by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Australia
June 21 - 28, 2009
Religion news stories from Australia
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
June 23 - The Catholic Church has confirmed a priest from Brisbane's Archdiocese has resigned as police investigate child sex abuse allegations made against him.
Bathurst sex abuse case: ninth man charged (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 23 - A ninth man has been charged by police investigating child sex offences at two colleges in Bathurst.
Brother's sex abuse 'shameful' (The Age, Melbourne)
June 23 - A Christian Brother whose sexual abuse of a 12-year-old boy was described by a judge as a "shameful breach of trust" will spend 15 months in jail.
Computer scanned in priest sex assault case (ABC News)
June 24 - Police will examine a computer hard drive after a Mackay Catholic priest in north Queensland was accused of sexually assaulting a student at a New South Wales school almost 20 years ago.
June 26 - Alleged victims of sex abuse at a Catholic boy's college say they are angry the school is hosting a major religious ceremony while police investigations are still underway.
Priest may lose OAM over sex charge (The Australian)
June 26 - HE has dedicated his life to the Catholic church.
June 26 - The Anglican Bishop of Wollongong Alan Stewart is to take up a new role with the Anglican Diocese of Sydney early next year.
Church defends historic sell-off (ABC News)
June 27 - The Anglican church denies claims it has not consulted parishioners about selling some of its heritage buildings in Tasmania.
Bishop in talks for big payout (Adelaide Now)
June 27 - EMBATTLED Anglican Bishop Ross Davies has conceded he is negotiating a payout to quit the Diocese of the Murray.
A noble calling (The Age, Melbourne)
June 27 - THE smoke is for cleansing, I'm told. Purification. Clearing the air. Dispersing negativity.
Vandals cause $40K damage to church (ABC News)
June 22 - About $40,000 damage was caused to a Margaret River church during a weekend attack.
Order of the boot: nuns' lawyer sold family out (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 26 - THE Victorian Supreme Court has issued a damning indictment of the actions of a Catholic investment group that "deliberately" and "recklessly" sold a family's substantial property in what the judge said was total disregard for the owner's right to retain his home.
Robbing private schools of public funding makes everyone poorer (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 24 – (Opinion: Sam Molloy) Whether public funding of private education is unconscionable is a trade-off between different values and consequences.
Vote for Dalai Lama (The Age, Melbourne)
June 23 - The Dalai Lama has said that the tradition of a monk leading Tibet's Buddhists by divine right should end with him.
Bulging Buddha statue upsets Japan's monks (ABC News)
June 25 - A Japanese company has agreed to withdraw from sale a figurine of Buddha with a bulge between its legs.
Catholic Church eyes new scandals facing Berlusconi (The Age, Melbourne)
June 22 - The seemingly untouchable Italian Prime Minister, who has emerged unscathed from corruption allegations and a reputation for gaffes with world leaders, has come under the stern gaze of the Catholic Church as he battles further accusations of sleaze.
Pop stardom awaits Pope (The Age, Melbourne)
June 23 - POPE Benedict XVI, an iconic figure to tens of millions, is about to boost his street cred by putting out a CD on the same label as U2 and Lady GaGa.
Bishop Domenico Mogavero calls on Silvio Berlusconi to resign (The Australian)
June 27 - SILVIO Berlusconi is under intense pressure to come clean about his private life after revelations he entertained about 20 women, including two lesbian escort girls, until dawn during a private party at his house in Rome.
June 27 - A marriage counselling service says too much time spent on the internet is causing increasing friction between couples in Ireland.
Catholic sect defies Vatican (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 28 - A breakaway Roman Catholic sect has thumbed its nose at Pope Benedict XVI by ordaining three priests in his home region of southern Germany in defiance of the Vatican.
French may outlaw burqa (The Age, Melbourne)
June 22 - FRANCE'S ability to reconcile secularism with religious diversity is under fresh scrutiny after the Government said it would not rule out banning women from wearing the full Islamic veil, the burqa.
Also: French MPs in call to unveil Islamic dress code (The Australian)
June 22 - FRANCE could bar Muslim women from wearing full veils in public, a government minister said at the weekend as parliament took action over concern about an increase in women who are wearing the niqab and burka in big cities.
Also: Burqa a sign of enslavement, Sarkozy says (ABC News)
June 23 - French President Nicolas Sarkozy says the Muslim burqa is a sign of subservience for women that undermines their dignity.
Also: Burqas not welcome in France, says President Nicolas Sarkozy (Adelaide Now)
June 23 - PRESIDENT Nicolas Sarkozy says the Islamic burqa is not welcome in secular France, home to Europe's largest Muslim community.
Also: Burka a sign of subservience, says Sarkozy (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 23 - The Islamic burka is "not welcome" in France because it is not a symbol of religion but a sign of subservience for women, President Nicolas Sarkozy says.
Also: Sarkozy's state of the nation dress: no burqas, please (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 24 - THE FRENCH President, Nicolas Sarkozy, has thrown his weight behind a ban on wearing the burqa in public - before a new parliamentary inquiry has reported on the proposal.
June 23 - A new report says Islamic schools are fertile recruiting grounds for new militants for Thailand's southern insurgency.
Also: Thai rebels 'not al-Qaeda' (The Age, Melbourne)
June 23 - INSURGENTS in southern Thailand are using a network of Islamic schools to recruit fighters, but their movement does not appear to be linked to al-Qaeda or other foreign Islamist groups, according to a study.
Rooftop chants a secret weapon for Iran's dissidents (The Australian)
June 26 - AT about 9pm each day, Nushin, a young housewife, performs the same curious ritual. She climbs up the stairs to the roof of her Tehran home and begins shouting into the night.
Ambitious cultural journey loses its way (The Australian)
June 27 – (Review) WE all inhabit the same planet, yet so often we hear phrases such as "the Muslim world" and "the Western world". Do such discrete entities indeed exist?
Blessed be the shtreimel makers, despite fur fury (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 27 - AT DUSK on the Sabbath, few things are more spectacular in Jerusalem than the fascinating passing parade of fur hats moving inexorably towards the Western Wall.
Nazi art thefts under summit spotlight (ABC News)
June 28 - Jewish groups and representatives of 49 countries are meeting in Prague for talks on returning art and property stolen by the Nazis.
Philippines blast kills one, wounds 32 (The Age, Melbourne)
June 21 - Suspected Muslim guerrillas hurled two grenades near a crowded town plaza where a beauty contest was being held in the southern Philippines, killing at least one person and wounding 32 others, officials said.
Mullah Omar reasserts control of Taliban: report (The Age, Melbourne)
June 23 - Taliban supreme leader Mullah Omar is reasserting direct control over the militant group, ordering attacks and shuffling field commanders in Afghanistan, The Wall Street Journal has reported.
Militants blow up girls' school (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
June 26 - MILITANTS bombed a girls' primary school on the outskirts of Pakistan's Peshawar city today, the latest in a series of such attacks blighting the northwest of the country, police said.
Taliban kill eight police in Afghanistan (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 27 - Taliban militants have stormed a police checkpoint in southern Afghanistan's troubled Helmand province and killed eight policemen, the provincial government says.
Twelve Taliban killed in northwest Pakistan (The Australian)
June 27 - AT least 12 militants were killed and more than a dozen wounded when Pakistani forces attacked the suspected bases of feared Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud today.
There but for the Grace of God (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 22 - In her first scene in her first television series, Holly Hunter sits naked astride a man who is married but not to her character.
Runaway boy ordered back to chemo (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 24 - A 13-year-old US boy with cancer who fled Minnesota with his mother to avoid chemotherapy must continue getting the treatment because it appears to be working, a judge has ruled.
Also: Daniel Hauser angry over continuing chemo (Adelaide Now)
June 24 - A TEENAGER who fled Minnesota with his mother to avoid chemotherapy is angry that he has to continue the treatment, the Associated Press has reported.
New Swiss law may restrict euthanasia (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 24 - Swiss government proposals to restrict the practice of assisted suicide in the Alpine nation could lead to greater suffering for patients and their loved ones, a group that helps people to die said.
Mennonite gang 'drugged, raped' 60 women (Adelaide Now)
June 24 - SEVEN members of a religious Mennonite colony in Bolivia have been arrested for the alleged rape of 60 women in their community over the past few months.
Jack Black risks fury with Bible rant (News.com.au)
June 24 - JACK Black is as black and white as the furry animal he played in Kung Fu Panda when it comes to biblical discussions.
Wimbledon fans use graveyard as carpark (The Australian)
June 26 - A CHURCH by the Wimbledon championships is letting tennis fans park above the bodies in the graveyard, a newspaper reported today.
Kentucky pastor preaches 'BYO guns' (ABC News)
June 28 - A church pastor in the American state of Kentucky has held a special service where the congregation were invited to bring their guns.
Also: Guns invited to church (Sydney Morning Herald)
June 28 - A gun-toting Kentucky pastor says it's OK to bring your weapon to church - at least for one day.
Watershed Iranian events make case for Al Jazeera (The Australian)
June 22 – (Opinion: Mark Day) You need to be a latter-day Lawrence of Arabia to begin to understand the ins and outs of ancient tribal enmities, disparate cultural demands and multiple religious groupings involving sects and sub-sects, let alone the byzantine workings of the plethora of political parties and splinters.
June 23 - The idea that the Muslim burqa represents the enslavement of women and undermines their dignity is an ignorant misconception, according to a young, part-Australian Muslim woman.
Take a lesson from Thomas More (The Australian)
June 27 – (Opinion: Dennis Shanahan) MONDAY was the feast day of St Thomas More, the patron saint of lawyers and politicians, and there was a special meeting of the St Thomas More Society and Forum in Canberra to mark the day.
June 25 - For all the pain and suffering the financial crisis is inflicting, the philosophical among us say there is a plus side - a happier, richer side.
Atheist bus ad dispute goes to tribunal (ABC News)
June 26 - A dispute over Metro Tasmania's refusal to display anti-religious advertisements on its buses has been set down for a conciliation hearing.
Sikh man denied bike test because of turban (The West Australian, Perth)
June 22 - An Indian man who says he was denied the opportunity to get his motorcycle licence because his religious beliefs dictate he cannot remove his turban has taken his case to the Equal Opportunity Commission.
Minto mates keeping the faith (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
June 27 - BEFORE they cross swords at Parramatta Stadium tomorrow afternoon, Krisnan Inu and Israel Folau will cross themselves in the same place of worship.
Ex-Brethren father loses battle for children (The Age, Melbourne)
June 28 - A GRIEVING father's only contact with his Exclusive Brethren children will be permission to buy their photographs from the sect's school, as long as they are not there at the time, a Family Court judge has ruled.
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