Wed, 20 Dec 2017
Malaysian politicians say budget airlines' uniforms are too revealing and do not represent the country's official Muslim status.
Tue, 19 Dec 2017
A consultation on sex and relationships education has opened this morning. The education secretary, Justine Greening, explains how she wants to change this part of the curriculum.
The Right Reverend Sarah Mullally has been named as the first female bishop of London. She will become the third most senior official in the Church of England and immediately take a seat in the House of Lords.
On BBC Newsnight Rod Thomas, the bishop of Maidstone, said disagreements over sexuality in the C of E were "a primary issue" with the capacity to "split the Church".
A Muslim radio station has been reprimanded by Ofcom after an Islamic scholar advised a sick listener to ignore the advice of non-Muslim doctors.
The Times (£)
A Church of England priest who served as a vicar at a village church has been charged with historic sex offences against a girl.
Mid Sussex Times
The governor of Pennsylvania has vetoed a bill on abortion passed by the Republican-controlled legislature in the state. It would have limited abortions to the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. Opponents also say it would have outlawed the most common method of second-trimester abortion.
The Washington Post
President Trump personally pushed allies to pressure Congress to repeal a law prohibiting churches and tax-exempt institutions from political organising in its upcoming tax bill. But the change has been blocked.
A mother's lawsuit against her daughter's school district details more than 30 specific incidents of allegedly unconstitutional use of religion in schools. These include science teachers calling evolution a "fairy tale," teachers waving a Bible at students and teachers punishing or criticising students who refused to participate in classroom prayers.
Alia Waheed says cultural pressures make it difficult for many Muslim women to speak out about sexual abuse, but "the #MeToo effect" could help to start changing attitudes.
Claims about abortion will be fact checked by Ireland's referendum commission during next year's campaign, Ireland's prime minister Leo Varadkar has said.
The Times (£)
A Chinese university has banned Christmas in a bid to help young people resist the "corrosion of Western religious culture".
Mon, 18 Dec 2017
A safeguarding expert who wrote a review of sex abuse within the Church of England said his recommendations for better practice to protect survivors have been ignored.
Premier Christian Radio
The head of Ofsted says she has received threats and abuse after accusing private faith schools run by religious conservatives of deliberately resisting British values and equalities law.
Around the world, there are very few countries which allow schools to pick pupils on the basis of their faith. The UK is one of them, and groups such as the NSS argue that faith-based admissions are bad for society.
Lawyers acting for the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children Scotland have written to Dr Catherine Calderwood, the country's chief medical officer. The society says Dr Calderwood will face legal action if she does not stop allowing women to take the abortion pill at home by 5 January.
The former archbishop of Canterbury George Carey has attacked his successor, Justin Welby, in a Christmas letter to friends. This year Welby asked Carey to resign an honorary post over his involvement in a high-profile sexual abuse case. Lord Carey has called the demand "shocking" and "quite unjust".
The Bishop of Chelmsford has said he regrets online sales beginning on Christmas Eve and he would support laws to prevent all but essential services operating on 25th December.
The Times (£)
Fewer Americans today believe the biblical accounts of Jesus's birth are reflected in the way the culture observes the season, the Pew Research Centre has found. Pew also said "most U.S. adults believe the religious aspects of Christmas are emphasised less now than in the past — even as relatively few Americans are bothered by this trend".
Baptist News Global
At least nine Christian worshippers were killed and 50 wounded when two suicide bombers attacked a church in the southwestern city of Quetta on Sunday. Islamic State quickly claimed responsibility.
The Washington Post
The Catholic Archbishop of Sydney has responded to a royal commission report making recommendations over child sex abuse. He said breaking the secrecy of confession was a "distraction" and ending celibacy would not guarantee an end to the abuse claims.
Germany's interior minister has called for the creation of an anti-Semitism officer to tackle increasing violence against Jews in the country.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday expressed his support for same-sex unions, in an about-face that may displease bishops in the mainly Roman Catholic country.
New York Post
There has been an alarming increase in domestic violence in Hindu and Sikh communities in Australia. Advocates say this is due to myriad factors, including the influence of ancient texts which relegate women to inferior status, clerical reluctance to raise the subject and Australia's failure to outlaw dowry abuse.
Fri, 15 Dec 2017
Children being educated illegally in unregistered faith schools are left "unprepared for life in modern Britain," according to a report published this week by England education watchdog Ofsted.
The Church of England has apologised to the relatives of a bishop for the way it investigated child abuse claims made against him decades after his death.
A five-year inquiry into sexual abuse in Australia has released its final report, saying institutions had "seriously failed" to protect children.
A letter in response to the bishop of Bedford's swipe that the National Secular Society over its call for disestablishment.
A Muslim man has launched a discrimination case against the holiday company Butlins after he claims his teenage daughter was barred from using the dodgems because she was wearing a hijab.
News that chancel repair liability (an ancient law that can force homeowners to pay for some ancient Anglican parish church repairs) is among the 14 projects that the Law Commission will look at over the next three years.
The Labour leader was accused of hating Jewish people as he delivered a speech to the Jewish Labour Movement's Chanukah party.
Based on surveys of refugees in Bangladesh, the number is much higher than Myanmar's official figure of 400.
Police in India's western Rajasthan state have frozen the bank account of a Hindu zealot who received public donations of around £3,500 days after he is alleged to have brutally murdered a Muslim labourer, burnt his body and circulated videos of the incident on social media.
The Turnbull government has appointed an academic who has argued that recognising religious freedom should include acceptance of a limited form of sharia law to the Ruddock review.
Shankar, 22, was hacked to death in Tamil Nadu by a gang of men including his wife's father, because they did not approve of him marrying above his caste.
"More moderate forms of organized religion could become increasingly irrelevant in the United States," a sociologist says.
Thu, 14 Dec 2017
There is a responsibility on all of us that want to live in a fairer, more egalitarian society to challenge religious privilege and push for disestablishment, argues Stephen Evans.
Amanda Spielman, Ofsted's chief inspector, said yesterday that some schools were deliberately illegal and unregistered, so they did not have to meet education requirements. She said children at many illegal faith schools left education with limited or no ability to read and write in English, no qualifications and no work skills.
The Times (£)
A rising number of conservative faith schools are actively undermining British values and thus increasing the risk of extremism in society, the head of Ofsted has warned.
International Business Times
Anti-abortion campaigners could be banned from gathering outside a Marie Stopes clinic in Edgbaston.
John Chisholm says it has been a travesty that hundreds of people die due to a lack of transplant organs and an opt-out donation scheme is long overdue in England.
Marianne Elliott has returned to her former home in Belfast's White City estate for her latest book, Hearthlands. She discusses the relative harmony on the estate before the Troubles – partly aided by Governments defying vested interests like the Orange Order to bring in mixed-religion housing.
Women's rights advocates say a controversial US legal advocacy group, Alliance Defending Freedom, is "exporting extreme ideologies worldwide" against sexual and reproductive rights.
Nicky Pessaroff says claims of a 'war on Christmas' in America are really a means of eroding the separation between church and state.
Las Cruces Sun-News
Marie Solis says Jones's win in Alabama shows pro-choice candidates can win American elections, even when the electorate seems hostile to their position on abortion.
Politicians have made clear-cut calls to repeal Ireland's eighth amendment, allow abortion up to 12 weeks' pregnancy and decriminalise the act.
Indonesia's Constitutional Court has narrowly rejected a petition asking it to criminalize all sex outside marriage. The decision is a blow to religious conservatives who have been gaining influence in the secular, Muslim-majority country.
The New York Times
An El Salvador court has rejected the appeal of a woman sentenced to 30 years in prison over what she says was a stillbirth. El Salvador is one of four Latin American countries with total bans on abortion.
China is collecting a huge trove of personal data including fingerprints, eye scans and DNA samples from millions of people in the western region of Xinjiang. Critics say the Muslim Uighur population is bearing the brunt of a security crackdown.
The Times (£)
Wed, 13 Dec 2017
Gradually dismantle royal family’s links to Church when Prince Charles crowned King, says NSS report
Prince Charles's accession to the throne will offer a "particularly opportune moment" to disestablish the Church of England, according to an NSS report.
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