The Personal Parish for the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite in the Archdiocese of Melbourne.

St Aloysius' Church, 233 Balaclava Road, Caulfield North, 3161


News and Announcements

20th August, 2017

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From the Parish Priest's Desk


Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The Postal Plebiscite

Assuming that the High Court does not find the proposed plebiscite on same sex marriage unlawful, this will be conducted in the very near future. If you are eligible to vote, it is most important that you participate. Since what is being proposed is the approval of grave offenses against the natural law, and the debasement of the institution of marriage - which is the basis of civil society - it would be gravely sinful under any circumstances to support a “yes” vote. A fortiori, no Catholic could in good conscience do so. It may be helpful briefly to recall the origin and limits of authority in the State, as we prepare for a contest of great significance. The proposed plebiscite – now a postal survey – has served as a good strategy thus far to prevent the legalised perversion of marriage. We hope and pray that there will be a convincing win for the “no” campaign. However, it is important to recall that neither the Parliament nor the Electorate has the authority to change the reality of marriage, which was instituted by God, our Creator. All authority – be it in the Church or State – is from God, and to be validly exercised must conform itself to the purpose and limits given to it. Neither a popular plebiscite nor an elected assembly can annul the natural law. Even in a representative democracy, authority derives ultimately not from the people, but from God. Those who deny this truth make themselves an enemy of both God and man. In the event that the plebiscite favours a change, Parliament would still possess no moral authority to alter the reality of marriage, and no Catholic Parliamentarian could under any circumstances justify supporting legislative change.

To understand better the essential principles at stake, I especially commend to your study the following doctrinal notes from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith:

Link 1

Link 2

A further consideration regarding the plebiscite, as several commentators have noted, is that it threatens religious freedom. Now, the Catholic Church does not teach an absolute right to religious freedom. In fact, objectively the State has an obligation to acknowledge and protect the True Religion, and to recognize the Social Kingship of Christ. The tolerance of false religions is then a matter for the exercise of political prudence. It is legitimate, however, in a pluralistic commonwealth, for the Church to support religious freedom as a civil right. It is clear that there has been no serious consideration given by the Parliament to the protection of religious freedom in this sense, should the definition of marriage be changed. It would not be adequate simply to exempt ministers of religion who are also civil celebrants, from the obligation to witness same sex “marriages”. The civil right of freedom of worship is only one small aspect of the civil right to religious freedom, which is a complexus of the rights of freedom of conscience, association and expression. The recent persecution of Archbishop Porteous attempted via the Human Rights Commission is merely a harbinger of what we can expect if “same sex marriage” is approved.

The Royal Commission and the Sacrament of Confession

It has come as no surprise that the Royal Commission in its recommendations refuses to recognise – and fails to comprehend – the seal of the Confessional. Every penitent has a right to anonymity, and this should be respected and facilitated in the way the Sacrament is administered (eg the provision of a grill and screen, and separate secure spaces for the Confessor and Penitent). The Church exists for the salvation of souls. Central to this mission is the ability of the Church to be an instrument of Christ’s mercy and forgiveness, above all in the Sacrament of Penance or Confession. Of its nature, Confession is auricular, and if penitents are to have any confidence in their Confessors, they must be able to rest assured that their confession is absolutely confidential. Down through the centuries, priests have been martyred rather than betray the seal of the Confessional. If necessary, they will do so again. The Church Herself has no power to derogate from the obligation of the seal, and any State that attempts to mandate its betrayal will fail. That having been said, it should be understood in any case that the abandonment of the seal of the Confessional would do nothing to prevent sexual abuse, or to help in the apprehension of its perpetrators. Those who are guilty of sexual abuse do not have recourse to the Sacrament. Their pathology is such that they do not acknowledge the gravity of their offence, or their own responsibility for it. They feel no need to approach the Sacrament as some sort of license to sin. Finally, one wonders how the State would enforce a law that obliged priests to violate the seal. Entrapment, perhaps?

It is noteworthy that while in his response to the Commission’s recommendations, Archbishop Hart (President of the Australian Bishops’ Conference) upheld the teaching and discipline of the Church regarding the Sacrament of Confession, Francis Sullivan, CEO of the Church’s Truth, Justice and Healing Council (TJHC), indicated his expectation that priests should comply with any new civil requirements (even in the face of contrary Divine Law and Canon Law) or suffer the consequences….

The usual suspects

One trait that is commendable in Francis Sullivan is his candour. He has indicated his willingness to see the seal of Confession betrayed. He has also stated, in at least one of his talks recently in Canberra, that he sees no reason why the Catholic Church should oppose same sex “marriage”. I am grateful to Mr Sullivan for confirming all the misgivings I expressed about him some months ago in an interview I gave to Greg Bearup, published in The Australian. The ABC turned its attention to this interview in recent days, in the course of a new interview of Elizabeth Proust, “Vice Chair” of the TJHC:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-16/catholic-churchs-own-abuse-review-says-it-is-unlikely-to-change/8811764".

If you take the time to listen to the audio interview with Andrew West, you will discover that among the changes in the Church Elizabeth Proust deems necessary, is the priestly ordination of women, something that was ruled definitely as outside the Church ‘s competence by St John Paul II in Ordinatio Sacerdotalis. This is simply more evidence of the truth of my original contention: that some of those who have been placed into leading positions in the Church’s response to sexual abuse, have their own agenda which denies fundamental teachings of the Church. Some victims of sexual abuse understandably feel aggrieved by this. One – who gave evidence to the Commission – has spoken to me of a sense of being exploited and abused a second time, by parasitic and sanctimonious bureaucrats.

Elizabeth Proust expressed a hope that the much vaunted 2020 Australian Synod (which still remains to be approved by the Holy See) might provide some prospect of change in a direction of which she would approve. In fact, a “facilitator” has just been appointed to help prepare the Synod: a Ms Lana Turvey-Collins. Lana’s Facebook profile boasted her support for “gay pride” until quite recent days. Mysteriously, that conviction has gone into hiding for now. Somehow, I have a feeling it might emerge again at the Synod….

Keep the faith, and may God bless you! Fr Glen Tattersall PP

Parish Priest

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The annual Parish dinner dance will be held on Saturday evening, 26th August, at the RACV City Club, 501 Bourke Street, from 6.30 pm. Bookings (and payment) may be made after Sunday Mass, or preferably electronically at http://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=302062. Prices are as follows: 3 courses, $67 per person ($92 with matching wines); 4 courses, $78 ($110 with wines). Additional drinks will be billed to each table, on the night. The band is “Silver Service”. Bookings close Tuesday, 22nd August.

For sale by auction. Framed tapestry of Our Lady of Sorrows. Worked by M E Daniel; mounted and framed by the late E F Daniel and approx. 41w x 55h. Proceeds to the Newman Parish. The tapestry is on display in the vestibule after Sunday Masses (and otherwise may be viewed at Maryvale upon request). Bidding closes on 15th September. An image is located here. To place bids or make enquiries, please contact Michael Daniel at MED@cgs.vic.edu.au or phone 0413 015 705.

A Petition against Euthanasia and assisted suicide is available in the vestibule. All voters are urged to sign it. The Petition will be tabled in Parliament in coming weeks.

Visit to Newman Parish of pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima: Saturday 19th – Friday 25th August. During the visit of the pilgrim statue, we will suspend Exposition and pray the Rosary before Our Lady of Fatima, after weekday Mass (before Mass on Sunday). Today, Sunday 20th August, we will renew the consecration of the Newman Parish to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, after each Mass. We will celebrate the feast of the Immaculate Heart this Tuesday 22nd August, with a Solemn Mass at 7 pm. On Thursday 24th August, there will be a Low Mass at 6.30 pm, followed by a Holy Hour in honour of Our Lady of Fatima: this will consist of the Holy Rosary, lessons, hymns and motets. This is being organised by the Legion of Mary, who will also provide Supper in Maryvale afterwards (around 8 pm). All are welcome

First Confessions and First Holy Communion: first Holy Communion will be celebrated on Gaudete Sunday (17th December), preceded by First Confessions. Those parents who wish to present their children for these sacraments are asked to register this month, by contacting the Secretary via email (secretary@newmanparish.org). Sacramental preparation will commence in September.

An intensive two week course investigating the “modern dilemma” and its resolution, based on the thought of Bl. John Henry Newman, will be offered at the John Paul II Institute in Melbourne from Saturday 23rd September (contingent upon sufficient enrolments). The course, entitled "Faith, Reason & the New Evangelisation", will be given by Fr Scot Anthony Armstrong of the Brisbane Oratory in formation. For further enquiries, please contact Toby Hunter, thunter@jp2institute.org, or 9417 4349.

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