Every week in Newsline we have a couple of quotes of the week on topics related to secularism. Please feel free to share these images.

Fri, 22 Jun 2018

Something else that makes a mockery of the system is the fact that we still have clerics legislating – the 26 bishops, or lords spiritual. The only other country that has clerics who legislate is Iran. I shall let it sink in that we are part of that.

David Linden MP, during a debate on the status of the House of Lords

By removing this provision from our constitution, we can send a strong message to the world that laws against blasphemy do not reflect Irish values and that we do not believe such laws should exist.

Charlie Flanagan, Ireland's Minister for Justice and Equality

The best we can do for our children is to teach them to think for themselves, not tell them what to think.

Christine, No More Faith Schools supporter

Fri, 15 Jun 2018

I'd like an acknowledgement of the suffering these women have been through. A lot of it is tied up with the churches: it was under their authority that these things happened. Nothing can compensate for the loss, but an acknowledgement is what we need.

Felicity Davies, one of thousands of women coerced into handing over their babies for adoption in the 1950s and 60s at a time when "unmarried mothers" were often rejected by their families and ostracised by society

It is essential that children of all faiths or none, from a wide mixture of class, cultural and race backgrounds are educated together. Young children are naturally both curious and non-judgmental; when they meet as equals in the classroom they will learn mutual acceptance which will help create a more cohesive and less fearful society.

Michaela from Stoke-on-Trent, No More Faith Schools campaign supporter

Fri, 08 Jun 2018

If, as well as the curtailment on their autonomy which this involves, [women] are carrying a foetus with a fatal abnormality or have been the victims of rape or incest, they are condemned, because legislation enacted in another era has decreed it, to endure untold suffering and desolation. What is that, if it is not humiliation and debasement?

Lord Kerr, Supreme Court judge and former chief justice of NI, on abortion laws in Northern Ireland

Fri, 01 Jun 2018

What we've seen is the culmination of a quiet revolution that's taken place in Ireland for the past 10 or twenty years… The people have said we want a modern constitution for a modern country, that we trust women and we respect them to make the right decision, the right choices about their own healthcare.

Leo Varadkar, Ireland's prime minister, reacts to the repeal of the eighth amendment

It's hypocritical, degrading and insulting to Northern Irish women that we are forced to travel for vital healthcare services but cannot access them at home. We cannot be left behind in a corner of the UK and on the island of Ireland as second-class citizens.

Grainne Teggart, Amnesty International's Northern Ireland campaigns manager, calls for reform after the result in the Republic

Fri, 25 May 2018

What I find so disturbing about this debate is the heavy hand of the pious upon it. Behind them stand the serried ranks of a church that has shown itself undeserving of the respect it still expects and demands. From child abuse scandals to the cruel and demeaning treatment of unwed mothers and their vulnerable children, to the hypocrisy of a celibate clergy (who were often anything but) pontificating on how women should think and behave, Catholicism has imposed a legacy of shame and denigration that, in its harshness and misogyny, is worse than medieval.

Rosemary Goring, reflecting on the role of Catholicism in the Irish abortion referendum

It's so important that the government recognises the mistakes it made and guarantees it won't make them again… If I'd had inclusive and compulsory sex education at school, I don't think I'd be HIV positive today.

Andrew Bates, who knew nothing about HIV until he was diagnosed with it aged 21, on the legacy of Section 28

Fri, 18 May 2018

At a time when hate attacks against Muslims are having a serious impact on many people, let us try to ensure that obfuscation through the use of the term 'Islamophobia' does not take away from the real-world problems facing Muslims.

Fiyaz Mughal, founder and director of Faith Matters

If the [sexual] act is not ordered towards creation, then it is not procreative and therefore it is not a legitimate expression of sexuality, as far as we are concerned.

Father Michael McMahon, Church Representative with Inverclyde Council, speaking at the annual conference of the Catholic Headteachers’ Association of Scotland

Fri, 11 May 2018

You can't just choose one exhibit you think might offend someone and self-censor in that manner. It's sad and unwarranted, and it's also illegal.

Chaya David, a visitor who complained about the Natural History Museum in Jerusalem covering an exhibit to avoid offending ultra-Orthodox people

Fri, 27 Apr 2018

The bishop's apparent anger and energy might have been more productive at the time if it had been put into more serious investigation of allegations, as opposed to hostile rejection.

Simon Collins, a solicitor representing survivors of abuse in care homes run by a Catholic order, criticises archbishop Mario Conti at the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry

Fri, 20 Apr 2018

In the India where I grew up, memories of Gandhi, Tagore and Nehru were strong; the necessity of secularism was drummed into us. We knew that our politicians were largely venal, but it was still a country in which morality and humanity mattered. Now, journalists and writers who speak up against the undeclared war on Dalits, Muslims, poor people and women are trolled by cyber-mobs – if they're lucky.

Anuradha Roy, an award-winning writer, reflects on the shocking response to the rape and murder of a girl from a Muslim tribe in India this week

If you criticise ideas, you challenge ideas, that's when you move a society forward. When you demonise people that's how you rip societies apart.

Ali Rizvi, ex-Muslim author, on negotiating the space between left and right on Islam

I am all too aware that these laws were often put in place by my own country. They were wrong then, and they are wrong now. As the UK's prime minister, I deeply regret both the fact that such laws were introduced and the legacy of discrimination, violence and even death that persists today.

Theresa May, reflecting on anti-gay laws in the Commonwealth

Fri, 13 Apr 2018

This was never about protest. It was about small groups of strangers choosing to gather by our entrance gates where they could harass and intimidate women and try to prevent them from accessing healthcare to which they are legally entitled.

Richard Bentley, Marie Stopes UK managing director, on buffer zones outside abortion clinics

Don't let go, be the British bulldog, be tenacious. I would tell anybody out there to trust in the British justice system. Yes, it's crazily weird, but you will get justice.

A woman who was sexually abused as a child by members of the Salvation Army, outlining what she’d tell others after the conviction of her abusers

Politics apart, this is horrible that some people would see this horrendous crime through a religious prism to gain some mileage. It's a new low and I don't know if we can stoop any lower after this.

Girdhari Lal, a retired teacher, reflecting on the rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl from a Muslim family in Indian-controlled Kashmir. The crime has sparked protests from Hindu nationalists, who are demanding the release of the accused