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Wed, 07 Apr 2021

'Unfair and unjustified': A Jersey man's call for an assisted dying law

'Unfair and unjustified': A Jersey man's call for an assisted dying law

A terminally ill islander says Jersey's law on assisted dying is "unfair" and "unjustified" and he is calling for it to be changed.

ITV

'Allergic reaction to US religious right' fuelling decline of religion, experts say

'Allergic reaction to US religious right' fuelling decline of religion, experts say

The percentage of churchgoing Americans is steadily falling, and the swirl of rightwing politics and Christianity is playing a key role.

The Guardian

US: ‘Are LGBTQ students at Christian schools discriminated against?’

US: ‘Are LGBTQ students at Christian schools discriminated against?’

A new lawsuit backs up what scholars have been saying: LGBTQ students at Christian schools experience higher rates of bullying and harassment as well as clinical depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation in comparison with students at non-religious schools.

Religion News Service

New research documents the severity of LGBT+ conversion practices

New research documents the severity of LGBT+ conversion practices

New research reveals the harms of religion-based LGBTQA+ conversion practices are more severe than previously thought.

The Conversation

Australia: Push for investigation into Scientology’s charity status

Australia: Push for investigation into Scientology’s charity status

Australia's charity regulator has been called on to investigate Scientology amid concerns it is abusing its not-for-profit status.

The Sydney Morning Herald

Mozambique town Palma 'retaken' from militant Islamists

Mozambique town Palma 'retaken' from militant Islamists

Mozambique's military says it has regained full control of the coastal town of Palma, more than a week after it was raided by militant Islamists.

BBC

Hindu nationalists tear down Delhi temple statue of Indian spiritual teacher

Hindu nationalists tear down Delhi temple statue of Indian spiritual teacher

Delhi Police are investigating the removal of a statue depicting the spiritual leader Sai Baba from a temple in the city's south, after several videos emerged online showing a group of men demolishing the idol and declaring him a "Muslim".

The Art Newspaper

'Every year we dig mass graves': the slaughter of Pakistan’s Hazara Shia Muslims

'Every year we dig mass graves': the slaughter of Pakistan’s Hazara Shia Muslims

Decades of persecution has left the Shia minority with little space left in its graveyards but prime minister Imran Khan is in no hurry to listen.

The Guardian

Tue, 06 Apr 2021

NI laws that allow schools to discriminate on religious grounds 'must be scrapped'

NI laws that allow schools to discriminate on religious grounds 'must be scrapped'

Laws that allow schools to discriminate on the grounds of religion when appointing teachers must be scrapped, a conference will hear.

The Irish Times

Franklin Graham: Blackpool bus ad ban 'breached human rights'

Franklin Graham: Blackpool bus ad ban 'breached human rights'

A council breached human rights when it banned adverts for an evangelical Christian event, a court has ruled.

BBC

Controversial issues must not be 'closed down', says union in wake of Muhammad row

Controversial issues must not be 'closed down', says union in wake of Muhammad row

Dr Patrick Roach, general secretary of NASUWT, added that teachers should not be subject to threats for doing their jobs.

The Telegraph*

Sara Khan: ‘There is no right not to be offended’

Sara Khan: ‘There is no right not to be offended’

The PM's new adviser is a Muslim determined to fight intolerance.

The Times*

Keir Starmer apologises for visit to church criticised for LGBT stance

Keir Starmer apologises for visit to church criticised for LGBT stance

The Labour leader visited Jesus House in London on Good Friday and later shared a video from his visit online.

BBC

‘Pray-away-the-gay’ outfit gets to keep its charitable status – NSS quoted

‘Pray-away-the-gay’ outfit gets to keep its charitable status – NSS quoted

The Charity Commission told the NSS of its decision in a letter back in January.

The Freethinker (Patheos)

‘I thought I was over my Catholic guilt about being gay. Maybe I was wrong?’

‘I thought I was over my Catholic guilt about being gay. Maybe I was wrong?’

An adolescence of shame about being LGBTQ+ can have lingering effects on our behaviour that stretch well into adulthood, says Antoun Issa.

The Guardian

SNP say annual Citizens' Assemblies could look at assisted dying

SNP say annual Citizens' Assemblies could look at assisted dying

The SNP has pledged to hold annual Citizens' Assemblies if the party is re-elected – with the panels potentially looking at assisted dying.

The Herald*

Police break up Good Friday church service over apparent Covid rule breaches

Police break up Good Friday church service over apparent Covid rule breaches

Footage uploaded on YouTube showed Metropolitan police officers addressing worshippers at the Christ the King Polish Catholic church in Balham, south London, late on Friday afternoon.

The Guardian

‘Why I had to choose my own family over being a Jehovah’s Witness’

‘Why I had to choose my own family over being a Jehovah’s Witness’

Her childhood had no birthdays, no parties, no Easter, but Jodie Chapman didn't want her children to have that life. The decision meant she risked being cut off by everyone she loved.

Mail Online

US: ‘An extraordinary winning streak for religion at the Supreme Court’

US: ‘An extraordinary winning streak for religion at the Supreme Court’

The Supreme Court has become far more likely to rule in favour of religious rights in recent years, according to a new study that considered 70 years of data.

The New York Times*

Thu, 01 Apr 2021

Christian group promoting conversion therapy won’t be stripped of charitable status – NSS quoted

Christian group promoting conversion therapy won’t be stripped of charitable status – NSS quoted

Northern Ireland's charity regulator has said it will not take action against an organisation that claims to help people "change" their "sexual preference", in response to a letter from the NSS.

Pink News

How conversion therapy impacts trans people

How conversion therapy impacts trans people

Transgender and non-binary people who are subjected to conversion therapy experience an increase in suicidal ideation, a first-of-its-kind report has warned. The vast majority of those subjected to the conversion therapy grew up in religious households, while religious leaders were those most likely to direct people to the practice.

iNews

Christian broadcaster fined £125,000 for Covid-19 conspiracies

Christian broadcaster fined £125,000 for Covid-19 conspiracies

Ofcom has fined a Christian broadcaster £125,000 after it breached the rules by airing "inaccurate and potentially harmful claims about coronavirus".

The Independent

New taskforce calls on NI Executive to urgently improve sex education services

New taskforce calls on NI Executive to urgently improve sex education services

The Northern Ireland Abortion and Contraception Taskgroup has published a report containing 38 recommendations centring on a "new approach to relationships and sex education (RSE), contraception and abortion care".

The Irish News

Batley teacher’s union donated money to charity that accused him of ‘terrorism’

Batley teacher’s union donated money to charity that accused him of ‘terrorism’

The Kirklees branch of the National Education Union (NEU) gave £3,000 to Purpose of Life, a charity based in west Yorkshire, which has been accused of leaving the teacher, who showed a cartoon of Muhammad to his class last week, in danger of "physical harm" by publishing his name online.

The Telegraph*

‘Lessons to learn’

‘Lessons to learn’

Courageous educators are being left at the mercy of religious fanatics, says Khadija Khan.

Sister-Hood

BBC to broadcast Archbishop of Canterbury's Easter Sunday service

BBC to broadcast Archbishop of Canterbury's Easter Sunday service

Justin Welby's service will be broadcast across BBC television and local and national radio.

The Irish News

‘Which social contact is most worthy?’

‘Which social contact is most worthy?’

In a letter, Edinburgh Secular Society's Neil Barber criticises the judicial review that ruled in favour of some Scottish churches' demand uniquely to be allowed to open for communal worship.

Edinburgh Evening News

Ireland: Cavan priest says he will not pay fine for saying Mass in breach of restrictions

Ireland: Cavan priest says he will not pay fine for saying Mass in breach of restrictions

A parish priest in Co Cavan has accused police of harassing him and churchgoers on Sunday as he went to celebrate Mass in breach of pandemic restrictions which do not allow public worship.

The Irish Times

US: North Dakota House approves Ten Commandments school bill

US: North Dakota House approves Ten Commandments school bill

North Dakota's Republican-led House overwhelmingly endorsed legislation Tuesday that's aimed at shielding schools and teachers from lawsuits arising from posting the Ten Commandments in classrooms.

The Associated Press

Wed, 31 Mar 2021

Batley Grammar School issues statement in Muhammad row

Batley Grammar School issues statement in Muhammad row

Batley Grammar School have released another statement after a teacher was suspended last week for showing students a caricature of Muhammad.

Yorkshire Live

LGBT people should leave Church of England ‘for their own safety’

LGBT people should leave Church of England ‘for their own safety’

LGBT people should leave the Church of England for their own "safety and wellbeing", a former government advisor has said.

The Telegraph*

Call to make Covid home abortions rule change permanent in Wales

Call to make Covid home abortions rule change permanent in Wales

There are calls for changes to rules on home abortions in Wales to be made a permanent. At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, temporary measures were introduced allowing women to take early medical abortion tablets at home.

BBC

Liam Neeson 'proud' of new integrated school Seaview Primary

Liam Neeson 'proud' of new integrated school Seaview Primary

Hollywood star Liam Neeson has praised a Catholic primary school in Glenarm that has been approved for integrated status.

BBC

Tories pledge to repeal parts of SNP's Hate Crime Act

Tories pledge to repeal parts of SNP's Hate Crime Act

The Conservatives have officially pledged to repeal parts of the SNP's controversial Hate Crime Act.

The Herald*

BBC should include religion in dramas and documentaries, says bishop

BBC should include religion in dramas and documentaries, says bishop

The BBC has relegated religion to the "God slot" and should be including it in dramas and documentaries, according to the Bishop of Ripon.

The Telegraph*

Assisted dying: Jersey islander is to give personal testimony

Assisted dying: Jersey islander is to give personal testimony

The citizens' jury considering assisted dying will hear the personal testimony of an Islander who has made plans to travel to Switzerland to end his life.

Jersey Evening Post

Church membership in the US has fallen below the majority for the first time in nearly a century

Church membership in the US has fallen below the majority for the first time in nearly a century

The proportion of Americans who consider themselves members of a church, synagogue or mosque has dropped below 50 percent, according to a poll from Gallup released Monday. It is the first time that has happened since Gallup first asked the question in 1937, when church membership was 73 percent.

The Washington Post*

China is guilty of genocide against Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang, says US report

China is guilty of genocide against Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang, says US report

China is committing genocide and crimes against humanity against Uighur Muslims in Xinjiang, the US State Department declared in its annual human rights report to Congress, raising the stakes in the superpowers' fraught relationship.

The Times*

Tue, 30 Mar 2021

Woman sues mosque members over ‘campaign of discrimination and sexual harassment’

Woman sues mosque members over ‘campaign of discrimination and sexual harassment’

A woman claims she was subjected to a campaign of discrimination and sexual harassment by mosque members while she regulated prayer entry during the coronavirus pandemic - and is suing them for £27,000 in compensation.

Edinburgh Evening News

Batley Grammar School teacher who showed pupils a cartoon of Muhammad fears for his life

Batley Grammar School teacher who showed pupils a cartoon of Muhammad fears for his life

A teacher who showed pupils a cartoon of Muhammad in a religious studies class is in fear of his life, his father has said.

iNews

‘The Batley protestors don’t represent me’

‘The Batley protestors don’t represent me’

The Batley demonstrators risk giving an impression to many that British Muslims are somehow intolerant, cannot bear critique, that they go berserk at the sight of a cartoon and want blasphemy laws introduced into the heart of our schools, says Fiyaz Mughal.

The Spectator*

‘If the Battle of Batley Grammar is lost, young Muslims too will be the losers’

‘If the Battle of Batley Grammar is lost, young Muslims too will be the losers’

The Battle of Batley Grammar is about many things — the right to give or take offence, parents versus teachers, sharia law versus English common law. But on the central issue of freedom versus faith, the school has chosen the path of least resistance, says Daniel Johnson.

The Article

Independent watchdog to police abusive priests

Independent watchdog to police abusive priests

The Church of England has acknowledged that bishops cannot be trusted to investigate their own priests and will bring back "defrocking" to kick out paedophiles, in an overhaul of how sexual abuse cases are handled.

The Times*

Vatican official ‘offered call girl as thank you for £300m Chelsea property deal’

Vatican official ‘offered call girl as thank you for £300m Chelsea property deal’

A Vatican official allegedly offered a businessman the services of a call girl as they negotiated the Holy See's £300 million purchase of a landmark London property, according to a High Court ruling.

The Times*

Arkansas governor signs medical conscience objections law

Arkansas governor signs medical conscience objections law

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Friday signed into law legislation allowing doctors to refuse to treat someone because of religious or moral objections, a move opponents have said will give providers broad powers to turn away LGBTQ patients and others.

The Associated Press

Women, LGBT people and students protest for rights in Turkey

Women, LGBT people and students protest for rights in Turkey

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in Istanbul on Saturday for anti-government protests, demanding amid a heavy police presence the reversal of recent decisions by Turkey's president that affect students, women and the LGBT community.

ABC News

Pakistani judge orders blasphemy probe against organisers of Women's Day march

Pakistani judge orders blasphemy probe against organisers of Women's Day march

A judge in the Pakistani city of Peshawar ordered police on Friday to open an investigation into the organisers of a march marking International Women's Day over allegations they committed blasphemy.

Reuters

‘We’re treated as children,’ Qatari women tell rights group

‘We’re treated as children,’ Qatari women tell rights group

Gulf state's male guardian rules deny women right to wed, travel, work or to make decisions about their children, report says.

The Guardian

Mon, 29 Mar 2021

50,000 sign petition supporting teacher ‘who showed Muhammad cartoon’

50,000 sign petition supporting teacher ‘who showed Muhammad cartoon’

A petition in support of a teacher suspended for allegedly showing a cartoon of the Islamic prophet Muhammad to pupils has garnered more than 50,000 signatures.

Metro

Communities secretary weighs in on Muhammad cartoon row: ‘Issues should not be censored’

Communities secretary weighs in on Muhammad cartoon row: ‘Issues should not be censored’

A Cabinet minister has attacked curbs on teaching amid the controversy over children being shown a cartoon of Muhammad, saying "issues should not be censored".

The Independent

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