The Archdiocese of Brisbane acknowledges the Traditional Custodians who have walked and cared for this land for thousands of years and their descendants who maintain their spiritual connection and traditions. We thank them for their continual cultural and spiritual connection to Country as expressed through their history, music, language, songs, art and dance.
We respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the Archdiocese of Brisbane, North, South, East and West and reflect on the millions of footprints that travelled the Dreaming pathways and continue to walk this land.


The Archdiocese of Brisbane’s vision for reconciliation is to be a community in which there is mutual respect and deep solidarity between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and those of us with differing heritage; a community committed to healing the hurts and wrongs of the past and being present in a spirit of mercy, love, justice, forgiveness and peace.
We hope to be a community that, as Pope Francis stated in Evangelii Gaudium (#190), not only has respect for human rights, but also has respect for the rights of peoples. This has specific application in Australia to develop a community that promotes the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of our land.
“We need a genuinely new engagement of the Church with the First Nations peoples, especially in an Archdiocese like this where the Indigenous presence is strong. A new engagement will mean, first of all, listening to Indigenous voices, and believing that we can learn if we really listen. In the past, non-Indigenous Australia has struggled to believe that we could learn anything from First Nations peoples. They could learn from us, but not we from them. That has to change, both in the Church and in Australia more generally. Then the listening and learning need to lead to action.” (With Lamps Ablaze, Apostolic Priorities for the Archdiocese of Brisbane from 2023 – 5. Engaging Anew with First Nations Peoples). 
We want to be a Church, which recognises and respects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their cultural traditions. We recognise their spiritual connection with Land and Sea. It is fundamental to show respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and their cultural traditions. “They are not merely one minority among others, but should be the principal dialogue partners, especially when large projects affecting their land are proposed. For them, land is not a commodity but rather a gift from God and from their ancestors who rest there, a sacred space with which they need to interact if they are to maintain their identity and values.” (Pope Francis, Laudato Si, page 146).
As we continue on this journey of reconciliation, we are committed to listening to the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and to the voice of the Holy Spirit.

OUR Reconciliation Action Plan

The Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) for 2023 – 2025 was launched at the inaugural Archdiocese of Brisbane Reconciliation Dinner on Thursday 14 September 2023.

Please click on the image thumbnail to download a copy of the RAP.

For use of the Archdiocese of Brisbane RAP Artwork, please contact RAP Project Manager Joni McCourt for a copy of the style guide and RAP artwork: mccourtj@bne.catholic.net.au.


For the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane, building stronger relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians is essential if we are to be true to our mission. As a serving, healing and inclusive Church, connecting with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their organisations and building strong relationships with them is necessary if we are to give witness to the Gospel. This requires us to promote the healing of divisions, justice and peace, and the dignity of every individual in society. Relationships are built on trust and an understanding of the intergenerational impact of colonisation on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Understanding and accepting 60,000 years of human occupation in which families lived, loved, and celebrated their existence through ceremonies, songs and dance – some of which are still practiced today – builds on our identity as Australians when we claim this Country as our home and where we practice our faith.


Respect and recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through the sharing of cultural ways, language, sharing knowledge of the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are but a small aspect of the contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to the life of the Church. Most contributions to schools and parishes have been given to share the rich heritage and continual cultural connection to Country by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders.

In 1989 Ngutana-Lui, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Studies Centre was established. It is an example of the contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to reconciliation and to Catholic Education for the ongoing commitment to education and reconciliation. The benefit for Catholic Education students, teachers, and administrators is to participate in a learning experience that creates understanding and appreciation of the richness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, diversity and cultures. This process enables participants to engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with confidence and understanding.

Through this RAP, we plan to create opportunities for Clergy, Archdiocesan agencies, and parishioners to access similar Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural learning experiences to build confidence in establishing/continuing respectful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.


Our Archdiocesan agencies and parishes have an opportunity to build on the participation rate of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the workforce through paid employment and volunteerism. Our commitment is to increase the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees through the development and implementation of an Archdiocesan Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander recruitment and retention strategy. The development of this strategy will be through input from RRG, agencies and parishes to ensure that a partnership approach is undertaken to achieve this deliverable. Increasing the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the workforce creates opportunities to build on respectful relationships, increases the diversity of the workforce and contributes to embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural perspectives in the day-to-day activities in agencies and parishes.

Recognising and accessing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses through the purchasing of supplies and services is another way in which agencies and parishes can contribute to socioeconomic development.

The Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane is committed to the implementation of the RAP through the allocation of resources, regular review and progress reports to engage mitigation strategies should the completion of deliverables be at risk. Secretariat support to the RRG to oversee the implementation of the RAP is one of the key commitments to ensure the Archdiocese is on track for the successful implementation of this RAP.


My name is Shara Delaney. I’m a descendant of the Noonuccal, Ngugi and Goenpul clan groups of Quandamooka that is located on the east coast of Brisbane. I grew up in the Redlands and always maintained my connection to country. I find the importance of belonging and having a relationship with the land and sea is intrinsic to my identity. Having a sense of community has always been important to me. Being able to engage with community through art as a cultural practice brings me joy.

This artwork represents the Archdiocese of Brisbane as the face of the Catholic Church of South East Queensland. My design shows the journey of faith, which is guided by the Spirit. It is depicted where the blue meets the green, and that main path represents the journey of faith which is heading towards the centre. It’s the spirit figure that is guiding them. The main circle also represents the Archdiocese of Brisbane’s community as a whole. From the centre, it branches out to the smaller circles to support and stay connected to the vulnerable in our communities. The white dots are the healing power (coming from the spirit) which is highlighted throughout the design. I have placed the smaller circles to represent different people throughout the community and to be seen as inclusive. The little figure in the smaller circles are my interpretation of a person, using Aboriginal symbols. The black lines that flow in the background represents the spreading the good news simply and effectively. I really enhanced the main circle with layers and dots, to express governance structures and systems in bright colours as being responsive and innovative.

Message from the Archbishop of Brisbane

Since our first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in 2020, much has been done. The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and I, as Archbishop of Brisbane, have publicly endorsed the Uluru Statement from the Heart and an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice enshrined in the Constitution. Like the RAP, these are important steps on the long and arduous journey of reconciliation upon which the flourishing of this nation depends, given that the ongoing injustice suffered by our Indigenous peoples has been and remains a deadly running sore at the heart of the nation. So too the Church in Australia needs a new engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples: that was made clear by the Plenary Council. This will begin with a deep listening to Indigenous voices; and my hope is that the RAP will help us to enter into that deep listening, in the belief that non-Indigenous Australians can actually learn something, even something vital, from Indigenous peoples. I thank all who have worked hard to produce this new iteration: may it bear the fruit we both want and need.
+Mark Coleridge
Archbishop of Brisbane


Reconciliation Australia commends the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane on the formal endorsement of its second Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

Since 2006, RAPs have provided a framework for organisations to leverage their structures and diverse spheres of influence to support the national reconciliation movement. With close to 3 million people now either working or studying in an organisation with a RAP, the program’s potential for impact is greater than ever. The Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane continues to be part of a strong network of more than 2,200 corporate, government, and not-for-profit organisations that have taken goodwill and transformed it into action. 

The four RAP types — Reflect, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate — allow RAP partners to continuously strengthen reconciliation commitments and constantly strive to apply learnings in new ways. 

Karen Mundine
Chief Executive Officer
Reconciliation Australia

An Innovate RAP is a crucial and rewarding period in an organisation’s reconciliation journey. It is a time to build the strong foundations and relationships that ensure sustainable, thoughtful, and impactful RAP outcomes into the future. An integral part of building these foundations is reflecting on and cataloguing the successes and challenges of previous RAPs. Learnings gained through effort and innovation are invaluable resources that the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane will continuously draw upon to create RAP commitments rooted in experience and maturity. 

These learnings extend to the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane using the lens of reconciliation to better understand its core business, sphere of influence, and diverse community of staff and stakeholders. 

The RAP program’s emphasis on relationships, respect, and opportunities gives organisations a framework from which to foster connections with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples rooted in mutual collaboration and trust. This Innovate RAP is an opportunity for the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane to strengthen these relationships, gain crucial experience, and nurture connections that will become the lifeblood of its future RAP commitments. By enabling and empowering staff to contribute to this process, the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane will ensure shared and cooperative success in the long-term. Gaining experience and reflecting on pertinent learnings will ensure the sustainability of the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane’s future RAPs and reconciliation initiatives, providing meaningful impact toward Australia’s reconciliation journey.

Congratulations to the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane on your second Innovate RAP and I look forward to following your ongoing reconciliation journey. 


The Reconciliation Action Plan is a guide for all agencies and parishes to build respective relationships with Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islander peoples to gain an understanding and appreciation of the effects of racism (systemic and casual), to acknowledge historical impacts of colonialisation on contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and identify opportunities to build new pathways to address this through a series of activities and learning opportunities.

Message from the Archdiocese of Brisbane

At the launch of the Reconciliation Action Plan 2023 – 2025, Archbishop Mark Coleridge emphatically stated “It’s not enough just to listen, although that’s crucial because it’s where it begins. Nor is it enough just to learn, nor is it even enough just to love unless the love becomes action… So, we commit ourselves to that action; the action which takes concrete shape in the reconciliation plan.”

In light of Archbishop Mark’s powerful call to action and the outcome of the Voice Referendum in October 2023, we need now more than ever to be the voice of change and help parishes, communities and Church agencies to continue to develop and strengthen respectful relationships with First Nation peoples.  

To assist in this call to action, we have developed resources to assist and support parishes, communities and agencies in their journey towards reconciliation. The resources developed to support your commitment to reconciliation include: 

  • A tailored Parish/Community Implementation plan with suggested activities which address the actions and deliverables which specifically aligns to parishes and communities. 
  • A tailored Agency Implementation plan with suggested activities which address the actions and deliverables which specifically aligns to agencies.
  • A Progress Report template for RAP working groups to assist with documenting progress, achievements and challenges.
Thank you for your commitment to reconciliation.
Joni McCourt
RAP Manager

RAP Toolkit


The Laurel Blow Speaker Series is for anyone wanting to grow in understanding with our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander brother and sisters and help make true reconciliation a reality. This speaker series is named after Laurel because of the significant role she has played in our Archdiocese for bringing about reconciliation.

We have now hosted a number of events under the banner of the Laurel Blow Speaker Series including an endorsement from Archbishop Mark Coleridge for the Uluru Statement from the Heart. You can watch our previous events by clicking the button below.


For further information about the Archdiocese of Brisbane RAP or for support with implementing a RAP in your parish, community or agency, please contact our RAP Manager via the details below:

Joni McCourt





(07) 3324 3440

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