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Richard Colledge, left, Fr Quyen Vu SJ, Fr Dan Madigan SJ and ACU’s Joel Hodge at yesterday’s launch (Jesuit Communications/Janark Gray)

Australian Catholic University will partner with the Australian province of the Society of Jesus to launch a new national research institute in Melbourne.

ACU Melbourne will be the official home of The Loyola Institute, established by the Australian Jesuits in 2021 to promote the research and advocacy of Jesuit scholars in Australia and abroad. The Institute will bring together ACU experts in various sectors of the university with Australian and international Jesuit scholars to work on collaborative research projects that align with the society’s apostolic priorities.

The new partnership builds on a formal agreement between ACU’s Faculty of Theology and Philosophy and the Australian Jesuits to deliver Ignatian Spirituality and Ministry Supervision postgraduate courses previously offered by the now-closed Jesuit College of Spirituality.

ACU Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Zlatko Skrbis and Provincial of the Australian Jesuits Fr Quyen Vu SJ launched the partnership between The Loyola Institute and ACU yesterday.

The Loyola Institute chair Fr Daniel Madigan SJ said the Jesuits were grateful to have ACU as their national university partner.

“The Loyola Institute was established to encourage collaboration among Jesuit scholars and our colleagues in Australia as well as with broad international networks. An institutional partner like ACU is essential to such a project, and almost all of our scholars will be working in an honorary capacity,” Fr Madigan said.

“Our priorities for research and advocacy include several areas that are also important to ACU’s teaching and research: for example, the Church and human rights (including questions of indigenous rights, disability, refugee policy, social services, ethics and public policy); contemporary Catholic theologies in this ‘change of epoch,’ as Pope Francis calls it; comparative theology and interreligious engagement; mission formation for Catholic institutional leadership; and the search for adequate responses to the profound questions raised for the Church by the clerical abuse crisis.”

Executive Dean of ACU’s Faculty of Theology and Philosophy, Associate Professor Richard Colledge, said the partnership will “foster unique connections with the order’s global network of scholars and strengthen the research capacity of both institutions”.


ACU and Australian Jesuits announce research partnership (ACU)