2023 Program

Australian Catholic Historical Society Inc. Program for 2023

Sydney Program

Location, time and contact: Sunday afternoons at 2.00pm (unless otherwise stated) in the Crypt of St Patrick’s at Church Hill [Grosvenor Street], The Rocks. Members and non-members are welcome to join us in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Attendance is free but a gold coin donation for afternoon tea is welcome.

Enquiries to: Dr John Carmody, President ACHS:

19 FebruaryThe Church changes its mind – an Australian story (podcast)Prof Dr Edmund Campion
Emeritus Professor of History, Catholic Institute of Sydney
19 MarchMy family and my mission to Papua New Guinea
Mary Mennis (née Eccles)
Historian and author, Brisbane and PNG
16 April
Catholic Action, Sydney style: Catholic lay organisations from friendly societies to the Vice Squad (text) (podcast)Prof James Franklin
ACHS Vice-President and Journal editor; Honorary Professor UNSW
21 MayMilk of Paradise”: Reflections on family, church and media, 1935-2023 (podcast)

[AGM and elections at 13:15]
Patrick Kirkwood
Formerly, Head of Religious Program (Radio and TV) and Director, Catholic Audio-Visual Centre, Homebush
18 JuneFrom taproot to rhizome: What you never knew about women religious’ lives, 1968-2008 (podcast)Dr Sr Catherine Thom rsj
Formerly academic (history and theology) in Australia, UK, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Lithuania
16 JulyCatholic “culture wars” (podcast)
Andrew West
Presenter, Religion and Ethics Report, ABC Radio National,
Formerly NSW State political editor, Sydney Morning Herald
20 August

Resolving Catholicism’s dichotomies (podcast)

Dr Paul Collins
Freelance religious affairs commentator
Formerly Head, ABC Religious Broadcasts
17 September“Wise as serpents, innocent as doves”: navigating a broken world with a Catholic purpose (podcast)
Prof Francis Campbell
Vice-Chancellor, University of Notre Dame Australia
15 October
St John’s College: on the way to a history (podcast)

Dr Peter Cunich
College historian, St John’s College (University of Sydney)
19 NovemberA panorama of Australian religious poetry through reading it (podcast ; log of readings)Dr Stephen McInerney
Campion College, Sydney
9 December11.45: Annual Mass and Christmas Lunch.
Speaker: Diana Carmody
Dyer Centre, St Mary’s Ridge St, North Sydney. Mass, then light lunch

Melbourne Program

Melbourne Meetings continue in 2023

Times and dates:

March 6: Br. Shane Wood CFC, speaking on Fr Kevin McKelson SAC and the drive for an Australian Indigenous Liturgy, the so-called ‘Pilbara Rite’

June 5: Helen Anderson SGS speaking on Anna Brennan (1879-1962), Catholic lay woman, lawyer and advocate for equal rights for women

September 4

November 13

: Yarra Theological Union Study Centre, Classroom 1. 29 Albion Street Box Hill. Time: 5pm. Contact: Matthew Beckmann, OFM. Email:

See also the program of the Brisbane Catholic Historical Society.

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