New Zealand

Seismic shift in church earthquake rating

Of 75 buildings in the Wairarapa tagged as ‘high seismic risk’, civic officials have listed St Patrick’s Church in Masterton as one of six deserving priority attention. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Enterprise (MBIE) rates St Patrick’s as only 26% NBS compliant (New Building Standard). Church engineers originally rated the building at a much Read more

Diocese seeks Christchurch Catholic Cathedral treasures

Ten years on from Christchurch’s devastating earthquake, the Catholic Diocese is seeking the treasures that once graced the Catholic Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament. Among the items that have gone missing is a pair of angels. So has one of the marble Stations of the Cross designed for the cathedral’s centenary in 2000 by late Read more

Analysis and Comment

Unmet need: in 40 years I’ve never seen it quite like this

unmet need

You may have heard an increasing number of child poverty experts and frontline support services calling on the Government to increase the amount of income support paid to effectively address poverty in New Zealand. What you may not have heard about is the recent UMR poll in February showing seven in 10 New Zealanders support Read more

Reforming Catholic liturgy

Catholic liturgy

Other than sex, nothing is more heatedly debated by Catholics than the liturgy. Everyone has strong opinions based on years of personal experience. In the 1960s and ’70s, Pope Paul VI implemented revolutionary liturgical reforms laid out by the Second Vatican Council, but after his death in 1978, the Vatican put a stop to the Read more

Communion for the divorced and remarried; ‘Amoris Laetitia’ at 5 years

Amoris Laetitia

Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” was released five years ago. The 264-page document, whose title is Latin for “The Joy of Love,” is one of the longest papal writings in history. It meanders through an introduction and nine chapters, offering everything from grandfatherly advice on family life to Scripture reflections to South American love Read more

Sex selection: A New Zealand anomaly

sex selection

A year ago the New Zealand Parliament voted in favour of radical reforms to the Abortion Legislation Act. The amendments were aimed at modernising the legislation, and moving abortion out from under the Crimes Act of 1961 and the Contraceptive, Sterilisation Act of 1977. One of the more fiercely debated points in the Bill related Read more

Demand doubled for Orange Sky services

Everyone deserves access to basic hygiene. With 41,600 Kiwis not knowing where they will sleep tonight, and many not having access to a shower or laundry services demand for Orange Sky services has doubled. And, it needs more volunteers. Orange Sky, offers a mobile laundry and hot shower service working on the streets and in Read more

  • World

  • Top court clears cardinal of concealing predator priest’s sex-abuse

    France’s highest court for civil cases as cleared Catholic cardinal Philippe Barbarin (70) of concealing a predator priest’s sex abuse of minors. The Court of Cassation agreed with an appeals court that ruled the nine victims who filed suit against Barbarin some five years ago could have directly filed a complaint against the now-defrocked priest, Read more

  • Catholic Church builds mosque for internally displaced Muslims

    The Catholic Church has built a mosque for internally displaced Muslims at a camp in Yola, northeastern Nigeria. The Bishop of Yola’s Catholic Diocese, Stephen Mamza, says since 2014 the Diocese has helped care for the displaced victims of Boko Haram insurgency who ran to Yola for refuge. Mamza says Church authorities didn’t ask what Read more

  • Online abuse – Vatican expert calls out big tech

    Big tech online abuse

    A leading expert in child protection says big tech companies are reluctant to use profits to prevent online abuse and the exploitation of minors. Speaking to Crux, German Jesuit Father Hans Zollner said advancing developments in technology, are “allowing new forms of abuse online to take root.” “The internet and new technologies represent fertile ground Read more

  • Catholic priests and nuns kidnapped in Haiti

    Catholics kidnapped Haiti

    Kidnappers are demanding $1 million for the release of ten Catholics in Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti. Five priests and two religious sisters are among the group who were heading to the installation ceremony of a new parish priest when they were kidnapped. Michel Briand, one of the victims, is a member of the Society Read more

  • Major Vatican conference on priesthood planned for 2022

    Vatican theological conference

    The Vatican has announced a major theological conference titled “Toward a Fundamental Theology of the Priesthood”. It will be held in February 2022. Increasing vocations to the priesthood, improving the way laypeople and priests work together and ensuring that service, not power, motivates the request for ordination are all possible outcomes of the 3-day symposium. Read more