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Australian bishops call for religious freedom laws to be updated after government receives report

religious freedom panel

THE Federal Government has received a report into religious freedom in Australia, but it could be weeks before the findings are made public. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull ordered the review following concerns that last year’s legalisation allowing same-sex marriage could undermine freedom of religion. Former attorney general Philip Ruddock has led a panel of experts, including Catholic lawyer Jesuit Father ... Read More »

Sister’s secret to staying 80 years young: work with young people

Sr Elvera Sesta

LEGENDARY educator Sr Elvera Sesta has revealed the reason why she’s stayed in the same school since she was eight years old. The renowned leader in Catholic girls’ education and columnist for The Catholic Leader, who turns 80 on May 1, has spent nearly seven decades at the same school to “remain young”. “Youth have honesty, integrity and enthusiasm, and ... Read More »

Rosaries, prayers and hope abundant at Commonwealth Games multi-faith centre

Rwandan runner with Christian school students

CATHOLIC athletes have displayed their rousing singing skills and a penchant for rosary beads as they tuned up for Commonwealth Games competition. “I was sure they were going to lift the roof off with their singing,” volunteer Catholic chaplain Helen Day said, after a rousing Good Friday liturgy, held in the Gold Coast athletes’ village multi-faith centre. Mrs Day said ... Read More »

Religious instructors prepare for another year of delivering the message of Christ in Queensland classrooms

Religious Instructor Amy Hollier

AT the Catalyst Church, at Brassall near Ipswich, 106 religious instructors and assistants gather for training to prepare for their 2018 instructing in state schools. Similar training sessions are happening in centres across Queensland as an army of volunteers – from every denomination – take on the task of delivering the message of Jesus in the classroom. “It’s very satisfying, ... Read More »

New push to remove faith lessons from state classrooms ‘misguided’, instructors say

In the classroom

A BACK-to-school row has erupted with religious instructors concerned at new moves to push Christian teaching out of Queensland state school classrooms. Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge has labelled the push against religious instruction as “misguided” and described as a “right” state school students’ access to RI. School instructors have hit back at claims by “a small atheist lobby group” that ... Read More »

Greens pushing to scrap Our Father from parliament day

Our Father in Parliament

WHEN parliament returns from its winter recess, Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon has vowed to renew her push for the Lord’s Prayer to be ditched from Federal parliamentary proceedings. She describes the opening of each day of parliament as “insulting”. “Considering there’s many people who aren’t religious, there’s many people of different faiths, it’s time we started having an institution that ... Read More »

Census 2016: Drop in religious affiliation no surprise for Archbishop Coleridge

Decline in religious affiliation

BRISBANE Archbishop Mark Coleridge believes the latest census data showing a drop in religious affiliation suggests “the young are more interested in unorganised spirituality than organised religion, and that they aren’t as interested in denominations as their forebears were”. Catholicism remains by far the most dominant religion in Australia with more than 5.2 million followers, however the 2016 census data ... Read More »

Religious programs tipped for ABC’s ‘killing season’

ABC-Brisbane

INSIDE the ABC staff call it “the killing season” – when next year’s TV and radio schedules are formulated and announcements made about what shows are to be axed. There was disquiet from Christian leaders when news leaked out that religion and ethics program Sunday Nights with John Clearly was headed for the chopping block. For 15 years the show ... Read More »

Brisbane conference to prove religion is relevant in public debate, with support from former PM

religion

FORMER Prime Minister Tony Abbott will be among key speakers at a Brisbane conference aimed at fortifying the relevance of faith in the public square. Spirit in the City, hosted by the Queensland University of Technology chaplaincy, will draw speakers including Mr Abbott, Archbishop Mark Coleridge, Mercy Sister Moira Debono and Christian educator Dr Ryan Messmore. Mr Abbott will address ... Read More »

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