by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Australia
December 13 - 20, 2015
Religion news stories from Australia
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
Cardinal George Pell
labels reports 'misleading and mischievous' (ABC News)
Dec 14 - Catholic Cardinal George Pell has attacked reports casting doubt on the legitimacy of his illness, which has stopped him appearing at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Vatican refused to sack
priest convicted of child sex abuse, documents show (The Guardian, Australia)
Dec 14 - The Vatican refused to remove a Victorian priest despite his child sex abuse conviction and the pedophile wanted money to agree to be defrocked, documents obtained by AAP show.
Priests met on Ridsdale
abuse (The Australian)
Dec 14 - A group of priests held a meeting in the 1980s about their pedophile colleague Gerald Ridsdale’s sexual activities.
Former Ballarat Bishop
'profoundly sorry' for moving suspect priests to new parishes (Brisbane Times)
Dec 15 - The former Bishop of Ballarat struggles to sleep at night and is "profoundly sorry" for moving priests accused of child sexual abuse to different parishes, one of his former advisers has told a royal commission.
'Poorly' Cardinal George
Pell weighed down with worry over upcoming questioning (Brisbane Times)
Dec 15 - Cardinal George Pell was worried about his planned appearance at a child abuse royal commission last month, his former housemate says.
Priest accused of lying
to Royal Commission to 'save' Cardinal George Pell (Brisbane Times)
Dec 16 - Cardinal George Pell's former housemate has been accused of lying to a child abuse royal commission to "save" his friend from accusations that he tried to bribe a survivor to keep quiet.
Catholic priest denies
making up evidence 'to save' Cardinal George Pell (The Guardian, Australia)
Dec 16 - A Catholic priest has denied making up key parts of his evidence to the child abuse royal commission to “save” his friend Cardinal George Pell.
'crestfallen' after call with abuse victim, priest John Walshe says (ABC
Dec 17 - A Catholic priest has backed Cardinal George Pell's recollections of a 1993 telephone call where he allegedly offered to buy the silence of a sexual abuse victim.
Church in controversial
legal tactic to block lawsuits (Brisbane
Dec 19 - The Catholic Church attempted for nearly a decade to conceal incriminating documents about child sex abuse using a controversial legal tactic that it has since renounced as "inappropriate".
Child sex abuse
survivor: 'My belief in truth and justice has taken a beating' (The Guardian, Australia)
Dec 19 - Stephen Woods, a survivor of horrendous sexual abuse at the hands of three religious figures within the Diocese of Ballarat when he was a schoolboy, says his belief in truth and justice has “taken an utter beating” over the past fortnight.
Priest's designs on the
Mid West (The West Australian)
Dec 20 - It is 100 years — give or take a few weeks — since Monsignor John Hawes first set foot on West Australian soil.
Islamic school funding
suspended (The Australian)
Dec 17 - Federal and local government funding to South Australia’s Islamic school has been suspended.
Mother Teresa of
Calcutta, Nobel prize winner who dedicated life to the poor, to be made a saint (ABC News)
Dec 19 - Mother Teresa of Calcutta, the Nobel laureate who dedicated her life to helping the poorest of the poor, will be made a saint of the Roman Catholic Church, the Vatican says.
Trump defends Muslim ban (The Australian)
Dec 16 - The Republican frontrunner defends his provocative call as presidential candidates debate for the last time in 2015.
Donald Trump's Muslim
views 'tragic and full of hatred' (The
Dec 16 - The Nobel prize winner Malala Yousafzai has condemned Donald Trump’s views on Muslims as she attended a sombre ceremony to remember the 134 children killed in a Taliban attack on a Pakistani school a year ago.
Michael Moore writes
Donald Trump a letter, saying ‘We are all Muslim’ (news.com.au)
Dec 17 - AMERICAN documentary filmmaker Michael Moore has written a letter to Donald Trump, criticising him for his view of Muslims as an ‘angry white guy’.
Muslim security guards
at Paris airport fired ‘for their long beards’ (news.com.au)
Dec 18 - TWO Muslim security guards claim a Paris airport sacked them for having long beards, even though they grew their hair for “hipster fashion” and not religion.
Nigerian Shiite sect
leader Ibrahim Zakzaky arrested and aides killed (Sydney Morning Herald)
Dec 14 - Kaduna: Nigerian troops arrested the leader of a Shiite Muslim sect and killed his deputy and chief spokesman in raids on his house and other buildings on Sunday, the group said, a day after shooting dead seven others in a clash in the northern city of Zaria.
‘You ain’t no Muslim
bruv’ man speaks out on London tube terror attack (news.com.au)
Dec 14 - HE shouted “you ain’t no Muslim bruv” during a horrific terror attack at a London tube station.
President Obama talks
tough on Islamic State (Brisbane
Dec 15 - Washington: Surrounded by the bulk of his National Security Council, Barack Obama, addressed the threat from the Islamic State for the second time in just over a week
'You are next': Barack
Obama lists top IS leaders killed by US-led airstrikes (ABC News)
Dec 15 - United States President Barack Obama has listed a number of senior Islamic State fighters who have been killed in recent months by US-led airstrikes.
After San Bernardino
attack, NRA blasts New York Daily News, 'Godless Left' (Sydney Morning Herald)
Dec 16 - After the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, New York's Daily News deployed all of its tabloid cover in an attack on what it called America's "gun scourge" and the "cowards" – meaning the politicians, hiding "behind meaningless platitudes" instead of fixing the problem. "GOD ISN'T FIXING THIS" was the headline.
World War III will be
cyber war that IS could win, John McAfee says (news.com.au)
Dec 16 - PUT away the tanks and bombs — World War III will be fought online and Islamic State is better prepared for the cyber war than any Western military superpower.
Institute of Islamist
zeal (The Australian)
Dec 16 – (Opinion: Aliyah Saleem) I went to the school that created the San Bernardino killer.
Saudis lead anti-terror
alliance (The Australian)
Dec 16 - Saudi Arabia has announced that 34 nations have agreed to form a new “Islamic military alliance” to fight terrorism.
Is Saudi Arabia’s
anti-terrorist alliance real? (The
Dec 16 – (Opinion: Oliver Miles) In a move that seems to have taken everyone by surprise, the young Saudi deputy crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, son of the king, announced this morning at a brief press conference – itself an unusual event – the formation of an Islamic military alliance to fight terrorism.
Syrians tell of destruction
and abductions in Christian town invaded by Islamic State (ABC News)
Dec 16 - The Christian village of Tal Hemes, in the fertile fields of northern Syria, has been subject to an epic battle of tyranny and faith.
Defeat of IS in Iraq a
matter of when, not if, says operations chief David Johnston (Brisbane Times)
Dec 19 - Australia's military operations chief says it is now a matter of "when, not if" the Islamic State terror group is defeated in Iraq.
ISIS ‘spectacular attack
plan’ (The Australian)
Dec 20 - A former student who has returned from the Syria battlefield says IS wants to carry out simultaneous attacks across Europe.
Canadian pastor given
life sentence in North Korea (The
Dec 16 - A North Korean court has sentenced a Canadian pastor to life in prison with hard labour for what it called crimes against the state.
New Zealand approves
colander hats and flying noodle weddings (The West Australian)
Dec 20 - Wellington (AFP) - Colander-wearing members of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster could soon be legally married in New Zealand after the church was approved to hold "Pastafarian" marriage ceremonies.
Money meant for Islamic
State group found in dirty laundry by witness's mother, Sydney court hears (ABC News)
Dec 14 - Money allegedly intended for the Islamic State terrorist group was found by the mother of a rollover witness as she went to wash his clothes, a Sydney court has heard.
Enlightenment - that is
what Islam truly needs (Sydney Morning Herald)
Dec 15 – (Opinion: Paul Monk) The kind of reformation that Islam needs is one that frees it from the medieval traditions and muddled histories that plague it.
Lindt cafe siege
anniversary marked by tributes and song (Sydney Morning Herald)
Dec 15 - UC Brigante hung back from the media pack gathered outside the Lindt cafe, looking on cautiously.
Bendigo mosque one step
closer after latest appeal against proposal rejected (ABC News)
Dec 16 - Bendigo's first mosque appears likely to go ahead after a Victorian court refused an appeal against its planning approval.
Bendigo mosque appeal
thrown out of court (The Age,
Dec 16 - Victoria's highest court has thrown out a protracted legal bid by a group of Bendigo residents to stop a mosque being built in the regional city.
Grand Mufti banned sheik
link (The Australian)
Dec 16 - The Grand Mufti publicly supports a Middle Eastern sheik who has been banned from the US, Britain and France.
Tamworth Muslim Community Centre (ABC News)
Dec 17 - Tamworth Regional Council has approved an application for a Muslim Community Centre.
We need to talk about
Islam, says former radical Maajid Nawaz (Brisbane Times)
Dec 19 - People in the West are reluctant to discuss Islamism because they are frightened of being portrayed as racist, according to Maajid Nawaz, a British politician and former extremist who spent five years in an Egyptian jail.
Moderate Islam in danger (The Australian)
Dec 19 – (Opinion: John Lyons, Jennine Khalik) The Grand Mufti of Australia is under siege politically and publicly.
Stop megaphone politics
on Islam (The Australian)
Dec 16 – (Opinion: Concetta Fierravanti-Wells) Recent calls for a reformation of Islam demand a reality check.
Liberal divisions after
ASIO chief Duncan Lewis 'intervenes' on MPs' Islam comments (Sydney Morning Herald)
Dec 17 - Divisions have opened up in the Turnbull government, with right-wing MPs frustrated at the Prime Minister's reluctance to call out radical Islam and angry that ASIO boss Duncan Lewis has asked some MPs to temper their comments to avoid causing offence.
ASIO briefings: Islam
debate is ensnared in Liberal leadership battle (The Age, Melbourne)
Dec 17 – (Opinion: David Wroe) The war within the Coalition on national security has gone nuclear.
Hastie upset ASIO with
Islam views (The West Australian)
Dec 19 - Rookie WA Liberal MP Andrew Hastie says he is no leaker after Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull named him as one of two people briefed by ASIO boss Duncan Lewis on the dangers of using inflammatory language about Islam.
PM reveals MP text to
ASIO (The Australian)
Dec 20 - Malcolm Turnbull gave ASIO’s chief the number of one MP asked to try to avoid inflaming tensions with Muslims.
Salvation Army among
charities to lose unclaimed donations to government accounts (ABC News)
Dec 14 - Around $500,000 in unclaimed charity donations has now been transferred to government accounts after being unclaimed for several years, with the Salvation Army alone losing $100,000.
Black doll used in
Pascoe Vale MP’s nativity scene sparks complaints (Herald-Sun, Melbourne)
Dec 16 - A BLACK doll representing baby Jesus in a Pascoe Vale nativity scene will remain on display, despite some residents’ concerns.
Qasem Gardi who choked
teenage girlfriend with hijab jailed for 11-and-a-half years (ABC News)
Dec 18 - A man who choked his estranged girlfriend with her hijab until she passed out called out "none of this is true" as he was sentenced to jail today.
Church of the Flying
Spaghetti Monster fights for recognition in Australia (ABC News)
Dec 18 - The Australian arm of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has been encouraged by New Zealand's decision to grant the church approval to conduct weddings.
Can we truly forgive? Is
the Christian demand relevant today? (Brisbane Times)
Dec 19 – (Opinion: Barney Zwartz) Corrie ten Boom is famous in Christian circles for a superhuman act of grace.
Salvation Army's Flying
Padre brings holiday spirit and Christmas presents to outback Queensland (ABC News)
Dec 20 - Christmas has come early to children in remote parts of outback Queensland.
From the Archive…
Religion News Australia 2015 – 34 (Sept 6 - 13)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 33 (Aug 30 – Sept 6)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 32 (Aug 23 - 30)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 31 (Aug 16 - 23)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 30 (Aug 9 - 16)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 29 (Aug 2 - 9)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 28 (July 26 – Aug 2)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 27 (July 19 - 26)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 26 (July 12 - 19)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 25 (July 5 - 12)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 24 (June 28 – July 5)
Religion News Australia 2015 – 23 (June 21 - 28)