Mon, 19 Oct 2020

France: Rallies held to honour beheaded Samuel Paty

France: Rallies held to honour beheaded Samuel Paty

Thousands have attended rallies across France in honour of Samuel Paty, the teacher beheaded after showing cartoons of the Islamic prophet Muhammad to his pupils.

BBC

'The freedom to offend is a priceless commodity'

'The freedom to offend is a priceless commodity'

The murder of a Parisian teacher underlines the need to stand up for free speech, says Kenan Malik.

The Guardian

'Building an Islam of the Enlightenment'

'Building an Islam of the Enlightenment'

A speech made by French president Emmanuel Macron says secularism is "the glue of a united France."

The Spectator

UK supreme court backs housing charity's 'Jewish only' rule

UK supreme court backs housing charity's 'Jewish only' rule

A woman seeking housing in east London who alleged racial discrimination when a housing charity reserved its properties for Orthodox Jewish people has lost her case at the supreme court.

The Guardian

UK churches urged to wake up to spiritual abuse of LGBT people

UK churches urged to wake up to spiritual abuse of LGBT people

Spiritual and emotional abuse of LGBT people is a "ticking timebomb" for churches in the UK and could lead to legal action and demands for redress, campaigners have said.

The Guardian

Only accountable Church is a safe Church, says chair of CofE safeguarding panel

Only accountable Church is a safe Church, says chair of CofE safeguarding panel

The Church of England must move forward from the "easy part" of publicly apologising to abuse survivors towards profound change that puts safeguarding and accountability at the centre of its mission, the independent chair of the C of E's National Safeguarding Panel has said.

Church Times

Downing Street insists life peerage for John Sentamu 'imminent' amid backlash over delay

Downing Street insists life peerage for John Sentamu 'imminent' amid backlash over delay

A delay in handing Dr John Sentamu a life peerage was due to the inquiry into child sexual abuse in the Church of England, it has been claimed, as Downing Street insisted the announcement was now "imminent."

The Telegraph

More than 1m Irish animals killed last year without being stunned

More than 1m Irish animals killed last year without being stunned

More than one million animals were slaughtered in Ireland last year without first being stunned, in order to allow their meat to be sold as halal or kosher to Muslim and Jewish markets.

The Times (£)

Pope removes Polish bishop following ‘cover-up’ of abuse claims against priests

Pope removes Polish bishop following ‘cover-up’ of abuse claims against priests

Pope Francis has permanently removed a Polish bishop who was kicked out of his diocese a few months ago pending a Vatican investigation into allegations he covered up cases of sexual abuse by his priests.

Irvine Times

'When Covid-19 rules are flouted by ultra-Orthodox Jews, it isn't anti-Semitism to call it out'

'When Covid-19 rules are flouted by ultra-Orthodox Jews, it isn't anti-Semitism to call it out'

When the Jewish community says that it is, it obscures true anti-Semitism while providing leeway not to comply with restrictions needed to stop the spread of the virus, says JJ Goldberg.

NBC News

'Revealed: chaining, beatings and torture inside Sudan's Islamic schools'

'Revealed: chaining, beatings and torture inside Sudan's Islamic schools'

Two-year BBC News Arabic investigation uncovers horrific conditions, with boys as young as five facing violence and sexual abuse

The Guardian

'The backlash against an Indian jewellery advert with a Hindu-Muslim couple makes me despair'

'The backlash against an Indian jewellery advert with a Hindu-Muslim couple makes me despair'

The Twitter storm over a Tanishq advert about an interfaith marriage and family proves India is no longer a secular nation in anything but its constitution, says Akanksha Singh

The Independent

Fri, 16 Oct 2020

Worker told police officer about praying "crank" at Manchester Arena 30 minutes before the blast

Worker told police officer about praying "crank" at Manchester Arena 30 minutes before the blast

A security worker told a police officer about a praying "crank" at the Manchester Arena about 30 minutes before the blast that killed 22 people and injured hundreds more, an inquiry has heard.

ITV

Islamist extremist on trial for video which 'encouraged' terrorism

Islamist extremist on trial for video which 'encouraged' terrorism

An Islamist extremist shared a home-made video of London's Royal Festival Hall with the message "attack, attack", a court has heard.

East London & West Essex Guardian

Lloyds Pharmacy apologises again for emergency contraception refusal

Lloyds Pharmacy apologises again for emergency contraception refusal

Firm says sorry after pharmacist would not dispense product 'for religious reasons'.

The Guardian

'Catholic symbols are being phased out of Irish state secondary schools - and it's about time'

'Catholic symbols are being phased out of Irish state secondary schools - and it's about time'

Why should any student be forced to attend a mandatory mass a couple of times a year, an event that has nothing to do with their education or the beliefs of a considerable chunk of the people who attend the school, or those who work there, asks Jade Hayden.

Her

'Time to listen to citizens and trust technology when it comes to slaughter'

'Time to listen to citizens and trust technology when it comes to slaughter'

The conversation on slaughter without stunning is bouncing around Europe for different reasons: animal welfare, religion, economy.

EU Reporter

‘You don’t belong here’

‘You don’t belong here’

In Poland's 'LGBT-free zones,' existing is an act of defiance.

CNN

Coalition of prosecutors, attorneys general across US vows not to enforce anti-abortion laws

Coalition of prosecutors, attorneys general across US vows not to enforce anti-abortion laws

A coalition of more than 60 state prosecutors and attorneys general from across the country declared Wednesday that they would not enforce laws that criminalise abortion, even if the Supreme Court overturned the 1973 decision that legalised it nationwide.

The Washington Post

US: Gov Cuomo says 'religious practices' in Orthodox Jewish communities has caused renewed spread of Covid-19

US: Gov Cuomo says 'religious practices' in Orthodox Jewish communities has caused renewed spread of Covid-19

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has said 'religious practices' within Orthodox Jewish communities has caused the renewed spread of Covid-19 in New York City and other hot spot zones within the state.

Mail Online

Canada's bishops say conversion therapy ban threatens religious freedom

Canada's bishops say conversion therapy ban threatens religious freedom

Canada's Catholic bishops have criticised the "potential overreach" of a proposed government ban on conversion therapy, arguing that the legislation's "very disconcerting ambiguity" poses a threat to freedom of religion.

Catholic Herald

LGBT groups in Japan launch petition seeking equality law

LGBT groups in Japan launch petition seeking equality law

Sexual minority groups and human rights activists launched a petition on Thursday calling for an LGBT equality law in Japan in hopes that it can be enacted next year, when the country is to host the Olympics and will be the focus of international attention.

Associated Press

'Mubarak Bala: Blasphemy and anti-atheist repression in Nigeria'

'Mubarak Bala: Blasphemy and anti-atheist repression in Nigeria'

The arrest of Mubarak Bala has foregrounded the dangerous situation of humanists and the vicious threat of Islamic extremism in Nigeria, says Leo Igwe.

Today News Africa

'New Zealand euthanasia vote: polls point to "yes" amid campaign of fear and doubt'

'New Zealand euthanasia vote: polls point to "yes" amid campaign of fear and doubt'

The End of Life Choice Act 2019 would allow those with a terminal illness to apply to terminate their life. Although the act has passed through parliament it will only come into force if more than 50% of voters tick "yes".

The Guardian

Thu, 15 Oct 2020

Catholic Church admits blame over pensioner's care home death

Catholic Church admits blame over pensioner's care home death

The Catholic Church has admitted it was to blame for the death of a 94-year-old man who died after falling from a Dundee care home window in 2017.

BBC

LGBT pupils in Wales 'need better support' from schools

LGBT pupils in Wales 'need better support' from schools

Schools and colleges need to give better support to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students, the schools inspectorate has urged.

BBC

Nine out of 10 EU citizens oppose animal slaughter without stunning, poll finds

Nine out of 10 EU citizens oppose animal slaughter without stunning, poll finds

Nine out of 10 EU citizens want their governments to ban the slaughter of animals that have not been stunned, according to a poll published last week.

The Guardian

Poland postpones non-stun slaughtered meat export ban until 2025

Poland postpones non-stun slaughtered meat export ban until 2025

The Polish Senate voted Wednesday to postpone provisions in an animal rights bill that would ban exporting meat from animals slaughtered without stunning until 2025.

The Jerusalem Post

Two priests accused in Vatican's first sexual abuse trial

Two priests accused in Vatican's first sexual abuse trial

Two Catholic priests have gone on trial in the Vatican, marking the first time the city state has prosecuted a case of alleged sexual abuse.

BBC

Italian woman in Vatican financial scandal investigation arrested

Italian woman in Vatican financial scandal investigation arrested

A 39-year-old Italian woman with links to a deposed Roman Catholic cardinal was arrested on Tuesday in connection with the Vatican's latest financial scandal, Italian police and the Vatican said.

Reuters

Iceland: PM criticised for bill banning intersex surgery on children but not male circumcision

Iceland: PM criticised for bill banning intersex surgery on children but not male circumcision

If passed, this bill would grant children born with atypical sex characteristics freedom from non-consensual and medically unnecessary surgery on their genitalia. People's Party MP Guðmundur Ingi Kristinsson criticised the bill for not including a ban on penile circumcision.

Reykjavik Grapevine

US: Student warned by Christian college after tweeting about being a lesbian

US: Student warned by Christian college after tweeting about being a lesbian

A student at Moody Bible Institute, a Christian college in Chicago, has revealed that she was placed on "warning status" after she tweeted about being a lesbian.

Pink News

Wed, 14 Oct 2020

Radio 4 Sunday: Mubarak Bala and IICSA findings on the Church of England

Radio 4 Sunday: Mubarak Bala and IICSA findings on the Church of England

BBC Radio 4's Sunday show features an interview with Leo Igwe on the imprisonment of humanist Mubarak Bala in Nigeria (from 01:30), and the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse's report on the Church of England (from 13:30).

BBC

French education minister calls for vigilance on secular rules in schools

French education minister calls for vigilance on secular rules in schools

French Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer has promised to back teachers, pupils and parents who expose breaches of the country's law on secularism in schools, as he reported figures on infringements in the past year.

RFI

Cardinal George Pell meets Pope Francis for first time since acquittal

Cardinal George Pell meets Pope Francis for first time since acquittal

George Pell has met Pope Francis in Rome for the first time since the Australian cardinal's conviction for child sexual abuse was overturned.

BBC

'I thought about giving up music'

'I thought about giving up music'

Mennel Ibtissem is a French-Syrian singer who has become an internet sensation. However, she faced a lot of criticism following her decision to no longer wear a hijab.

BBC

US: Trump voters overwhelmingly support LGBT+ rights

US: Trump voters overwhelmingly support LGBT+ rights

While Trump-supporting Republicans are usually assumed to be staunchly anti-LGBT+, the poll found that across the board participants were in favour of marriage equality, adoption rights and trans people serving in the US military.

Pink News

US: Christian adoption agency that only placed children with married straight couples won’t be shut down, court rules

US: Christian adoption agency that only placed children with married straight couples won’t be shut down, court rules

A federal judge has temporarily blocked the shut down of a Christian adoption agency which refused to place children with LGBT+ families.

Pink News

Indian LGBT+ rights group launches landmark bid to ban conversion therapy

Indian LGBT+ rights group launches landmark bid to ban conversion therapy

Following the suicide of a young bisexual woman in India, an LGBT+ rights group has filed a petition to the Kerala High Court seeking to ban the practice of conversion therapy.

Pink News

China bans pilgrimage for Muslims who fail patriotism test

China bans pilgrimage for Muslims who fail patriotism test

China has ordered Muslim citizens to prove that they are patriotic and law-abiding before they are allowed to undertake the haj pilgrimage, under a new law that it says will safeguard national security.

The Times (£)

Pakistan cleric killed in apparent sectarian attack

Pakistan cleric killed in apparent sectarian attack

Gunmen riding on a motorcycle shot and killed a religious scholar who belongs to a little-known branch of Islam in Pakistan's bustling city of Karachi, police said.

Associated Press

Three Dalit girls targeted in ‘acid attack' in Indian state at centre of caste tensions

Three Dalit girls targeted in ‘acid attack' in Indian state at centre of caste tensions

Police say three girls from the Dalit (formerly known as 'Untouchable') community have been targeted in a possible acid attack while they were sleeping in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.

The Independent

Tue, 13 Oct 2020

Ireland: Catholic symbols in state schools to be phased out

Ireland: Catholic symbols in state schools to be phased out

State secondary schools in Ireland are to phase out a range of Catholic influences such as mandatory graduation masses, the display of Catholic symbols only and visits from diocesan inspectors.

The Irish Times

Church of England’s ‘Safe Spaces’ helpline labelled 'unsafe' by abuse survivors

Church of England’s ‘Safe Spaces’ helpline labelled 'unsafe' by abuse survivors

Survivors claim the helpline was 'rushed' into service so archbishops could refer to it in their response to the child sex abuse report.

The Telegraph

Church of England statistics: attendance still falling

Church of England statistics: attendance still falling

In the decade since 2009, most key measures of attendance have fallen by between 15 and 20 per cent, and by three per cent since 2014, according to a Church of England report.

Church Times

Regulator finds mismanagement at Christian broadcasting charity

Regulator finds mismanagement at Christian broadcasting charity

The regulator published an inquiry report into the Revelation Foundation, a Christian broadcaster, on Friday. It uncovered flaws in its structure and serious governance failings that amount to mismanagement by its trustees.

Civil Society

Catholic Church thanks Government for 'lifeline' heritage fund

Catholic Church thanks Government for 'lifeline' heritage fund

The first major tranche of grants from the Government's £1.57bn fund include the Catholic Bishops' Conference, which is to receive £3m.

Christian Today

MEPs condemn LGBT conversion therapy in appeal to European Commission

MEPs condemn LGBT conversion therapy in appeal to European Commission

More than sixty Members of the European Parliament have signed a letter to three European Commissioners, demanding a Europe-wide ban on so-called "conversion therapy" practices.

The Parliament Magazine

France: Islamic scholar charged with rape hires convicted teacher for new school

France: Islamic scholar charged with rape hires convicted teacher for new school

Islamic scholar Tariq Ramadan has recruited a barred teacher who showed support for the Charlie Hebdo massacre to work in his new school. Mr Ramadan is launching a centre in France to teach ethics and feminism this month, despite being suspended from his Oxford University post over rape allegations.

TheNational.ae

Algeria hands activist 10-year sentence for 'inciting atheism'

Algeria hands activist 10-year sentence for 'inciting atheism'

An Algerian activist has been sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined over $77,000 for "inciting atheism", "offending or denigrating the dogma and precepts of Islam", and "undermining national unity".

Middle East Eye

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