Cardinal Dew: The only authority is the authority of service

servant leadership

The archbishop of Wellington, Cardinal John Dew, was in Australia last week to present an address on Servant Leadership in the Spirit of Pope Francis.

He spoke at Our Lady of Mercy College, Parramatta on Tuesday.

On Wednesday he spoke on the same topic when he presented the Helder Camara Lecture at Newman College in Melbourne.

In his address on Tuesday Dew described clericalism as a “sense of entitlement”.

He said that “bishops and priests are not set apart from laity” and that we all need to “focus on human frailty that we see around us.”

Dew said being on “the margins you see more clearly” than in the centre and that “our task as leaders is to develop communities of care.”

He emphasised that this is something Pope Francis has done repeatedly during his pontificate.

“Throughout his ministry, Pope Francis has lived servant leadership…he challenges us to follow Christ’s words and actions.”

He used the incident in which Pope Francis kissed the leader’s feet in South Sudan as an example of servant leadership,

Dew said that “the only authority is the authority of service and the only power is the power of the Cross”.

Following the cardinal’s address on Tuesday, Vincent Long, bishop of Parramatta, gave his reflections on the cardinal’s address and on Pope Francis.

Long drew parallels between Cardinal Dew’s lecture and Pope Francis’ pastoral approach, telling the audience we need to be the “church of humility, the church of inclusivity and being a humble, healing church.”

After he had delivered the Helder Camara lecture, Louisa Selvadurai and Frank Brennan provided responses.

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News category: New Zealand, Top Story.

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