• image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
  • image
Wednesday, 13 June 2018 10:18

Catholic Religious in Australia - Evolving with Hope

Rate this item
(0 votes)

 

Amended flyerThe Catholic Religious Australia National Assembly kicks off next week with the theme ‘Religious in Australia – Evolving in Hope’.

The Assembly of religious leaders will be held from June 19-21 in Brisbane and will pick up from the 2016 Assembly during which leaders resolved to embark on a journey of restructure of the state and national bodies of religious leaders.

CRA President, Sr Ruth Durick osu says the next stage of the journey will be celebrated at the Assembly with the launch of the new CRA.

“The theme of our Assembly is Religious in Australia – Evolving with Hope,” Ruth says.

“This epitomises what we are about in the new CRA. It is an evolutionary process; it is a process filled with hope.

“My hope is that our time together will be a rich encounter with each other, a time of deep reflection on our call as religious in Australia today and sheer joy in the gifts of the Spirit present in our midst and in our ministries.”

The keynote speakers will be Sr Gail Worcelo sgm from the United States and Australian Marist priest Fr Michael Whelan.

Gail, who joined the Passionist nuns of St Gabriel’s Monastery in 1982 founded and directed Homecomings: Centre for Ecology and Contemplation (1990-99), served on her community’s leadership team as Councillor and Novice Director (1992-99), obtained a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology (1993) and began travelling around the world giving retreats and programs to congregations of men and women religious, seminaries and houses of formation on a theology and praxis rooted in the evolutionary dynamism of an unfolding universe (1999-present).

In 1999, Gail, along with two others of her congregation were missioned to co-found, along with Passionist Thomas Berry, a new community in the Church, dedicated to the healing and protection of Earth and its life systems. This led to the founding of Green Mountain Monastery and the Thomas Berry Sanctuary in 2004 on 160 acres in the beautiful forest community of Vermont.

Fr Michel Whelan sm is well known to most CRA members as an expert in spirituality, the Director of the Aquinas Academy and Parish Priest of St Patrick’s, Church Hill, in Sydney’s historic Rocks area.

After four-and-a-half years of high school teaching in Tasmania (1973-77), he gained his MA from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. He lectured at the Catholic Theological Union and Aquinas Academy (1979-81) and gained his PhD from Duquesne University in 1984, specialising in the study of spirituality. From 1984-95, he was Head of the Spirituality Department of the Union Theological Institute in Sydney and was Principal of the Catholic Theological Union from 1989-1994.

Fr Michael was President of the Sydney College of Divinity from 1989-90 and during these years was also involved with the formation of Marist students. He is currently Director of the Aquinas Academy, Executive Director of Catalyst for Renewal, of which he is also a founding member, and is co-founder of Spirituality in the Pub as well as a published author.