Jan 30, 2023

Homily for the Red Mass

In a recent Quarterly Essay entitled “Uncivil Wars: How contempt is corroding democracy”,[1] Waleed Aly and Scott Stephens addressed the contemporary phenomenon that every demographic feels victimised, and every issue draws sharp lines between us. Opposing sides consider themselves shamed and cancelled and regard the others as bullies and “deplorables”. Outrage and contempt are the emotions of the age. This undermines our ability to dialogue and govern…

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Jan 03, 2023

Homily for the Midnight Mass of the Nativity of the Lord

“He loves me, he loves me not, he loves me, he loves me not,” so the game goes as petal after petal is plucked from a daisy until the last petal answers the question. The history of ‘the Daisy Oracle’ has been traced through 19th-century classics such as Goethe’s Faust (1808) and Adam’s ballet Giselle (1841) back to the songbook of a 15th-century German nun (Clara Hätzlerin 1471) and before…

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Dec 21, 2022

Homily for Mass of the 4th Sunday of Advent, Year A

There are a few contenders for the most iconic line in an Aussie film. Who could forget Paul Hogan as Crocodile Dundee (1986) saying: “That’s not a knife”? Or Farmer Hogget (played by James Cromwell) at the end of Babe (1995): “That’ll do pig, that’ll do”? But perhaps the most popular Aussie film line, if sheer recitations are anything to go by, are four words uttered by Darryl Kerrigan…

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Dec 05, 2022

Homily for Lourdes Day Mass for the Order of Malta

Professionally speaking, Luke was an overachiever. His ancient near eastern LinkedIn entry has him as a physician (Col 4:14), missionary (Acts 16:8-10; 20:5; Philem 24; 2Tim 4:11), and historian, whose publications include the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles (Lk 1:1-4; Acts 1:1-2) both of which made the New York Times Best Sellers list. Likely of Syrian background like Paul…

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Nov 28, 2022

Homily for Mass for 1st Sunday of Advent, Year A

I suspect the groggy eyes of some of the congregation today have something to do with a certain football tournament taking place on the other side of the world. Some fanatics might have stayed up to watch Australia defeat Tunisia, and three more matches before coming to Mass! A few here might even have been interested in Croatia’s draw with Morocco last Wednesday or be up to see it go head-to-head with Canada…

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Nov 11, 2022


Recently three Catholic University of America researchers published Well-being, Trust and Policy in a Time of Crisis: Highlights from the National Study of Catholic Priests. It paints a rather bleak picture of priests’ fears of false accusations of abuse and of being abandoned by their bishop if that happened.[1] Ever since the U.S. Bishops’ instigated the Dallas Charter…

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