• Occasional

    Homily at Opening and Blessing of La Consolacion Convent, Toukley – 28 August 2019

    There is a magic in every beginning, wrote the German philosopher Herman Hesse.[1] It is the magic of anticipation which lies at the heart of the experience of wonder. The future comes to greet us with expectation. As we gather today with our Augustinian Sisters Our Lady of Consolation who have now joined the mission of our Diocese, there is every sense of being at a new beginning. It is what provides our celebration today with an unmistakable joy – the joy that belongs to gratitude. We welcome them, and with them we savour all the potential of their presence and ministry. We have been looking forward to your presence…

  • Occasional

    Eucharist of CHA 2019 Governance Symposium – Manly, 26 August 2019

    To be given the liturgy of the day at a particular event such as this Conference, and to have its prescribed readings proclaimed, can represent both a challenge and a possibility. The Gospel proclaimed in today’s liturgy (Matthew 23: 13-22) is perhaps not quite the one that with the freedom of choice we might have selected for a Conference on healthcare. And yet in a curious way it does, in fact, address the matrix through which Catholic healthcare operates, the framework of mission to which we are committed and about which the Governance Symposium attends in such an era of change. In his strident attack in the Gospel, Jesus confronts…

  • Reflections

    On the Outcome of Cardinal Pell’s Appeal – A Letter to the People of Broken Bay Diocese

    Thursday 22 August 2019 My dear brothers and sisters, The dismissal by the Victorian Court of Appeals on 21 August of Cardinal George Pell’s appeal against his conviction of 11 December 2018, for child sexual abuse, and his subsequent sentencing on 13 March 2019, will be met with many diverse reactions, especially amongst our Catholic community.  These events represent a most significant development in the history of the Catholic Church in Australia and for the practice of Australian law more generally.   Most especially they bring us to a new chapter in the most regrettable and shameful history of sexual abuse within our community of faith, in which the full implications are even…

  • Year C

    21st Sunday of Year C

    As the football season reaches towards the Finals emotions are mixed. For the supporters of those teams that meet the Finals there is a great deal of excitement. For others, our teams have not met our expectations. We think, well next year things will be better, but we know that we are not promised such a guarantee.  Whether it is for our sporting teams, or in many other aspects of our life, we want the best that is possible, and this expectation begins to infiltrate most dimensions of our lives.  For example, in our relationships we can easily be led into thinking about how we might achieve the best partner, or…

  • Year C

    20th Sunday of Year C

    17 August 2019 In an interview, the winner of the Miles Franklin Prize for literature this year, the aboriginal writer, Melissa Lucashenko quoted the philosopher, Rosa Luxemburg: “The most revolutionary thing one can do is always to proclaim loudly what is happening.”[1] Luxemburg is a Marxist thinker, but I think this declaration is to be something quite true. The most revolutionary thing one can do is always to proclaim loudly what is happening. It reminded me of a wonderful sentence in Pope Francis’ recent exhortation to the Youth of our Church when he declared, “I ask you to be revolutionaries, I ask you to swim against the tide; yes, I am asking you to rebel…

  • Year C

    19th Sunday of Year C

    Homily to the Parish of Gosford 11 August 2019 Many years ago, there was quite a popular film called, “Dead Poets Society.” The catchcry of the film, Carpe Diem,“Seize the Day”, became somewhat famous in itself and got to be widely used. The film was very much a portrayal of the philosophy of Henry Thoreau. Thoreau was a well-known American humanist philosopher of the 19thcentury. His famous work was called, Walden,and was an account of him leaving the city and retiring to the side of Walden Pond in the north-east of the United States at which he sought to come to the essence of what life was all about.  It represented his own sea-change,…

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