During the past week, there have been many diocesan events which I will share with you as part of this message, in an attempt to keep you up to date with how we are living out our call to be the people of God in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.
The greatest objection to religious belief in our time is possibly the perceived connection between religion and violence. All the religions have messages of peace; all are historically complicit in violence.
A private Members’ Bill will shortly be debated in the NSW Parliament. The effect of this law would be to permit euthanasia or voluntary assisted dying for people experiencing severe pain, suffering or physical incapacity to an extent unacceptable to themselves – provided they are over 25 with a terminal illness likely to result in death within a year.
“I love your new boss” was said to me numerous times after Pope Francis’ election to the papacy in March 2013. Often the remark was made by someone who did not share my Catholic faith; often, too, by someone under thirty. To this day, there’s a freshness and vibrancy in Francis’ leadership of the church.
It would have been difficult not to have heard something over the past few months about The Atonement: Lina’s Project if you live in Newcastle, the Hunter or Manning regions. Throughout July, August and September a mysterious penguin and egg started appearing on billboards, TV screens, in newspapers and magazines, as well as in social media feeds. Lina, who conceived the event, was interviewed by The Star and 1233 ABC.