The celebration of the 150 years since the arrival of the first residential Bishop in the Diocese of Maitland, Bishop James Murray, came to a fitting climax on Sunday with the dedication of the former St John the Baptist Cathedral as St John’s Chapel.
Globally, religion is on the rise. Almost three-quarters of the world’s population identify with one of the great world religions − Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism − and the graph is pointing upwards. By the middle of this century, 80 percent of the world’s population will be identified with one of those four religions.
Every minute of every day in 2015, some 24 people were displaced from their homes. That’s 34,000 people per day, worldwide, who were forced to seek refuge elsewhere. These large numbers of newly displaced persons further swelled the 16.1 million refugees in the world who, according to the UN Agency for Refugees (UNHCR), were already displaced.
In a recent Children’s Ministries newsletter published by the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle’s Office of Life and Faith, I invited readers to think about how they share their personal faith stories with the children in their lives. Why?
In this 150 Years since the arrival of Bishop James Murray in our Diocese, I have had a weekend experience of pilgrimage, beginning on Saturday with the Murray Pilgrimage, followed by the Deaf Pride Week Mass at the Cathedral and then a ‘Prayer and Ritual in Thanksgiving and Farewell' to Sr Anne Moylan and Sr Kim Barnes from St Joseph’s Toronto.
Over the last few days there have been three significant events that have shone a direct focus on education, particularly Catholic education, and although they celebrated the rich history of Catholic education in our diocese they also served to highlight the exciting future of education in our diocese and across Australia.
When I came to the Diocese in 2005 there was one person employed in the area of Communications across the diocese and its agencies. I am amazed how much change has occurred in this space in that 11 years.