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Vol 37 No 3



John Leary

John Wilcken SJ

Tony Paganoni CS

Andrew Murray SM

Michael Trainor


Kevin Mark




Cecilia: An ex-nun’s extraordinary journey; Cecilia Inglis; Penguin Books; PB $22.95 [0143001299]; 372pp; 200x130mm; 2003

Autobiography of a former member of the Sisters of Mercy in New South Wales. Part one is an account her Catholic upbringing. Part two covers her time as a religious, beginning as a novice in 1952 at the age of 17. She worked as a teacher, but suffered a breakdown. Although she recovered, in 1982 she decided to leave the convent. Part three describes her transition to lay life, her search for employment and for a marriage partner. Author has been married for over 17 years and is now a stepmother and grandmother.

Dixon of Botany Bay: The convict priest from Wexford; Vivienne Keely; St Pauls; PB $19.95 [1876295635]; 96pp; 215x140mm; 2003

Biography of James Dixon (1758-1840), an Irish priest wrongly accused and convicted of taking part in the Irish Rebellion of 1798 and transported to Australia. Dixon became the first priest permitted to minister to the Catholics of New South Wales. Draws on recently published contemporary diaries and historical records. Challenges the perceived division between Catholics and Protestants. Photos; endnotes; bibliography: index. Author is Research Officer for the Diocese of Parramatta.

Experiencing God in the Gospel of John; Anthony J. Kelly CSsR & Francis J. Moloney SDB; Paulist Press, USA, dist. by Rainbow Book Agencies; PB $45.00 [08091410X]; 446pp; 225x155mm; 2003

Collaborative theological study by two of Australia’s leading Catholic religious writers, one a biblical scholar, the other a systematic theologian. It offers a systematic reflection on the experience of God, based upon contemporary biblical scholarship regarding a fundamental text of the New Testament. Notes; references; index of authors; index of biblical citations. Moloney is the Katharine Drexel Professor of Religious Studies at The Catholic University of America, Washington DC. His previous books include Belief in the Word: Reading John 1-4 (1993) and The Gospel of John (Sacra Pagina series, 1998). Kelly is Professor of Theology at Australian Catholic University. His other books include Trinity of Love (1989) and An Expanding Theology (1993).

Flesh and Glory: Symbol, gender, and theology in the Gospel of John; Dorothy A. Lee; Crossroad (Herder and Herder), USA, dist. by John Garratt Publishing; PB $59.95 [0824519817]; 304pp; 235x150mm; 2002

Scholarly explanatory study of symbolism in the Gospel of John. Presented as offering a more organic approach than the fragmentary methods of much post-Enlightenment biblical scholarship. Focuses particularly on stories of female characters in the Gospel and the text engages with feminist theology. Individual chapters focus on the following principal symbols: Jesus’ flesh; living water; love and friendship; God as father; motherhood; sin and evil; anointing; and Easter. Notes; bibliography; index of subjects; index of biblical passages. Book was awarded third place in the 2003 (US) Catholic Press Award in the Scripture book category. Author is Professor of New Testament Studies at Uniting Church Theological Hall, Melbourne. Her other books include Wisdom and Demons (with John Honner SJ, 1993) and Symbolic Narratives of the Fourth Gospel (1994).

God, Life, Intelligence and the Universe; Terence J. Kelly SJ & Hilary D. Regan (editors); Australian Theological Forum, dist. by Rainbow Book Agencies; PB $35.00 [0958639965]; 196pp; 210x145mm; 2002

First volume in the ‘ATF Science and Theology’ series under the editorship of Mark Wm Worthing. Following an essay on the relationship between scientific and religious knowledge, a series of essays consider the phenomenon of intelligence, including the possibilities of extraterrestrial and artificial intelligence and issues regarding animal intelligence. These topics are related to concepts of God and other theological concerns. Anne Foerst, Mark Wm Worthing, and John Puddlefoot each contribute two essays, and there are a foreword by Ted Peters and introduction by volume editor Kelly. Contributor notes; footnotes; author index; subject index.

Gospel and Culture in Vanuatu 3: The voice of the local church; Randall Prior (editor); Gospel Vanuatu Books, 6 Fowler Street, Wattle Park 3218, priority49@optushome.com.au; PB $24.95 [0957898614]; 204pp; 215x135mm; 2003

Third in a series of studies examining the relationship between the Christian gospel and local culture in Vanuatu. It offers further insights of local ni-Vanuatu people into contemporary aspects of this relationship. The first and longest section presents 27 reports from study group workshops at the 2002 National Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Vanuatu. The groups considered topics such as marriage, bride-price, roles of men and women, dress, death, feasting, kava, and youth. Part two consists of nine interviews with local church and community leaders, discussing issues of gospel and culture. An essay examines the concept of conversion. Contributor notes and lists; colour photos; glossary. Editor is a Uniting Church minister who has worked in Vanuatu, was founding Chairperson of the Victorian Council of Churches Commission on the Gospel and Cultures, and is currently Professor of Ministry Studies at the United Faculty of Theology, Melbourne. He also wrote Gospel and Culture in Vanuatu: The founding missionary and a missionary for today (1998) and edited Gospel and Culture in Vanuatu 2: Contemporary local perspectives (2001).

Growing Good Catholic Girls: Education and convent life in Australia; Christine Trimingham Jack; Melbourne University Press; PB $34.95 [0522850553]; 149pp; 235x155mm; 2003

Study of a Catholic convent school from the mid-1940s to 1965. Originally founded in France in the late 19th century, the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus opened schools in Australia in 1880 with the aim of raising ‘good catholic girls’ and influencing society through a moral family life. Using the narratives of nuns and former students of the Kerever Park convent, in New South Wales, the book explores the social order of such schools, discussing how its manner of teaching and traditional church symbols, metaphors and myths impacted on the lives of its students. Photos; notes; sources; index. Author attended Kerever Park and other Sacred Heart schools as a child. She is currently Head of Primary Education at the University of Canberra.

Lines of My Life: Journal of a year; Edmund Campion; Penguin Books; PB $22.95 [0143001523]; 275pp; 200x130mm; 2003

Author’s account of his experiences and reflections over the course of a year, beginning with his visit to New York City soon after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Reflects his interests in literature, history, religion, social justice, and friendship and conversation. Author is a retired Sydney priest, a contributing editor to Eureka Street, former head of the Australian Council Literature Board, and taught at the Catholic Institute of Sydney. Previous books include Rockchoppers (1982), Australian Catholics (1987) and A Place in the City (1994).

Mean Streets, Kind Heart: The story of Father Chris Riley; Sue Williams; HarperCollinsPublishers; PB $29.95 [0732274737]; 334pp; 230x150mm; 2003

Inspirational biography of Chris Riley, a Salesian priest and founder of Youth Off The Streets projects in Australia. More than 45,000 children have passed through these projects, which include farms in the country, a detox centre, a food van delivering hot meals to the hungry and homeless, schools, and a mentor program. Presents Fr Riley’s life story, focussing on his work with youth, and including stories of many he has helped. Includes foreword by Sir William Deane, Former Governor-General of Australia, and acknowledgements by Riley and by the author. Colour and black-and-white photos. A percentage of profits from the book will go to Youth Off The Streets. Author’s previous book was Peter Ryan: The inside story (2002).

Psalms: Songs from a pierced heart; Patricia Stevenson RSJ; Sisters of Saint Joseph, PO Box 1508, North Sydney 2059; PB $14.95 [0957900228]; 94pp; 210x150mm; 2003

Collection of 93 paraphrases of texts in the Book of Psalms. Aims to make the wisdom of these biblical texts more accessible to the general reader. Author is a Sister of St Joseph from Fairlie South Canterbury, New Zealand. She was worked for more than 20 years with adults in faith formation, spirituality and liturgy.

Kevin Mark is editor of Guide to New Australian Books and a former religious publisher for HarperCollins Publishers.