Faith Doing Justice
Home Issues Catholic Social Teaching What's On Newsletter Links About Us Contact Us Subscribe Free

Text size: A A A

Read the newsletter editorial

Indigenous Australia

Abuse survivors welcome settlement over Retta Dixon home
Compensation for years of physical and sexual abuse at a notorious home for Aboriginal children will provide relief but will never erase the trauma of what happened, former residents say.  

Detainee recounts journey from bush childhood to Don Dale
"I'd changed a bit. I thought Don Dale was going to make me better, but I think it just made me tougher. I was on the streets and I was mad."
The vulnerable witness, known only by the pseudonym AU, gave evidence to the Royal Commission into Youth Detention in the Northern Territory on March 23, writes Ben Millington for the ABC.  


Adani mine a line in the sand in climate change battle
There is nowhere else on the planet right now where the dichotomy between two potential futures – one where we address the climate change crisis, one where we ignore this momentous threat and continue with business as usual – is playing out in such a dramatic and explosive way as Australia.  

Refugees and Migrants

State of the nation: refugees and migrants in Australia
The world is in the midst of an unprecedented humanitarian crisis. Yet Australia's approach in recent years has been to punish people seeking asylum, while increasing the numbers of refugees it resettles. This contrasting approach threatens the long and proud history Australia has of successful integration of refugee communities. So says the Refugee Council of Australia in its report released last month.  

The Death Penalty

Philippines urged to choose restorative over punitive
The Lower House of Congress in the Philippines has passed a death penalty bill. Unfortunately, vengeance and revenge for wrongdoing has become the driving force in the thinking of legislators. Compassion, rehabilitation, and eventual mercy and forgiveness are not in their hearts and minds, writes Shay Cullen.  

The Political Community

'Decolonising the mind': using Hollywood celebrities to validate Islam
When Terry Holdbrooks Jr, converted to Islam in 2003, he was inundated with death threats and labeled a 'race traitor'.
If a religious conversion ever deserves to be admired, Holdbrooks' conversion does, and not because Islam has 'won' yet another convert, but because the new convert was assigned the very role of subjugating his Muslim prisoners in Guantanamo, writes Palestinian journalist and author Ramzy Baroud.  

Israelifying airports
Last month, the Royal Jordanian Airlines satirically tweeted twelve recommendations to its passengers because of the U.S. and U.K.'s respective governments' ban of electronic devices larger than "smart" phones on planes flying to those countries, writes Mahmoud Zidan for the Palestine Chronicle.  

Time to draw the line
The Australian Government announced in January 2017 that it would negotiate a permanent border for the maritime boundaries which will determine oil and gas treaties between the two nations. The negotiation of permanent equitable boundaries for oil and gas is critically important for Timor-Leste to ensure that our nearest and tiniest neighbour receives just royalties from these lucrative resources.
To find out about a documentary film about the disputed maritime boundaries, click here  

Housing First: a path to social justice
The story of St Kilda community activism and the Port Phillip Housing Association by Anne Tuohey and Tony Lintermans covers new geography. Crossing the Yarra, it is very much a St Kilda-centric story, out of which wide consequences grew for other areas, as governments devolved provision of affordable housing to registered housing associations.

Bishops offer Lenten reflections online
Bishops from across Australia will be offering weekly Sunday Gospel reflections online as part of a new Lenten resource prepared by the Diocese of Broken Bay.

Helping farmers improve their livelihood
This video by the Poverty-Environment Initiative looks at efforts in Myanmar to work with small-holder farmers and help them with tools to promote more efficient farming, which in turn improves their livelihood.
Watch here  

Charity and justice – either side of a coin
This short video explains the difference between charity and justice and why society needs both.
Watch here  

Prayer for our earth
…from Laudato Si’  

Book: The Intervention: an Anthology
In this historic anthology, award-winning writers Rosie Scott and Dr Anita Heiss have gathered together the work of twenty of Australian’s finest writers both Indigenous and non-Indigenous together with powerful statements from Northern Territory Elders to bring a new dimension and urgency to an issue that has remained largely outside the public radar.

To order go to

Getting to know Catholic Social Teaching
For many years people have said that Catholic Social Teaching is our best kept secret, but I don’t think this is true anymore, writes Sandie Cornish.  

Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church

Major International Catholic Social Teaching Documents

Key Principles

Human Dignity
Each person, made in the image and likeness of God, has an inalienable and transcendent human dignity which gives rise to human rights.

The Common Good
We are called to work for conditions which ensure that every person and group in society is able to meet their needs and realize their potential.

The people or groups most directly affected by a decision or policy should have a key decision making role.

We can only grow and achieve our potential in relationship with others. Solidarity encourages us to commit ourselves to the common good.