by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Australia
March 3 - 9, 2014
Religion news stories from Australia
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
Mar 6 - A Jesuit priest and teacher at Saint Ignatius' College in Adelaide has admitted to child pornography offences.
Why bring God into it, Matthew McConaughey? (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 7 – (Opinion: Sam de Brito) Why Matthew McConaughey? Why'd you have to bring God into it?
Mar 7 - Noah, the big-budget Hollywood biblical epic starring Russell Crowe, is irreligious and should not be screened in Egypt, the country's top Islamic body says.
Also: Noah film angers another religious group (Perth Now)
Mar 7 - MUSLIMS and Christians might have their differences but they are united on one thing - they don't like Russell Crowe's new film Noah.
Also: Hollywood blockbuster 'Noah' faces ban in Arab world (The West Australian)
Mar 8 - CAIRO (Reuters) - Three Arab countries have banned the Hollywood film "Noah" on religious grounds even before its worldwide premiere and several others are expected to follow suit, a representative of Paramount Pictures told Reuters on Saturday.
Actor Chris O'Dowd says religion is 'unacceptable' (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 8 - Actor Chris O'Dowd thinks following a religion will eventually become as offensive and unacceptable as racism.
Pressure builds on state's religious instruction educator (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 7 - The main provider of religious instruction in Victorian state schools is under financial pressure and is being propped up by the federal and state governments.
Mar 6 - Pope Francis has defended the Catholic Church's record on tackling the sexual abuse of children by priests, saying "no-one else has done more" to root out paedophilia.
Business could learn a lot from Pope (The West Australian)
Mar 6 – (Opinion: Joyce Gannon) Jorge Bergoglio, the archbishop of Buenos Aires, was widely considered to be the runner-up in 2005 when Pope Benedict XVI was elected to lead the Catholic Church. But he didn't hang around the Vatican and plot a political strategy that would eventually lead to him becoming Benedict's successor.
The Francis effect (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 8 – (Opinion: Nick Miller) Pope Francis has won plenty of public support for his progressive views. But not everyone is convinced things will change.
Pope names top economists, finance experts to Vatican body (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 9 - Pope Francis named top laymen from the worlds of finance and economics on Saturday to a new Vatican Council for the Economy, intended to improve scrutiny of the Holy See's scandal-plagued accounts.
Malaysia bans Japanese comic book Ultraman for using 'Allah' (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - Kuala Lumpur (AFP) - Malaysia has banned a translation of an Ultraman comic book after it referred to the popular Japanese superhero as "Allah", authorities said Friday, during an ongoing row over use of the word by non-Muslims.
Mar 9 - About two dozen Iraqi women have demonstrated in Baghdad against a draft law approved by the Iraqi cabinet that would permit the marriage of nine-year-old girls and automatically give child custody to fathers.
Ultra-Orthodox Jews rally against proposal to draft them into Israeli military (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 3 - Jerusalem: Hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews blocked the main entrance to Jerusalem in a mammoth prayer vigil to protest plans to draft thousands of their young men for military service.
Knife gang tried to leave China before attack: report (The West Australian)
Mar 5 - Beijing (AFP) - Attackers who launched a brutal mass knifing at a Chinese train station acted in desperation after a failed attempt to leave the country and become jihadists overseas, a Chinese official was Wednesday quoted as saying.
U.N. says west of Central African Republic 'cleansed' of Muslims (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Most Muslims have been driven out of the western half of conflict-torn Central African Republic, where thousands of civilians risk of being killed "right before our eyes," the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees said on Thursday.
Putin enlists Russian philosophers for backup on world stage (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 5 – (Opinion: David Brooks) Even cynics like to feel moral.
Hardline and Hindu: Nationalists on the rise in India (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 6 - Hindu nationalists are gaining power in India - and silencing opponents along the way.
Mar 6 - A PREACHER has told his followers to eat grass to cleanse themselves and be “closer to God”.
Dalai Lama to lead US Senate prayers (The West Australian)
Mar 6 - Washington (AFP) - The Dalai Lama will lead the US Senate in prayer on Thursday as the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader rallies support among leaders of Congress, aides said.
Dalai Lama says no problem with gay marriage (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - Washington (AFP) - The celibate Dalai Lama has thrown his considerable moral weight behind gay marriage, condemning homophobia and saying sex was fine as long as it was consensual.
Dalai Lama encourages 'self-confident' US global role (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - Washington (AFP) - The Dalai Lama on Thursday encouraged the United States to show self-confidence in defending democracy as top lawmakers rallied behind his calls to preserve Tibetan culture.
Mar 8 - Pacific churches are being asked to speak out about alleged atrocities conducted by Indonesian security forces on people in the province of Papua.
Town prays for its stolen god Shiva to return (The Australian)
Mar 8 - EVERY day at dawn, noon and dusk, Palanisamy Kasi lights lamps in the dark, empty altar of the Hindu temple behind his house and prays for good fortune and the return of his god.
China anger at Dalai Lama's US Congress meeting (The West Australian)
Mar 8 - Beijing (AFP) - China expressed anger Friday over the Dalai Lama's meeting with US congressional leaders, urging Washington to "stop conniving" with the man it brands a separatist working under the "cloak of religion".
Mar 5 - The Australian National University is investigating claims a group of Jewish students was subject to an anti-Semitic attack.
Mar 3 - Australian missionary John Short has arrived in Beijing after being released by North Korean authorities.
Also: North Korea expels Australian missionary (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 3 - Australian man John Short, detained in North Korea for allegedly spreading Christianity, has been released and has arrived in Beijing.
Mar 5 – (Opinion: Editorial) THE weight of public opinion considers John Short is a lucky man to have been released so soon by North Korea.
Also: Missionary John Short says Bible helped him through N Korea interrogations (The Australian)
Mar 6 - AN Australian missionary detained in North Korea for trying to spread Christianity says he was interrogated for four hours a day and kept under 24-hour guard during his gruelling 13-day investigation.
Mar 4 - The Uniting Church is offering to look after asylum seeker children without parents living on Christmas Island.
Sydney FC midfielder Ali Abbas claims he was racially abused during A-League derby (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 9 - Sydney FC midfielder Ali Abbas has accused unnamed Western Sydney Wanderers players of racially, religiously and culturally abusing him during Saturday night's A-League Sydney derby which will prompt an investigation from the club.
Also: Aloisi urges Abbas to pursue race claim (The Australian)
Mar 9 - FORMER Socceroo John Aloisi has urged Sydney FC midfielder Ali Abbas to take his claims of cultural and religious abuse further with Football Federation Australia.
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