Bishop Peter Cullinane - Writings

Published on 21st Feb, 2017

A selection of some of the writings of Emeritus Bishop Peter Cullinane is available under each of the following headings:  The Church in Society; Church and Pastoral; Leadership and Ministries; Ecumenical and Interfaith; Liturgy and Homilies; and Catholic Education.



It’s all about belonging is Bishop Peter’s latest writing – this time to Senior Students.  Please feel free to distribute widely.

Under the title It’s All About Becoming, Bishop Peter provides a framework, and perhaps a kind of unity, for the things we already teach under the various headings of human, personal, moral and spiritual development.








Submission on White Paper “A Bill of Rights for New Zealand” (1 April 1986)

Submission to Health Select Committee Investigating Ending One’s Life

Submission of NZ Catholic Bishops to the Constitutional Advisory Panel (6 May 2013)

Personal Reflections on the Recent Controversy (1981)

Social Sin, Sinful Structures (3 Dec 1988)

Work and Employment (3 Aug 1992)

Address at launching of “Church in the World” (1 Dec 1997)

Statement on Tania Kovats’ “Virgin in a Condom” exhibit (1998)

Why is our Church not touching some people? (March 2000)

For a Culture of Peace, Pious Platitudes Won’t Do (1 Sept 2000)

Let us be Fair and Informed (11 May 2004)

The Civil Union Bill? (21 Jan 2005)

Thinking about the Election (31 Jul 2005)

Waihopai (1 June 2010)

Address at Pike River Commemoration (22 Nov 2011)

Reflections on the ‘Roastbusters’ (2014)

Time to Challenge Secularism (28 Jan 2016)

Wars and Rumours of War (June 2016)

Solidarity (2017)

Truth Still Matters (April 2017)

Participation in a General Election (June 2017)

The Spiritual Dimension to Suicide Prevention (October 2017)

Catholic Social Teaching: Address to Catholic School Teachers in Christchurch (26 Jan 2018)

Submission on the End of Life Choice Bill (2 Feb 2018)

Methodist / Roman Catholic Dialogue: Concerning Secularism (6 Nov 2018)

What Does ‘Hope’ Really Mean? (12 April 2018)

Clear Heads and Compassionate Hearts (28 Nov 2019)

What is the connection between the pandemic and the need for a different economic order? (June 2020)

Language, love, laïcité and violence (9 Nov 2020)

Calling Out Evil (March 2021)

Come, dream with me a dream that is coming true (April 2022)

People of the Eucharist and the Tiriti o Waitangi (2022)

About LGBTQ+ (2022)

Pursing the Common Good (2024)




Māori Mission in the Taranaki (9 Feb 1983)

Further Reflections on our Commitment to the Māori People (June 1990)

Aspirations of Māori Catholics (14 September 1994)

The Universal Church as a Communio of Particular Churches (2 Nov 1987)

The Altar-Girl Debate (1 March 1990)

Theological Reflection and Catechesis on the project “Made in God’s Image” (March 1990)

Pastoral Letter on Evangelisation (19 May 1991)

Life-Giving Love (2 May 1993)

Ad Limina Address to Holy Father (1998)

Discussion paper on the Pastoral Care of Separated or Divorced Catholics (Nov 2011)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (1 Dec 1993)

Reflections on the Encyclical “Splendour of Truth” (1994)

Report to the Deanery Pastoral Forums on What Happened in Rome (Nov 1998)

“Fides et Ratio”, and its applicability in New Zealand (March 1999)

Statement on Homosexuality (August 2000)

A Reflection on the relationship between the Maramatanga Movement and the Catholic Faith (2004)

25th Jubilee (23 April 2005)

Implications for Catechetics, Homiletics and Pastoral Practice (22 Sept 2005)

The Changing Face of the Church in Aotearoa-New Zealand  (10 June 2006)

World Youth Day 2008 (5 Sept 2006)

Vocations (1 Sept 2010)

Conversion, Contemplation and Compassion (11 Aug 2011)

A few thoughts on New Evangelisation (2 Feb 2012)

Reasons for Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Second Vatican Council (October 2012)

After-birth Abortion: A New Euphemism (12 Mar 2012)

On Bridging the Gaps

“This I Believe” series (April 2012)

When Respect for Persons Goes Deeper (Nov 2014)

Memo to NZ Bishops on Homosexuality (2015)

Review of Pā Henare Tates ‘He Puna Iti i te Ao Mārama

Be Still and Know

Transforming the Church isn’t finished yet (Feb 2018)

A Matter of Style (Dec 2018)

From Clericalism to Synodality (Jan 2019)

Doctrine & Life (December 2019)

Regarding the term ‘ontological’ (July 2020)

A Heart Open to the Whole World (March 2021)

Mission, Ministries and Co-responsibility (August 2021)

Unmoored (Parts One and Two)

A Continuing Apostolate (October 2021)

A Time to Wonder (October 2021)

The Journey into Reality

40th Anniversary (notes for WelCom)

Reflections Shared with Latin Mass Groups

It’s Time to Make Connections (March 2022)

The Clamour and the Silence (August 2022)

On Promoting Theology (January 2024)

Small Family Arguments (2024)

Towards Authenticity (2024)





Clericalism: Avoidable Damage to the Church (March 1990)

Guiding Principles for the Development of Lay Ministries (May 1994)

A Reflection on Priestly Ordination (1994)

The Future Staffing of our Parishes (Aug 1997)

Leadership as Ministry (May 2001)

What to do on the other Sundays (June 2002)

Guidelines for Parish Pastoral Councils (1 Aug 2010)

Decree on the Pastoral Office of Bishops

Concerning Information, Knowledge and Wisdom





The Catholic Church’s response to the final report of ARCIC 1 (May 1992)

Comments on the New Ecumenical Directory (Aug 1993)

Evangelisation and Ecumenism (2 June 1995)

Address to Christian Leaders Congress, Waikanae (26 May 2005)

Regensburg, Human Freedoms and Inter-faith Dialogue (Nov 2006)

Address for Ecumenical Environmental Conference (30 Oct 2012)

The Roman Catholic Church Ecumenical Movement (5 Aug 2013)

Islam and Christianity (17 Mar 2015)

Can the Reformation Benefit Us All? (May 2017)

Concerning Secularism  – Methodist/RC dialogue (6 Nov 2018)





Reflection on Liturgy, Culture and Spirituality in the NZ Church (June 1990)

A Special Decade of Evangelisation (19 May 1991)

The case for Confirmation at a later date (1991)

Guidelines for inclusive language (Sept 1995)

A Letter To Young People (1999)

Homily on Holy Cross Seminary Founders Day (3 May 2000)

Posture in the Eucharistic Prayer (20 July 2003)

Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum (1 May 2008)

Preparing for the new translation of the Revised Roman Missal (May 2008)

Liturgical Norms (30 Jul 2008)

Posture during the Eucharistic Prayer (24 Nov 2008)

Homily for the 26th Sunday (B) in Ordinary Time (3 Oct 2010)

Homily: Mass of Thanksgiving for Saint Mary MacKillop (7 Dec 2010)

Christmas Homily (25 Dec 2015)

Proposed letter of bishops to priests and deacons

Waitangi Day 2018

On Translations and Underlying Concerns (Feb 2018)

Sessions on the Mass – Prepared for Chch CEO (May 2018)

Homily on Co-Responsibility – Thanksgiving Mass at Holy Cross Seminary (Nov 2018)

Advent Homily (Dec 2018)

Homily at the Ordination of Vui Xuan Hoang (29 June 2019)

Homily at the Jubilee Mass of Mons David Bell, Fr Peter Fahy and Bishop Owen Dolan (27 July 2019)

Homily at Hastings on Occasion of Promulgating the New Pastoral Plan (25 August 2019)

Homily for the 18th Sunday of Ordinary Time (4 August 2019)

Homily for the 25th Sunday of Ordinary Time (22 September 2019)

Homily for the 40th Anniversary of the Diocese of Palmerston North (31 May 2020)

Homily for the 21st Sunday of Ordinary Time (23 August 2020)

Jubilarians Mass (8 Nov 2020)

Homily (17 March 2012)

60th Jubilee of Religious Profession (March 2022)

A Suggestion for the Liturgy of the Word (June 2022)

Like Charity, Christian Unity Begins at Home (July 2022)

Homily for the Funeral of Cardinal Tom Williams (December 2023)

Third Sunday of Lent – Year B (3 March 2024)




Letter to students in years 12 & 13 (30 June 2005)

Opening Address for the Catholic Schools’ Convention (3 July 2006)

Is there something missing? (24 July 2006)

Education – For what kind of society? (2006)

Letter to school leavers (30 June 2007)

Catholic Schools Convention Welcome Address (5 Jul 2009)

Catholic Schools’ Day (5 May 2010)

The Future of Catholic Education (30 Oct 2010)

Clear Heads and Compassionate Hearts (11 Nov 2019)

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