Finding the balance

Balancing Act– Australia Between Recession and Renewal | Quarterly Essay 61 | George Megalogenis


Expanding on themes briefly explored in 2015’s Australia’s Second Chance, journalist George Megalogenis returns with his second Quarterly Essay, Balancing Act- Australia Between Recession and Renewal.

On the heels of yet another myopic Federal Budget, Megalogenis’ new article looks ...

Sermons with heart

Book | The Heart of It All: Sermons from St Stephen’s | David Gill

Review by BOB FASER

Since retiring from parish ministry, I’ve been culling my library. One area I’ve culled dramatically is my books of sermons. Examining my shelves today, I found only four volumes of sermons remaining.

One was John Wesley’s classic collection of forty-four sermons. Two ...

Timeless tale

Film |The Jungle Book |PG


Keen to “forget your worries and your strife”? Then treat yourself to a night at the cinema to see the 2016 version of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book.

It’s a risk turning up to watch a movie remake that formed part of your childhood and an even greater risk ...

Tales from the past

Book | Out of the Ordinary: Twelve Australian Methodist Biographies | editors: Patricia Curthoys and William W. Emilsen. 

Review by BOB FASER

While a reasonable amount of material has been written since Union by historians in the UCA on the history of Congregationalism and Presbyterianism in Australia, comparatively little has been written from a Methodist perspective.

In my ...

Prison preachers

Book | Opening the Doors: A Prison Chaplain’s Life On The Inside | Paul Gill


Author Paul Gill served as senior prison chaplain and coordinating chaplain at Western Australia’s Casuarina Prison for 10 years before his retirement. This book emanates from his vast experience working in a prison environment in WA. It is raw and ...

Subversive faith

Book | Seeing – Remembering – Connecting:  subversive practices of being Church | Karen L. Bloomquist

Review by BOB FASER

How can churches engage with our society so as to resist injustice and to transform the culture? This is the question Karen Bloomquist addresses in Seeing – Remembering – Connecting.

Bloomquist, a minister of the Evangelical Lutheran Church ...

Midsummer Drama

Play | Miss Julie | Melbourne Theatre Company


The clapping started tenuously, slowly. It was as though the audience released a collective breath in acknowledgement that the emotional, physical and verbal maelstrom they had witnessed had concluded.

August Strindberg’s Miss Julie demands total commitment of its cast, as they repeatedly collide over values, class, sexual ...

Party tricks

Book | The Road to Ruin: how Tony Abbott and Peta Credlin destroyed their own government | Niki Savva


Part memoir, part political reportage, The Road to Ruin is above all else an insightful glimpse into the deliberately opaque world of national politics. The story of the rise and spectacular fall of Tony Abbott ...

War wounds

Book | Moral Injury – unseen wounds in an age of barbarism | Edited by Tom Frame

By Penny Mulvey

What happens to those who, due to particular circumstances, are faced with having to make unacceptable decisions; choices which in normal life are not just illegal, but shocking, deeply offensive, and from which most of us would revile?


Leading for others

Book | The Anonymous Leader: An Unambitious Pursuit of Influence | Ralph Mayhew  

Review by Scott Guyatt

Leadership, it seems, is the new buzzword. Whether in politics, sport, culture or the church, one need not scratch very deep to find a view that leadership is either the cause or the solution to whatever challenges face a particular organisation.


Witness to history

Book | Bystanders | Valerie Volk

Review by Alan Ray

The Bible contains a library of dramas. Similar to a festival of plays we have, in the one book, historical, romantic, morality and mystical plots.

Valerie Volk invites us to become immersed in 15 of these stories through the eyes of bystanders to the main action. Just as ...

Uncovering dark secrets

Film | Spotlight | M

Review by Deb Bennett

Nominated for six Academy Awards, Spotlight is a true-life movie that can be appreciated on many levels.

It tells the story of four investigative journalists (the Spotlight team) from the Boston Globe who, in the early 2000s, uncovered widespread child abuse, corruption and deceit within the Catholic Church in Boston.