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Dr John Collins

Dr John Collins

Pastoral Theology

BTheol (MCD, 1987), GradDipEd (Secondary) (ICE, 1987), MTh (Sydney 1990), MEd (Pastoral Guidance) (CCES, 1991), PhD (ACU, 2014 ) Supervisor AAOS* (APSE-UK) ** *Australasian Association of Supervision ** Association for Pastoral Supervision and Education, United Kingdom

+ 61 2 9752 9516


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Australian Catholic University (2014)
  • Master of Education (Pastoral Guidance), Catholic College of Education Sydney (1991)
  • Master of Theology, University of Sydney (1990)
  • Graduate Diploma in Education (Secondary), Institute of Catholic Education (Christ College) (1987)
  • Bachelor of Theology, Melbourne College of Divinity (Yarra Theological Union) (1987)


Areas of Research Interest

Practical Theology and Theological Method, Lonergan Studies, Pastoral Theology and formation for ministry, The relationship between theology and the human sciences -particularly psychoanalytic theory and practice, Group Relations and Socio Analytic theory, Cultural Anthropology, Vocational Anthropology



Originally from Melbourne, John moved to Sydney in 1988 and now lives in Sydney’s Inner West with his wife Dr Sandra Carroll and they have two young adult sons, Paul and Bede.

John has worked for over twenty-five years in Church agencies. His roles have included pastoral work in a Catholic hospital, primary, secondary and tertiary teaching in Catholic institutions, adult faith education, diocesan renewal, and co-ordination of RCIA and organisational consultancy.

Before beginning with CIS in 2016 John worked at the ACBC Agencies the National Office for Evangelisation – Catholic Enquiry Centre from 2007 to 2015. Before that he was at Centacare Sydney for 14 years where he worked in a variety of roles including marriage education, research and the development of social policy. While working at Centacare and for the ACBC John also taught Practical Theology and Professional Ethics at ACU as a sessional lecturer.

John currently president of the Association for Practical Theology in Oceania and is an active member of the Australian Catholic Theological Association.

Currently a Candidate for the Permanent Diaconate in the Diocese of Parramatta. John is also a passionate Sydney Swans member and supporter.

John is also interested in clergy well- being and is active in the provision of pastoral supervision for clergy from a variety of Christian denominations.

At CIS John is the head of the Christian Life and Ministry Discipline.


Select Publications

  • “The Curious Case of the Priest Who Had Lost His Faculties,” with Neil Ormerod. Australasian Catholic Record 97, no. 2 (2020): 206–15.
  • “Towards the Establishment of a Permanent Catechumenate for the Sacrament of Matrimony in Australia.” Australasian Catholic Record 97, no. 1 (2020): 18–29.
  • “Lonergan, Group Relations and Formation for Educational Leadership in Catholic Schools.” In Australian Lonergan Workshop III, edited by Matthew C. Ogilvie, 70–85. Sydney: The Lonergan Centre, 2019.
  • “Stewards of Creation: Laudato Si’, Ecological Conversion and Religious Education,” with Sandra Carroll. In Global Perspectives on Catholic Religious Education in Schools, Vol. 2: Learning and Leading in a Pluralist World, edited by Michael T. Buchanan and Adrian-Mario Gellel, 417–28. Singapore: Springer, 2019.
  • “Worker Deacons.” Australasian Catholic Record 95, no. 3 (2018): 319–29.
  • “Pastoral Formation and Group Relations Theory.” In Lonergan’s Anthropology Revisited: The Next Fifty Years of Vatican II, edited by Gerard Whelan, 441–5. Rome: Gregorian and Biblical Press, 2015.
  • “Questioning the Role of Enchantment for the New Evangelisation,” with Sandra Carroll. Australasian Catholic Record 90, no. 2 (2013): 196–206.
  • Call and Response: An Introduction to the Catholic Faith. Strathfield, NSW: St Pauls Publications, 2010.