Section Archive: It Occurred to Me

175 years ago, black lives mattered to John Bede Polding

In the spirit of Polding, may we pray for reconciliation between Indigenous and non-indigenous peoples and take action to address discrimination against any group of people, writes Sister Patty Fawkner.

Posted on: September 16, 2020

A wise leader uses 'different strokes for different folks'

Within the Rule of Benedict, the contemporary relevance of wisdom for leaders is as impressive as the Rule’s longevity, writes Sister Patty Fawkner in an open letter to President Trump. 

Posted on: August 19, 2020

Voices of the oppressed must be heard to make positive social change

Stories create an emotional connection and can inspire us to act to overcome bigotry and racism, writes Patty Fawkner. Stories, rather than statistics or angry tweets, can change the world.

Posted on: July 16, 2020

Embracing life’s givens with solidarity and compassion

In the face of searing unfairness, we embrace injustice by working for justice, we embrace the painful realities of life by digging deeper for hope, writes Sister Patty Fawkner SGS.

Posted on: June 16, 2020

Women – seen and not seen during a pandemic

When the gifts of women and men, equally made in God’s image and likeness, are brought together it is possible for great outcomes to be achieved, writes Sister Patty Fawkner....

Posted on: May 19, 2020

Jean Vanier abuse reveals patriarchy and pedestals are a toxic combination

For decades Jean Vanier was seen as a ‘spiritual superstar’. On learning of his abusive relationships with women, my response was one of disillusion and overarching sadness, writes Patty Fawkner....

Posted on: March 17, 2020

Fires, floods and the season of Lent are inextricably linked

For the sake of humanity and our planet, we cannot allow personally, communally, nationally or globally, to return to situation normal, writes Patty Fawkner. It was early February 1984. The...

Posted on: February 19, 2020

The Feast for the Frayed and Fatigued

Christmas is the feast for the fatigued and the frayed, writes Patty Fawkner, because God is with us in the actual reality, not the fairy tale version, of our lives.

Posted on: December 11, 2019


In response to the tragedy of institutional child sexual abuse, Sister Patty Fawkner considers the distinct ‘stages’ currently being journeyed through by the Church.

Posted on: November 20, 2019

Show me what it looks like

What does loving God look like? asks Sister Patty Fawkner. She finds it is not in some other-worldly realm, but grounded in the here and now with each and every...

Posted on: October 16, 2019

Following the ‘clues’ to our vocation

For many, finding one’s vocation can be a slow-burning realisation, even a trial and error exercise, writes Sister Patty Fawkner.

Posted on: September 18, 2019

The Church – to include or not to include?

If I include myself in any critique I make of the Church… I will be taking a step in “fostering ecclesial community”.

Posted on: August 20, 2019