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Campion Society

15 Feb 22: The Campion Society and the development of the lay apostolate in Australia

Thanks to Colin Jory and Richard Doig for an excellent webinar on “The Campion Society and the development of the lay apostolate in Australia” on Tuesday 15 February 2022.

Also taking part were eight direct descendants of the original Campions, Karl Schmude, son of Alf, Anne Kelly and Barbara Kelly Cooper, daughters of Kevin T. Kelly, Jacinta Heffey and Marilyn Puglisi, daughters of Gerard Heffey, Tom Knowles son of Bill Knowles, as well as Paul Santamaria and Anne McIlroy, son and daugther of BA Santamaria. Also present was David Moloney, nephew of Des O’Connell.

Inspired by the encyclicals Rerum Novarum and later by Quadragesimo Anno, in 1929 a group of Catholic university students from Melbourne launched a study circle they called “The Campion Society” to study and act on the social issues facing Australia.

As the Great Depression took hold over the next decade, the Campion Society members launched or helped launch a wide range of social initiatives, including the YCW, the Australian National Secretariat of Catholic Action, the National Catholic Rural Movement and many others.

In our first ACI webinar of 2022, Colin Jory, author of “The Campion Society and Catholic social militancy in Australia 1929-39” and Richard Doig, author of a doctoral thesis “The National Catholic Rural Movement and a ‘New Deal’ for Australia: the rise and fall of an agrarian movement 1931-1958”, will share their research on these pioneering lay apostolate initiatives.

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Richard Doig, The National Catholic Rural Movement and a ‘New Deal’ for Australia: the rise and fall of an agrarian movement 1931-1958 (Charles Sturt University)