Academic Articles

Louise’s interest in Christian church disputes comes from a very strong legal and academic background, as well as the Christian desire to see restoration and unity within the Body of Christ.

Louise has published a number of articles on the legal and religious aspects of dispute resolution.

Legal Education and Restorative Practices:

Having spent many years as a Law lecturer, Louise understands the importance of properly training and developing our legal advisers of the future. In the following series of articles Louise discusses some of the issues and approaches necessary for a future of lawyers who can provide appropriate restorative dispute resolution.

Article: A Restorative Approach to Preparing Law Students for Ethical Practice. – Louise Greentree

This article discusses the need and methods for designing subject teaching and student disciplinary processes using restorative practices within a Law Faculty to teach and model standards of personal integrity and professional ethics.

Along with looking at some of the problems facing law educators today, the article also provides a clear definition and summary of restorative practices.

Article: Changing the Leopard’s Spots: Practical Training in New Skills Required For Collaborative Lawyers – Marilyn Scott and Louise Greentree

This article looks at the need for collaborative law in general, and particularly the need for it to be taught within universities. Collaborative law is a new way of assisting clients to solve their legal problems, whether in family law, small business, partnerships, wills, property, civil litigation or aged care, to name a few.

Teaching legal practice skills needs to include educating lawyers in collaborative practice particularly to off-set the dominant adversarial litigious approach implied in black-letter law subjects and overtly taught in traditional PLT courses. The collaborative lawyer requires a complex set of skills distinctly different from the adversarial lawyer, not only as to the attitude and character of the lawyer but also for coaching the client.

Article: Conversion: The Overlooked and Underrated Element in Restorative Practices? – Louise Greentree

Before ‘healing the harm’ – preparedness to forgive
Before preparedness to forgive – shame & repentance
Before shame & repentance – conversion

The theory of restorative practices is focused on three areas or elements that make up the foundation for the process: the first area is the shame theory, the second area is restorative versus retributive theory and the third area focuses on the healing qualities of repentance and forgiveness. The three areas together provide a compelling argument in favour of restorative practices and give an explanation of why restorative conferences are effective in criminological, sociological, psychological and spiritual terms.

This article arose from consideration of three different aspects of restorative practices; first the desire to create a model of restorative practices; second the need to address certain questions that came out from hearing the stories of restorative practices carried out in various situations; third the consideration of whether restorative practices had any place in the ‘hard’ cases such as those involving terrorism, culturally entrenched domestic violence and drug-induced psychosis.

The ultimate question arose: is it the nature of restorative practices that they are only applicable to the offender who is a mentally sound person who adheres, fundamentally, to the set of values or mindset that prevails in the community?


The Anglican Church:

Louise has been involved in a number of cases and researched the ordinances and practices of the Anglican church. In a number of articles she evaluates and analyses current practices and potential problems.

Article: How the Anglican Church’s ‘Criminal Law’ System Targets Ordinary Parishioners – Louise Greentree, 12th November 2007

In The Melbourne Anglican November 2007 the Registrar, the Director of the Diocesan Professional Standards Unit and two members of the Professional Standards Committee wrote a response to a letter from Wendy Hunter, published in the same edition, in which she lamented the church’s over-response to ‘sexual offences’ and pointed to the need to provide for responses that distinguished between different kinds of ‘inappropriate behaviours’. The diocesan response says, rightly, that the consequences of the betrayal of their position of power and trust by clergy and diocesan employees who abuse others are very great and totally unacceptable. What was the evil that has surfaced only in recent years? Not that abuse occurred, but that the church in the past failed to deal appropriately with the allegations. Is it possible that in trying to rectify this evil the church has gone after the wrong targets?

Report to the Advisory Group from Louise Greentree upon reading responses to the Open Letter and amended version from Dr. Keith Mascord to Standing Committee of the Anglican Church of Australia Sydney Diocese. Louise Greentree, 13th June 2007

The project was to read the responses to the letters from Dr. Keith Mascord to Standing Committee and to prepare a report to contribute to the view of the members of the Advisory Group of those responses, particularly in the light of the various areas of expertise represented in the Advisory Group. Louise analyses the response from the perspective of someone interested in organisational culture and conflict.


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