Mon, 04 May 2020
Barbara Smoker, who has died aged 96, was president of the National Secular Society for a quarter of a century and a humanist activist for 70 years.
A prominent Nigerian humanist accused of blasphemy has been arrested and taken to the northern city of Kano, according to figures close to him.
Christian fostering agency takes Ofsted to the High Court over policy of only working with evangelical married heterosexual carers
A court battle is set to take place between Ofsted and a Christian fostering agency over the company's policy of only working with straight married couples.
Witchcraft accusations against children and vulnerable people could rise in Britain because of the coronavirus outbreak, police have warned.
Sunday trading laws could be scrapped under plans to kick start Britain's economic recovery.
A quarter of adults in the UK have watched or listened to a religious service since the coronavirus lockdown began, according to a survey commissioned by a Christian aid agency.
The Catholic Church in Scotland is to approach the Scottish government with plans for the phased reopening of parishes, according to a senior bishop.
Indian police are arresting high-profile Muslim activists and ordinary civilians under the cover of the coronavirus pandemic in a crackdown that follows anti-government protests and communal riots this year.
Eight US states have worked to try and halt abortions entirely during the pandemic as clinics report a rise in demand.
White supremacist groups in the United States are encouraging supporters who contract coronavirus to spread the virus on to Jews and police officers, an FBI intelligence report has claimed.
The Jewish Chronicle
Even as Israel closed down its public sphere to stem the spread of the coronavirus, the government deemed that some 700 of these ritual baths were essential and permitted them to remain open along with supermarkets and pharmacies.
The Washington Post (£)
Fri, 01 May 2020
A church in south London has continued selling a fake Covid-19 cure, despite being under investigation by the charity watchdog.
An obituary for Barbara Smoker, the NSS's president from 1972 to 1996.
London News Online
The victims and the public deserve to know the truth, says Hardeep Singh.
Sudan has criminalised female genital mutilation, making it punishable by three years in jail, a move campaigners said ushered in a "new era" for women's rights in the African nation.
The long-awaited opening of Pope Pius XII's wartime records only lasted a week before the coronavirus shut the Vatican archives down again, but that was long enough for documents to emerge that reflect badly on the pontiff accused of silence during the Holocaust, according to published reports.
Religion News Service
The 1970s singer-songwriter formerly known as Cat Stevens, who converted to Islam and renounced his life as a musician, is to lead a series of spiritual reflections for the BBC during Ramadan.
Catholic schools that reward pupils who attend religious ceremonies are discriminating against non-Catholic pupils, an Irish commission has found.
The Irish Times
Tensions between police and members of New York City's Hasidic Jewish community flared again on Thursday as officers interrupted a crowded funeral procession to crack down on social distancing violators.
NBC New York
'A phantom plague': America's Bible Belt played down the pandemic and even cashed in. Now dozens of pastors are dead
Dozens of pastors across the Bible Belt have succumbed to coronavirus after churches and televangelists played down the pandemic and actively encouraged churchgoers to flout self-distancing guidelines.
The Canadian city of Ottawa is exempting mosques from local noise bylaws during Ramadan to allow them to play a five-minute call to prayer at sundown, as the pandemic prevents people from gathering and hearing it inside.
A map shows global rates of circumcision.
Thu, 30 Apr 2020
Nigerian police have arrested Mubarak Bala, president of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, for "blasphemy" after he allegedly posted criticism of Islam on his Facebook page.
The Friendly Atheist (Patheos)
The new Bishop of Horsham has been announced today by 10 Downing Street.
Mid Sussex Times
A disgraced former councillor who was banned from serving on any local authority has been be given a top post at England's second largest police force.
The Times (£)
Religious worship is likely to remain confined to people's homes until the end of 2020, a top health advisor on Birmingham City Council has warned.
The Sudanese government is to criminalise female genital mutilation. A special article will be added to the country's criminal law.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has issued an apology after he criticised a large gathering for a Jewish funeral amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The event showed the challenges that officials have faced in addressing the flouting of social distancing in close-knit ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods.
The New York Times
A small evangelical church is suing the governor of California, Gavin Newsom, arguing the state's public gathering ban violates first amendment rights to religious freedom.
Los Angeles Times
Germany is to set out guidelines for holding religious services during the coronavirus pandemic with a list of strict restrictions expected to include a ban on singing.
Romania's Orthodox Church said on Wednesday a series of outdoor posters depicting nurses and doctors on the frontlines of the new coronavirus outbreak as saints were blasphemous and an insult to Christian iconography.
Wed, 29 Apr 2020
Disruption linked to the pandemic could mean many more girls are cut or married in childhood, according to new data that paints a bleak picture of life for women over the next decade.
A US government commission has criticised India for failing to protect religious minorities and called for sanctions on government officials responsible for violating religious freedoms enshrined in its constitution.
Justin Welby will record a reflection and moment of prayer as part of the national commemoration of the 75th anniversary of VE Day next Friday.
A same-sex marriage which was formalised in France has reportedly been legally accepted as valid in Tunisia, a first for a Muslim-majority nation. Homosexuality is illegal in Tunisia.
Bill De Blasio personally showed up at an Orthodox Jewish funeral on Tuesday night and threatened mourners with arrest for ignoring social distancing rules. His response on Twitter has sparked an angry reaction from some Jewish groups.
India's Hindu nationalist government is stoking anti-Muslim sentiment during the coronavirus crisis.
The Hollywood star and bestselling author has described male circumcision as "genital mutilation" and said religious grounds for it are "ridiculous".
Irish newlyweds are getting older and less religious every year. Almost as many couples chose non-religious ceremonies as Catholic ones last year, according to new figures from the Central Statistics Office.
The Times (£)
Tue, 28 Apr 2020
Renfrewshire Council defends plans to prioritise pupils baptised Catholic for admission to denominational schools – NSS quoted
Renfrewshire Council has defended plans to extend the priority given to pupils who are baptised Catholic for admission to denominational schools after the NSS criticised the idea.
A Jewish girls' school has been slammed by Ofsted for cutting out a 'large chunk of history' by gluing textbook pages together.
Robert Halfon criticised for defending state faith school which censored Elizabeth I from history books
The chair of the House of Commons education select committee has been criticised for appearing to defend a state faith school which censored material about Elizabeth I from a history book.
Dominic Cummings' wife was afforded BBC Radio 4 airtime on Saturday to say how "extremely kind" the maverick Downing Street adviser is, sparking criticism.
The Liberal Democrats' 'solidarity fast' is patronising to Muslims and anyone else who is religious, says Nick Tyrone.
Pakistan is entering its fifth week under lockdown to control the spread of the coronavirus. But as the Islamic holy month of Ramadan starts this weekend, hundreds of thousands of people will congregate in mosques nationwide to offer special prayers.
Poland's conservative leaders have come a step closer to their goal of further tightening what are already some of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe.
In Poland, ultranationalists aren't just obsessed with white civilisation and getting rid of foreigners. They're also big on Catholic family values and determined to stamp out what they see as decadent Western liberalism.
ABC News (Australia)
Moroccan men on gay dating apps have seen their pictures leaked online in recent weeks, rights groups said, in an 'outing' campaign targeting LGBT+ Arabs.
Mon, 27 Apr 2020
A bill that updates and extends existing hate crime law has been introduced to the Scottish parliament.
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