New Zealand

Virginia Noonan appointed director for Professional Standard Office Comments 0


The National Professional Standards Committee (NPSC) has appointed former Christchurch lawyer and mother of two, Virginia Noonan, to the role of Director, National Office of Professional Standards (NOPS). Ms Noonan, most recently working as the inaugural Safeguarding Coordinator for the Catholic Diocese of Christchurch, will take up this new role in January 2018. NOPS is Read more

Palliative medicine physicians use morphine with great care Comments 1


A palliative medicine physician with 28 years experience in caring for patients and their families at the end of life has challenged ACT party MP David Seymour’s claim that doctors intentionally end peoples’ lives by giving them too much morphine. Dr Sinead Donnelly said she was affronted by the fact that “a politician would imply Read more

Asia Pacific

West Papuans face human rights violations – Church group says Comments 0

Rights Violations

After a visit to Indonesian-controlled West Papua, the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) says the indigenous West Papuans face “grave human rights violations and repression….in their own homeland”. A three-member pastoral solidarity team spent four days in West Papua with an “intensive” programme of visits and meetings. “Indigenous West Papuans shared with the CCA delegation Read more

Bishop Henry Bull ordained under corrugated iron roof, propped up by scaffolding Comments 0

Henry Bull

A new Anglican bishop in the Diocese of Polynesia has been consecrated under a makeshift shelter on Vanua Levu, rather than the cathedral in Suva. More than 1000 people attended the ordination of Father Henry Bull as the new suffragan bishop of the Anglican Church in the Northern Division. He was ordained on Sunday (10 December) Read more


Catholic Senator Tim Kaine offers to dialogue with Archbishop Naumann Comments 1

I am a practicing Catholic and follow church teachings about the sanctity of life. In my personal life, that has meant long periods of abstinence, natural family planning, avoiding unwanted pregnancy, fidelity to my wife of 33 years, and welcoming Read more

No room at the inn Comments 0

Joy Cowley

The children were talking in class about the birth of Jesus. What did the angels look like? How many animals were in the stable? The only negative character in the story was the landlord of the inn. “He was mean!” Read more

Vatican – Australian Royal Commission’s report requires serious study Comments 1

The Australian Royal Commission’s report into child abuse has made 409 recommendations, 15 of them directed at the Catholic church. In an initial response to the report, a Vatican Press Office released a statement saying the report is a thorough effort that “deserves to be studied seriously.” It reiterated the commitment of the Holy See Read more

  • Features

  • Henry Ossawa Tanner’s Annunciation

    Henry Ossawa Tanner (1859-1937), the first African-American painter ever to gain international acclaim, treats the classic Annunciation motif in a rather unconventional manner: he reckons the simplicity of the scene, rather than its theatrical recreation. In the intimacy of a chamber, Mary is portrayed as a dark haired Jewish peasant girl, seated at the edge Read more

  • Nativity Day: the deeper meaning of Christmas

    Christmas. People roll their eyes. The pace in an already over-stimulated society quickens. Everyone is trying to get their jobs, their gigs, their projects, finished by Christmas. Many people bemoan the approach of this festival, complain about its commercialization, wonder why it is still observed in a multicultural, multi-faith country like Australia. But most people Read more

  • World

  • Suicide bombers attack congregation at Pakistani church Comments 0

    Suicide bombers attacked a Christian church in Quetta, Pakistan on Sunday. The Bethel Memorial Methodist Church, which was targeted in the attack, was on high alert as Christian places of worship are often targeted by Islamist extremists over the Christmas season. Over 400 people were attending a service at the time of the attack. Nine Read more

  • Anti-semitism increasing in Sweden Comments 0

    Anti-semitism is on the rise in Sweden. Church and state leaders have spoken out against the violence. There have been many attacks against the Swedish Jewish community over the past few years, with two during the past week. It is thought the most recent events are connected with United States President Donald Trump’s recognition of Read more

  • Italy’s ‘euthanasia in disguise’ law Comments 0

    Italy’s “euthanasia in disguise” bill has been passed into law 30 years after it was first mooted. The law allows citizens to create advance directives about their treatment. These directives express their final wishes for medical treatment in case they lose the ability to communicate their choice. The Italian senate passed the bill into law Read more

  • Proclaiming Christianity is a hate crime – isn’t it? Comments 0

    Proclaiming Christianity could be seen as a hate crime in the United Kingdom. However, the British government is refusing to say whether it is or not. The question arose when Lord Pearson of Rannoch raised a question on the issue in the House of Lords. In response, he says the government failed to state clearly Read more

  • Eight priests beaten, vehicle burned Comments 0

    Eight priests who were beaten by 100 Hindu extremists outside an Indian police station and had their vehicle burned say the police did nothing to help them. “They [the Hindu mob] set our vehicle on fire, forcing us to take shelter inside the police station,” Fr Anish Emmanuel says. He says he and his confreres Read more