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Conscience – defend it or just ignore it? Take Manus Island, for instance.

Conscience – defend it or just ignore it? Take Manus Island, for instance.

Peter Whiting. This must surely seem an odd way to frame a commentary on conscience, but I am having great difficulty reconciling the Australian Government’s position on the refugees on Manus and Nauru and any notion of conscience. On 31 October, the Australian Government closed the Manus Island processing centre, requiring the 600 men detained […]

November 4th, 2017 | Posted in Asylum seekers,Church and Social Justice,Feature,Recent articles by SPC members | Read More »

Be ‘fair dinkum’ about encountering the poor: Pope Francis institutes new World Day of the Poor.

Be ‘fair dinkum’ about encountering the poor: Pope Francis institutes new World Day of the Poor.

John Ferguson. As we approach the seasons of Advent and Christmas, Pope Francis has instituted a new ‘World day of the Poor’, which this year will be celebrated on Sunday 19 November. In his message for the day, Pope Francis says he wants the annual event to be a “powerful appeal to our consciences as […]

November 3rd, 2017 | Posted in Church and Social Justice,Feature,Global poverty,Recent articles by SPC members | Read More »

Frank Brennan SJ : 110th anniversary of Harvester Decision.

Rerum Novarum Oration 2017 Wednesday 8 November 7:30pm Cardinal Knox Centre 383 Albert Street East Melbourne Light refreshments served from 7pm All welcome. Free event. Justice H B Higgins established a living wage for unskilled male workers, enough to support a wife and three children in ‘frugal comfort’. This became the basis of the Australian […]

November 2nd, 2017 | Posted in Church and Social Justice,Events,Events 2017 | Read More »

Pope Francis under attack.

Pope Francis under attack.

Bruce Duncan Despite his immense popularity among most Catholics and many others, not just Christians, Pope Francis is meeting increasing opposition and outspoken criticism, even from some cardinals and bishops, as well as from some prominent academics and writers. Contention centres on his views on the pastoral implications of moral theology on divorce and remarriage, […]

November 1st, 2017 | Posted in Church and Social Justice,Economic issues,Feature,Recent articles by SPC members | Read More »

Why has Australia been almost continuously at war?

Why has Australia been almost continuously at war?

Henry Reynolds Delivered this International Day of Peace Lecture at St John’s Cathedral Brisbane on 21 September 2017. It is republished from John Menadue’s blog 26 October 2017. In a letter written in August 1855 to his colleague John Bright, the great free trade liberal, Richard Cobden, expressed his hostility to Britain’s involvement in the Crimean War. “And […]

October 29th, 2017 | Posted in Feature,Peace,Politics,Recent articles by SPC members | Read More »

Government spending on Indigenous people is rising, so why do so many still live in poverty?

Government spending on Indigenous people is rising, so why do so many still live in poverty?

Nicholas Biddle Australian National University At first glance, the most recent review of government expenditure on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Australians is quite staggering. It estimates that direct expenditure was A$33.4 billion, an increase of around 23.7% since the first report in 2008-09 (taking into account inflation). This equates to A$44,886 per Aboriginal and […]

October 28th, 2017 | Posted in Feature,Indigenous Issues,Politics | Read More »

Russell Broadbent launches critique of Australian refugee policies.

Russell Broadbent launches critique of Australian refugee policies.

Australia faces a T-intersection: time to resolve our refugee crisis. Bruce Duncan Liberal member for McMillan in Gippsland, Russell Broadbent, challenged his own political party sharply, as well as Australia’s detention policies for refugees on Manus Island and Nauru, saying that Australians were finding it quite ‘unacceptable’ that we treat refugees so badly, keeping them […]

October 9th, 2017 | Posted in Asylum seekers,Feature,SPC Events 2017 | Read More »

ICAN awarded 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

ICAN awarded 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

Bill Frilay. What is ICAN? It is a coalition of non-governmental organisations in one hundred countries seeking the elimination of nuclear weapons. While it is an international organisation, ICAN’s first office was established here in Melbourne in 2007. So there’s justified local pride in its achievement. Its main office (albeit very small) is in Geneva. […]

October 8th, 2017 | Posted in Disarmament,Peace | Read More »

Cool the rhetoric on North Korea.

Cool the rhetoric on North Korea.

Brian Johnstone CSsR US President Trump’s threat to “totally destroy” North Korea can be taken to mean totally destroy the North Korean government, writes Greg Sheridan in the Australian on 21 September. Is this what Trump really meant? How could a nuclear attack be so precisely targeted that it would destroy only the North Korean […]

October 6th, 2017 | Posted in Church and Social Justice,Disarmament,Peace | Read More »

Keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees: really hard, but not impossible.

Keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees: really hard, but not impossible.

Dave Frame Victoria University of Wellington & H Damon Matthews Concordia University. The Paris climate agreement has two aims: “holding the increase in global average temperature to well below 2℃ above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5℃”. The more ambitious of these is not yet out of reach, according […]

October 6th, 2017 | Posted in Stewardship of our planet | Read More »