Author: Michael Kelly

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Pope receives the grace of Rohingya shame

    • Michael Kelly
    • 02 December 2017
    16 Comments

    Francis' approach to the religious differences in Myanmar and Bangladesh models something of universal significance for the Catholic Church. If, in the 21st century, the Church in Asia is generations from its colonial foundations, it is also well aware of its minority status and its need to live well with fellow citizens who are religiously different.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Thai turmoil continues

    • Michael Kelly
    • 24 August 2015
    4 Comments

    Thailand's chronic political instability intensified with the bomb that exploded last week in the middle of a major Bangkok tourist district. With 20 dead and still counting, the event is a decisive rebuttal of the military dictatorship's promise to restore 'happiness' to Thailand. Because Thailand's public life revolves around the frail and ageing king and the military, a brighter future awaits the outcome of royal succession.

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  • RELIGION

    The Jesuits' patient, demanding banker

    • Michael Kelly
    • 26 May 2014
    3 Comments

    When I first proposed what was to become Jesuit Communications, the organisation that now publishes Eureka Street, Julian Slatterie was the first to respond. 'Now Michael,' he said. 'This proposal rests on five assumptions and three presuppositions and if any of them is voided, the project is likely to fail.' He answered that hesitation with 25 years membership of the board. Julian died suddenly of a heart attack last Tuesday.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Thai coup more of the same

    • Michael Kelly
    • 25 May 2014
    3 Comments

    The cycle of election, opposition protest, social and political instability that provokes a royal approved military intervention underlies how immature democracy is in Thailand. Unfortunately, in the medium term — the next five years — it will be 'same, same' unless there is a circuit breaker. That may come with the next trigger to instability which has to be set off sooner rather than later: the death of a very frail royal person.

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  • RELIGION

    Secular scrutiny can save the Church

    • Michael Kelly
    • 17 January 2013
    40 Comments

    Too often the Church acts as if Catholics have a right to legislate their morality for everyone else. Now the boot is on the other foot and Catholics are being told their Church has to smarten itself up. It won't be the first time in the life of the Australian Church that external intervention has produced far more than was initially intended.

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  • RELIGION

    Dysfunctional Church stares into the abuse abyss

    • Michael Kelly
    • 26 November 2012
    77 Comments

    Rome is seen to be out of touch with the membership. Local bishops often behave as branch managers of a poorly administered, centralised multinational corporation. Royal Commission notwithstanding, there won't be healing of the community of faith until there is systemic change. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    China's cupcakes and Australia's Asia fear

    • Michael Kelly
    • 30 October 2012
    8 Comments

    Looking at Australia from Asia, you quickly conclude that Australian approaches to the region are fickle and opportunistic. It's hardly news that the fastest growing economies and greatest opportunities for Australia are at our doorstep. But like kids at parties, we seem to focus more on the cup cakes than the host and guest of honour.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Back-pedalling on Vatican II

    • Michael Kelly
    • 07 October 2012
    30 Comments

    The fresh wind of Vatican II has been reined in, with the focus turned to shoring up 'the firm wall of religion' against threatening forces from a world that had grown tired of the Church. As Christianity faces minority status in Europe, the Pope offers an intellectualised version of the ghetto mentality that Vatican II sought to break down.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Peter Steele's path to something better

    • Michael Kelly
    • 01 July 2012
    10 Comments

    However sunny the greeting, beneath the exterior there lurked in Peter Steele an acute familiarity with the dark side. Nicknamed 'Stainless' early in life, the swashbuckling gait and swaggering style masked all that he knew and felt of life’s grimier parts.

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  • MEDIA

    Steve Jobs' gift to the Church

    • Michael Kelly
    • 01 September 2011
    5 Comments

    Co-founder and former CEO of Apple, Steve Jobs, played a pivotal role in the shaping of the publishing and media landscapes in recent decades. The developments initiated by Jobs and Apple are of profound significance for the Church — for better and for worse.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Britain's riots and the new financial crisis

    • Michael Kelly
    • 10 August 2011
    5 Comments

    London is burning. Throughout the rest of the world, stock markets are tumbling at a rate not seen since the 2008 global financial crisis. Unemployment in the US and parts of Europe is high and refuses to come down. What we are seeing in Britain could be just the beginning.

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  • RELIGION

    Fixing the priesthood

    • Michael Kelly
    • 20 February 2011
    41 Comments

    In earlier generations, Australian priests were treated as tribal heroes. But the sexual abuse scandals and their inept management by Church authorities have dealt lethal blows. The paradigm is broken and needs a full review.

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