Are Catholics truly being represented in the process of synodality? 

John Warhurst, Emeritus Professor of Political Science at the Australian National University, the Chair of Concerned Catholics Canberra Goulburn and a member of the Plenary Council, suggests the appointed members of the Plenary Council may understandably be confused as to what their role is and who or how they are to represent. Reprinted with permission Eureka Street, July 21,

The First Assembly of Australia’s Plenary Council is only two months away, but uncertainty still remains about the role that its 282 members will play. Not just about what work they will do but what conception of the role they will bring or will be imposed upon them by the authorities.

Climb every mountain: Sr Joan Chittister OSB

Columban priest, Jim Mulroney SSC, Essendon VIC, summarises the key points of a talk by Sr Joan Chittister OSB (pictured) to the Convocation sponsored by the Australasian Coalition of Catholic Church Reform on May 2, 2021. Reprinted with permission from the Columban eBulletin – Vol 14 No. 5, Jun 15, 2021 (

Truth-telling about Australia’s First Nations & the Plenary Council  

Brendan Byrne SJ, Jesuit Theological College, Parkville VIC, discusses the truth about our history and first nations as a starting point for re-energizing interest in and relevance of the Plenary Council.

Is the church irrelevant?

Kevin Bates SM OAM, Hunters Hill NSW, explores the way of pastoral care that seeks to include and invite especially those on the periphery of parish life.

Giving our Aboriginal brothers and sisters a voice

Jo Dirks SSS pleads for recognition of an Aboriginal Voice in Australia. Reprinted with permission from Blessed Sacrament Congregation Newsletter June 2021, Vol 5. Details and picture of the Uluru Statement from the Heart can be found here:

In 1967 the Australian people voted in a referendum that Aboriginal people be granted full citizenship. It was a great act of inclusion. Now over fifty years later there is a desire to recognize an Aboriginal voice and have it enshrined in the Australian Constitution.