Film screening: The Insult

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The Insult, Distributed by Palace Films

The Insult, Distributed by Palace Films








Date:  Commencing 29 May 2019, 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

As part of National Reconciliation Week, the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture will be hosting a film screening of the movie The Insult which demonstrates reconciliation and forgiveness in a powerful and compelling way. Distributor Palace Films states:

The internationally acclaimed new film from multi award-winning writer/director Ziad Doueiri, 2018 Oscar-nominee THE INSULT is a thrilling new legal drama centring on a minor disagreement that escalates into a nationwide controversy.

The present day. It’s a scorching hot afternoon in Beirut. Forty-something mechanic Tony already has a chip on his shoulder about Palestinians, so he’s less than welcoming when 60 year-old Yasser, the foreman of a construction crew working on the street outside, asks him to fix the faulty drainpipe on his balcony. Tony closes the door in his face, so Yasser replaces the pipe anyway, only for Tony to smash it to pieces. Passions boil over, each man digs in, and what should have been a trivial incident easily shrugged off escalates quickly into a dispute that reverberates through their families and communities. Eventually lawyers are called in and the men find themselves in the centre of a highly publicised trial – one that reopens historical and personal wounds on both sides.

Widely heralded at the Venice, Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals, Doueiri’s gripping and revealing film is reminiscent of such masterful socio-political dramas as A Separation and Incendies, daring to lay bare the divisions within contemporary society. Expertly depicting the shifting conflicts that take place within homes, neighbourhoods and in the courtroom, this thrilling and superbly performed moral fable serves as both a smart and thought-provoking piece of entertainment, and a deeply affecting plea for empathy and conciliation.

Venue: Chapel, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, cnr Kings Avenue and Blackall Street, Barton

Donation:  Gold coin donation

Click here to register

Next forum 4 June 2019: Why a National Integrity Commission?

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Ebony Bennett, Deputy Director, The Australia Institute

Tuesday 4 June 2019

Speaker: Ebony Bennett, Deputy Director, The Australia Institute
Chair: Emeritus Professor John Warhust AO
When: 7:30pm Tuesday 4 June 2019
Where: Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture (Chapel), Corner Blackall St and Kings Av, Barton

In our June forum, Ebony Bennett, Deputy Director of The Australia Institute, will explain the case for a National Integrity Commission (a federal ICAC) with authority and capacity to systematically investigate corruption at the federal level.

In the words of an open letter signed by 34 retired senior judges, “Confidence and trust in government and public institutions is at an all-time low. When this confidence and trust is diminished, pessimism, divisiveness and conflict increase; and social cohesiveness is harmed. As a result, the economy and the welfare of all Australians suffers. Ultimately, as international experience has shown, democracy itself is threatened and may be irreparably damaged. Governments ignore at their peril demands by citizens to combat corruption with vigor.”

Ebony Bennett has worked in federal politics for more than a decade. Ms Bennett has published research on gender and street harassment and regularly appears as a commentator on Sky News and as a contributor for the Guardian and Fairfax publications.

Ebony began her career as a journalist in the federal press gallery before becoming media advisor to Bob Brown and later his Strategy Director. She has worked in federal politics for more than a decade. She has also worked for the Australian Human Rights Commission and a market research company.


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    Federal Election 2019: Where do the main parties stand on refugee policy?

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    With the federal election fast approaching,  the Refugee Council of Australia’s Choose Humane campaign has released a detailed comparison of where the three main parties stand on issues relating to refugees, including:

    • a permanent end to offshore processing
    • a fair process for claiming asylum
    • reform of the immigration detention system
    • a larger and more responsive refugee and humanitarian program
    • Australia’s improved engagement in Asia.

    Read the full comparison here.

    The Choose Humane campaign is working to achieve humane policies for people seeking asylum. For more information about their platform, visit their website.

    Public Forum: Governance for our Church – Out of hope, not fear

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    Robert Fitzgerald AM










    Forum flyer

    Exploring the lessons of the Royal Commission and beyond for the future governance, leadership and culture of the Catholic Church

    Robert Fitzgerald AM, former commissioner on the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is guest speaker at Concerned Catholics Canberra Goulburn’s next public forum to be held in Canberra on 16 April.  All are welcome. Supper provided.

    Date:  Tuesday 16 April 2019

    Time: 7:15 for 7:30 pm

    Venue: The Chapel, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, 55 Blackall Street, Barton

    Enquiries and further information:

    Further details:

    Contact Mark Metherell 0417 603 697

    2018 Forum Series: “Wellsprings of Hope”

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    8 February 2018: “Wellsprings of Hope”, Professor John Warhurst

    24 April 2018: “Hope and Peace”, A/Professor David Neville

    29 May 2018:  “Springs of Hope: rethinking the vertical”, Elizabeth Farrelly

    15 August 2018:  “Rule of Law or ruled by law?”, Gerard Horton and Salwa Duaibis

    25 October 2018:  “Catholic Social Justice Commission 2018-19 Social Justice Statement:  A place to call home – making a home for everyone in our land”, Fr Frank Brennan, Susan Hellyer, Dr John Falzon, Peter Thorley

    • Audio recordings:

      • Introduction:  Fr Michael Cockayne
      • Address: Fr Frank Brennan
      • Address: Susan Hellyer
      • Address: John Falzon
      • Address: Peter Thorley
      • Question 1: How can we take on board the Indigenous spirit of hospitality, make housing a popular issue and accommodate pets?
      • Question 2: Low priority of expenditure on Housing and what it takes to make a home
      • Question 3: Houselessness and Homelessness not the same thing
      • Question 4: What do you do if lease not renewed?
      • Question 5: Partnerships particularly with Industry Groups
      • Question 6: Necessary to move away from private ownership of land?
      • Question 7: Relevance of shared indigenous landownership.
      • Closing remarks: by Mike Cassidy, Archdiocesan Social Justice Commission



    Rusted Off: Why is Country Australia Fed Up?

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    Gabrielle Chan

    Tuesday 26 March 2019

    Speaker: Gabrielle Chan
    Chair: Emeritus Professor John Warhust AO
    When: 7:30pm Tuesday 26 March 2019
    Where: Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture (Chapel), Corner Blackall St and Kings Av, Barton

    As Australia prepares for a federal election, the contest for rural and regional seats is likely to be one of the most fascinating aspects of the 2019 poll.  Already, country independents are pushing incumbent MPs against a backdrop of disappointment and disengagement with politicians and the parliament across the country.
    Gabrielle Chan will examine why politics is changing in rural areas and how it may impact on the outcome of the next election.
    Gabrielle Chan has been a journalist for more than 30 years. She began covering politics in the 1990s for The Australian in NSW parliament and the Canberra press gallery. Since 2013, she has worked for Guardian Australia as a political correspondent and Politics Live blogger. Gabrielle has also worked for ABC radio, the Daily Telegraph, in local newspapers and politics. She has written and edited histories and biographies.
    The city-born daughter of a Singaporean migrant, Gabrielle moved to a sheep and wheat farm near Harden, Murrumburrah, in 1996. She noticed the economic and cultural divide between city and country and the yawning gap between parliament and small town life. As a result, she wrote Rusted Off: Why Country Australia is Fed Up, released in 2018 by Penguin Random House.

    Further information (forum flyer)

    Mediating Democracy: Journalism in the Post Truth Age

    By | Past Forums

    Paul Bongiorno AM


    Tuesday 12 February 2019

    Speaker: Paul Bongiorno AM
    Chair: Emeritus Professor John Warhust AO
    When: 7:30pm Tuesday 12 February 2019
    Where: Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, Corner Blackall St and Kings Av, Barton

    Australians will go to the polls this year in what is one of the best regulated voting systems in the world. But while the integrity of the vote is assured and compulsory voting a safeguard against extremist minorities it is not enough to restore or maintain faith in democracy.

    Truth has become a commodity for media outlets. The business model dictates editorial choice of stories and the slant they receive. The trivialisation of politics and the unwillingness to hold power to account by a banal equivalence of views has reduced news to entertainment or worse an echo chamber of bigotry.

    But the truth can still set us free and there are shafts of light.

    Further information (flyer)

    2017 Forum Series: “Seeking our Moral Compass”

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    16 February 2017: “Seeking our Moral Compass”, Fr Peter L’Estrange

    • Audio recordings:
      • Welcome: Rev. Dr. Thowald Lorenzen, President CES
      • Introduction: Rt Rev’d Professor Stephen Pickard
      • Father L’Estrange’s address
      • Question 1: Underpayment and other new forms of slavery and where in an on-line world can we look to for guidance?
      • Question 2: We’ve moved from a world of what is right to one of what works.
      • Question 3: The arbiter of what is private and what public morality.
      • Question 4: Why is the church heard on some issues and why it is absent on others?
      • Question 5: Disjunction between rich Catholic Social Teaching and Catholic Support for Trump?
      • Question 6: Displacement of Liberal Arts Education By Subjects Of Quantification.
      • Question 7: If I begin again is it freedom or habit?
      • Question 8: Responding graciously to the God within each of us.
      • Final remarks and thanks: Rt Rev’d Profesor Stephen Pickard

    19 April 2017: “The Politics of Love”, Andrew Leigh MP

    • Copy of address
    • Audio recordings:
      • Full recording
      • Welcome: Emeritus Prof. Ingrid Moses
      • Call for questions: Emeritus Prof. Ingrid Moses
      • Question 1: How do we nudge or economic system to foster ultruism and generosity?
      • Question 2: Incompatability of growth in inequality with a politics of love.
      • Question 3: Are trading, ownership and authority incompatible with maximization of wellbeing?
      • Question 4: Capacity to adjust trade to minimize inequalty and trade as a means of specialisation.
      • Question 5: How to get cross party consensus in a polarized political system?
      • Question 6: How to advocate for Diversity & Inequality without that advocacy intensifying the problem?
      • Question 7: Are you having success in working with colleagues to bring about a groundswell of change?
      • Question 8: How to apply the politics of love in dealing with proposals to move agencies from Canberra?
      • Question 9: On whom does blame lie for the success in many democracies of the politics of fear, slogans and hate?
      • Question 10: How do you explain the irony of the correlation between inequality and lack of empathy?
      • Question 11:  Parliamentary Vote to exercise War power?
      • Question 12: Incompatibility of Politics of Love with Bipartisan Refugee Policy.
      • Question 13: Detention of Refugees on Manus & Nauru as a sacrifice to prevent others drowning.
      • Comment: Emeritus Prof. Ingrid Moses
      • Final remarks and thanks: Rt Rev’d Profesor Stephen Pickard, Executive Director, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture

    3 May 2017: Defiant earth: The fate of humans in the Anthropocene, Clive Hamilton

    17 August 2017: “The Getting of Wisdom – a Private Faith, a Public Christian”, Kristina Keneally (Annual dinner forum)

    • Audio recordings:
      • Welcome: Bishop George Browning, CES Chairman
      • Address: Kristina Keneally
      • Initial comments: Bishop George Browning
      • Question 1: Hobbling of NSW ICAC – corruption
      • Question 2: Why in conscience vote did you say you did so on the basis of your faith?
      • Question 3: Which would you expect to come first: married or female priests in the Catholic Church?
      • Question 4: Withdrawal of services from the Church is fine as a protest but where do you move them to?
      • Question 5: What advice would you give to young women thinking of taking up politics?
      • Vote of thanks: Rt Rev’d Professor Stephen Pickard, Executive Director, ACC&C
      • Concluding comments: Bishop George Browning

    18 October 2017: “Everyone’s Business: Developing an inclusive and sustainable economy”, Joint Forum  with the Catholic Social Justice Commission, on their Social Justice Statement.  Keynote speaker: Fr Frank Brennan SJ

    • Audio recordings:
      • Introduction: Mike Cassidy ,Archdiocesan Social Justice Commission Canberra & Goulburn
      • Introduction: Dr Helen Watchirs OAM, ACT Human Rights Commissioner
      • Address:  Fr Frank Brennan SJ
      • Question 1: Doubling the waiting period for new start allowance from 13 to 26 weeks for those with liquid assets of $18,000 for singles and $36,000 for couples
      • Question 2: Taking on neoliberalism and influencing politicians
      • Question 3: Why don’t welfare groups campaign against growing inequality?
      • Question 4: A fair return should be secured for finite mineral assets which belong to the nation
      • Question 5:  Neoliberalism encourages efficiency and encourages exploitation of talents
      • Question 6: Calling out the need for sustainability and inclusiveness.
      • Question 7:  Australia should have a sovereign wealth fund like the Norwegians.
      • Question 8: Mutual exchange and capacity building providing a bridge out of poverty?
      • Question 9: Alternatives to mainstream economics as ways out of poverty.
      • Comments and thanks:  Dr Helen Watchirs OAM, ACT Human Rights Commissioner

    15 November 2017:  “Diversity and Harmony:  Peace and Justice in the 21st Century” – A Muslim-Christian Conversation