On Thursday 14 September, the Melbourne Catholic Lawyers’ Association (MCLA) held their annual dinner, with special guest speaker Chris Uhlmann, seasoned journalist and former political editor of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and Nine News.

The evening commenced with grace by Archbishop Peter A Comensoli, who also extended his gratitude to all those in attendance for the important role they play in the legal and justice system.

Since 2001, the association has brought together members of the judiciary, barristers, solicitors and law students for opportunities to strengthen and develop their faith and provide a network of like-minded professionals for Catholics in the legal field.

Thursday’s event took place in an atmosphere of camaraderie and intellectual discourse and, according to MCLA organisers, was a chance to emphasise the crucial role that the legal community plays in upholding justice for all. Also in attendance were members of the clergy, as well as MCLA chaplain and Rector of Corpus Christi Seminary Rev Dr Cameron Forbes.

The Walkley award-winning Uhlmann was introduced by eminent Kings Counsel Róisín Annesley, who outlined Uhlmann’s illustrious career, spanning 19 years at the ABC and later at Nine News.

Uhlmann’s speech, titled ‘In Defence of Western Civilisation: Defending our Cultural Heritage’, captivated the audience’s attention as he delved into the complexities and challenges facing Western civilisation in the modern world. Organisers said that Uhlmann’s insightful analysis and eloquent delivery left attendees with a deeper appreciation of the cultural heritage they are tasked with protecting.

A vibrant, engaging Q&A session followed Uhlmann’s address, often punctuated with humorous anecdotes about his career covering all things politics.

MCLA organisers described the evening as one of ‘intellectual enrichment, camaraderie and reflection’, and underscored the enduring significance of the association as a place ‘where legal professionals can convene to deliberate on work-related, ethical and legal matters, and enjoy a cohesive network of like-minded individuals within the Catholic legal community’.

The Melbourne Catholic Lawyers’ Association runs regular retreats, Masses and events throughout the year. For more information or to contact the association, visit www.catholiclawyers.net.au or email info@catholiclawyers.com.au.

Main image (L–R): Archbishop Peter A Comensoli, Christina Warren (President of the MCLA), Chris Uhlmann and Tim McFarlane (the evening’s MC).