Media Watch Around The World

Trump calls on Arab, Muslim leaders to end ‘slaughter of Christians’

May 23, 2017 World Watch Monitor: U.S. President Donald Trump addressed the Arab Islamic American Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday, 21 May. He mentioned the situation for Christians in the Middle East twice during his remarks:

Taiwan’s top courts set to rule on same-sex marriage

May 23, 2017 Washington Post: A panel of grand justices are set to meet soon in Taiwan to decide whether a law stating marriage should be restricted to a man and woman is unconstitutional. The island is considered one of the most gay-friendly places in Asia.

It’s not Tim Farron who is illiberal: it’s society

May 23, 2017 The Spectator UK: What a miserable election campaign Tim Farron is having. The Liberal Democrat leader wants to use broadcast interviews to talk about Brexit and his party’s pitch to disgruntled Remainers. Instead, he finds himself stuck in an episode of the Moral Maze, endlessly cross-examined about his beliefs on issues such as gay sex and abortion.

Church of England made stunning 17% return on investments in 2016 | Money | The Guardian

May 22, 2017 The Guardian: Church Commissioners, which manages investable C of E assets worth £7.9bn, says it has been promoting ethical investing.the

AMA throws its weight behind same-sex marriage, declares it a health issue

May 22, 2017 Sydney Morning Herald: The nation's most powerful doctors' group has thrown its weight behind same-sex marriage for the first time, declaring it a public health issue and calling on politicians to end the divisive debate.

Sam Dastyari decries rise of extremism in Australia

May 22, 2017 Sydney Morning Herald: Labor senator Sam Dastyari has told the next generation of his party the left of politics needed to resist turning a blind eye to extremism, and it was time for Australia to start a conversation on faith.

Is Tim Farron prepared to defend any of his beliefs?

May 19, 2017 The Spectator UK: Are there any matters of principle, do you reckon, that Tim Farron isn’t prepared to give up on under pressure from a television journalist? After caving under repeated questioning from Channel 4’s Cathy Newman (how brave, Cathy!) to declare that he does not, in fact, consider homosexual acts to be sinful, he’s now had to conform again, this time on abortion. In an interview with ITV, he said he strongly believed that ‘when procedures takes place, it should be safe and it should be legal,’ and supported the law as it stands.

Pakistan medical superintendent ‘orders Christian staff to recite Quran’

May 19, 2017 World Watch Monitor: The medical superintendent of a hospital in Pakistan has been accused of forcing its Christian staff to memorise Quranic verses. Article 20 of the Pakistan Constitution guarantees that no-one can be forced into any religious practice or belief against his/her own faith.

Assisted suicide could be legalised in up to three Australian states this year

May 18, 2017 ABC News: Assisted dying advocates are hopeful the practice could be legalised in up to three Australian states by the end of the year. Tasmania will debate a bill next week, while New South Wales and Victoria plan introduce legislation later this year. While voluntary euthanasia bills are introduced into Australian parliaments every year, advocates believe momentum is finally on their side.

Perth councils say no to marriage equality motion

May 18, 2017 The Age: A contentious issue has divided a number of Perth councils, and residents may be surprised to learn the debate has not revolved around bin pick-up, park maintenance or sports club funding.

Penny Wong takes aim at religious ‘fundamentalism’ blocking same-sex marriage

May 18, 2017 Sydney Morning Herald: Freedom of religion has wrongly and unfairly been used to deny marriage rights to gay and lesbian Australians and must be strongly resisted, Labor frontbencher Penny Wong has said.

At least 120 schools adopt gender-neutral uniforms, charity says

May 17, 2017 The Guardian: At least 120 schools now have a gender-neutral school uniform policy, and primary schools are adopting the stance faster than secondary schools, a charity that develops LGBT training in schools has said.

Franklin Graham: Boy Scouts No Longer A Group Christian Church Can Support

May 17, 2017 Western Journalism: The Boy Scouts of America is no longer a place where Christian churches should want young men to participate, Rev. Franklin Graham said Friday.

Nearly 50% are of no religion – but has UK hit ‘peak secular’?

May 16, 2017 The Guardian: The secularisation of Britain has been thrown into sharp focus by new research showing that for every person brought up in a non-religious household who becomes a churchgoer, 26 people raised as Christians now identify as non-believers.

US Vice-President says Trump will protect Middle East Christians and flush out ‘terrorists’

May 15, 2017 World Watch Monitor: US Vice-President Mike Pence has said that the Trump administration is committed “to defend[ing] Christians, and those of all faiths, whose freedom of religion is threatened”.

Archeologists Find Churches in Ancient City

May 15, 2017 Haaretz: Who, and what, was Jesus? Opinions still differ, but it seems early Christians living in ancient northern Israel accepted diverse interpretations of his nature, worshipping in churches built as closely as possible, side by side. Then, around the sixth century C.E., the Western interpretation of Jesus’ nature seems to have begun to prevail, say archaeologists.

Patriotism could account for rising number of Christians

May 15, 2017 Daily Mail: A rise in patriotism and Christian pride has accounted for a rise in the number Anglican churchgoers, a new report has found.

Theresa May tells how her Christian faith sustained her after she realised she could not become a mo

May 12, 2017 UK Telegraph: Theresa May has told how her Christian faith sustained her after she realised she could not have children.

Sudanese government destroys another church

May 12, 2017 World Watch Monitor: Sudanese government officials demolished the Sudan Church of Christ (SCOC) building in the Soba region, 20 Km south of the capital Khartoum, on Sunday. Two church members were detained and interrogated but later released.

The rise of so-called happy funerals is no laughing matter

May 12, 2017 The Guardian: It’s time to put the fun back into funeral. Yes, it’s going to be the party of your life. After all, you only die once. It’s your special day. Why not make it a themed occasion? Perhaps the coffin-bearers could be dressed up as superheroes? Or maybe a MasterChef theme? Do you think Gregg Wallace might be available to take the ceremony? I was once asked by a group of mourners if they could put a snow machine on the roof of St Paul’s Cathedral, because the deceased “loved the snow”, they explained.