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30 August - 5 September

A retired Anglican bishop calls the Christianity of new Prime Minister Scott Morrison into question; a Christian conference in Melbourne calls on Australia's churches to urgently reform in the wake of the Royal Commission; and new research shows that hostility to religion is on the rise in Australia

September 5 2018

Scott Morrison’s Christianity in question, argues retired bishop

Australian Christians have a right to be concerned that the new Prime Minister, on current form, will behave in a way that is out of step with true biblical values, argues Dr George Browning, a former bishop of the Anglican diocese of Canberra and Goulburn.

 

 Democracy’s great institutions and the need to renew

The leadership battle in Canberra is a further indication that Parliament and other institutions in society – including churches, banks, trade unions and universities - need to be renewed, argues Bishop Philip Huggins

 

Conference calls on churches to urgently reform following Royal Commission

A Christian conference in Melbourne has called on Australia’s churches to urgently reform their structures, governance and culture in the wake of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

The three-day ecumenical Health and Integrity in Church and Ministry conference tackled the task of rebuilding and renewal for the churches after the Royal Commission.

 

What it will take to prove the Church gets it

The Catholic leadership, in its response to the Royal Commission, has resisted calls to break the seal of confession.

But despite the Church accepting “98 per cent” of the other recommendations, the media and the public believe the leadership “still don't get it” on child sex abuse, writes John Warhurst in Eureka Street.

 

Hostility to religion on the rise in Australia, says research

Australia has seen a continued rise in social hostilities involving religion, according to an annual study by the Pew Research Center.

Only one other Asia-Pacific country, Malaysia, has seen a more drastic increase in social hostility around religion over the nine years the study has been running.

Australia is not alone among western nations. The study found the United Kingdom, Germany, Denmark, Italy and Sweden all saw an increase in religious social hostility.

 

Uluru statement reaches one-year anniversary

One year ago, an unprecedented gathering of Indigenous elders and academics, delegates and activists, held out an invitation to non-Indigenous Australians to join with them in a process of truth-telling and political attentiveness.

The gathering called for a constitutionally enshrined "First Nations Voice" which would be able to speak into Parliament, and the establishment of a Makarrata Commission which would lay the foundation for a Treaty between federal and state governments and the First Nations.

 

The striking Australian landscape and its impact on spirituality

The extraordinary and unique beauty of the ancient Australian landscape, and its plants and animals, is often felt to influence Australian spirituality, writes Melbourne Archbishop Philip Freier.

Dr Freier wrote his “Letter for Creation” at the request of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

 

The true location of Jesus’ water-into-wine miracle

For hundreds of years, pilgrims have believed the site of the miracle, Cana, to be Kafr Kanna, a town in northern Israel. 

But the true location has long been debated. Now, reports the Daily Mail, archaeologists believe the Cana of biblical times may be a dusty hillside five miles further north. 

 

Typical Australian church leader is middle-aged and male, says survey

A National Church Life Survey into the demographics of church leaders, including their age, gender and marital status, has just been released.

Results reveal that half are middle aged. They are most commonly male, university-educated and in their first marriage. Over a quarter have another occupation in addition to their ministry role.

 

What drives the priest behind those controversial road signs

Anglican priest Rod Bower has attracted widespread media attention in Australia and overseas for the road signs he’s posted outside his church in Gosford, New South Wales.

He’s just written a book called, appropriately, Outspoken: The Life and Work of the Man Behind Those Signs.