Mon, 06 Jan 2020

Irish state criticised over €10m spent on chaplains for schools

Irish state criticised over €10m spent on chaplains for schools

Education authorities in Ireland are spending almost €10m of taxpayers' money on hiring religious chaplains for State-run multidenominational secondary schools.

The Irish Times

Indian students injured in university violence

Indian students injured in university violence

There have been reports of masked men attacking students at one of India's most prestigious universities. The university recently saw protests over a discriminatory citizenship law. The student union at the university blamed the latest violence on a right-wing student body linked to India's governing Hindu nationalist BJP party.

BBC

Anti-abortion activists increasingly targeting UK university students

Anti-abortion activists increasingly targeting UK university students

Anti-abortion campaigners are increasingly targeting students at UK universities, where there has been a rise in the number of anti-abortion societies on campus and demonstrations by outside groups displaying graphic imagery.

The Guardian

'He was sent to us': at church rally, evangelicals worship God and Trump

'He was sent to us': at church rally, evangelicals worship God and Trump

A rally on Friday highlighted President Trump's need to retain the loyalty of the evangelical voting bloc that propelled him to victory in 2016.

The Guardian

Council declares Bridport in Dorset to be first ‘rights-respecting town’ in England

Council declares Bridport in Dorset to be first ‘rights-respecting town’ in England

A town council has declared Bridport to be the first 'rights-respecting town' in England with its own Rights Charter.

Bridport & Lyme Regis News

Non-believers own more cats than the religious, study claims

Non-believers own more cats than the religious, study claims

Cats are 'very godlike' which make them more likely to be owned by atheists than churchgoers as a substitute for religion, a study has claimed.

Mail Online

Fri, 03 Jan 2020

‘Reflect on the need for prayer in the Commons’

‘Reflect on the need for prayer in the Commons’

Newly-elected MP Kenny MacAskill questions the practice of holding Christian prayers as sitting days open in the House of Commons.

The Scotsman

Government ‘changing law to protect gay marriage critics’ in NI

Government ‘changing law to protect gay marriage critics’ in NI

A Christian campaign group says the government has committed to measures that will protect critics of same sex marriage from prosecution.

News Letter

Britons split on whether religion is source of morality

Britons split on whether religion is source of morality

Across Britain, 34% of people agree that "all morals are grounded in religious teachings", with 32% disagreeing and the rest undecided, according to a survey by the publisher UnHerd and pollster FocalData.

Swindon Advertiser

Procedural reform could make it harder to undermine human rights and equality in NI

Procedural reform could make it harder to undermine human rights and equality in NI

A key proposal in talks over power-sharing at Stormont is to reform the petition of concern so its use would have to be approved on each occasion by the Human Rights Commission, it has been claimed. The petition has previously been used to block measures including the legalisation of same-sex marriage.

News Letter

Plans for first ever Jewish eruv to be created in north Leeds

Plans for first ever Jewish eruv to be created in north Leeds

Proposals in Leeds would create a demarcated area for orthodox Jews to use during the Jewish Sabbath.

Leeds Live

No certainty terror offenders can be 'cured', says top psychologist

No certainty terror offenders can be 'cured', says top psychologist

The psychologist behind the UK's main deradicalisation programme for terror offenders says it can never be certain that attackers have been "cured".

BBC

Members of US Congress ask Supreme Court to 'reconsider' landmark Roe v. Wade abortion ruling

Members of US Congress ask Supreme Court to 'reconsider' landmark Roe v. Wade abortion ruling

More than 200 members of the US Congress are urging the country's Supreme Court to reconsider – if not overrule – the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which legalised abortion nationwide.

CNN

India's Muslims tell of wave of police brutality

India's Muslims tell of wave of police brutality

Police in Uttar Pradesh state in India have embarked on a 'reign of terror' against Muslims in the wake of a discriminatory new citizenship law.

The Guardian

Secular Israel rejoices over Sabbath buses

Secular Israel rejoices over Sabbath buses

Minibuses that run on Friday evenings and Saturdays buck Israel's religious restrictions.

The Guardian

Murdered priest had abused father and son

Murdered priest had abused father and son

Two more cases of clerical sexual abuse have added new twists to the series of accusations that gnaw away at the image of the Catholic Church in France.

The Tablet

Thu, 02 Jan 2020

New year honours for church servants

New year honours for church servants

The secretary and chief executive of the Church Commissioners, Andrew Brown, and the former chief legal adviser for the C of E, Stephen Slack, were among the people recognised in the new year honours list. They were appointed OBE and CBE respectively.

Church Times

Civil partnerships: First mixed-sex unions take place

Civil partnerships: First mixed-sex unions take place

One of the first mixed-sex couples to become civil partners hailed it as a "unique, special and personal moment".

BBC

Landmark hearing to decide if veganism is a ‘philosophical or religious belief’

Landmark hearing to decide if veganism is a ‘philosophical or religious belief’

A landmark legal hearing begins today in Norwich, with a panel to decide if veganism is a "philosophical or religious belief" and thus protected in law.

LBC

Muslims treated differently by newspapers, says press watchdog

Muslims treated differently by newspapers, says press watchdog

The portrayal of Islam and Muslims in the British press has been "the most difficult issue" facing the press watchdog in the past five years, according to its outgoing chief.

Financial Times

Church of England gives staff 'unconscious bias training' in attempt to have more female leaders

Church of England gives staff 'unconscious bias training' in attempt to have more female leaders

The Church of England is to use 'unconscious bias training' to help ensure half of its leaders are female by 2030.

Mail Online

Pope slaps woman’s hand

Pope slaps woman’s hand

The pope has apologised for angrily striking the hand of a woman who reached out and yanked him towards her.

Sky News

Anti-Islamic slogans spray-painted near mosque in Brixton

Anti-Islamic slogans spray-painted near mosque in Brixton

Anti-Islamic slogans have been painted on a building close to a mosque and cultural centre in south London, the Metropolitan Police has said. The incident comes shortly after antisemitic graffiti was sprayed across a synagogue and shops in north London.

The Guardian

Teacher in Trojan horse scandal is back in classroom

Teacher in Trojan horse scandal is back in classroom

A teacher who lost his job after making homophobic comments is back in the classroom giving advice to teachers.

The Times (£)

China jails underground pastor Wang Yi for nine years for inciting subversion

China jails underground pastor Wang Yi for nine years for inciting subversion

A Chinese court has sentenced the pastor Wang Yi to nine years in prison on charges of inciting subversion of state power and illegally operating a business.

The Guardian

Indian police officer tells citizenship law protesters to 'go to Pakistan' as death toll rises

Indian police officer tells citizenship law protesters to 'go to Pakistan' as death toll rises

A senior police officer in an Indian state which has seen 19 deaths in protests over a discriminatory citizenship law has been filmed telling demonstrators to "go to Pakistan".

The Independent

Messiah: Jordan calls on Netflix to ban ‘anti-Islamic’ drama series

Messiah: Jordan calls on Netflix to ban ‘anti-Islamic’ drama series

The Royal Film Commission of Jordan has called on Netflix to ban a US drama series due to stream in the country this week.

The Independent

Far-right group claims responsibility for attack on comedy troupe behind ‘gay Jesus’ portrayal

Far-right group claims responsibility for attack on comedy troupe behind ‘gay Jesus’ portrayal

A far-right group is claiming responsibility for a Christmas Eve attack on the headquarters of Porta dos Fundos, the comedy group behind the portrayal of a gay Jesus in Netflix's "The First Temptation of Christ."

The Hill

Tue, 24 Dec 2019

Boris Johnson vows to defend persecuted Christians around the world in first Christmas message as PM

Boris Johnson vows to defend persecuted Christians around the world in first Christmas message as PM

Boris Johnson has vowed to defend persecuted Christians around the world and their "right to practise their faith".

Daily Mail

‘The Times view on the preservation of religious freedom: Faith under fire’

‘The Times view on the preservation of religious freedom: Faith under fire’

This editorial says the persecution of religious minorities has intensified across the globe over the past decade. Free societies must insist upon and defend the exercise of private conscience.

The Times (£)

Petitioners try to shut down Netflix show by accusing it of being ‘blasphemous’

Petitioners try to shut down Netflix show by accusing it of being ‘blasphemous’

More than 3,000 people have signed a petition calling for a new Netflix show to be banned or face a boycott amid claims it will be disrespectful to Islamic and Christian beliefs.

Metro

Catholic Church's dominance of education continues to slide in Ireland

Catholic Church's dominance of education continues to slide in Ireland

The Catholic Church's dominance of education in Ireland is continuing to slide in the face of rapid growth for the multi-denominational sector.

The Independent (Ireland)

Modi's party loses fifth state election in a year as India rocked by citizenship protests

Modi's party loses fifth state election in a year as India rocked by citizenship protests

Indian prime minister's Hindu nationalist party has lost a key state election, a setback for Narendra Modi's party as it faces massive anti-government protests against a contentious new citizenship law.

The Guardian

China slammed over programme that 'appoints' men to sleep with Uighur women

China slammed over programme that 'appoints' men to sleep with Uighur women

A disturbing policy implemented in the northwest Chinese region of Xinjiang is a forced-living arrangement between Han Chinese men and Uighur women that's been likened to "mass rape".

NZ Herald

Christian group unhappy over appointment of new archbishop – NSS quoted

Christian group unhappy over appointment of new archbishop – NSS quoted

Christian Concern is unhappy over the appointment of Stephen Cottrell as the new archbishop of York.

The Freethinker (Patheos)

US Christian nationalist project changes its name

US Christian nationalist project changes its name

It appears that the Christian-nationalist Project Blitz movement's momentum has been slowed in America.

Godzooks (Patheos)

Mon, 23 Dec 2019

Bill would abolish bishops’ automatic right to sit in the Lords – NSS mentioned

Bill would abolish bishops’ automatic right to sit in the Lords – NSS mentioned

This round-up of news includes a bill drafted with NSS assistance which would end the automatic right of bishops to sit in the House of Lords.

Law and Religion UK

Islamist extremists hold sharia trials and groom young Muslims in British prisons

Islamist extremists hold sharia trials and groom young Muslims in British prisons

Islamist extremists in Britain's prisons are holding makeshift Sharia trials, circulating banned books and openly grooming young Muslim inmates, The Times has been told.

The Times (£)

‘Should the Welsh Assembly adopt a definition of Islamophobia?’ – NSS quoted

‘Should the Welsh Assembly adopt a definition of Islamophobia?’ – NSS quoted

Following the UK government's rejection of the APPG on British Muslims' definition of Islamophobia, Mairi Hughes looks at whether Wales could adopt it.

Planet Extra

Row over decision making process for proposed new Catholic school in Peterborough

Row over decision making process for proposed new Catholic school in Peterborough

There were arguments at a Peterborough City Council meeting over the consultation process being used to determine if a new Catholic school will be built.

Peterborough Telegraph

Forced marriages and honour crimes against women ‘spike during Christmas’

Forced marriages and honour crimes against women ‘spike during Christmas’

The number of girls being forced into marriage spikes during the Christmas holidays due to authorities failing to properly protect girls ahead of the festive period, frontline service providers have warned.

The Independent

Reviewer of Prevent programme removed after legal challenge

Reviewer of Prevent programme removed after legal challenge

The peer Alex Carlile has been stood down by the government as independent reviewer of the Prevent programme following a legal challenge over his appointment.

The Guardian

Academic sentenced to death for blasphemy in Pakistan

Academic sentenced to death for blasphemy in Pakistan

A university lecturer in Pakistan has been sentenced to death for blasphemy.

BBC

India protests: PM Modi defends citizenship bill amid clashes

India protests: PM Modi defends citizenship bill amid clashes

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi has defended the government's new citizenship law, despite the major ongoing protests against it.

BBC

Vegan ‘sacked over beliefs’ demands court treats lifestyle like religion

Vegan ‘sacked over beliefs’ demands court treats lifestyle like religion

A campaigner who claims he was sacked for his ethical beliefs is demanding judges to recognise veganism as a protected category similar to faith.

Metro

Fri, 20 Dec 2019

Medical centre received many complaints over 'pushing' religion on patients - NSS quoted

Medical centre received many complaints over 'pushing' religion on patients - NSS quoted

Minutes of a meeting in January have been revealed that show multiple complaints from patients at Bethesda Medical Centre that religion was 'pushed upon' them. Dr Richard Scott was cleared last month of any wrongdoing by the General Medical Council after the NSS reported that he was preaching to patients.

Mirror

Two Northern Ireland women to get abortion costs compensation

Two Northern Ireland women to get abortion costs compensation

The European court of human rights has instructed the government to reimburse the women for the cost of travel and the termination at a private English clinic seven years ago.

The Guardian

Plans to halt female genital mutilation can be 'effective', MSPs told

Plans to halt female genital mutilation can be 'effective', MSPs told

New protection orders aimed at halting female genital mutilation can be an "effective and proven approach" to dealing with the problem, MSPs have been told.

The Scotsman

Ofsted concerns after 'dangerous' Islamic independent school closed on inspection day

Ofsted concerns after 'dangerous' Islamic independent school closed on inspection day

An independent faith school in Solihull which was repeatedly warned by Ofsted over its failings closed its doors on the day of a recent inspection.

Solihull Observer

 Right-to-die campaigner fails to overturn ban in court

Right-to-die campaigner fails to overturn ban in court

Paul Lamb has failed to overturn the ban on assisted dying after arguing it was discriminatory against people with disabilities.

The Guardian

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