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National Secular Society

Challenging Religious Privilege

Tags: Catholic Church

The new UN Secretary General must not allow religion to override human rights

The new UN Secretary General must not allow religion to override human rights

Posted: Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:18 by Keith Porteous Wood

UN Secretary General designate needs to ignore Catholic pressure to row back on Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights and Gay Rights, writes Keith Porteous Wood.

Religious privilege undermines abuse victims’ access to justice

Religious privilege undermines abuse victims’ access to justice

Posted: Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:40 by Richard Scorer

Richard Scorer, a specialist child abuse lawyer at Slater & Gordon draws attention to organisations seeking more lenient treatment over child abuse-connected matters because they are religious and makes the case for no concessions being given.

Invisible power: how the Catholic Church influences Italian politics

Invisible power: how the Catholic Church influences Italian politics

Posted: Thu, 26 May 2016 10:39 by Stefano Bonino

Italy's bill on civil unions is an important landmark in the history of successful and unsuccessful attempts by the Vatican to influence Italian politics, writes Stefano Bonino.

Spotlight: This hard-hitting film salutes the journalists who exposed the power of a deeply corrupt institution

Spotlight: This hard-hitting film salutes the journalists who exposed the power of a deeply corrupt institution

Posted: Thu, 28 Jan 2016 12:48 by Keith Porteous Wood

Keith Porteous Wood previews Spotlight, the hard-hitting film which depicts the Boston Globe's investigation into the cover-up of child sex abuse by the Catholic Church.

Catholic hierarchy stand by while nuns’ orders seek to obstruct justice for their abuse victims

Catholic hierarchy stand by while nuns’ orders seek to obstruct justice for their abuse victims

Posted: Mon, 06 Jul 2015 13:14 by Keith Porteous Wood

Following the failed attempt to obstruct the historic child abuse inquiry in Scotland, Keith Porteous Wood exposes the continuing reluctance of the Catholic Church to face up to and pay for its crimes.

Irish same-sex marriage – is the Church trying to blackmail the state?

Irish same-sex marriage – is the Church trying to blackmail the state?

Posted: Fri, 17 Apr 2015 11:01 by Keith Porteous Wood

The Roman Catholic Church in Ireland has threatened to stop civil marriage registration if Irish law is changed to allow same sex marriages. Keith Porteous Wood argues that if it were to carry out its threat, it could inflict more harm on the Church than any change of the legal definition of marriage would.

Why did the CPS abandon investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor?

Why did the CPS abandon investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor?

Posted: Thu, 19 Mar 2015 12:28 by Alistair McBay

As the full scale of the British Establishment's cover-up of child sex abuse becomes apparent, Alistair McBay argues it is time for the Crown Prosecution Service to make public its reasons for dropping the investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor 12 years ago.

The dishonesty of religious lobbying shines like a beacon

The dishonesty of religious lobbying shines like a beacon

Posted: Tue, 03 Feb 2015 11:59 by Terry Sanderson

NSS President Terry Sanderson argues that the churches have changed their lobbying tactics, and are trying to impose their doctrines through misdirection and 'slippery slope' arguments.

The Bishops, the Catholic vote and the Referendum

The Bishops, the Catholic vote and the Referendum

Posted: Fri, 10 Oct 2014 10:37 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay argues that a growing political alliance between the leadership of the Catholic Church in Scotland and SNP has implications which stretch far beyond the Referendum campaign and threaten to revive religious identity politics.

Pope’s zero tolerance pledge on child abuse is not enough

Pope’s zero tolerance pledge on child abuse is not enough

Posted: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 12:45 by David McClenaghan

Words are not enough: David McClenaghan argues that if the Church wants to deal with its record on child abuse it must root out both offenders and enablers.

The English Catholic Church and the Sex Abuse Crisis

The English Catholic Church and the Sex Abuse Crisis

Posted: Wed, 19 Mar 2014 12:04 by Richard Scorer

In England, Catholic leaders have fostered the impression that the English church has been relatively scandal-free, and that such problems as did exist were eliminated by the Nolan reforms. A new book by Richard Scorer, head of the abuse unit at Slater & Gordon lawyers, interrogates that claim.

Pope's first year of papacy has been a failure on child abuse

Pope's first year of papacy has been a failure on child abuse

Posted: Thu, 13 Mar 2014 15:26 by Keith Porteous Wood

This week marks the first anniversary of the election of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina as Pope Francis. But as far as far as child abuse is concerned, it's just business as usual at the Vatican but with better PR, argues Keith Porteous Wood.

The bishop’s fantasy secularism

The bishop’s fantasy secularism

Posted: Tue, 11 Mar 2014 16:25

This week the Catholic Bishop of Portsmouth, Philip Egan, gave a lecture at King's College in London in which he launched a full frontal attack on secularism. But the secularism the Bishop denounces, argues Terry Sanderson, is simply a figment of his imagination.

Vatican’s attack on its critics is a familiar tactic

Vatican’s attack on its critics is a familiar tactic

Posted: Fri, 07 Feb 2014 11:08 by David Clohessy

After hearing the UN's scathing attack on its child abuse record, the Vatican's counter-attack against its critics is a familiar tactic, argues David Clohessy

Catholic cognitive dissonance: Overlooking evil

Catholic cognitive dissonance: Overlooking evil

Posted: Thu, 23 Jan 2014 10:28 by Terry Sanderson

The UN's recent examination of the Holy See presented yet more evidence of the Catholic Church's responsibility for, and cover-up of, child abuse. Yet the Catholic majority remains persistently silent, argues Terry Sanderson.

Catholic sex abuse scandal: how will Pope Francis make the Church accountable?

Catholic sex abuse scandal: how will Pope Francis make the Church accountable?

Posted: Wed, 04 Dec 2013 17:11 by Terry Sanderson

The Vatican's refusal to provide information requested by the United Nations on the alleged sexual abuse of children could mean Pope Francis's honeymoon period ends in ignominy, just like his predecessor, argues Terry Sanderson.

Is the “Francis Effect” just a figment of Catholic wishful thinking?

Is the “Francis Effect” just a figment of Catholic wishful thinking?

Posted: Mon, 25 Nov 2013 13:00 by Terry Sanderson

Anecdotal reports of a rise in Catholic mass attendance since the arrival of the new Pope do not seem to be supported by systematically obtained data – at least in USA., blogs Terry Sanderson.

Do you know what a Concordat is?

Do you know what a Concordat is?

Posted: Mon, 21 Oct 2013 13:50 by Anne Marie Waters

Concordats are a little known tool of the Vatican to impose its dogma in to the public square. They are anti-democratic and anti-secular and, as Anne Marie Waters argues, are having a serious impact on the safety and health of millions of women.

It may be a new velvet glove, but it’s the same old iron fist at the Vatican

It may be a new velvet glove, but it’s the same old iron fist at the Vatican

Posted: Tue, 30 Jul 2013 12:43 by Terry Sanderson

Terry Sanderson argues that Pope Bergoglio won't move the Catholic Church forward and help it reform.

Will the UN finally bring the Vatican to account for its child abuse crimes?

Will the UN finally bring the Vatican to account for its child abuse crimes?

Posted: Thu, 11 Jul 2013 11:30 by Keith Porteous Wood

As a United Nations Committee on children's rights confronts the Vatican on its abysmal record on clerical paedophilia and criminal cover-ups, Keith Porteous Wood describes his role in bringing the Holy See to account.

Same-sex marriage – is Cameron’s commitment wobbling?

Same-sex marriage – is Cameron’s commitment wobbling?

Posted: Thu, 16 May 2013 13:50 by Terry Sanderson

Terry Sanderson questions if the recent political upheaval will add leverage for the opponents of gay marriage in the UK.

Are religions unfair to women? Is the Pope Catholic?

Are religions unfair to women? Is the Pope Catholic?

Posted: Thu, 09 May 2013 10:40 by Anne Marie Waters

Secularism does not control belief; it keeps religious oppressors away from power and, most importantly, keeps women safe and free from these oppressors.

At last – churches recognise The Big Society for the Big Con that it was

At last – churches recognise The Big Society for the Big Con that it was

Posted: Mon, 29 Apr 2013 10:54 by Terry Sanderson

It seems The Big Society is back – if only for the last nail to be driven into its coffin.

The sorry tale of the Catholic Church in Scotland continues to unfold

The sorry tale of the Catholic Church in Scotland continues to unfold

Posted: Tue, 12 Mar 2013 12:33

As we await the inevitable media-inspired 'Popefest' from the Vatican, Alistair McBay wonders if the new Bishop of Rome will grasp the full meaning of the words transparency and accountability, and face up to the Herculean task of getting the Church's house in order.

The Catholic Church must change or die

The Catholic Church must change or die

Posted: Thu, 07 Mar 2013 19:20 by Terry Sanderson

Terry Sanderson says level of arrogant politicisation to which The Catholic church aspired under the papacy of Joseph Ratzinger was appalling, but perhaps the decline of support in the pews may bring the Church to its senses.

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