Hugh Mackay visits Albury when church’s reputation is on the line

The current redress scheme for abuse survivors combined with the opposition of the church to marriage equality will make an interesting mix when Hugh Mackay, Australia’s top commentator speaks from the pulpit at St Matthews Albury this Sunday 11th March at 9am.

The comments of the Prime Minister threatening to name and shame religious organisations who don’t sign up to the National Redress compensation scheme shows how far religious organisations have slipped in their public standing.  If they failed in their moral responsibility toward children then we can only wonder what could compel them to act in a just and compassionate way and the leadership of the Prime Minister is in the best interests of the most vulnerable against the self interest of ancient institutions.

It is not enough for us to be ashamed of the behavior of organisations of which we are a part but to acknowledge the cost of religious privilege and exemptions that are responsible for human suffering and to see them extinguished.

Compensation for past injury is a starting point but the Ruddock review might well express the mood of the nation in refusing to grant religious bodies special licence to discriminate or continue exemptions from anti-discrimination legislation and also consider a public benefit test before granting tax concessions.  It is not sufficient to announce a cease fire if we take our history seriously its time that religious institutions surrender our weapons.

The Venerable Peter MacLeod-Miller
Archdeacon of Albury and the Hume
St Matthew’s Anglican Church Albury


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