Analysis and Comment

Louise Milligan’s George Pell story her most difficult Comments 0

Monday, August 19th, 2019

Louise Milligan has devoted the past few years of her life to investigating allegations about Ballarat-born Cardinal George Pell, Australia’s highest-ranking Catholic. As a result, Ballarat is a place that is close to her heart – her second home – but one that saddens her. Milligan was brought up as a very strict Catholic, though Read more

Peter Comensoli: Violating sanctity of the confessional would be a betrayal of trust Comments 0

Monday, August 19th, 2019

What is worth protecting and fighting for? The answer to that question is straightforward: our children. Of this, there is no doubt. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse cast a much-needed light on the failures of many institutions across Australia, including government and church institutions, and most prominently my own church. Read more

We must not criminalise what is said in the confessional Comments 0

Monday, August 19th, 2019

What’s said in the confessional stays in the confessional. It’s been a precept of the church for centuries. Penitents enter the booth to confess their sins and transgressions to a priest to receive spiritual comfort, advice and absolution. A forgiving of the sin in the eyes of God’s representative on Earth. But not in Victoria Read more

Smartphones are making us stupid – and may be a ‘gateway drug’ Comments 0

Monday, August 19th, 2019

Recent mobile phone bans in Victorian state schools have had some parents and kids up in arms, despite a study showing that 80 per cent of Australians support the ban. Many private schools are now implementing phone and device bans in schools – but they too face fierce opposition. Parents across Australia fork out hundreds Read more

Doubt in an age of deconstruction Comments 0

Thursday, August 15th, 2019
deconstruction

We are living in an age of deconstruction, and it’s affecting faith. Every ideal is picked apart. George Washington has his mural painted over because he owned slaves. The aspiration for e pluribus unum (“out of many, one”)—from the Great Seal of the United States—is being shredded by the chronic subdividing of increased tribalism. Even gender Read more

Abortion induces moral relativism Comments 0

Thursday, August 15th, 2019
Abortion

Two elderly priests I know have offered complementary insights into our current cultural crisis: “Social engineering is preceded by verbal engineering,” and “Those who win the language wars win the culture wars.” Language carefully hones, shapes—or distorts—our culture. And, since language is our medium for comprehension, our use of language directly impacts our ability to Read more

Becoming through the formation of character Comments 0

Thursday, August 15th, 2019

“Character” is mainly about moral strength, or strength of will. It is more than just personality and social skills. Our becoming is a life-long partnership with God. God didn’t just bring the world into existence and then leave it to itself. Every moment of its existence depends on God just as much as its first Read more

Top 10 myths about clergy sexual abuse in the Catholic Church Comments 0

Thursday, August 15th, 2019
clergy abuse

Sexual abuse perpetrated by Roman Catholic priests has been headline news for years. But even with so much press attention, there are many commonly accepted myths about this issue. Remarkably, quality evidence-based research and facts about the problem doesn’t always receive attention while sensationalized stories that create a particular—but sometimes false—narrative do. This ultimately misinforms Read more

What I learned talking to Boris Johnson about religion Comments 0

Thursday, August 15th, 2019

I don’t pretend to have had extensive discussions about religion with our new Prime Minister, but I did have a couple of brief ones when he edited my first Spectator articles. We once discussed Christian and Muslim ideas of martyrdom, and he was suddenly reminded of a hymn he liked at Eton which he proceeded Read more

Why the Eucharist is confusing for many Catholics (and survey researchers) Comments 0

Monday, August 12th, 2019
Eucharist

A fundamental difference in the centuries since the Protestant Reformation between the teachings and practice of the Catholic Church and that of most Protestant denominations has centered on what one believes happens at the celebration of the Eucharist. Unlike (most of) their Protestant brethren, Catholics profess that in the Eucharist, the bread and wine on Read more