Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday
A New Life in Christ:
Uniting as One People on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday
An invitation from the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council Liturgy Team:
Each year, Catholics from all corners of Australia gather on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday to celebrate the unique gifts and contributions of Australia’s First Peoples. This year’s theme, “A New Life in Christ” reflects the hope and promise of a brighter future, rooted in unity and shared commitment to positive change.
As we commemorate this special day on the Liturgical Calendar, we invite you to listen to our voices and walk alongside us on our journey towards progress. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday symbolizes our unity as one people in Christ, and we urge both Indigenous and non-Indigenous Catholics to come together in every Catholic Parish and School across this great Southern land.
Archbishop Mark has written a message below in which he once again states his endorsement of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
“Australia as a nation is at a delicate and important moment in our history as we move towards the referendum on “The Voice” and all that it entails.
The call for a ‘Voice’ goes back to at least 2017 and to a National Constitutional Convention which produced what we know as the ‘Uluru Statement from the Heart’, which speaks of three things – Voice, Truth Telling and Treaty; three elements that are intimately related.
The call for a ‘Voice’ in fact goes back much earlier, so there is quite some history to what we are going to do in this year as we come to the referendum.
I would urge all of you to read the ‘Statement from the Heart’. Many people have read about it but not everyone has read the statement. It’s not long; it’s one page, and it’s a powerful and in some ways quite beautiful statement. I would urge you all to read or to read again, and carefully, the statement, which is really our indigenous peoples offering a hand to the entire nation.
This isn’t just about the 3% who identify as indigenous; it’s about the 100% who identify as Australians. This is about the whole nation.
The statement has been endorsed by me personally and I renew that endorsement here. It has been endorsed also by the Catholic Bishops of Australia.
So with that endorsement, my prayer is that we can journey together in a respectful and peaceful spirit so that the whole nation can become stronger as a result of this process of reconciliation.”