Is what is happening in Australia a pointer towards where the Church is heading everywhere?
In his commentary today Dr Graham English shares some of his perspectives seen from North of the Murray River that divides New South Wales from Victoria. He explores some of the differences in outlook between the culture of Catholicism in NSW and Victoria and the different approaches taken by Bishops in the two States. It is perhaps ironic, given all the circumstances, that it was the partnership of a NSW Archbishop, in James Carroll, and a Victoria priest, in Frank Martin, that was largely responsible for the structure that eventually emerged firmly rooted in the forward-thinking, outwardly-oriented, spirit of the Second Vatican Council that was still ascendant at that time albeit even then under challenge by minority elements within the lay Church and the Bishops.
CORRECTION: In my email yesterday I suggested that Archbishop James Carroll was only an Auxiliary Bishop. In fact he was made an Auxiliary Archbishop of Sydney in 1965 so the title Archbishop is correct. Bishop James Darcy Freeman, then Bishop of Armidale and a former Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney, was promoted over his head to become Archbishop of Sydney on 9th July 1971.
<Part II of Dr English's review and essay...>
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