by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Selection
July 29 – August 5, 2012
A selection of religion news stories from Australia.
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
Inclusion here does not endorse the veracity or quality of any particular item – it just means
I found it worth reading and reflecting on (even if badly conceived or poorly written).
If you’re after the unexpurgated (and reasonably unbiased) version,
see Religion News Australia which appears weekly on our website.
Police move on priests over abuse 'cover-up' (Sydney Morning Herald)
July 31 - NSW Police will give prosecutors evidence that three of the most senior members of the Catholic Church allegedly concealed the sexual assault of young girls in the Hunter Valley, in a landmark case that could expose the church to a new wave of criminal prosecution.
Ethics classes hidden from parents, say supporters (Sydney Morning Herald)
Aug 4 - PROPOSED changes to the way parents are notified about the option of ethics classes in NSW schools have been criticised by supporters, who claim they are a deliberate attempt to stymie the classes' take up.
Clarify school profit rules, Garrett says (Sydney Morning Herald)
Aug 4 - RESTRICTIONS that prevent schools from operating for profit should be tightened to legitimise taxpayer subsidies, the federal Education Minister, Peter Garrett, said yesterday.
Parents shun school religion (The Age, Melbourne)
Aug 4 - THE group representing parents in Victorian state schools has joined teachers in calling for controversial religious instruction classes to be scrapped during school hours.
Aug 5 - Thousands of Catholics have rallied in the Philippines against a measure to control the country's population growth.
French summer camp workers sacked over Ramadan fast (The West Australian)
Aug 1 - PARIS (AFP) - Tensions between French authorities and the country's Islamic community resurfaced on Tuesday after it emerged that four summer camp instructors had been sacked for fasting during Ramadan.
Aug 3 - An Islamic council in Indonesia wants the country's broadcasting commission to consider certifying TV programs as religiously acceptable.
Aug 4 - FOR most athletes at the London Olympics, their battle starts when they take their place on the starting blocks.
July 30 - A MISSISSIPPI couple was told by a pastor that they could not get married at their church because they were black.
Swiss bishop calls on power of prayer to bring back ice (The Age, Melbourne)
July 31 - YOU'VE got to hand it to the Catholic Church - sometimes its methods work.
July 31 - THE United States has warned the world is sliding backwards on religious freedoms, criticising violence against Coptic Christians in Egypt and citing European laws banning Muslim veils.
Punks trial puts heat on Putin (The Age, Melbourne)
Aug 1 - THREE special forces troops, Kalashnikov rifles draped across their chests, stood guard outside the courtroom. Inside, an equally ominous pit bull kept watch from in front of the judge's desk as journalists piled into a shabby wooden room inside Moscow's notorious Khamovnichesky court.
Also: Pussy Riot sacrificed on Putin's orthodox altar (Sydney Morning Herald)
Aug 2 – (Opinion: Warwick McFadyen) The trial began this week in Moscow of three members of the punk band Pussy Riot. They have pleaded not guilty to hooliganism and religious hatred.
Pastor admits to being Stasi agent (The Australian)
Aug 2 - AN AUSTRIAN pastor admitted in a newspaper interview to spying for East Germany's Stasi secret police for 20 years and said he was leaving his ministry with the Lutheran Church of Sweden.
Fried chicken in same-sex marriage row (The Australian)
Aug 2 - THOUSANDS of Americans have feasted on fried chicken in a politically-charged show of support for a family owned fast-food chain which opposes same-sex marriage.
Czechs pass $3.6bn religious compo bill (The Australian)
Aug 2 - CZECH legislators have passed a bill on the restitution of assets worth up to 2.95 billion euros ($A3.57 billion) seized from 17 religious denominations by Czechoslovakia's communist regime between 1948 and 1989.
Jerusalem hosts Gay Pride parade (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
Aug 3 - THOUSANDS have marched in central Jerusalem for a milestone 10th anniversary Gay Pride parade, passing by the spot where an ultra-Orthodox Jew stabbed three participants in 2005.
Sydney Islamic school ordered to repay $9m (Sydney Morning Herald)
July 31 - Sydney Islamic school Malek Fahd has been forced to repay $9 million in NSW government funding because it was found to be transferring money to a Muslim organisation.
Also: Islamic school denies operating for profit (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
July 31 - AN Islamic school in Sydney's southwest, ordered to pay back $9 million of public funding, denies it has done anything wrong.
Aug 2 - The ACT Human Rights Commissioner has found a flyer opposing a mosque development in Canberra's north is unlikely to have breached the Discrimination Act.
RELIGION & SOCIETY
Happy clappy app: church joins the modern age (The Age, Melbourne)
July 30 - Venturing where angels fear to tread, a Melbourne church has embraced social media and digital technology to revolutionise its links with members and the wider world.
How do we turn a palette of colours into picture perfect? (The Age, Melbourne)
Aug 4 – (Opinion: Martin Flanagan) In 1978, when I was 23, I left Australia and went to Ireland.
From the Archive…