Main points from the article (which CathNews featured):
- There were 8422 "religious personnel" (including retired religious) in Australia in 2009, down from 17029 in 1976.
- "The median age is 73, and only 8.2 per cent are aged under 50, whereas 26.6 per cent are aged 80 or more."
- "Three-quarters of all religious came from Australia and the rest came from 75 different nations, with Ireland, New Zealand and Vietnam the greatest source countries."
- "[T]he tradition of being taught by a nun or a brother in a Catholic school belongs mostly to previous generations. While 48 per cent of the religious worked in education in 1976, that cohort has shrunk to 12 per cent, as lay-people have taken over Catholic education."
- Despite the decline in membership, "40 congregations out of 109 said they were ''not contemplating change''".
Neither the descriptive report nor its analysis focus on the figure which I regard as the most remarkable: Only 3% of Australians identify as homosexual. (Terra has more on this.)
3. Mr. Rowney on the philosphical distinction between intended consequences and merely foreseen ones
I was surprised to see Mr. Rowney write that
Even utilitarians need to decide where they stand on this one. Do they side with Hume and Mill on the Aristotelian side or with Sidgwick, Adams, Singer and the Consequentialists on the other?
4. Dr. Jones (responding to Msgr. Williamson) on the teachings of Vatican II
I disagree with Dr. Jones's conclusions, but I was interested to read the following:
John Courtney [sic] Murray ... was working for Henry Luce’s Time/Life empire, which had intimate connections with the CIA. [That story] will appear in the pages of Culture Wars and a forthcoming book by David Wemhoff.
From a letter by Mrs. Babette Francis in The Australian today:
... the significance of breastfeeding in early education should not be overlooked.
During breastfeeding, an infant's eyes focus on its mother's face and it learns from her "baby-talk" and conversation, whereas bottle-fed babies look away from the mother towards the bottle, and are sometimes propped up with pillows with no adult holding the bottle. ...