Catholic Thought and Catholic Action
Scenes from Australian Catholic Life
Paperback, 310 pages, $39.95
Release Date: February 2023
This is a book to enliven any discussion about the Catholic Church
and Australian society. Readers will profit from James Franklin’s rich
research in out-of-the-way corners of our history.
Edmund Campion, Emeritus Professor of History
Catholic Institute of Sydney
The Catholic quarter of the Australian population have been driven by
a unique vision of how humans fit in God’s universe and of how
objective ethics should inform individual and collective action.
Following Jesus’ command to be witnesses “to the ends of the earth”,
Australian Catholics have worked hard to reform their own souls and
Australian society. In this wide-ranging volume, James Franklin shows
how core Catholic ideas have played out and motivated action across many
fields of endeavour – remote area missions, virtuous rural communities,
religious life, multicultural refugee programs, Labor politics,
Magdalen laundries, Catholic philosophy. He brings to life the colourful
characters behind the action, like F.X. Gsell, the “Bishop with 150
wives”, pugnacious immigration minister Arthur Calwell, fiery
anti-Communist speaker Dr P.J. Ryan and ex-nun memoirist Cecilia Inglis.
Saints and sinners, they transformed Australian society in directions
it would not otherwise have moved.
James Franklin is the editor of the Journal of the Australian Catholic Historical Society and an honorary professor at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. His books include Corrupting the Youth: A History of Philosophy in Australia, Catholic Values and Australian Realities, The Real Archbishop Mannix and The Worth of Persons: The Foundation of Ethics.
Read the Introduction here. (Click here).
1 Sydney, 1803: The experiment in toleration of Catholics
2 1821: A new beginning for the Church in Europe and Australia
3 Catholic missions to Aboriginal Australia: an evaluation
4 F. X. Gsell: The missionary with 150 Wives
5 Catholic rural virtue in Australia: ideal and reality
6 Catholic Scholastic philosophy in Australia
7 Catholic thought and Catholic Action: Dr Paddy Ryan MSC and the Red Peril
8 Convent slave laundries? Magdalen asylums in Australia
9 Catholics versus Masons
10 Archbishop Mannix and the politics of social justice
11 Memoirs by Australian priests, religious and ex-religious
12 Calwell, Catholicism and the origins of multicultural Australia
13 Catholic Action, Sydney style: Lay organisations from friendly societies to the Vice Squad
14 Gerald Ridsdale, pedophile priest, in his own words
15 Natural law ethics and the Mabo decision
16 Random thoughts