June 28, 2017

Author Archive | Staff writers

An eight-year-old Canadian boy who performs drag under the name "Lactatia". PHOTO: YouTube

Media celebrates advent of “heartwarming eight-year-old drag queen”

An eight-year-old boy has appeared in a report on the website of Australia’s leading LGBTQI publication, The Star Observer, as a “heartwarming eight-year-old drag queen”. The Canadian boy, who goes by the “drag name” Lactatia, told media that he had wanted to be a drag queen since the age of seven, and had been taking “voguing […]


Catholic schools launch fairness campaign in the face of a $4.6b cut to funding

Catholic schools have launched a video campaign to highlight the impact of the Liberal-National Government’s proposed funding reforms on low-fee paying Catholic school families. The videos were released earlier today by the National Catholic Education Commission (NCEC), with the legislation due to be put to a vote on Wednesday. Figures from the Education Minister, Simon Birmingham’s own department, which came to […]

Australian Catholic Youth Festival Host Diocese Coordinator Kathy Campbell enjoys the moment last Friday afternoon shortly after ACYF Professional Officer Phillipe Sanders-Agius posts the latest registrations tally for the Festival – 11,227 young people and rising – to run in Sydney from 7-9 December. PHOTO: Peter Rosengren

Australian Catholic Youth Festival bookings flood in

It’s looking like the sky’s the limit for the Australian Catholic Youth Festival in Sydney this December with the event clocking up a record 11,000+ registrations in a little over two weeks. Bookings have shattered organisers’ expectations and Festival Director Kathy Campbell’s message is simple – “Keep them coming” – as Sydney continues to ramp […]


Maronite faithful say goodbye to beloved pastor Fr Tanios

It was a bittersweet moment for many Sydney Maronite youth and faithful last Sunday evening as they bid farewell to a popular priest returning to Lebanon to co-found a new order of monks. The Lebanese community pulled out all-stops to throw a goodbye function for Fr Tanios Ghoussain, a member of the Lebanese Maronite Order, […]

PHOTO: Giovanni Portelli

Catholics offer encounter: flavours for Mind, Body and Spirit to savour

This year’s Catholic outreach at the Mind, Body, Spirit Festival revealed a too little acknowledged phenomenon: that there is a veritable ocean suffering and a quiet heroism in our community, and that people are desperate to discover meaning in the midst of it. Catherine Kennedy, Director of the Sydney Archdiocese’ office for evangelisation, CREDO, and […]


The Father Factor challenges men to embrace their importance

A new initiative will bring acclaimed men’s leader Robert Falzon to Sydney to give a series of talks to fathers, helping them to be the kind of men that deep down they want to be for their children. The talks begin on Tuesday, June 13 (details here). Here, Catherine Kennedy gives a taste of what […]

From left, Hayden Ramsay is pictured with UNDA Prof Tracey Rowland, Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP of Sydney, and UNDA Vice Chancellor Celia Hammond. PHOTO: Giovanni Portelli

Hayden Ramsay is leaving the University of Notre Dame Australia

Hayden Ramsay, Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor and effectively the chief administrator of the University of Notre Dame Australia (UNDA) in Sydney, is leaving the university. UNDA Vice Chancellor Celia Hammond announced the news to staff in a memorandum on 23 May, stating that it was “with sadness” that she was making the news known. His […]

Members of the Chinese Catholic Community gather for a photo with clergy, including Bishop Richard Umbers. PHOTO: Alphonsus Fok

35 years on, the Chinese Catholic Community in Sydney is still looking to the future

A major powerhouse of the local Church celebrated a milestone on May 21 that was as much about celebrating the future ahead as it was about celebrating a proud past. The Chinese Catholic Community marked its 35th anniversary with Mass at St Kevin’s Parish, Eastwood, followed by culinary festivities in Strathfield. The largely Cantonese-speaking community […]

Sleeping in the cold streets of the Sydney CBD on May 29, 2017. PHOTO: Peter Rosengren

Vinnies backs NSW Labor’s housing proposal, hopes government will act

Jack de Groot, CEO St Vincent de Paul Society, has welcomed the NSW Opposition’s policy announcement that at least 25 per cent of new properties constructed on government-owned land will be set aside as affordable housing. “We support their proposal, especially their promise that 15 per cent of privately owned land to be rezoned for […]

Fr Phillip Elias, newly ordained in Rome for the Personal Prelature of Opus Dei. PHOTO: Supplied

Two Sydney men ordained priests for the Prelature of Opus Dei

Two young Sydney men were ordained as priests of the Prelature of Opus Dei in Rome on April 29: Phillip Elias, 33, of Pennant Hills; and John Watson, 31, of Wahroonga. The ordination of Fr Elias and Fr Watson was attended by over 70 family members and friends from Australia and New Zealand. They will remain in […]


TJHC laments death of a ‘tireless advocate’ who put survivors’ interests first

The Chairman, Neville Owen, and members of the Catholic Church’s Truth Justice and Healing Council have issue a statement saying they are saddened by the death of Anthony Foster, “a strong, committed and tireless advocate for the survivors of child sexual abuse in particular for those abused within the Catholic Church”. CEO of the TJHC, […]

Dr Dan White and Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP in 2015 with award recipients Oliver Sumsky, Justin Story, Kevin Jonas, and Daniella Foley. Photo: Kitty Beale

Catholic schools benefit the public purse, contrary to media claims, says Sydney Catholic Schools

Sydney Catholic Schools have criticised a report in the Daily Telegraph, (‘Poor’ Church has pocketed millions, Catholic and elite schools bank huge surpluses), saying it highlights a fundamental misunderstanding about how low-fee Catholic systemic school systems apportion ‘surplus funds’ to their schools. The article notes that the ‘retained earnings’ of low-fee Catholic schools across Sydney in 2015 was […]