A message from the Vice President, Father Anthony Casamento.
ACU is pleased to congratulate two of our Australian Bishops on a significant new set of responsibilities for the Church down under.
Archbishop of Brisbane, Most Reverend Mark Coleridge was elected President of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC), and Archbishop of Sydney, Most Reverend, Anthony Fisher OP was elected Vice President. The Archbishop of Melbourne, Most Reverend Denis Hart, had served as President of the ACBC for six years.
Each Bishop has responsibility for their own local diocese. They are pastors who teach and care for their particular diocesan family, and lead them through the complexities of contemporary Australian life. As a group, the Bishops make national decisions through the ACBC, which meets twice a year. To ensure the ACBC has a constant voice to represent their many communities, they elect a President and Vice President who serve for two years.
Archbishops Coleridge and Fisher are leading voices on a range of social issues, as varied as the treatment of asylum seekers, homelessness, modern slavery and human trafficking. Their role is to help guide the Catholic community in Australia in the face of many demands, and to encourage the tremendous gifts and time that ordinary Catholics give of themselves every day for the sake of others in need. At the heart of their ministry is Jesus Christ.
In the words of new President Archbishop Mark:
“Our engagement will be driven by the Gospel, which means we’ll be a servant Church out in the streets wherever human need is found.”
Over this two year term, ACU will pray for the President and Vice President of ACBC, and will continue to foster a warm friendship with them and their communities. The work of collaborating with our Bishops is not just the responsibility of a few clergy, but a mark of any flourishing and cohesive Christian family. The doors are always open to new collaborations and friendship, to both Catholics and non-Catholics alike, because our Catholic mission at ACU means we welcome each person and their distinctive gifts.
All of us at ACU share in the commitment to truth and love, and in that spirit we do what we can to help the Bishops, especially through collegial bodies like the ACBC, as we face a range of common challenges together.