Wominjeka – Welcome

St Paul’s Cathedral stands on the sovereign Country of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation; land that was taken, not ceded. We give thanks for their ancestors, and acknowledge the ongoing right and responsibility of their elders to care for this Country. We are committed to work and pray towards a more just settlement for all Indigenous people and pay our respects to First Nations people.

During the colonisation of Australia, conflicts erupted between colonial forces (including the police and local settlers) and the Indigenous peoples of this land. Now known as the ‘Frontier Wars’, more than 20,000 Indigenous people were killed; losses amongst European settlers were about 2500.

Historians note that whilst open conflict often resulted in violence and murder, demoralisation and European diseases have been responsible for taking many more Indigenous lives since colonisation.

Today, we mourn our part in this history and affirm our commitment to the work of reconciliation.

The painting featured above is Treaty by Glenn Loughrey, a Wiradjuri man from New South Wales and priest at St Oswald’s Anglican Church, Glen Iris, Melbourne. He is an artist who fuses Indigenous art styles with Western forms of story telling. He writes of Treaty:

“We are in the process of a discussion about how to recognise indigenous Australians in the constitution. This piece suggests that only when deep dialogue occurs between equals resulting in true sovereignty and a treaty that recognises such will we have recognition. The piece uses red to signify the bloody history of our country, the black lines as the fences and policies we have used to further that history, the black and white squares as the way we view our selves in opposition. The tentative yellow lines and the meeting place reminds us that we have only just begun and that this process is fragile and can collapse at anytime.”    

Revd Canon Glenn Loughrey

The Voice to Parliament

At their February 2023 meeting, members of the Cathedral Chapter voted unanimously to endorse the Statement from the Heart and the Yes Campaign for the upcoming Voice to Parliament Referendum. 

Below are some resources to help promote and better understand the Voice to Parliament Referendum.

Publication | Unpacking the Statement from the Heart

A personal reflection, written by The Revd Canon Assoc. Prof. Glenn Loughrey, for the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University.

Panel Discussion | The Voice to Parliament

The Cathedral hosted a panel discussion on Voice to Parliament and its significance ahead of the upcoming national referendum, with a panel of high-level experts in the field of Indigenous rights and cultural understanding.

Article | “A Voice to Parliament is just a first step towards healing”

Read Canon Glenn Loughrey’s article written for The Melbourne Anglican, and also published in our February Edition of Notes & News.

Podcast | The Voice – The Need for Good Information

Canon Glenn Loughrey speaks to Victorian Aboriginal News about the role of Religious Organisations in the upcoming referendum and the need for reliable and open information.

Video | Truth, Justice & Water

Canon Glenn Loughrey uses a practical example of consultations on the Murray-Darling river system to imagine what would be possible with a Voice to Parliament.

Publication | A guide to talking about the Voice to Parliament

Feeling uncomfortable or uninformed about the Constitutional Referendum on Recognition and Voice? Here is an excellent resource that will help you better understand and be better able to discuss this with others.

Video | A Call to the Churches to support a ‘Yes’ Vote

Prof. Anne Pattel-Grey calls on Churches to support a Yes vote in the referendum on an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament.

Lectern | The design of ‘the Voice’

Canon Dr Garry Deverell speaks on the Uluru Statement and the design of the Voice to Parliament.