News Update - 20 Nov - Tas abortion, Union super, GM vaccine trial, religious freedom

11 weeks-preborn-708077The 'News Update' is early this week. Regegular News Updates will resume on 12 December.

Australian News

1. Tasmania: Abortion debate and vote in Legislative Council
The Tasmanian Parliament’s upper house, the Legislative Council, debated the Bill on abortion law this week – the Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) Bill 2013.

Media report: Upper House abortion debate coverage, Examiner, 19/11/2013.

A 'second reading vote' was held on Tuesday night - it PASSED by 9 votes to 5.
Some of those supporting the Bill expressed concern about fines for doctors/counsellors if they don't refer a patient on to someone who supports abortion - the final vote will depend on amendments made to the Bill.
Media: Decriminalising abortion closer, Examiner, 19/11/2013.

Last week the Legislative Council Sessional Committee Government Administration A handed down their Final Report into this Bill.

– Click here for the Inquiry webpage
– Click here for the actual Final Report.

Please pray that the Members vote against the Bill at the final reading.


2. Paul Keating’s speech on Remembrance Day – real history?
Merv Bendle, a former academic, has had a close look at what Paul Keating said about World War 1 in his Remembrance Day speech.
This is the start of his article:
“PAUL Keating's assertions about the nature of World War I demand a response if the memory of all those who served and died is not to be betrayed. His speech at the Australian War Memorial on Remembrance Day is a lamentable example of the nihilist view of that epoch-defining conflict  The nihilist perspective has long been the default historical interpretation on the Left and it has its roots in V. I. Lenin's communist polemic, Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism (1917). According to this view the war was a murderous spasm of a racist, patriarchal, and imperialist civilisation, which should have been avoided and ultimately achieved nothing. In Keating's words, it was "a war devoid of any virtue".

Such a view is often dismissed derisively by professional historians as the Blackadder version of the war . . .
In fact, this nihilist view of the war is quite unhistorical. German expansionism under the Prussian military caste was a pressing military imperative that had to be confronted and Australia had no choice but to enter the war once Great Britain was committed. Moreover, as the war unfolded the necessity for us to see the task through to the end became only more obvious. . .”
Article:  Keating's Remembrance Day speech echoed Leninist nihilism, Australian, 18/11/2013.


3.Union super and ‘The New Daily’ – Judith Sloan responds
Professor Judith Sloan, an economist (info), has written a forthright article criticising the investment of union members’ super funds in an online news service. She also published the letter she wrote to Heather Ridout, the chairwoman of AustralianSuper, one of the three ‘investors’.

Judith points out that she didn’t really want to join AustralianSuper but did so whilst she was a Commissioner of the Productivity Commission. She highlights the fact that the scheme is not expected to make a profit for at least three years – “But the real kicker is the uncommercial nature of the whole venture. We are told by Bruce Guthrie, editorial director of the new website and former editor of The Age and Herald Sun, that the investment by the superannuation funds is effectively unlimited. He predicts the venture will not make any money for three to five years but may turn a profit after that. It rather makes a mockery of AustralianSuper's motto, "It's your money, your life".”

That’s hardly a good investment for the super funds of union members!

Judith calls on the government to legislate to ensure that ‘a majority of the trustees of industry superannuation funds are independent’.

Article:  I've got some news for you: not with my super you don't, Australian, 16/11/2013.


4. Possible GM Vaccine trial for cholera in Australia
We’ve all heard of the controversy over ‘Genetically Modified’ crops. But now a company, PaxVax, has applied for a licence from Australia’s Gene Technology Regulator (GTR) “for the intentional release of a genetically modified (GM) bacterial vaccine into the environment.”

The official GTR website says, “PaxVax is seeking approval to conduct a clinical trial of a GM live bacterial vaccine against cholera. Once underway the trial is expected to be completed within one year, with trial sites selected from local government areas (LGAs) in Queensland, South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia. The trial will involve the inoculation of approximately 1000 children and adults. The applicant has proposed a number of control measures to restrict the spread and persistence of the GM vaccine and its introduced genetic material.”

The current cholera vaccine is ‘inactivated’ – click here for info.
Cases of cholera in Australia (about 2 to 6 cases a year) almost always occur in individuals who have been infected in endemic areas overseas.

This proposed trial would involve LIVE ‘Genetically Modified’ bacteria!

Will you be volunteering to be vaccinated in this trial?

The public are expected to be asked for COMMENT on this proposal in January 2014. Mark this site…
DIR 126 - Notification of application 
Receipt of licence application (DIR 126) from PaxVax Australia Pty Ltd for a clinical trial of a GM cholera vaccine


5. Islamic presentation at St James Centre
Recently the St James Ethics Centre in Sydney ran one of their IQ2 debates.
I was phoned to see if I would publicise it - but I wasn't impressed with their topic or their plans!

At that point they were planning to have Anwar Ibrahim from Malaysia as one of the speakers - in favour of Islamic laws to stop free speech. That didn't eventuate.

But the topic says it all: “Should God and His Prophets Be Protected From Insult?”

On the 'For' side were human rights lawyer Julian Burnside and the Spokesman for radical Islamist group Hizb-ut-Tahrir, Uthman Badar!

On the 'Against' side were Tom Keneally and a Muslim woman, Yasmin Abdel-Magied, Founder of Youth without Borders.
According to this eye-witness report from a member of Party for Freedom, she ended up agreeing with the other side most of the time! And free speech was condemned!

Read the report - St James Centre - not so ethical after all


6. Journalism and Truth
Nick Cater, former senior editor of The Australian (source), has written a compelling critique on the Australian media, saying they have abandoned the TRUTH and the FACTS in their reporting. He writes, “It is not the government that is in trouble but the news industry itself. Journalism has succumbed to a culture of dependency and is losing that most basic of skills: the ability to nail the facts.”

He highlights the difference between the Rudd/Gillard approach to the media – and that of the new Abbott government.

I loved this statement: “Today, the news industry is content to outsource information-gathering to public relations professionals and advocacy groups, accepting the facts they provide on trust."

And this one: “The truth has become secondary to what American comedian Stephen Colbert calls "truthiness", the selection of facts one wishes to be true, rather than facts known to be true.”

Nick goes on to say that the former Chairman of the ABC, Maurice Newman, has been very outspoken recently about the way the ABC seems to have abandoned the TRUTH and FACTS in reporting. Me Newman said, "What passes for journalism these days shows no respect for the facts," he says. "It is particularly apparent in the reporting of issues like climate change, where the evidence simply doesn't matter any more."

Mr Newman was very critical of journalism schools: “"Students who are not taught to be curious or approach a topic with an open mind will struggle to bring rigour to journalism."

On Lateline this week, Mr Newman continued with his comments – with a stinging assessment of the former Labor government’s debt and opposing the promotion of wind farms.

Media report: Nick Cater's article,  Australian Journalism giving up on the search for truth, The Australian, 2/11/2013.


Overseas News

1. USA: Supreme Court hears THREE religious liberty cases
Manhattan Declaration reports that the US Supreme Court will hear three cases on November 26.
They write, “The questions that are being asked of the Supreme Court are simple and fundamental:
- May the government order citizens to violate their sincerely held religious convictions?
- Does the free exercise clause of our Constitution mean anything anymore?
- Should the United States be a refuge for those fleeing religious persecution?”
They go on to describe the three cases. Read their report at this blog.


2. USA: Hawaii passes same-sex ‘marriage’ law
Hawaii has passed a law to allow homosexual ’marriage’ – more than twenty years after they were the first US state to have a court case over the issue.

And a lesbian legislator, Jo Jordan, voted AGAINST same-sex ‘marriage’!
Why? Because the religious liberty protections were not strong enough!
But the rest of the parliament PASSED the Bill and the Governor has signed it.
Article:  Governor signs bill to legalize gay marriage in Hawaii, FoxNews, 13/11/2013.

Article:  Why-Rep-Jo-Jordan-voted-against-Marriage-Equality 


3. Denmark: Free speech and criticising Islam - fine or prison!
A Danish Court has UPHELD the conviction of an Iranian-Danish woman – who made remarks that were critical of Islam. Artist Firoozeh Bazrafkan is a former Muslim who wrote about the treatment of women in Islam, saying she was "very convinced that Muslim men around the world rape, abuse and kill their daughters." Such abuse resulted "according to my understanding as a Danish-Iranian" from a "defective and inhumane culture—if you can even call it a culture at all." Bazrafkan deemed Islam a "defective and inhumane religion whose textbook, the Koran, is more immoral, deplorable and crazy than manuals of the two other global religions combined."

The comment was based on one by free speech activist Lars Kragh Andersen – who was convicted under the Danish Penal Code. Section 266b punishes any public "pronouncement or other communication by which a group of persons are threatened, insulted or denigrated due to their race, skin color, national or ethnic origin, religion or sexual orientation."

Bazrafkan claims that the criticism of RELIGION should be allowed under free speech provisions. The REAL PROBLEM – just as in Victoria’s Racial and Religious Tolerance Act, the problem is that the law is about how people FEEL, not whether it is TRUE or not. In another case, Jesper Langballe said that Section 266b's "sole criterion of culpability…is whether someone feels offended…not whether what I have said is true or false."

Bazrafkan has been ordered to pay a 5,000 Kroner fine or five days in prison.
She plans to appeal to the Danish Supreme Court – if that fails, she says she will go to prison instead of paying the fine.

Article: Many Things Rotten in Denmark, Andrew E. Harrod, FrontPage, 13/11/2013.


4. North Korea: Public executions – some for possessing a Bible or watching videos
Dan Wooding of Assist Ministries, reports that “As many as 80 people were publicly executed in North Korea earlier this month, some for offenses as minor as watching South Korean movies or possessing a Bible, according to a story in Fox News.”
The report details the horrific treatment of some of these people, including some who were tied to stakes and shot in front of a stadium full of people.
Article: North Korea publicly executes 80, some for videos or Bibles, report says, 12/11/2013.


5. Brunei to enact sharia law next year
Elizabeth Kendal of Religious Liberty Monitoring writes about this situation and asks us to PRAY. . .
“Commencing April 2014, Brunei will enact Sharia criminal law, including amputation, lashing, stoning and execution. The Sultan signed the bill on 22 October. As reported by the Jakarta Post, 'Hudud crimes cover areas including theft, illicit sexual relations, making unproven accusations of illicit sex, causing physical hurt, drinking intoxicants, apostasy, and acts contrary to Islamic belief.'

The laws supposedly will apply only to Brunei's Muslims (about 65 percent of the population). However, wherever Hudud laws are enforced, Christians especially become extremely vulnerable to rape and other violent crimes. If they report rape they risk being punished for making 'false' claims as they will not be able to get four adult male Muslim eye witnesses required to corroborate their claim. The Sharia criminal penalty of death for apostasy will remove any pretence of religious liberty, making witness and conversion even more dangerous than it is already.
Pray for the Church in Brunei. 
Media reports:  Reuters – Jakarta Post

On the Issues

1. Mum and Dad together as it should be
Reflective short article on marriage and family… AWR Hawkins describes his experience of Mum, Dad and HOME.
He concludes: “Why are so many willing to take away a child's opportunity to press his or her face against the glass and yearn for Mom to be home with Dad, where the whole family can sit together and children can learn early lessons about structure, authority, and joy?  And what will we say to children when they one day ask why they have been intentionally deprived of the love of either a father or a mother?
Many things change with time, but the structure of essential matters -- like the family -- ought never change.
Article:  Mom and Dad Together, as It Should Be, AWR Hawkins, American Thinker, 3/10/2013.


2. On the growth of ‘Chrislam’ in the USA – Rick Warren and others…
Since Rick Warren spoke to a Muslim group in 2009 and mentioned what Christianity and Islam have in common – then there was the ‘A Common Word’ document signed by Christian leaders and addressed to Muslims…
Anyway, it hasn’t gone away – this recent article highlights some of the developments: 
Rick Warren’s Chrislam Becomes One Of The Fastest Growing Religions In America, Before It’s News, 13/11/2013.



News Update - 15 Nov - NSW 'marriage' bill defeated, Vic child abuse Inquiry, Kevin Rudd resigns, Alex Greenwich's activism...

taking notes Another busy week - with the NSW Parliament defeating the proposed same-sex 'marriage' Bill, the Victorian Parliament handing down its report on child abuse and Kevin Rudd resigning...

Read on...  May God bless you as you follow Him and also monitor what is happening in the world!



Australian News 

1. NSW – homosexual ‘marriage Bill DEFEATED by two votes
Good News! Yesterday (14 Nov) the New South Wales Legislative Council defeated a Bill to legalise ‘marriage’ between two people of the same sex.
The vote was 21 to 19.
Two Liberals voted FOR the Bill - Catherine Cusack and Greg Pearce.
Two Nationals supported the Bill - Sarah Mitchell and Trevor Khan.

Fred Nile said the outcome was ''a great victory for marriage in the NSW upper house''. He noted that he had encouraged the Premier Barry O’Farrell to make a statement saying he would vote against the Bill if it came to the Legislative Assembly.
A huge thank you to all the Members who voted AGAINST the Bill!

Click here for the Parliament’s official page for this Bill – it includes the Bill, second reading speeches.
Click here for the Hansard record of the debate and VOTE on the ‘Same-sex marriage Bill 2013’.

Article: Same-sex marriage bill defeated in NSW upper house, SMH, 14/11/2013.


2. Vic Parliament Inquiry into child abuse hands down report: “Betrayal of Trust”
The Chair of the Inquiry into child sexual abuse by religious and other organisations in Victoria has condemned the amount of sexual abuse and been very critical of the handling of allegations of abuse by organisations.

The Victorian Parliament’s Family and Community Development Committee has handed down the Report from their “Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and Other Organisations”. The Report has been titled ‘Betrayal of Trust’- as that sums up what the Committee found in its Inquiry.

The Report is particularly critical of the handing of allegations of abuse by the Catholic Church. Among 15 main recommendations made by the committee is a call for laws that make it a crime to conceal child abuse offences, to groom a child for sexual abuse and to place a child at risk.

The Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne has spoken publicly, admitting errors in the handling of cases, and saying the damage is “irreparable”.

Official Inquiry webpage – click here.

The Final Report has been posted on the Parliament’s website - click here.
- Summary and Recommendations – 24 pages (PDF 308Kb)

OR Whole Report:  Volume 1 (PDF 2.2Mb), Volume 2 (PDF 4.0Mb)

Media report:  Catholic Church condemned in abuse report,, 13/11/2013.


3. Tasmania: parliamentary report on abortion published
The Tasmanian upper house standing committee has released its report on abortion – they investigated the proposed Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) Bill 2013.
The Committee expressed concern that the $32,000 fine, for counsellors who didn’t mention abortion as an option, was excessive – but they didn’t condemn it outright.
Click here to read the report.


4. Kevin Rudd resigns from parliament
Kevin Rudd announced on Wednesday evening (13 November) that he is resigning from federal parliament. He plans to leave by the end of this week. In his statement, he said he wanted to spend more time with his family. Mr Rudd had been under pressure from some Labor people to resign and allow the new leaders to rebuild the Party.

Media report – includes video of his speech:
Former prime minister Kevin Rudd quits federal politics with emotional speech to Parliament, ABC, 14/11/2013.


5. War memorial – Political correctness and the words ‘Unknown to God’
In September, it was reported that the Australian War Memorial was planning to CHANGE the inscription on the ‘Tomb of the Unknown Soldier’ at the memorial in Canberra.

The inscription, "An Australian soldier of the Great War, known unto God", is a line from Rudyard Kipling and is found on graves of unknown soldiers around the world. It was on the headstone of this soldier in France.

The governing council of the War Memorial had decided to remove the words ‘Known unto God’ and replace them with "We do not know this Australian's name, we never will" – taken from a eulogy given by Paul Keating in 1993 when the body was interred. The words ‘Known to God’ were put there in 1999.

Anyway, numerous complaints ensued, including a plea from Prime Minister Tony Abbott to leave it as it is. The War Memorial Council then decided to leave the words ‘Known unto God’ on the tomb – a plaque with the words of Paul Keating’s eulogy has been placed on the wall!
It was unveiled on Remembrance Day this week. 
Insightful article from Miranda Devine: Turning in their graves, 29/10/2103.

Media reports:
War Memorial to keep 'Known unto God' on tomb of Unknown Soldier, ABC, 29/11/2013.
Paul Keating speaks at Australian War Memorial on 20th anniversary of entombment of the Unknown Soldier, Daily Telegraph, 11/11/2013.


6. The New Daily - funded by union super funds...
Yes, a new online news service - it claims to be 'independent' but it is being funded by unions!
Or more accurately, by the SUPER funds of the union members!
Read this assessment, by the H R Nicholls Society, of 'The New Daily" which they label as a 'far-left publication'!
And a media report by the ABC (which will provide 'content'!).


7. Activism: Is Alex Greenwich a homosexual activist OR an MP?
NSW Independent MP Alex Greenwich has put ANOTHER amendment relating to homosexual rights in to the NSW parliament.

This time it relates to the new National Disability Insurance Scheme – the NSW Parliament is considering an ‘enabling Bill’. According to media reports, if the Bill is passed, the provision of “disability services, assets and employment” will be transferred to the non-government sector.

Greenwich claims that, since religiously-affiliated disability care providers are exempt from the NSW Anti-Discrimination Act, disabled homosexuals will be discriminated against. He cites an example where a homosexual might have a disability worker who is homosexual – currently religious groups can choose not to employ homosexuals. Greenwich wants to amend the Bill to REMOVE the right of religious organisations to ‘discriminate’ re employment with respect to ‘sexual orientation’!

This would be a huge change – if passed it will have wide-ranging implications for religious organisations – and would put pressure on other states to follow suit.

Media report: Need to protect disabled gay people: MP, AAP, 12/11/2013.
Statement from Alex Greenwich – click here.

As for being a ‘homosexual activist’ - out of 38 Media releases on his website, 21 are about homosexual issues.
Of the last 10, 8 of them are about homosexual causes – and FOUR relate to actual legislation he has promoted! (See his Media releases.)
The others?
He has also had six media releases opposing the granting of a second casino licence to James Packer and two where he is supporting a euthanasia Bill.


Overseas News

1. A view of Syria - A nun talks of how the ‘rebels’ have caused conflict
This is an interesting short video (9 min) - Mother Agnes Mariam to Outside Powers - LEAVE SYRIA ALONE! 

She speaks about the Assad regime, the sectarian conflict and how the rebels are using, and justifying, violence.


2. Brave Coptic Bishop tells Episcopalians to return to the gospel
A Coptic Bishop has told Episcopalians to say ‘NO’ to homosexual ordination and same-sex ‘marriage’….
Coptic Hierarch Takes Episcopalians to Task, Coptic World, 12/11/2013.

“A Coptic Orthodox Church observer to the Fourth Global South to South Encounter ripped into the Episcopal Church, stunning some 130 archbishops, bishops, clergy and laity, urging them to say “no to ordination of homosexuals, no to gay marriage, no to such immorality, and that it is time to purify the sanctuary of the Lord from this abomination that causes our God to suffer, bleed and be crucified again everyday.” “You are martyrs without the shedding of blood because you are upholding the teaching of the Gospel handed down once and for all to the apostles,” Bishop Anba Suriel told the stunned delegates….”

“An army of sheep led by a lion is more powerful than an army of lions led by a sheep. I really pray that you lions here, the primates of each of the provinces of the Global South will stand united with one accord against the heresies of The Episcopal Church.”

Original article intro – click here.
Copy of full article at Virtue Online – click here.


3. Al-Qaeda Twitters how to ‘gently’ cut someone’s head off
Yes, Al-Qaeda are telling their followers how to cut off heads in a ‘nice’ way!
The tweet was ‘How do you separate the head from the body ‘gently’?”
Article from Conservative Infidel
Original article –


On the issues 

Homosexual research and ‘conflict of interest’
We’ve previously written about research on homosexuality often being done by lesbians or homosexuals. One question we have – do they declare a conflict of interest – or declare they are homosexual themselves?

Generally, the answer is NO!

There is Charlotte Patterson, who does research on same-sex parenting – and did a Report on same-sex parenting for the American Psychological Association. She is a lesbian with a partner and children.
See Dr Loren Marks analysis of her Paper click here.

Then there is Lynne Hillier, doing research on SSA young people where they volunteer to respond to a survey (‘Writing themselves in’).
We mentioned her in an E-News this week.
She was named on same-same’s 2010 list of ‘The 25 Most Influential Gays and Lesbians’.

Recently we mentioned Damien Riggs, the Chair of the Australian Psychological Society’s Gay and Lesbian Issues Group. He is an active homosexual with a former partner and several foster care children (source).

So what are his areas of research?

One of them is foster care:
An essay published in 2007 is on heterosexism in the foster care system!
It is called: Reassessing the Foster-Care System: Examining the Impact of Heterosexism on Lesbian and Gay Applicants

He’s also written a book on parenting: Becoming Parent: Lesbians, Gay Men and Family

He’s one of the authors of a Literature Review on same-sex parenting published by the Australian Psychological Societyclick here.

They are often reticent at telling everyone about their self-interest. They rarely, if ever, declare their homosexuality in their research!

Isn’t that a conflict of interest?

News Update - 8 Nov – Racial vilification, euthanasia, same-sex ‘marriage’

Newspaper-dog shutterstock-Sm
Catching up on the news from the past fortnight. Grab a coffee or tea and find out what's happening!
May God inspire you as you 'are in the world but not of it'!

Australian News

1. Federal Racial Vilification law to be CHANGED
Good News! Federal Attorney-General George Brandis has announced that, in line with the Coalition’s election commitment, his first piece of legislation will be a Bill to AMEND Section 18C of the federal Racial Discrimination Act.

This section, under which Andrew Bolt was found ‘guilty’, says,
“It is unlawful for a person to do an act, otherwise than in private, if:
the act is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people; and
(b)  the act is done because of the race, colour or national or ethnic origin of the other person or of some or all of the people in the group.”

The government is committed to at least removing the words ‘offend’ and insult’. However, Senator Brandis is now considering more extensive changes - possibly even the repeal of the Section. Professor James Allan, the Garrick Professor of Law at the University of Queensland, says the WHOLE Section should be repealed to protect free speech – a position we agree with!

Jewish groups actively support the law, since they are covered as a ‘race’ by S18C – Jewish groups have used the law to take cases against people who question the details of the holocaust.

Article: Attorney-General George Brandis' first task: repeal 'Bolt laws' in name of free speech, The Australian, 8/11/2013.

Prof James Allan: Act has chilling effect on freedom of speech

ACTION: Please write to Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Attorney General George Brandis – ask them to repeal the WHOLE of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act to protect free speech.
PM Tony Abbott:
Attorney-General, Senator George Brandis: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


2. Federal Inquiry into ‘rights’ and ‘freedoms’
Senator Brandis also said that terms of reference are being drawn up for an Inquiry to be conducted by the Australian Law Reform Commission into statutory infringements of traditional rights and freedoms. The inquiry will be completed before the next election.

Senator Brandis said said that the role of the Australian Human Rights Commission will be expanded to protect traditional rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of religion and a ‘freedom commissioner’ would be appointed. See article at No 1.


3. Persecution of Christians – ‘Age of Intolerance’ by Barney Zwartz
A feature article in The Age by religion writer Barney Zwartz highlighted the persecution of Christians, especially in the Middle East – of course much of this is in Muslim-majority nations under Islam. Although the article doesn’t attribute this to the nature of Islam itself, it does highlight the fact that Christians are being persecuted around the world.

Don’t forget the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church this weekend – click here for our post on this.
Article: Age of Intolerance – the war on religion, Barney Zwartz, The Age, 1/11/2013.


4. SA: ANOTHER euthanasia Bill proposed
Some politicians DON’T GIVE UP!  SA Independent MP Bob Such has introduced the ‘Ending Life with Dignity (2) Bill 2013’. This is his NINTH euthanasia bill since 2000, and his second try this year. His previous Bill is still before the parliament!

FamilyVoice SA state officer David d’Lima said, “Sadly, even though Dr Such claims that his November bill is tighter than his April version (which he had claimed was as tight as anyone could get), it still has huge loopholes you could drive a hearse through.”

The Bill could be debated and voted on NEXT WEEK - 14 November – before MPs and other bodies such as the Law Society, AMA, palliative carers and the insurance industry have had time to trawl through its 25 pages and determine its full implications.

Paul Russell, of HOPE, says that the Bill suffers form the same flaws!

There are only TWO sitting days left this year – and in the parliament before the next state election. Dr Such told Lifesite that the Bill “almost realistically won’t pass’”!
But he keeps on trying!

FamilyVoice media release – click here.
Paul Russell’s report: Such tables 'new & improved' euthanasia bill in SA at eleventh hour 
Lifesite report: South Australian euthanasia bill ‘almost certainly won’t pass,’ MP admits to LifeSiteNews


5. UPDATE: Same-sex ‘marriage’

5.1  ACT ‘marriage’ law
The High Court will consider the federal government’s challenge to the legality of the ACT same-sex ‘marriage’ law on December 3 and 4. The hearing is just a week before the first homosexual ‘marriages’ are expected to be held in the ACT.

The full bench of the High Court will consider the case.
Media article: High Court sets Dec 3 for marriage case, AAP, 4/11/2013.


5.2  Tasmania: Same-sex ‘marriage’ Bill NOT to be debated!
More good news! The Tasmanian Legislative Council has defeated a motion to re-consider the issue of same-sex ‘marriage’ by 8 votes to 6. The vote was held on 29 October. But the politician pushing the issue is planning to ‘fight on’!
Media report: Same-sex marriage Bill fails but fight goes on, 30/10/2013


5.3  NSW: Homosexual ‘marriage’ Bill being considered 
The NSW parliament is still considering the same-sex ‘marriage’ Bill. 
Pray that it is NOT passed.
If you live in NSW, please contact your MPs. Click here for MP details.


6.  WA: Anglican Archbishop vetoes motion on homosexuality
In a welcome development, Perth’s Anglican Archbishop Roger Herft has vetoed the motion that promoted sexual diversity’ that was passed by two thirds of the recent Anglican Church synod. The motion recognised diversity within the diocese "both in our sexual identities and in our theologies of human sexuality". Archbishop Herft said he had major problems with the theology of this section and that ‘the recognition of diversity in identities and theologies, however diverse they are, lead to a view that all sexual identities and all theologies were ‘acceptable”. He said it would have “unintended consequences”. He also rejected the recognition of ‘civil unions’, saying they were not recognised by the state of Western Australia.

The Motion will now be considered at a special meeting of the WA Anglican Provincial Council and they will decide the outcome.

This was good news – but be warned. The issue will NOT go away! The West Australian reports, “Archbishop Herft said the wording of the motion was too general and he expected a similar, more carefully worded motion would be brought to the Church's synod next year.”

Archbishop Herft’s statement – click here.
The actual letter announcing his decision – click here.

Media report: Church rejects gay union bid, West Australian, 30/10/2013.


7. Election: AEC loses ballot papers in WA Senate race
The Senate positions in WA have still not been finalised. At the end of counting, with the last position being tentatively given to Labor and PUP, a re-count was begun.

Last Thursday (31/10/2013) the AEC revealed they had LOST 1,375 ballot papers!
These ballots had initially been counted and verified. The AEC has called in called in former federal police commissioner Mick Keelty to investigate.

In the meantime, the AEC declared that the Greens and the Sports Party had won the seat. Legal action - a challenge to the High Court - and a new WA Senate election.
Report: Probe launched into lost WA Senate ballot papers, The Australian.


8. NSW: Greenwich pushes homosexual agenda
We recently reported on the Motion moved by homosexual activist and NSW Independent MP Alex Greenwich that criticised ‘reparative therapy’ and counselling for people seeking help with unwanted same-sex attraction.

Greenwich is also pushing for an amendment to the Anti-Discrimination Act to remove exemptions for religious schools regarding homosexuality.
Click here to read the Bill and here to view Alex’s explanation of his actions.

The Catholic Education Commission NSW says that Greenwich has spoken of the “exemptions as special permission granted to non-government schools to allow them to expel or refuse to enrol students who are same-sex attracted, bisexual, transgender or pregnant outside marriage.”

However, the Commission says that there is no record of Catholic doing that. They warn that, “The proposed legislation will weaken the protections religious communities have to run schools according to their conscientiously-held beliefs, which are protected by international law.”

ACTION: If you live in NSW – please contact your MP in the Legislative Assembly and all Members of the Legislative Council – ask them to vote against the Bill to protect religious freedom. Click here for MP details.


9. ABC Fact Check – how factual is it?
Sounds official, doesn’t it? After all, ‘facts’ are true, aren’t they?

The ABC was given an additional $10 m by the Labor government to establish this new Fact Check Unit… you may have seen their reports on the ABC News.

Recently Fact Check did a report on same-sex ‘marriage’ – they criticised Tony Abbott’s comment: 'From time immemorial, in every culture that’s been known, marriage or that kind of solemnised relationship has been between a man and a woman.'
As Andrew Bolt said, the Fact Check team reached new depths- justifying same-sex ‘marriage’ ‘because Nero did it’!

Chris Kenny asks, ‘Why do they NEED a Fact Check team… shouldn’t the ABC be giving the FACTS anyway?”


10. NSW: School inspectors recommend closure of Islamic school 
Australia's largest Muslim school Malek Fahd Islamic School, with  2,500 students, is facing closure because the NSW Board of Studies Inspectors have recommended that the school’s registration NOT be renewed in 2014. ABC reports that the NSW Education Minister has written to the school saying he is “gravely concerned” about the school – including attendance, Higher School Certificate curriculum, educational quality, safe environment and buildings.

The matter will be considered when the Board meets on December 10. Currently the school has ‘provisional registration’ – it was downgraded last year because of financial issues. The State government stopped funding and ordered the school to repay $9 million – the school was accused of funnelling education money to the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils – for rent and other expenses. Apparently ASIC and the ATO are conducting investigations.

Interestingly, the school has appointed a Christian as the Principal – Dr Barrett has a reputation for ‘turning around troubled schools’! He says the school is trying hard to comply with the Board.

Media report: NSW school inspectors recommend closure of Australia's largest Muslim school, ABC, 1/11/2013.


Overseas News

1. Holland: ‘Sweetie sting’ nabs 1000 sex predators
Dutch children’s rights activists used an animated computer-generated image of a 10 year old Phillipine girl to catch suspected sex predators. They say 1000 people from 71 countries interacted with the girl. It included 46 Australians.
Articles: CBS (5/11/2013), (5/11/2013)


2. UK: Core Issues Trust loses injunction case on bus ads
Christian Concern reports that the UK High Court did NOT grant an injunction to stop Transport for London running pro-homosexual ads for homosexual activist group Stonewall.

The High Court had previously ruled that the ads breached TfL’s Guidelines! They also report that they were ordered to pay costs.
Read more about the case here.


3. UK: PM Cameron announces ‘Islamic bond’
Whilst speaking at the World Islamic Economic Forum, PM David Cameron announced that the UK would become the FIRST non-Muslim country to issue an Islamic bond – to encourage Islamic investment.
He wants to make London “one “of the great capitals of Islamic finance anywhere in the world”.
Read Soeren Kern’s analysis at the Gatestone Institute


On the Issues

1. Same-sex ‘marriage’ unfair to hookers and bigamists
Yes, Andrew Bolt highlights the ‘slippery slope’ that same-sex ‘marriage’ promotes. He shares an essay by Sydney academic Annamarie Jagose, who is a “ scholar in feminist studies, lesbian/gay studies and queer theory”.

She claims that, if same-sex ‘marriage’ is legalised, other groups are marginalised – and they deserve respect too, don’t they?

She says that whilst same-sex ‘marriage’ might ‘admit’ gays and lesbians it would further exclude other people who aren’t married – “Unmarried mothers, for instance; adulterers; the devotedly promiscuous; sex workers; the divorced; the bigamous and polygamous; those who are not strangers to the august traditions of the dirty weekend or the one-night stand; single people.” 

Her conclusion says it all:
“Important questions of social justice, equity and social belonging cannot get worked out across such an absurdly constrained and increasingly irrelevant category as marriage. Presenting itself as a magical solution while only distracting us from the real and unaddressed conditions of social inequity, marriage is a red herring for the 21st-century pursuit of social justice.”

Andrew Bolt’s Comment: Same sex marriage unfair to hookers and bigamists

Article by Annamarie Jagose: The trouble with gay marriage


2. IPCC Report – Analysis of the latest IPCC ‘Summary for Policy Makers’
The IPCC Summary for Policy Makers was published recently as part of their Fifth Assessment Report.

if you want to know what the climate scientists who disagree with the IPCC proposals re ‘global warming, read S. Fred Singer’s analysis.
It is an overview of a larger assessment published by the Heartland Institute.
S. Fred Singer: Non-governmental climate scientists slam the UN's IPCC

Policy Brief: Scientific Critique of IPCC's 2013 'Summary for Policymakers,' by Craig D. Idso, Robert M. Carter, S. Fred Singer, and Willie Soon." 

News Update - 25 Oct - marriage, vilification, HIV increase, bushfires, Islamic underage marriage. . .

Newspaper and glasses SX 953849 15854849 320x200

Same-sex 'marriage' laws will be discussed in two state parliaments next week. The federal government has asked for an expedited High Court hearing on the ACT same-sex 'marriage' law. Then there are vilification claims, Islamic underage marriages, bushfires, and more...

Next week we will have our monthly Prayer News - so our next in-depth News Update will be in two weeks time.



News Update - 25 October

Australian News

1. Homosexual ‘marriage’ Update
1.1  Tasmania – Same-sex ‘marriage’ Bill to be voted on next Tuesday
The Tasmanian Legislative Council will vote on a Bill to legalise same-sex ‘marriage’ next Tuesday, 29 October.

If you live in Tasmania, please contact your MLC and ask them to vote AGAINST this Bill. Last year a similar Bill was defeated – many of the Independent MLCs voted against it on the basis that marriage was a federal issue. Click here for MLC contact details.
Please pray that the Bill is defeated.


1.2  NSW – Bill introduced to Legislative Council on Thursday 31 October
A Bill to legalise homosexual ‘marriage’ will be introduced to the NSW Legislative Council next Thursday, 31 October. The Working Group behind this Bill has members across the political parties – including Liberal MLA Bruce Notley-Smith who is homosexual and lives with a partner.
Read report from homosexual group Australian Marriage Equality.

If you live in NSW, please contact ALL Members of the Legislative Council and ask hem to vote against the Bill.
Please pray that the Bill is defeated.


1.3  ACT: Homosexual ‘marriage’ Bill passed
As we reported earlier this week, the ACT government passed a Bill to legalise ‘marriage’ for same-sex couples on Tuesday by 9 votes to 8. All the Liberals voted against it – all Labor MPs and the one Green voted for it.

The ACT government changed the Bill at the last minute. They new law says it deals only with same-sex ‘marriage’ – some homosexual groups complained that this removed the right for ‘transgender’ and intersex couples to marry. This was done in an attempt to ‘reduce’ the risk of the High Court overturning the law.
The federal government has asked the High Court to expedite the hearing of their appeal against the law and has now lodged the writ. The Directions hearing is being heard today - it seems that a hearing may be held in December and that an injunction to stop 'weddings' occurring before the hearing has not been granted (source).

Media reports:
ACT makes eleventh-hour changes to same-sex marriage laws, ABC, 21/10/2013.
Redraft gives ACT same-sex marriage law stronger chance, The Australian, 22/10/2013.
Federal government lodges High Court challenge to ACT same-sex marriage laws, SMH, 23/10/2013.


2.  Vilification: Gary Burns, Tess Corbett and our Facebook page
Last week we reported that NSW ‘discrimination activist’ Gary Burns had WON a vilification case against Tess Corbett, a candidate in the recent federal election (read our report).

We posted the item on our website and Facebook page. Gary Burns found our posts on Facebook and started making comments. Some of the comments were extremely unpleasant and some were crude. Peter reminded Gary that we are happy to debate the issue but crude and nasty comments would not be tolerated. He then put a post to that effect on our Facebook page to warn people about the comments being made – which attracted more comments from Gary Burns and others.
In one of his comments, Gary noted his family was affected by pedophilia and said he totally opposes pedophilia. In the decision against Tess Corbett, it was stated that Gary Burns’ brother was a victim of pedophilia [by a priest] and committed suicide at the age of 17 (source). In 2006, Gary made a joint statement with Rev Fred Nile, opposing pedophilia and calling for the age of consent in NSW to be raised to 18 (source).

We empathise with Gary Burns in his loss and pain, and we totally reject all pedophilia.
Please pray for Gary.

Read the discussion at

Gary Burns has now announced, on his website, that he is taking a complaint of ‘homosexual vilification’ against Bernard Gaynor, who wrote an article on the Tess Corbett decision.

Bernard Gaynor responds to the news of being sued: Sued by Gary Burns


3.  HIV – biggest increase in Australia for 20 years
The rate of HIV infection has increased markedly in the past year – the number of new cases is the highest in 20 years.

NSW’s Kirby Institute, which monitors the situation and collates the data, says 1,253 people were newly diagnosed with HIV last year - NSW had a 24% increase. The 10% increase last year included many people in their 20s.

The ‘solution’ proposed by the experts?
Yes, you guessed it - increase condom use, speed up access to new rapid HIV tests and ensure everyone who needs medications gets them.

The Annual Surveillance Report also documents STD infections:

- Chlamydia remains the most frequently reported notifiable infection (82,707) – mostly in young heterosexuals. The rate of infection is four times greater among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

- Gonorrhoea levels have increased substantially, to 13,649 cases in 2012; most cases are among men who have sex with men. The rate of diagnosis  is 21 times greater in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples than in the non-Indigenous population

Surveillance Report overview:
Sexually transmissible and blood-borne infections in Australia: the 2013 Surveillance Reports, 17/10/2013.

- HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmissible infections in Australia Annual Surveillance Report 2013.pdf 
- Summary of key statistics 2013.pdf


4. Bushfires and climate change - Bandt claim
Greens MP Adam Bandt made headlines when he blamed the Sydney bushfires on ‘climate change’ and on the Coalition’s policy on global warming. Several climate activists reiterated the charge on the ABC’s 7.30 - but this was rejected by Bushfire Management expert David Packham, who noted we have has similar fires in the Blue Mountains every 10 or 20 years since records began.

Gerard Henderson’s article refutes the Greens’ claim – read it here. But activist group Avaaz is backing the climate change and bushfires claim and running a petition to get Labor to retain a carbon tax! it here

Prime Minister Tony Abbott rejected the link to climate change, saying that bushfires are a part of Australian life.

Tony has written a moving tribute to the volunteers in the Rural Fire Service, outlined his service with the Davidson Brigade for the past 13 years, and supporting those affected by the fires. Christian prayer leader Kris Schlyder commended the Prime Minister’s message, saying, “They are the words of a humble man, a man of integrity with solid values, a real leader who leads by example. It is a refreshing change to have such a person leading our nation Australia again. Please pray, consistently and persistently, for him and the government he leads, to bring this nation back onto the path that our God has destined for it and its people. And we need to hold them in the place of honour which they deserve.” 

You can read Tony Abbott’s message online: 
Brave hearts, cool heads will guide us through long, hot summer ahead, SMH, 25/10/2013.


5.  Muslim girl forced to marry at 14 wins custody battle
Underage Muslim girls have been married in Australia – these ‘marriages’, which are illegal under Australian law, are performed at mosques by imams under ’Islamic law’. See the revealing article in the Overseas News section about a documentary on the marriage of underage Muslim girls in the UK.

An Australian Muslim girl, who was forced to marry at the age of 14, won a custody battle in the Federal Circuit Court. The media reports, “The Federal Circuit Court heard the bride's mum pushed her into the Islamic ceremony, telling the then-teen she'd get to attend theme parks and movies and eat lollies and ice- cream with her new husband. But once the girl moved in to the man's outer-Sydney home she was locked inside, let out only to attend high school.”

The girl became pregnant at 17 – after years of violence and abuse, she and her daughter left in 2009. The legal proceedings, for custody and access, were commenced by the father – who wanted regular access visits with the daughter. However, after evaluating the evidence, the Judge awarded full custody to the mother and refused to allow the father to have contact with the child.

Judge Joe Harman ­described the man as "a most heinous, capricious and ­revolting misogynist". He found that the couple's illegal marriage ceremony had taken place "with the full knowledge, if not connivance and co-operation, of her parents". The Judge ordered that the woman have full custody of the child and that the father be restrained from having all contact with them.

The young woman is no longer speaking to her parents. She said, "My father has said to me, 'So what if he raped you? So what if he bashed you?” and “The only way you can come back to me is in a coffin to pray on you'."

Federal Circuit Court decision: Essey & Elia [2013] FCCA 1525 (19 September 2013)
Media report: Forced to wed at 14, woman walks out after years of abuse from violent husband, Herald Sun, 14/10/2013.


6. Tony Abbott’s lesbian sister ‘engaged’
Christine Forster, the lesbian sister of Prime Minister Tony Abbott, has announced she is ‘engaged’ to Virginia Edwards. The story was an ‘exclusive’ in New Idea, and was quickly picked up by

Of course, the media is using this to put more pressure on Tony Abbott to change his mind on same-sex ‘marriage’ or to allow a conscience vote. Christine Forster says she thinks homosexual ‘marriage’ is “inevitable” in Australia. She has also said this week that she and her brother "agree to disagree" on same-sex 'marriage'.


7.  '21 Be There' Movement – raising the drinking age to 21
Shane Varcoe, of the Dalgarno Institute, reports on the Movement to raise the legal alcohol drinking age to 21. Dalgarno is the lead agency in the 21 Be There Consortium.
Visit the campaign website.

* Recently the Consortium held a ‘Conversation’ in Adelaide with presentations about the issue – it was attended by politicians, not-for profit groups, councillors, parents and uni students. Presentations and notes – click here.

* The South Australian parliament’s Social Development Committee requested a presentation from a delegation – it was well received.

* Professor John Toumbourou participated in a positive interview on Channel 9’s Sunday TODAY Show – click here to watch it.

* The Consortium was asked to participate in the One Direction concerts. The concerts are ‘under 18’ and require parental involvement. A targeted 15 second ad was produced – to be shown 6 times during One Direction’s last Melbourne and last Sydney Concerts! Watch the draft ad here. The final high quality ad will be released at the concerts. 

Well done, Shane, and the Consortium for their efforts on highlighting this issue.
Check out the group and get involved - Visit the campaign website.


Overseas News 

1.  Britain's Underage Muslim Marriage Epidemic: Gatestone Institute
Another revealing documentary from the UK – this time on the issue of the marriage of underage Muslim girls in the UK. The Exposure documentary was produced for ITV – read the ITV info here.

Soeren Kern, of Gatestone Institute, writes, “The documentary, entitled "Forced to Marry," was first broadcast on October 9, 2013 and involves two reporters posing as the mother and brother of a 14-year-old girl to be married to an older man. The reporters contacted 56 mosques across Britain and asked clerics to perform a nikah or marriage. The imams were specifically told that the "bride" did not consent to the marriage to an older man from London.”

The film “secretly recorded 18 Muslim imams agreeing to perform an Islamic marriage, known as a nikah, between a 14-year-old girl and an older man.”
It is also happening in Australia – see report above.

Read article:  Britain's Underage Muslim Marriage Epidemic, Gatestone Institute, 15/10/2013.


2.  USA: New Jersey allows homosexual ‘marriage’
New Jersey has become the 14th US state to recognise same-sex ‘marriage’. One homosexual couple that had brought a lawsuit on the issue were among the first homosexual couples to ‘marry’ on October 21. 2013.

On September 27 this year, a lower court in New Jersey ruled that the state must allow same-sex couples to ‘marry’ beginning on October 21, rather than give them the label "civil union." Civil unions were legalized in New Jersey from 2007 (source).

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's administration appealed against the decision – and the appeal was scheduled to be heard in January 2014. The Governor asked the Supreme Court to DELAY the September 27 order until AFTER the appeal is heard and decided. However, last Friday the New Jersey Supreme Court DECLINED to delay the order stating, "the state has not shown a reasonable probability that it will succeed on the merits" of the appeal.

Governor Christie strongly disagreed with the court decision – but has now withdrawn his appeal against the decision, since the ‘Supreme Court signaled last week that it would ultimately rule to redefine marriage.’

Media report: Same-sex marriages start in New Jersey, 14th state to recognize such unions, CNN, 21/10/2013.
Citizen Link: New Jersey Governor Drops Challenge to Marriage Redefinition Case


3.  Muslims attacked on the hajj – by other [Australian] Muslims

ABNA, a news service focusing on Shi'a Islam, reports that Arab Americans attending the hajj were attacked by other Muslims. This highlights the sectarian divisions within Islam.

A female community leader reports that “when the local group entered Tent Section 40, an area designated for American, European and Australian Muslims, a pilgrim in the group was asked about his sect, by a member of another group.  "When he said he was Shi'a, they called him Kafir (infidel) and attacked him." 
The report says, “The attackers, who are Australians of Lebanese descent, then hit three other men in the group and dragged one into a tent, while choking and kicking him.  "They took him into a woman's tent and had him in a chokehold. They were choking him out. When our guys got to him, he was blue," she said. The attackers threatened the pilgrims to leave the tent area, while bringing up historic sectarian references. "We will kill you Shi'a men and rape your women," they shouted, according to the source. The source said security officers at the tent area were aware of the attack, but stood by and did not do anything to stop it.”
Read the ABNA report – click here.


4.  UK: Stonewall re-running bus ads in UK despite court ruling
Homosexual activist group Stonewall is running ads on buses in London again. The ads - which state 'Some people are gay. Get over it!' - violate Transport for London’s own guidelines.

In May 2013, in the UK High Court, Mrs Justice Lang ruled that the adverts “did not comply with TfL’s own restrictions which prohibit advertisements ‘likely to cause widespread or serious offence.’”  

Core Issues Trust took the case to the High Court because TfL had REFUSED to run their ads that countered the Stonewall message: “Not gay! Ex-gay, post-gay and proud. Get over it!” TFL has still not run the Core Issues Trust ads – but is re-running the Stonewall ads!

Core Issues Trust has appealed against the decision – the case comes to the court on 9-10 December 2013. They are now seeking an ‘emergency judicial review’ of TfL’s decision to allow Stonewall’s adverts to be run. They will be seeking an interim injunction pending the hearing in December to prevent the adverts from being displayed on the buses. The Christian Legal Centre is supporting Core Issues Trust.

Christian Concern report: Gay group flouts court ruling on bus ads


5. USA: Washington – Judge refuses to officiate at same-sex ‘weddings’
In Washington State, Judge Gary Tabor has been given an official “admonishment” by the Judicial Conduct Commission after refusing to officiate same-sex weddings for what he said were “philosophical and religious reasons.” 

He made comments in a private meeting with other judges before homosexual ’marriage’ was legalised. When his comments were made public, he stopped officiating at ANY marriages – as a judge he is not REQUIRED to officiate at them.

He has now signed the ‘admonishment’ saying he won’t repeat the conduct and will not ‘discriminate against a ‘protected class’ of people in the future.
Judicial Conduct Commission decision – click here.
Lifesite report – click here.

Bill Muehlenberg has an article dealing with Judge Tabor’s situation as well as the recent decision against Tess Corbett: Open Season on Christians.


On the Issues

Canadian same–sex parenting study - link for ACTUAL PAPER
The ACTUAL 24 page paper of Dr Douglas Allen’s Canadian study that we reported on this week is online:
High school graduation rates among children of same-sex households 

I’ve also ADDED a detailed assessment of the current AUSTRALIAN study – and this new Canadian study – to our webpage on ‘Same-sex Parenting’.

News Update 18 October – police, euthanasia, marriage, creation…

Question marks shutterstock-Sm

Another busy week – more on the protesters at the March for the Babies, legislation in Tasmania and the ACT, UK counsellor removed, Islam and more.


Australian News

1. Police Commissioner to conduct investigation re March for the Babies  
The Victorian Police Commissioner Ken Lay has said that he will conduct an investigation into the incidents at last Saturday’s ‘March for the Babies’.

The Chairman of March for the Babies, Bernie Finn MLC welcomed the announcement and posted the following on Facebook: "I'm delighted to say I have received a response from Chief Commissioner Ken Lay who has readily agreed to an investigation into police response at the 2013 March for the Babies. That inquiry has now begun".

Thank you to everyone who wrote to the Police Commissioner, Premier & Police Minister.

More reports:
Australian March for Babies turns violent: U.S. pro-life activists,
MPs assaulted by pro-abort mob
Lifesite News, 12/10/2013.
Australian government must take strong action against Melbourne police for failing to stop violence, Lifesite, 12/10/2013.

Two more articles on the March by Bill Muehlenberg:
So this is what pro-choice really means
I knew this would happen – replying to our critics


2. Tasmania: Euthanasia Bill DEFEATED!
More good news! The Tasmanian House of Assembly has defeated the euthanasia Bill that was out forward by Premier Lara Giddings and Greens leader Nick McKim.
But it was VERY CLOSE – the Bill was only defeated by TWO votes after nearly ten hours of debate. The vote was 13 against and 11 in favour – all  Liberal MPs and three Labor members voted against the Bill.
Media report: Voluntary euthanasia law defeated by two votes, ABC, 17/10/2013.


3. Tasmania – decision to debate ‘marriage’ Bill postponed
In the Tasmanian Legislative Council, a decision on a motion by Independent MLC Ruth Forrest to debate a bill to legalise homosexual ‘marriage’ has been postponed for TWO weeks. The motion will be considered when the parliament returns in the last week of October.

MLCs were given two briefings: the first was by authors of the Tasmania Law Reform Institute report on same sex ‘marriage’ legislation that was handed down last week. The second was from Guy Barnett, the spokesman for the Save Marriage Coalition – he gave MLCs a critique of the paper from ‘Lawyers for the Preservation of the Definition of Marriage’. Their response questioned the motives of the report and the veracity and breadth of the research.
Media Report: Upper House postpones decision on marriage equality debate, Mercury, 15/10/2013.

ACTION: If you live in Tasmania, please contact your MLC and ask them to vote AGAINST this same-sex ‘marriage’ Bill. Click here for contact details.


4. ACT: Homosexual ‘marriage’ Bill - and prayer
The ACT Legislative Assembly is expected to vote on the same-sex ‘marriage’ Bill on 22 October.

The Canberra House of Prayer and the Canberra Declaration team have asked everyone to pray – calling for a ‘Prayer and Praise Night’ to be held all over Australia from 7 pm on Monday 21 October 2013.
- Pray on your own or with friends – organise a prayer time in your own church - Pray in your church service the day before, Sunday 20 October.

ACTION: If you live in the ACT please contact your MPs!
Click here for contact details.


5. QLD:  Teaching of ‘creation’ banned to ‘comply’ with National Curriculum
The Queensland Education Department has issued a Fact Sheet on the teaching of creationism and intelligent design in Queensland government schools.

The Fact Sheet says, “The Australian Curriculum: Science and the QSA Biology syllabus require students to study the theory of evolution by natural selection.”

It goes on to say, “The Australian Curriculum: Science and the Queensland Studies Authority Biology syllabus do not recognise the following as scientific theory: creationism, intelligent design, or any other metaphysical explanations of changes over time to living things; and do not identify these as part of any science curriculum. In Education Queensland schools, creationism and intelligent design are not recognised as scientific theory and are not included in the school science curriculum or in the teaching, learning and assessment associated with school science programs. Creationism or intelligent design is not to be compared with or evaluated against scientific theory.”

Tas Walker, from Creation Ministries, has analysed the Fact Sheet and writes, “This fact sheet is ambiguous, confusing, discriminatory, scientifically flawed, and should be removed. While this article deals with the Queensland policy, the issue is a global one, and the same principles apply.” 

Read Tas’ article: Discriminatory state education policy seeks to censor science teaching, CMI, 11/10/2013.


6. QLD: Gold Coast mayor wants to provide prayer rooms and halal food
Yes, Mayor Tom Tate wants to cater more for Muslim tourists – providing prayer rooms, halal food and so on.
Read more here.


7. Greens MP Adam Bandt links Sydney fires to PM’s climate change policy
Greens MP Adam Bandt has been widely criticised for his statements linking the current Sydney bushfires to the Coalition policy to remove the carbon tax and their plan relating to ‘climate change’.

Bandt tweeted the comment: "Tony Abbott's plan means more bushfires for Australia & more pics like this of Sydney". The comment was made as media outlets were showing footage of homes burning down.

Despite the criticism, Adam Bandt was, as the Herald Sun reported, “unrepentant”. He defended his comments today, saying on radio, “Well, in the last 12 months we've had the hottest year on record, the hottest month and the hottest day. Tony Abbott has picked this time to say he's going to rip up action on global warming, which is going to mean these are the kind of fires we will see more often."

The Herald Sun accused Mr Bandt of using the fires for political mileage.

Media report: Greens MP Adam Bandt tries to make political mileage out of fires, Herald Sun, 18/10/2013.


8. Labor leadership – Bill Shorten elected
Following a ballot of MPs and members, Bill Shorten has been elected leader of the Labor Party. Bill Shorten won the majority of the caucus votes and Anthony Albanese won the majority of members’ votes. Each was given equal weighting and Shorten won with 52% overall.

Terry McCrann points out that Labor was ‘four votes from disaster’ – if four more MPs had voted for Anthony Albanese he would have won overall – but this would have resulted in a caucus where the majority of MPs (51-35) had voted for the OTHER candidate!
Tania Plibersek, from the Left faction and a member of Emily’s List, has been elected Deputy Leader.


9. Nicola Roxon criticises Kevin Rudd and gives Labor ‘advice’
Former Labor government minister Nicola Roxon has given a lecture which provided ‘housekeeping tips’ for Labor. Ten points were covered, including leadership, polling, and the organisation of government. As SBS wrote, it contained ‘bombs and hard lessons’. Many of the points dealt with the flaws in Kevin Rudd’s leadership – Roxon refers to “the dysfunctional decision-making and lack of strategy”. If you have wanted to understand the ‘insider’s view of what really happened regarding the Rudd leadership and his government, this speech provides stunning insights.

For example, Nicola Roxon said, “As PM, Kevin Rudd simply refused to list contentious, and often strategic, items for Cabinet, and effectively stopped that conversation… Kevin also had an overwhelming inclination to focus on minutiae, as a way of avoiding the big, harder decisions. This took up a lot of valuable prime ministerial headspace which is better spent on the big picture.”

Many media outlets focused on her statement about Kevin Rudd being a “bastard”. But the full paragraph, toward the end of her lecture, was actually, “Removing Kevin was an act of political bastardry, for sure. But this act of political bastardry was made possible only because Kevin had been such a bastard himself to so many people.”

Nicola Roxon concluded, “In my opinion, and it is only my opinion, for the good of the federal parliamentary Labor party and the movement as a whole, Kevin Rudd should leave the Parliament. Otherwise the action of any Labor leader will always be tested through the prism of popularity compared to him.”

Read the full text of the John Button Memorial lecture: Ten housekeeping tips for a future Labor government
Media report: Roxon throws bombs and hard lessons, SBS, 18/2013.


10. SA: Inquiry - removing God from court oaths?
The South Australian government’s Attorney-General John Rau has asked the SA Law Reform Institute to draw up a ‘shortlist’ of possible ‘oaths’ with the intention of having a single UNIFORM statement that people say as the declare to ‘tell the truth’ in court. A Discussion Paper will then be released – and submissions invited from the public.

Currently people have a choice to swear an oath on the Bible according to God, on the Koran (and Allah) or a non-religious "affirmation''.

It was noted that some aboriginal people don’t feel comfortable with any of the current options.

Who knows what a possible ‘one-size-fits-all’ statement might look like. But is seems obvious that ‘God’ will be removed!

The media report says, “The State Government changes will be released as a discussion paper for public comment later this month and aim to design one oath suitable for all aspects of the community to provide binding and truthful evidence in court.”

Media report: South Australian plan to scrap God, Allah from court oaths, Advertiser, 8/10/2013.


Overseas News

1. New Zealand: Anglicans vote against homosexual ‘marriage’
Last month the Anglican diocese in Auckland, New Zealand held a vote on homosexual 'marriage'. Thankfully the motion was DEFEATED - however it is concerning to note that BOTH Auckland BISHOPS and the MAJORITY of the CLERGY were in favour of homosexual 'marriage'!
Read media report: Auckland Synod says no to ‘gay marriage’, Anglican Church League, 7/9/2013.


2. UK: Christian counsellor ‘REMOVED’
Another move in the efforts to stop counselling for people with same-sex attraction WHO WANT to deal with it…

Christian Concern reports: “The British Psychodrama Association (BPA) has this week removed former homosexual Dr Mike Davidson from the psychotherapists’ register of trainee professional membership under the direction of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). The decision was made on the basis of just two BBC radio interviews and no complaints from either his clients or his qualified supervisors.”

 They write, “Dr Davidson specialises in counselling those who consider themselves troubled by feelings of same-sex attraction as he himself has been in the past. He has counselled without professional objection for six years and is recognised as an intelligent, empathetic and caring therapist.  He has recently become a target for gay activists.
But now his professional bodies have hounded him out too. . .”
Read their report – click here.


3. SYRIA and the Middle East: Report from Elizabeth Kendal
Please read this insightful report on the situation in Syria, Iran and the Shi’ite Crescent – and pray for the people there.
RLPB 231. Syria, Iran and the Shi'ite Crescent, 9/10/2013.


4. Malaysia: Court rules on use of the name ‘Allah’
The Malaysian Court of Appeal has ruled that the Catholic weekly ‘The Herald’ will not be allowed to use the word “Allah” to refer to the Christian God. They upheld the appeal made by the government.

The Court stated, "Our common finding that the usage of Allah is not an integral part of the Christian faith. We cannot find why the parties are so adamant on the usage of the word."

Report: Govt wins appeal, Herald banned from using word Allah over public safety, The Star, 14/10/2013.


On the Issues

Pornographic e-books cause trouble for Amazon
Earlier this year, we entered the ‘e-book’ world – downloading new publications by conservative groups on the homosexual ‘marriage’ issue. At our annual Dinner, Peter was presented with a ‘Kindle’, which provides an easy reading format and gives access to Amazon digital e-books, magazines, newspapers and pdfs. We’ve purchased and downloaded a couple of Christian books and also the Bible this week. So far, so good.

But there is a very DARK side to online e-books. . .

People can ‘self-publish’ e-books. A report by British website The Kernel has found e-books containing rape, incest and more. They were shocked by what they found when they conducted an investigation.

British bookseller WHSmith has apologised for providing such material.

The story about these e-books is quite explicit – be warned. But we believe you need to be aware of what is being promoted and sold.
Report by Kernel: How Amazon cashes in on Kindle filth, 9/10/2013.
Further reports by The Kernel at the bottom of first story.

Media Report – LA Times: Self-published pornographic e-books cause trouble for Amazon, Kobo, 16/10/2013.

Daily Mail: WHSmith's vile trade in online rape porn: Bookseller apologises, 12/10/2013

Telegraph: Amazon is making money from rape and incest fantasies. Does Jeff Bezos have a moral compass?, 14/10/2013.


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