Bibliographical Heritage of Religious Institutes
For generations Catholic religious congregations of priests, brothers and nuns have played an important part in the cultural, educational, spiritual and social life of the entire Australian community, in areas as diverse as education, social welfare, health care, and overseas aid. Today many of these congregations are in decline and experiencing changes which, among other consequences, are having a drastic impact on the nation’s bibliographical heritage. Many communities have relocated from large institutions to smaller and more domestic housing, and already many unique and long-established libraries have been lost or irretrievably dispersed.
Through our project “Bibliographical Heritage of Religious Institutesthe Carmelite Library is making an urgent effort to provide a repository for books representing the historic traditions of religious congregations. We are convinced that these are of significance not only for their theological and religious content, but also from many other perspectives of broad interest in the community: for example, the history of education, of women and of children, and the sociology of particular spiritual, cultural, and religious outlooks and customs.
No peace among the nations without peace among the religions. No peace among religions without dialogue between the religions. No dialogue between the religions without investigation of the foundations of the religions (Hans Küng).
Inter-faith dialogue has assumed a special importance in today’s world. We plan to offer the Library as a centre for religious dialogue, especially on the level of the spiritual search at the heart of all religions.
We hope, as funds allow, to build on our select holdings on the spiritual and mystical traditions of the world religions.