This page contains news items from Catholics for Refugees. We will keep you updated regarding news and developments on this page.

Archbishop’s Appeal Update

When Archbishop, Anthony Fisher OP, launched the Archbishop’s Afghan Refugee Appeal last August, we knew there was a desire within our community to help, but we had no idea the response would be so generous and so widespread. Nor did we think we would have such a profound impact on the government’s own decision making. Read more…

Solidarity Still Strong for Refugees

On Sunday 20 March 2022 around a thousand people gathered outside Sydney Town Hall to advocate once again for justice and dignity for people seeking protection in Australia. The familiar calls to close the camps, end immigration detention, reinstate permanent protection visas have only increased in fervour over the years now that Australia’s deplorable treatment of refugees has become entrenched for so long. Read more…

The Djokovic Farce

The Djokovic Farce by Susan Connelly “The Djokovic farce has highlighted at last That a Melbourne hotel is a foyer of hell. Men who’ve broken no law are behind its brick wall And for seeking asylum our pollies revile them.” Read more…

Palm Sunday at the Park Hotel, Melbourne

A Prayer of Hope by Dorothy Scott “We came together on Palm Sunday, gathering in front of a hotel in which refugees continue to be imprisoned. The windows had been deliberately tinted so all we could see inside was darkness.

Despair descended upon us.” Read more…

Prime Minister’s response to Christian advocates for Afghan refugees is inadequate

In mid-October 2020 several Christian leaders from the Prime Minister’s electorate of Cook wrote to him to urge the Government to do more to support the people fleeing Afghanistan and seeking refuge in Australia. The leaders requested a meeting to explain their deep concern for the people of Afghanistan and how their congregations were willing to support the Government in helping to welcome Afghan refugees who arrive here. Read more…

Catholics for Refugees join in congratulating new president of Refugee Council

Catholics for Refugees are delighted to join with many justice groups in congratulating Jasmina Bajaktaric-Hayward on her election as the new head of the Australian Refugee Council. “This is an historic moment in the history of our country”, said Julie Macken, from Catholics for Refugees. For more details click here.

Imagine this Australia

Omid was the love of his mum’s life, Australia’s cruelty broke the lives of two people the day he died. Last week Queensland Coroner, Terry Ryan, said. “Omid started his journey In 2013 as an optimistic and perhaps naive 22 year old. Within three years he had died a painful death in a Brisbane hospital after struggling to come to terms with the reality of an indefinite period on Nauru.” As Craig Foster says, imagine his pain to be driven to this in Australia. For more details click here.

Minister Andrews reaffirms the status quo

On September 2nd, 2021, a significant number of Concerned Catholic leaders in the Australian community wrote to all our elected representatives to urge them to take decisive action action to protect those to whom we made promises and those who aspired for more in Afghanistan. We asked for three specific things in light of the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan. For more details click here.

Archbishop Launches Afghan Refugee Appeal

Sydney Catholic Archbishop, Anthony Fisher OP, has launched the Archbishop’s Afghan Refugee Appeal. The appeal will raise desperately needed funds and commit the Archdiocese resources of education, health and welfare to Afghan families and individuals fleeing their homeland in the wake of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. For more details click here.

Catholic Bishops urge Australian Government for a compassionate response to Afghans

In light of the rapidly deteriorating political and humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, many Catholic leaders have called on the Australian Government to have a more generous humanitarian response to the people of Afghanistan, particularly those who have assisted Australian personnel there for years. For more details click here.

Vicar General of Darwin urges Prime Minister for an Amnesty

In an open letter written on 19 July 2021, the Vicar General of the Catholic Diocese of Darwin, Father Malcolm P. Fyfe msc, urged the Prime Minister to cease Australia’s cruel policies towards people seeking protection by boat and to consider an amnesty for those still in detention. For more details click here.

Australia’s Catholic Bishops Call for Detainees to be Resettled in Australia

Australia’s Catholic bishops have joined the bishops of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands in calling for detainees on Manus Island and Nauru to be resettled in Australia – eight years after the advent of mandatory offshore detention. Read the full statement here.

Catholic Bishops call for freedom and a home for those detained on Manus and Nauru

On the 8th anniversary of the Australian Parliament legislating mandatory offshore detention for people seeking asylum arriving by boat after 19 July 2013 and barring them from ever settling in Australia, Fr Giorgio Lincini (General Secretary of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands) has called on the Australian Government give those who have been detained in Manus and Nauru since then their freedom and a home in Australia. Read the full letter here.

High Court Betrays the most vulnerable

Australia is now so morally bankrupt, so lacking in common decency and justice that a former judge of the High Court – the same court that just agreed to let asylum seekers be returned to persecution and death – implored law students to do the work their leaders refuse to do.  High Court, Justice McHugh told a group of law students. Read more…

150 Days of Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers launches

On 1 May 2021, the Feast of St Joseph the Worker, the 150 Days of Action Campaign for Refugees and Asylum Seekers under the title of St. Joseph the Refugee was launched at St. Mary MacKillop Place in North Sydney. Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney Terry Brady joined with 100 representatives from parishes, schools, refugee advocates and members of the Josephite Justice Network for the launch. Read more…

Refugees Deserve Justice – Palm Sunday Rally 2021

I never want to go to another Palm Sunday rally again. Over the last two decades – with a brief respite during the heady days of national compassion, or indifference, from 2007 to 2012 – I have been to almost every such rally. The numbers tend to ebb and wane depending largely on the media cycle. Read more…

Sydney Catholics Re-connect and plan to support Refugees

On the 27th of March Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Australia organised the first meeting of Catholic parish and schools leaders from across Greater Sydney to plan for welcoming, protecting, promoting, and integrating refugees and people seeking safety in 2021. Read more…