by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Australia
Mar 6 - 13, 2011
Religion news stories from Australia
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
Parishioner loses defamation case (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 8 - A parishioner whose inappropriate comments included recommending an orgasm as a remedy for bipolar disorder has lost his sexual harassment defamation case.
Also: Churchgoer loses fight over unwanted sex comments (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 10 - A PARISHIONER'S response to emails asking him to stay away from an Annandale church service has cost him more than a place to worship.
Top Ten Movie Priests (and other assorted Men of God) (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 10 - Although the usually brilliant Anthony Hopkins is punching way below his weight in the terrible, scare-free wannabe horror flick The Rite, his scenery-chewing performance as a Catholic priest charged with exorcising Satan from the tainted soul of a pregnant Italian teenager does remind us that movies are full of holy men trying to do the right thing.
Songs on a whim and a prayer (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 11 - A big break and a little faith have injected vigour into the Waifs.
Melbourne's Thai elephants blessed (news.com.au)
Mar 13 - BUDDHIST monks have blessed Melbourne Zoo's Thai elephants to mark the national elephant festival in their native country.
Mar 10 - The Catholic church is considering flying priests and bishops around western New South Wales to reach people in isolated areas.
Catholic schools get more funds, site shows (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 9 - SOME Catholic schools on Sydney's north shore are getting more government funding than public schools serving poorer communities in the western suburbs, according to the federal government's My School website.
China says Dalai Lama has to reincarnate (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - BEIJING (Reuters) - Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, does not have a right to choose his successor any way he wants and must follow the historical and religious tradition of reincarnation, a Chinese official said Monday.
China's Panchen Lama says Tibetans are 'free' (The West Australian)
Mar 9 - BEIJING (AFP) - China's controversial choice as the Panchen Lama said Tuesday that Tibetans had never been freer, just days ahead of the third anniversary of anti-government riots in the Himalayan region.
Dalai Lama to bow out of politics (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 11 - THE Dalai Lama has told Tibetans he wants to end his role as the political head of their government-in-exile.
Also: Dalai Lama quits politics (ABC News)
Mar 11 - The Dalai Lama has announced he is stepping down as political leader of the Tibetan government in exile.
Booty booted from the Bible (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 8 - Catholic bishops have kicked the ''booty'' out of the Bible. The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has ordered a new translation of the Bible, one it says is more accurate, more accessible and more poetic.
Pope to answer queries on TV (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 10 - FOR the first time in the history of the Vatican, the Pope will respond to questions about his faith on a television program.
Pope's book on Jesus condemns religious violence (The West Australian)
Mar 10 - VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Benedict has condemned violence committed in God's name and personally exonerated Jews of responsibility for Jesus' death in his latest book, released on Thursday.
Also: Pope rejects 1960s image of 'revolutionary' Jesus (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 11 - Pope Benedict XVI has rejected the 1960s notion of Jesus as a "political revolutionary" in a new book that has won praise from Israel for saying the Jews were not responsible for Christ's death.
Malaysia bans Shiites from promoting their faith (The West Australian)
Mar 9 - KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysia said on Wednesday that Shiites in the country, who have been termed a "deviant" sect, are barred from promoting their faith to other Muslims but are free to practise it themselves.
Pakistan's Islamist parties challenge weakening government (The West Australian)
Mar 9 - ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistan's disparate Islamist political parties are uniting behind their hatred of the United States, emboldened by a weak government that looks increasingly reluctant to stand up to extremism and a society where radicalism is widely tolerated.
Saudi clerics condemn protests and "deviant" ideas (The West Australian)
Mar 7 - DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's council of senior clerics issued a statement on Sunday forbidding public protests, which the rulers of the U.S. ally and key oil exporter fear could spread following demonstrations by minority Shi'ites.
Also: Saudi says protests don't fit Islamic state (The West Australian)
Mar 10 - DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's ruling family has mobilised the power of its conservative religious establishment to prevent a wave of uprisings against Arab autocrats from roaring into its kingdom, home to more than a fifth of the world's known oil reserves.
Tipple taboo: drinking alcohol in the Gulf a risky business (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 11 - The duty-free shop at Dubai's glitzy international airport brims with travellers choosing from row upon row of carefully stacked wine, champagne and whisky.
Congress to probe US Muslims (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 10 - THE chairman of a congressional committee that is investigating the radicalisation of American Muslims will press ahead with its first hearings tonight, despite widespread condemnation, because the US is ''under siege by Muslim terrorists''.
Gingrich sought "God's forgiveness" for marital affair (The West Australian)
Mar 10 - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Potential U.S. Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich told a Christian television network that he had sought God's forgiveness for a marital affair.
US taxes used to promote 'twisted' view of Islam (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 11 - THE US government is being accused of pumping millions of dollars into unregulated training schemes for local police officers and other law enforcers that give a distorted, dangerous and inflammatory picture of the Muslim faith.
'Six shot dead' in Egyptian religious clashes (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 9 - At least six Coptic Christians were shot dead and 45 wounded by gunfire in religious clashes with Muslims in the Egyptian capital, a Coptic priest told AFP on Wednesday, updating an earlier toll.
Also: Eleven die, 90 wounded in Cairo clashes (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 9 - Muslim-Christian clashes in the Egyptian capital Cairo have killed 11 people and wounded more than 90, security and hospital officials say.
A battle to worship in peace (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 10 - Indonesian Christians are facing a surge in threats and violence from Muslim radicals…
Bomb explodes in Pakistan mosque, no casualties (The West Australian)
Mar 11 - PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AFP) - A bomb prematurely exploded inside a mosque in Pakistan's northwestern capital of Peshawar shortly before prayers on Friday but caused no loss of life, police said.
Somali Islamists could grab tankers for attacks: PM (The West Australian)
Mar 11 - UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Somali pirates and Islamists are learning from each other and al Qaeda could hijack oil tankers to be used in September 11-style attacks, Somalia's prime minister said Thursday.
Muslims, Jews united over circumcision plan (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 7 - SAN FRANCISCO: Jewish and Muslim groups are mobilising over an attempt to outlaw male circumcision in San Francisco by putting the issue to a popular vote.
Banned Sheik Feiz Mohammed back in Australia (news.com.au)
Mar 13 - A RADICAL Muslim preacher - who has likened Jews to pigs, denounced Christians and urged children to die for their religion - is teaching Islam to young followers in Sydney after years in exile in the Middle East.
Jewish visit about 'social harmony' (ABC News)
Mar 7 - High school students in north and far north Queensland will this week meet representatives of the country's Jewish community to try and foster cultural acceptance.
Lord is briefly victims' shepherd (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 8 - THE number of people at St Gabriel's Anglican church in Grantham has, in one sense, visibly increased because of the Queensland floods: three temporary buildings now stand behind the church to shelter some of those who lost their homes when the water swept through the small town.
Salvation Army faces strike action (The Age, Melbourne)
Mar 9 - THE Salvation Army faces the unusual prospect of a strike from midday today with community employees in Sunshine set to walk off the job for two hours as part of a pay dispute.
First Sikh officer joins Victoria police (ABC News)
Mar 11 - The first officer of the Sikh faith has been inducted into Victoria Police.
Fright night led to rape claim (Sydney Morning Herald)
Mar 13 - A fancy dress student party ended with a lesbian accusing a Christian of rape.
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