the spirit and generosity of volunteers

THE courage of firefighters battling to save lives and property has been recounted by a priest as Queensland turns to recovery after a fortnight of scorching conditions classified as “catastrophic” for the first time. “This was like hand-to-hand combat,” Finch Hatton parish priest Fr Don White said, describing how volunteer firefighters fought intense flames to defend their town of 260 ... Read More »

St James College asylum-seeker student’s dreams of studying to become a doctor revived

OUTSTANDING refugee student Soumi Gopalakrishnan faces deportation together with her Tamil family but, for now, she is celebrating the prospect of fulfilling her dream of studying to become a doctor. The 19-year-old was school captain and dux at Brisbane’s inner-city St James College this year, but her refugee status means she is not eligible for a domestic government-supported HECS position at ... Read More »

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