News mike Fotolia 57267122 320x200Lots of news on the Victorian election, more attacks against those who are concerned about ‘halal certification’, prostitution and Islam in Australia and more…

Jenny

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News Update – 21 November

Australian News

1. UPDATE: Victorian election
     1.1 Our webpage on the election
     1.2 Labor’s response re the employment of Christians by religious organisations
     1.3 Religious leaders call on Labor to leave the EO laws as they are!
     1.4 Liberals announce $600,000 funding for pregnancy support services
     1.5 ACL ‘Meet your candidate’ forums
2. SA: Parliament debates prostitution
3. Albury – protests outside abortion centre lead to petition
4. Vic: NSW preachers attend Victorian country ‘pride’ event
5. Halal certification – more news from every side of the issue
6. Islam in Australia – joining the jihad, FGM
     6.1 Four Sydney brothers fly to Syria to join the jihad
     6.2 Sydney Islamic bookshops still selling books on female genital mutilation
     6.3 Newcastle: Pig’s head thrown at mosque

Overseas News
1. USA: Episcopal Church ‘adopts pro-Muslim, pro LGBT agendas
2. USA: Alabama passes law banning ‘foreign law’
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News Update – 21 November 2014

Australian News

1. UPDATE: Victorian election

1.1 Our webpage on the election
Check out our webpage on the Victorian election – it has all our election posts in one place…
Please ensure you look at the one on VOTING which I sent out yesterday – and share Mark Durie’s video on Labor’s policy on religious freedom and the freedom of association…

1.2 Labor’s response re the employment of Christians by religious organisations
I mentioned we had received a copy of Labor’s ‘standard response’ defending their policy.
I’ve attached it – don’t be persuaded by its nice-sounding words!
See our analysis of this issue – click here.

1.3 Religious leaders call on Labor to leave the EO laws as they are!
There has been a significant development – a Coalition of the state’s religious leaders have issued a Media Release, urging the Labor Party to leave the Equal Opportunity laws as they are.

The statement is signed by the Anglican Archbishop, the Catholic Archbishop, and the leaders of the Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran and Coptic Orthodox Churches.

It is especially significant that Archbishop Hart has signed the statement, since the Labor ‘response’ says that the Labor position is supported by the Catholic Church!
Read the Media Release:
RELIGIOUS GROUPS CALL ON ALL PARTIES TO LEAVE THE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY LAWS ALONE

1.4 Liberals announce $600,000 funding for pregnancy support services
One welcome campaign announcement from the Liberal/National Coalition is that they will provide $600,000 in funding (over 4 years) to three programs that assist women in their local communities cope during pregnancy, including crisis and unplanned pregnancies  – they are Olivia’s Place (Pregnancy and Parenting Resource Centre) in Warragul, the Babes Project (eastern suburbs) and another program on the Mornington Peninsula.

1.5 ACL ‘Meet your candidate’ forums
Labor leader Daniel Andrews has agreed to participate in an ACL ‘Meet your candidates’ forum in Mulgrave on Thursday 27 November. Since the electoral re-distribution, he only holds the seat by 960 votes!
Venue & Time: 7.30 pm, Waverley Baptist Church, cnr Waverley & Lum Rds, Wheeler
This is an opportunity to hear what he has to say.
We’ve now been told by ACL that they will now ONLY take written questions at any of their forums – these are then sorted into groups and selected by the Chairman. They won’t be taking questions, or subsequent questions, from the floor. Make sure your questions are prepared in advance and carefully worded...

At one of the forums, the Liberal candidate for Buninyong, Ben Taylor, expressed concern about late term abortion – the Nationals candidate, Sonia Smith, said she supported abortion. Following the forum, she announced she wouldn’t preference him (too late, preferences were already decided) or hand out his how-to-vote cards at pre-poll! Although this may be seen as confronting, that’s what we need to know about the candidates!
Article: Victorian state election: Abortion issue throws Buninyong campaign into disarray, The Age, 18/11/2014.


2. SA: Parliament debates prostitution

Ros Phillips reports that she was in the public gallery yesterday when a number of MPs all spoke about why they would NOT support Steph Key’s bill to decriminalise prostitution in SA.
Read FamilyVoice’s Media ReleaseSA Prostitution debate continues, 21/11/2014.


3. Albury – protests outside abortion centre lead to petition
A group in Albury has set up a petition to call for ‘exclusion zones’’ outside abortion centres so that those proclaiming a pro-life message can’t go near the centre.
We oppose this petition…
Article: Extremist Catholic sect sparks campaign for abortion clinic exclusion zoness, Daily Advertiser, 19/11/2014.


4. Vic: NSW preachers attend Victorian country ‘pride’ event
Three evangelists from NSW recently attended a ‘community gay pride event’ in the Victorian country town of Yackandandah – to preach and read from the Bible.

The town hosts an annual ‘pride event’ – it seems that one of the preachers approached two homosexual men who own a local store – then three of them visited the town and a community event was held to ‘support the men’.

The Anglican minister, Father Peter MacLeod-Miller, is apparently a ‘’new convert’ to supporting same-sex ‘marriage’.

Article: Illawarra God squad raid Victorian gay pride event, Illawarra Mercury, 17/11/2014.


5. Halal certification – more news from every side of the issue
This week, Liberal backbencher George Christensen wrote a very insightful article on the halal certification issue – in particular highlighting the payment of the fees and the need to label foods if they are halal certified so consumers can make choices about what they purchase.

Blog article: Terror in the Tucker Box?, George Christensen.

Of course, media reports followed – mostly criticising his comments!
Article: George Christensen uses Vegemite to suggest halal products are funding terrorism and sharia, The Age, 19/11/2014.

The ABC’s 7.30 program ran a segment on the ‘anti-halal campaigners’ and Fleurieu Milk…

Leigh Sales introduced the segment by saying, “Across Australia, a vicious campaign against halal-certified companies is gaining momentum...”
They quoted Facebook commenters on social media pages as linking it to terrorism… whereas most groups refer to the use of the money to promote Islam, mosques and so on. 

The spokesman for Fleurieu stated that Emirates required him to obtain a ‘halal certification’ certificate – which he paid $1,000 for – even though their yogurt doesn’t contain ANY gelatine and is naturally ‘halal’!

Perhaps the question we SHOULD be asking is, “Why did Emirates demand that Fleurieu obtain a halal certification certificate in order to be able to sell their products to Emirates – when their yogurt is ‘automatically halal’ since it doesn’t contain gelatine?”

The irony here is that there is a ‘virtual war’ going on between contending ‘halal certifiers’ to get businesses to sign up with them and pay them the ’halal certification fees’! The halal certifier charging Fleurieu just $1,000 to halal certify their milk is competing with AFIC and Mr El-Mouelhy of the Halal Certification Authority (Australia) and a dozen others to gain the business!

Video & transcript of 7.30 segment: Why are some Australians campaigning against Halal and what's its effect?, 7.30, ABC, 20/11/2014.


6. Islam in Australia – joining the jihad, FGM
6.1 Four Sydney brothers fly to Syria to join the jihad
Four boys from one family have left Sydney to fly to Turkey to join the ISIS fighting in Syria. They missed their flight but re-booked to fly out from Sydney the following day. They told their parents they were going on holiday to Thailand.
Muslim leader Jamal Rifi said the brothers ‘showed no signs of radicalisation before they left, and the family believes that someone in Australia convinced them to travel to Syria’.
Article: Sydney brothers are 'simple boys' who missed flight to join Islamic State in Syria, says family, SMH, 17/11/2014.

6.2 Sydney Islamic bookshops still selling books on female genital mutilation
News.com reports that Islamic bookshops in Lakemba and Auburn are still selling books that mention female genital mutilation…
In May 2014, the NSW government tripled penalties (to 21 years jail) for anyone performing FGM and introduced a new ­offence of removing a woman or girl from NSW to have it performed.

Article: Peddling pages of barbaric savagery: Islamic shops still selling female mutilation books, News.com.au, 17/11/2014.

6.3 Newcastle: Pig’s head thrown at mosque
Police are investigating after a pig’s head was thrown at a mosque in Newcastle.

Whilst we maintain it is important to rigorously debate and analyse other religions and the impact they have on society, we do not support this sort of ‘action’.
On a personal level, we need to build relationships with Muslims, enabling a bridge to be built where we can share our faith with them.

Article: Pig's head thrown at Newcastle mosque, Newcastle Herald, 19/11/2014.

 

Overseas News

1. USA: Episcopal Church ‘adopts pro-Muslim, pro-LGBT agendas
Breitbart reports on the Episcopal Church in the USA (part of the worldwide Anglican Church) and their recent positions on Islam and the homosexual agenda.
Breitbart had previously reported on a ‘Muslim Prayer event’ held at the National Cathedral – the co-organisers “included the Council on Islamic-American Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), and the All-Dulles Area Muslims Society (ADAMS) Center – all of which have ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The “prayers took place on the 100th anniversary of the last Caliph’s call for Jihad against nonbelievers”!

On homosexuality, Gene Robinson was the first ordained bishop in the Episcopal Church who is openly homosexual – he ‘married’ his partner and then got a ‘divorce’ from him in May this year.

Katharine Jefferts Schori is about to end her nine-year tenure as presiding bishop, the first woman elected to head a national branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion. In announcing her decision not to seek re-election, Jefferts Schori said, “I will continue to engage us in becoming a more fully diverse church…”

Breitbart outline a range of pro-homosexual measures in the US Episcopal Church…

Article: US Episcopal Church Has Adopted Pro-Muslim, LGBT Agendas, Breitbart News, 17/11/2014.


2. USA: Alabama passes law banning ‘foreign law’
Alabama has passed Amendment One, which “prohibits foreign law being used to decide cases in Alabama courts” by about 72 percent to 28 percent – it will be added to the state’s Constitution.

The law would mean that Islamic sharia law cannot be used as the’ basis of law’ in a child custody case in Alabama – but has wider implications than just restricting the use of sharia law.

Article: AMENDMENT BANNING 'FOREIGN LAW' IN ALABAMA CRTS PASSES & WILL BE ADDED TO CONSTITUTION, Australian Prayer Network.

 

News Update – 14 Nov – euthanasia, election, halal, SRI form, climate change

News jigsaw Fotolia 59083953 320x200Another eventful week – articles and information on the Human Rights survey (closes TODAY), euthanasia (in Victoria and federal Senate Committee report), Victorian election, halal certification, NEW SRI form, Climate change and more!

Jenny

News Update - 14 November 2014

Australian News
1. Human Rights – FREEDOM Survey – CLOSES today!
2. Man sentenced to 25 years for killing girlfriend’s baby
3. Euthanasia vote – POLL still OPEN to vote!4. Federal: Senate Committee REPORT on ‘euthanasia’
5. Halal certification – fees exposed
6. Victorian election – update and info
7. Anthony Mundine stands by comments on homosexuality
8. Victoria - NEW SRI form!
9. ‘Climate change’ – USA & China - IPCC 2014 Report
     9.1 – USA, China & Australia
     9.2 IPCC meeting in Denmark - 40th session
Overseas News
1. USA: Pastors at the Hitching Post & ‘marriage’

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News Update - 14 November 2014

Australian News

1. Human Rights – FREEDOM Survey – CLOSES today!
If you haven’t completed the SURVEY being conducted by the federal Human Rights Commissioner, please do it! The online Survey closes TODAY.
Alternatively, you can send a submission – and there are public meetings to attend.
READ our previous E-News post on this – click here.
COMPLETE the Survey – click here.


2. Man sentenced to 25 years for killing girlfriend’s baby
Over the years we have reported on a number of cases where the BOYFRIEND (or de facto partner) of a woman has killed her BABY - where he is NOT the biological father of the child.

There was another case this week. This case involved heroin – the man, Paul Ta-Vuong, who was at home minding the child, was said to be angry that the woman that the woman took so long to buy drugs. He was accused of beating the child and putting the child to bed - the child was later found dead in its cot. The couple had met in ‘rehabilitation’ but had resumed using heroin after leaving rehab. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
Article: Vic baby killer jailed for 25 years, Herald Sun, 13/11/2014.


3. Euthanasia vote – POLL still OPEN to vote!
The opinion poll on euthanasia we mentioned earlier this week is still ACTIVE.
If you haven’t voted, PLEASE vote NO to euthanasia NOW – click here.
The poll CLOSES at midnight Friday.
The poll has changed several times – initially the result was about 65%-35% in favour of euthanasia, then it swung to 65%-35% AGAINST euthanasia and now it has swung back to 65% support for euthanasia!

The poll was prompted by a campaign from those advocating euthanasia – including Philip Nitschke and Rodney Syme. They are currently running CANDIDATES in the Victorian election.
Read the article in The Age about all the 'hard cases' they mention… click here.


4. Federal: Senate Committee REPORT on ‘euthanasia’
The Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs has tabled its final report into an exposure draft of federal dying with dignity legislation… the Medical Services (Dying with Dignity) Exposure Draft Bill 2014 was introduced by Greens Senator Richard Di Natale.

The Committee recommended that, if the matter came before the Senate, all Senators should have a conscience vote.
Euthanasia has always been a state issue, not a federal one…
Chapter 3 of the Report addresses the serious constitutional problems surrounding the Bill.

The Committee recommended that Senator Di Natale “might address the technical and other issues raised in evidence to the committee and seek the advice of relevant experts before the Bill is taken further.”
Read the Committee’s Report – click here. Actual report as a single pdf here.


5. Halal certification – fees exposed
Over recent weeks there has been a focus by the media on ‘halal certification’ – a topic we have covered over many years.

Halal Choices, led by Kirralie Smith, have a website and shopping guide and a Facebook page – alerting people to the issue, and highlighting the number of companies that pay halal certification fees. Often they express concern that companies pay the certification fees but don’t label their food to tell consumers! The Halal Choices Facebook page and the Boycott Halal in Australia Facebook page are active sites telling people what is happening. Many of the halal certifying bodies are Islamic groups that use the money to promote Islam. Others are private businesses.

Halal Choices websiteclick here.

Kirralie has written a couple of articles recently that were posted on Larry Pickering’s site – in response to the various media articles, she has written some more responses – 7 articles and responses in all in the past few weeks – click here to read all of them.

Yesterday's article by Kirralie highlights a recent federal court case (June 2014) about the payment of halal certification fees at MULTIPLE LEVELS of the production, transport and sale of kebabs! It involves Mr Mohamed El-Mouelhy and the Halal Certification Authority of Australia. Amazing!
Article: HALAL FEES EXPOSED IN COURT JUDGMENT

Also read: Misconceptions about Halal Certification, “WAS THAT TUCKER REALLY HALAL? and The origins of Halal Certification Schemes

Larry Pickering exposes more of the problems, including Mohamed El-Mouelhy’s Facbook post this week! See Halal feels the pinch

One company, Fleurieu, which produces dairy products, decided not to continue with the halal certification. In response to their media comments, Islamic certifying groups, dairy bodies and the media have all complained about the groups that protest against halal certification – instead of asking what it is really about.

A sample of the media outpouring this week against Halal Choices and others:
Halal conspiracy theorists bullying Australian businesses, News.com.au, 12/11/2014
Fleurieu ditches Halal certification after social media 'bullying', BRW, 11/11/2014.
The people waging war on halal, NEWS.com.au, 12/11/2014.
Claims Halal certification fees fund terrorism 'absolutely wrong', ABC, 11/11/2014.
What's the big fuss about Halal certification?, ABC, 27/10/2014.
Australian company caves to Halal boycott pressure, SBS, 12/11/2014.
Businesses stay strong against anti-Halal campaigns, SBS, 12/11/2014.
Food and drink manufacturers 'have no plans' to ditch halal ..., The Guardian, 10/11/2014.
Explore in depth (45 more articles)


6. Victorian election – update and info
The election is ONLY TWO WEEKS away… If you live in Victoria, please read and share the emails we are sending out. If you don’t live in Victoria, please pray - and share the information with your Victorian friends!

So far we have published:
     #1 - Overview of election
     # 2 - Vote Compass to find out where parties stand on a range of issues
     #3 – ‘Meet your Candidate’ forums (ACL)
     #4 – Christian Values Checklist – please distribute this to friends and churches

We’ve also mentioned the FamilyVoice Surveyclick here (News Update, No 2).

On the ‘Meet your candidate’ forums, if you attend and candidates make statements that need to be CHALLENGED, please ASK QUESTIONS from the FLOOR – this week the Labor candidate for Forest Hill said she was a Catholic and had lots of children and was a member of EMILY’S LIST – a Labor group where members have to SUPPORT ABORTION! No-one challenged her! If you aren’t allowed to challenge/question, please let us know!

In the next two weeks, we will have emails on important issues current issues, such as religious freedom and abortion – as well as emails on preferences, group voting tickets and contacting your candidates to ask them THEIR VIEWS!

ALL this informationwill also be posted on our WEB PAGE for the Victorian election (available Monday).

Prayer for the Victorian election– Please come to the prayer meeting being held by the Parliamentary Prayer Network THIS SATURDAY, 15 November:
Venue: Queens Hall, Parliament House, Spring St. East Melbourne.
Time: 1 - 3.15pm
There is easy access from Parliament Station. An offering will be taken to cover costs.
Inquiries to Lynn,   Mob. 0407 525 335.


7. Anthony Mundine stands by comments on homosexuality
In November 2013, aboriginal boxer Anthony Mundine, who converted to Islam in 1999, said that homosexuality was not compatible with aboriginal law. Some media reports criticised him for his comments – particularly the Sydney Morning Herald and the producer of ‘Redfern Now’.

But he hasn’t backed down from his comments. In an interview last weekend, on Weekend Sunrise on Channel 7, he reiterated his comments about homosexuality… more criticism erupted, especially from homosexuals!

The controversy didn’t seem to affect him – yesterday he won his fight against Sergey Rabchenko.

October 2013
Article:
Anthony Mundine says homosexuality and Indigenous culture don't mix after watching Redfern Now, 1/11/2013.
Article: Anthony Mundine slammed over Redfern Now gay rant, SMH, 2/11/2014.
Recent interview:
The man behind the mouth – with video, Weekend Sunrise, 9/11/2014.
Article: Anthony Mundine stands by his homosexuality comments: ‘It’s not all right, News.com.au, 9/11/2014.


8. Victoria - NEW SRI form! Good news!
Some good news! When we reported on the resolution of the controversy surrounding ‘Special Religious Instruction’ in Victorian primary schools, we wrote that one thing STILL to be done was the design of a NEW CONSENT FORM.

We noted that the Minister for Education’s Ministerial Direction 141 stated that “A principal who offers special religious instruction in a school must obtain written advice from all parents of students at the school regarding whether their child is to participate or not participate in special religious instruction.” [Paragraph 11 (3)]

We called for the new ‘Consent Form’ to ask parents to complete the form with a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ regarding their child’s participation – or not - and for the form to be returned. In line with the Minister’s statement, it means that all forms should be returned, with parents expressly making their decision known. The group lobbying against SRI in schools, FIRIS (Fairness in Religion in Schools) wasn’t happy with our request, writing about us on their blog.

The new Consent Form is now available online – and that’s what it asks parents to do. Complete and return the form with a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’!

Read the NEW Consent form for SRI – click here.

Now FIRIS is writing about stopping school pageants at Christmas…
Vickie Jason, from Australian Christians, responds… Christmas described as ‘divisive and hurtful’. Really?

9. ‘Climate change’ – USA & China - IPCC 2014 Report
9.1 – USA, China & Australia
This week the USA and China made an agreement on reducing carbon emissions – they are the nations with the largest CO2 emissions. It led to more pressure being put on Australia to make a bigger commitment to reducing carbon emissions after 2020 – but Julie Bishop defended our current commitment and said Australia would make "an appropriate, relevant, and proportionate response" to other nations' post-2020 positions in the first half of 2015.

One CSIRO scientist said the US commitment still wasn’t enough – and that the world has “less than 30 years to fully decarbonise"!
Article: Climate: US-China pact to curb emissions not enough, CSIRO scientist Pep Canadell says, SMH, 13/11/2014.
Government media release: China-US Climate Change Announcement, 12/11/2014.

9.2 IPCC meeting in Denmark - 40th session
At their 40th session in Denmark (24-31 October), the IPCC released their ‘Climate Change 2014 – Synthesis Report’ 
For commentary critiquing the report, see ‘Watts Up With That’ - click here.
For News reports, click here.
Official documents:
Website for IPCC – Report featured on front page -http://www.ipcc.ch/
ACTUAL REPORT: ‘Climate Change 2014 – Synthesis Report’

ALSO available:
- Summary for Policymakers - Headline Statements - Factsheet


Overseas News

1. USA: Pastors at the Hitching Post & ‘marriage’
The battle about two pastors who run the ‘Hitching Post’ wedding chapel and provide Christian wedding services, is continuing. One big question is whether they are a ‘not-for-profit’ or ‘for-profit’ organisation. The City’s attorney said if they were a ‘non-profit’ religious organisation they would have an exemption.

The American Civil Liberties Union has unexpectedly agreed with the couple, with the Director of ACLU Idaho saying he won't pursue legal action because the Hitching Post only provides religious services and is exempted from the local ordinance!

The couple’s lawyers, Alliance Defending Freedom says they are a for-profit entity but the couple should be able to refuse to ‘marry’ homosexuals on the basis of religious freedom.

Article: Pentecostal Pastors Win Victory in Same-Sex Marriage Mandate, Charisma, 27/10/2014.

Alliance Defending Freedom’s report on the case: SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT: 4 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE HITCHING POST CASE, 25/10/2014.
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Don’t forget the Human Rights survey – and the euthanasia POLL – both close TODAY!

 

 

News ball Fotolia 31010118 320x200News from the past two weeks – catching up on last week as well, since we sent out our ‘Prayer Focus’ last week…

Jenny

News Update – 7 November

Australian News
1. Historic photo of ALL living former Prime Ministers & current PM
2. Victorian election – FamilyVoice survey – 10 Questions for political parties & candidates
3. G20 Interfaith Summit in Brisbane
4. Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels – new FILM
5. STUDY: Childcare centres foster aggression
6. Follow up – Bill Shorten’s speech at the ACL Conference
7. Follow up – face coverings in federal parliament
8. Uniting Church – ‘Uniting Network’ & ‘Unity and Friends’ call for homosexual ‘marriage’

Overseas News
1. US election – Republicans gain control of BOTH Houses
2. UK: MPs vote to ban sex-selective abortions
3. USA: Win for marriage – 6th Circuit court upholds marriage amendments
4. Pakistan: Fear for Christians after couple killed
5. UK: Christian school told to ‘promote other faiths’ or face closure
6. USA: Houston mayor has backed down on demands for ‘sermons’
7. ‘Parliament of the World’s Religions’ to be held in Utah, USA

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News Update – 7 November

Australian News

1. Historic photo of ALL living former Prime Ministers & current PM
All the living former Australian Prime Minsters – plus the current PM Tony Abbott – were present at the memorial service for former Prime Minister Gough Whitlam this week.

All of them agreed to be photographed together, which is quite a rare occurrence. Choosing who would stand where must have been quite a challenge!
The photo was taken by Dan Himbrechts – from left to right: Malcolm Fraser, Julia Gillard, Bob Hawke, Tony Abbott, John Howard, Kevin Rudd and Paul Keating.
Article: The 'special moment' seven surviving prime ministers were photographed together, SMH, 5/11/2014.

2. Victorian election – FamilyVoice survey – 10 Questions for political parties & candidates
FamilyVoice has published the list of TEN questions they are asking ALL candidates – and political parties – in the lead up to the Victorian election. The questions are on issues relating to family, life, faith and freedom – such as drugs, gambling, homosexuality, etc.

Two parties have already responded – as you might expect, the Sex Party and Rise Up Australia Party have VERY DIFFERENT responses!

Following the close of nominations, FamilyVoice will ask all candidates to respond. In some cases, political parties provide a response on behalf of all candidates. “The results would be posted on the FamilyVoice website in the week before the election on 29 November.”

Click here to read the TEN QUESTIONS.
RESPONSES: The responses will be posted online in the week before the election – click here.
PARTY responses will be posted here.
Media Release: Ten questions for parties contesting the Victorian election, FamilyVoice, 6/11/2014


3. G20 Interfaith Summit in Brisbane
As part of the G20 meetings in Brisbane, an ‘Interfaith Summit will be held. As you know, we’re not supportive of ‘interfaith’ initiatives…

The Interfaith Summit is being conducted by Griffith University Centre for Interfaith & Cultural Dialogue from November 16-18.

Read more at the official ‘Interfaith Summit’ website – click here.


4. Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels – new FILM
A new film by Creation Ministries addresses many of the problems with the theory of evolution. The film is currently being shown around Australia – click here for FULL details about the film.

For a list of venues and times over the next few weeks, click here. (Scroll down for your state or search on ‘Evolution’s Achilles’ Heels film launch’

A book by the same title is available – the DVD/Blu-ray of the film is also available.
You can also apply to host a screening of the documentary at your church.
More info on the film, book & DVD – click here.


5. STUDY: Childcare centres foster aggression
A study conducted by the University of Adelaide has found that childcare centres affect the behaviour of children – something we all probably knew.

The Australian reports, “CHILDREN placed in childcare centres are more likely to develop hyperactive and aggressive behaviours than those in home care, a study suggests. RESEARCHERS from the University of Adelaide monitored the development of more than 3200 children across Australia following time spent in different types of care up to age three. Based on surveys of parents and teachers, they found the length of time spent in childcare centres was directly linked to increases in problem behaviours by the age of four or five…”

Article: Childcare centres breed aggression: study, The Australian, 29/10/2014.


6. Follow up – Bill Shorten’s speech at the ACL Conference
Further to our email about Bill Shorten’s speech at the ACL conference where he spoke about ‘being a Christian and supporting ‘marriage’ for homosexuals’…

* On Bill Shorten’s religious faith – we referred to Bill Shorten and the Catholic Church.
Bill Shorten referred to his local priest at St Thomas’ Anglican Church in Moonee Ponds.
On further investigation, we discovered that this is an Anglican Church (not Catholic). Bill Shorten was raised as a Catholic and attended a Catholic school. He told Neil Mitchell in a 2012 interview that he was no longer a Catholic. He was married at St Thomas’ Anglican Church in November 2009 (source).

* Monica Doumit, a contributor to Catholic Talk, has written an analysis, point by point, of Bill Shorten’s speech to the ACL (on the section relating to the Bible and homosexual ‘marriage’… she starts with him missing the bit about being salt and light!
Article: A response to Bill Shorten's ACL keynote

* ACL provided responses to Bill Shorten’s speech:

  • An interview chat between Lyle Shelton and Bill Shorten following the speech:
    • 5 minute clip of the discussion about same-sex ‘marriage: click here.
    • Full 17 minute interview – click here.
    • For those who are asking why ACL invited Bill Shorten to speak at the conference, you can read Lyle’s explanation – he said Bill Shorten showed courage by speaking when some had urged him to stay away. Click here.
    • A couple of quotes from Bill: “I don’t disrespect anyone who holds a contrary view on this question to me” and “I’m a very imperfect Christian…”
      He noted that we need to “keep our eyes on the prize”. I immediately thought of the Biblical meaning of that (Philippians 3: 12-14) or even the folk song used in the civil rights movement, relating to Paul and Silas – but Bill Shorten went on to say it was “love and a good home life for the kids.”


7. Follow up – face coverings in federal parliament
During the recent debate on whether face coverings should be banned in federal parliament, three men set out to challenge the decision… that only Islamic niqabs were allowed, and that women wearing a niqab face covering should remove it for identification and then replace it…

Nick Folkes, from the Party for Freedom, provides an interesting account of their visit to parliament – one man wore a KKK hood and outfit, one wore a Muslim niqab and one wore a motorcycle helmet…

Read Nick’s report: Faceless in Canberra: Three men on a mission


8. Uniting Church – ‘Uniting Network’ & ‘Unity and Friends’ call for homosexual ‘marriage’
There are active groups in the Uniting Church promoting the acceptance of homosexuality – the main group is Uniting Network – the “National network of GLBTIQ members in the Uniting Church”.    At their 10th annual conference in June, the group called for ‘marriage equality’ or homosexual ‘marriage’.
MEDIA RELEASE – LGBTI Uniting Church members call for marriage equality

Unity and Friends is a group in the Uniting Church in South Australia that supports the full acceptance of homosexuality. So it perhaps isn’t surprising that they support same-sex ‘marriage’!
They recently reported on their webpage, “In 2014 various groups were invited to respond to the Doctrine Working groups report on Marriage. Here is what we sent them …”
Read the submission from Unity & Friends: UF Marriage response
It is posted on their Links and Resources page.


Overseas News

1. US election – Republicans gain control of BOTH Houses
In the mid-term elections held this week, the Republican Party gained enough seats to gain control of the Senate (the Upper House) of Congress. They also took more than 242 of the 435 seats in the House of Representatives.

The win by the Republicans is seen as a rebuke to President Obama of the Democrats. He will remain as President until 2016, when the next Presidential election is held.

Article: US mid-term elections: Republicans gain control of both houses of US Congress, ABC, 6/11/2014.


2. UK: MPs vote to ban sex-selective abortions
Good news – the majority of MPs in the UK have voted to ban abortions for ‘sex selection’!

Christian Institute reports, “MPs have voted almost unanimously for a motion which would make sex-selective abortion explicitly illegal, after growing concern that the law is unclear. Fiona Bruce MP yesterday tabled a Bill which passed by 181 votes to one. Mrs Bruce tabled the Ten Minute Rule Bill seeking to put beyond doubt that sex-selective abortion is not permitted in UK law…”

A Bill to ban the Medicare funding of sex-selection abortions in Australia was introduced by (former DLP) Senator John Madigan – unfortunately he hasn’t had much support from other political parties.

It’s time to ask our Senators and MPs to support him – click here for contact details for federal MPs and Senators.


3. USA: Win for marriage – 6th Circuit court upholds marriage amendments
A WIN for marriage between ‘a man and a woman’.

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld marriage amendments in four states that define marriage solely as the union of one man and one woman. The National Organisation for Marriage, said, “The ruling is a major victory for supporters of traditional marriage, and NOM called on the US Supreme Court to take the case when it is appealed and follow the direction of the 6th Circuit.

Brian Brown, President of NOM, said, "We have been awaiting this decision for some time and welcome it not only as a tremendous victory, but as a common sense recognition that it is not for the federal courts to substitute their judgment about whether same-sex 'marriage' is a good idea or not, but to leave it to the people to make the decision about this fundamental institution.”

Media release: National Organization for Marriage Praises 6th Circuit Ruling On Marriage; Urges US Supreme Court to Follow Suit, NOM, 6/11/2014.


4. Pakistan: Fear for Christians after couple killed
Christians in Pakistan are increasingly fearful about persecution – following the killing of a Christian couple by a mob. It is alleged that they desecrated the Koran’.

Article: Fear for Pakistan Christians after couple beaten to death, AP, 6/11/2014.


5. UK: Christian school told to ‘promote other faiths’ or face closure
Yes, things are getting that bad – if you think Christian schools are protected from the politically correct agendas of our day, think again. In the UK a Christian school has been told it must teach other faiths or it could be closed. Another recent report says that schools are also being told they must be tolerant of ‘diverse sexual orientations’.

World Net Daily reports that one suggestion was that they invite an IMAM to lead an assembly! In November 2013 the school received an ‘excellent’ rating from the government for caring for their students – “The provision for pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is excellent. . .”

Following the ‘Trojan Horse scandal’ about teaching in Muslim schools in Birmingham, “The U.K.’s Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills, known as Ofsted, then established new rules requiring the active promotion of “British values” such as tolerance. Consequently, the government sent a letter to Trinity Christian School in Reading that it was failing to “meet the new requirements for the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils.”

The school leaders can’t believe the huge change in such a short time – the Christian Institute is considering a legal challenge and wants a review of the ‘new tolerance rules’ that insist on religious pluralism as well as promotion of the acceptance of homosexuality.

Would Muslim schools be ordered to invite a Christian minister to lead an assembly? I don’t think so. It’s time to stand up and refuse to go along with such politically correct demands – if we give in, they will ask for even more!

Article: Christians outraged by orders to teach ‘other faiths, WND, 28/10/2014

Article: Faith Schools Could Face Closure If They Don't Promote Gay Rights, Prophecy News Watch, 4/11/2014.

Lifesite report: UK gvmt tells faith-based schools they must promote gay ‘rights’, 3/11/2014.


6. USA: Houston mayor has backed down on demands for ‘sermons’
The lesbian mayor of Houston has backed down on her demands for five pastors to send their sermons and correspondence in response to a legal challenge. The mayor received more than a thousand Bibles, as well as sermons from across the USA, with her email Inbox becoming overloaded.

Bill Muehlenberg reported on the backdown, but adds that the ‘war continues’ with anti-Christian bigotry.

Christian Institute report: U-turn: Houston pastors won’t have to hand over sermons, 4/11/2014.
Article: We must all stand against anti-Christian bigotry, Bill Muehlenberg.

7. ‘Parliament of the World’s Religions’ to be held in Utah, USA in 2015
Many of you will remember the ‘Parliament of the World’s Religions’ that was held in Melbourne in 2009. We remember it well – we held up banners outside the venue, proclaiming “Jesus – the only way to God, Acts 4:12”, read our webpage on that here).

The next parliament will be held in Utah – at the Salt Lake Palace Convention Centre Oct. 15–19, 2015. The announcement was made recently by Parliament Chair Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid, a Muslim. Salt Lake City is the centre for the Mormons – a local Mormon said “This [choosing Salt Lake City] says the Church is being taken seriously”.

Media Release: Global religious gathering coming to Utah in 2015, Salt Lake Tribune, 9/9/2014.

 

News mike Fotolia 57267122 320x200A round up of just some of the week’s news…

Jenny

_____________________________________

News Update - 23 October 2014

Australian news
1. 17 year old Australian ‘jihadi’ threatens Australia and Tony Abbott
2. Former Qantas worker claims airline discriminated against her religious beliefs
3. Another protest against a venue hosting a ‘hate conference’
4. Halal certification of ‘Anzac cookies’
5. REPORT: March for the Babies
6. Gough Whitlam dies at 98 – Fabianism and Family Law

Overseas News
1. Canada – attacks by Islamic converts on soldiers and at the parliament
2. On being relevant or Biblical? More on the statements by Hillsong and Brian Houston
3. USA: Idaho has homosexual ‘weddings’
4. UPDATE: The sermons of the Houston pastors
5. Another Houston pastor… Joel Osteen prayed at Annise Parker’s swearing-in!
6. Pakistan: Asia Bibi’s death sentence upheld by Lahore Supreme Court

Coming Events
-      National Prayer Breakfast – 27 Oct
-      Prayer for Victoria’s Elections – Sat 15 November

__________________________

Australian news

1. 17 year old Australian ‘jihadi’ threatens Australia and Tony Abbott
Abdullah Elmir, a 17 year old from Sydney, is fighting with ISIL/IS in the Middle East – he recently gave a chillingly explicit and threatening message on video as part of IS propaganda, where he threatened Australia and Tony Abbott.

Political leaders soundly condemned the message – and some Muslim leaders criticised him (the ABC showed two female Muslim leaders), but the boy’s friends generally supported his right to say such things! One of his friends told the media, "His close friends are trying to get everyone to respect Abdullah's decision and not cuss him as he was just as normal as anyone else."

Meanwhile, terrorism expert Greg Barton talked of the ‘grooming’ of young people to participate in ISIL atrocities. What about Abdullah’s friends? Are they being ‘groomed’ also?

Articles:
-    Islamic State: Australian 17yo Abdullah Elmir's friends defend his decision to join jihadists, ABC, 22/10/2014.
-    Teen jihadist Abdullah Elmir groomed like paedophile victim: terrorism expert, SMH, 22/10/2014.

2. Former Qantas worker claims airline discriminated against her religious beliefs
Georgina Sarikoudis, who worked for Qantas for 19 years before taking a redundancy package, is taking action against Qantas in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal. She claims that the airline discriminated against her and other Christians by insisting they remove Christian jewellery. Georgina says that she wore a cross and bracelet for all the time she worked there, but last year was told she couldn’t wear them anymore.

Apparently the Qantas dress code prohibits the wearing of bracelets and necklaces – though they can be worn ‘under a uniform’. Georgina points out that Muslims are allowed to wear headscarves, for ‘religious or cultural reasons’.
Article: Qantas worker accuses airline of banning crucifixes while allowing Muslim women to wear head scarfs, Daily Telegraph, 21/10/2014.

3. Another protest against a venue hosting a ‘hate conference’
In August we saw the power of social media in protesting against a venue that was going to host the Melbourne World Congress of Families event. Eventually the venue cancelled the booking when they received threats of ongoing protests against weddings!

This week homosexual activists launched a campaign against the Hyatt Hotel in Canberra – because they were hosting the annual conference for the Australian Christian Lobby, which they described as a ‘hate group’

It just goes to show the activists want FULL ACCEPTANCEACL has opposed homosexual ‘marriage’ and adoption, but had supported the changes to 84 Commonwealth laws giving rights to homosexual couples and they support ‘Relationship Registers’ for homosexuals!


4. Halal certification of ‘Anzac cookies’
We’ve regularly reported on the issue of Islamic halal certification of an increasing range of foods.

Byron Bay Cookies has succumbed to the pressure to gain ‘halal certification’ for their biscuits – this one gained even more public attention because it was their ‘Anzac’ biscuits that were halal certified! Much of the backlash came from social media, especially Facebook, with people saying it was “disrespectful” to the memory of the ‘Anzacs’…

In an article by Smart Company, the headline screamed that this was “racist abuse” but the two comments quoted stated… “What a disgrace. Halal certified Anzac biscuits?!! Seriously how disrespectful!!!” and “Shame on you. Don’t insult our boys by sending Halal certified Anzac biscuits overseas.”

The company said they had been the subject of a ‘well-orchestrated campaign’ for the past six months. The Facebook page Boycott Halal in Australia, has called for people to boycott Byron Bay Cookies. Other companies mentioned are Cadbury and Coopers beer.

Now Coopers beer is a real irony for ‘halal certification’ since Muslims aren’t supposed to drink alcohol!

Article: Byron Bay cookies cops racist abuse for “disrespectful” halal-certified Anzac biscuits, SmartCompany, 20/10/2014.


5. REPORT: March for the Babies
The police presence at March for the Babies this year (11 Oct) was extensive. The ‘March’ didn’t go into the city this year – instead it went from Treasury Gardens along Spring St to Parliament House. When the 5,000 or so marchers arrived, protestors were already at the parliament, but police ‘corralled them’, allowing the March for the Babies to walk past and assemble on the steps of parliament House.

Prior to the March the police wrote to all 200 people who had expressed concern to them about the attacks on the 2013 March, assuring them the police would provide extensive measures to protect the March for the Babies this year.
So writing those letters we ask you to DOES make a difference!

Watch the 5 minute video overview of the 2014 March for the babies on their website – click here.

Lord Christopher Monckton, from the UK, spoke at the rally – he outlined a plan to highlight the international torture laws of which Australia is a signatory. Since babies from 17 weeks gestation can feel pain, he insists that babies should be given an anaesthetic before being killed in an abortion in order to avoid torturing them (as well as killing them).
He wrote, “This unspeakable law permits abortion right up until birth. A couple of dozen disconsolate supporters of baby-butchering were kept at bay by an impressive police cordon. They shrieked obscenities and waved malicious slogans. One of these, crudely lettered on a large piece of white card, said this: “The only good baby is a dead baby.” There speaks the voice of pure evil….”
He then went on to detail the plan regarding ‘torture laws’, as put in his speech at the rally.
Click here to read Lord Monckton’s speech.


6. Gough Whitlam dies at 98 – Fabianism and Family Law
Former Labor Prime Minister Gough Whitlam died this week at the age of 98. Many words have been spoken – both commending and criticising him.

Mr Whitlam certainly did change Australian society and introduced social reforms – many of them we would not support. His government was also acknowledged to be poor financial managers.
Greg Sheridan of The Australian highlighted Mr Whitlam’s poor record on foreign affairs.
Article: Busting decades of myths on Gough Whitlam, The Australian, 22/10/2014.

Labor had been in opposition for many years prior to Gough’s ‘It’s Time’ election win in 1972. As a member of the Fabian Society (promoting socialism) [Now Australian Fabians], and later their President and Patron, Gough Whitlam had planned for years before being elected. The Fabian motto is ‘”When I Strike, I Strike Hard.” They often use an image of a tortoise with a paw lifted to strike. Another image of Fabianism is a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’ (read more here.) The current image for the Australian Fabians is much more understated!

In a 1984 speech, Bob Hawke referred to Gough Whitlam as their ‘Fabius Maximus’ – after the Roman general – because he had planned for a long time and then, once elected, ‘struck hard’ in implementing changes (see article). Others have also referred to him in this light – see here.

But it is the area of family law which has perhaps affected our society most.

During Gough Whitlam’s three-year reign as Prime Minister before ‘The Dismissal’ by Governor –General John Kerr, his government passed the Family Law Act (put forward by Attorney-General Lionel Murphy) which allowed for ‘no-fault’ divorce.

Ros Phillips, of FamilyVoice, issued a Media Release, which began by commending Gough on his long and faithful marriage to his wife Margaret. But she went on to contrast his personal relationship to the Family Law Act, noting the problems that have resulted from this law. Ros said that the Family Law Act has not only facilitated divorce, it has led to less marriage.
Media release: Gough Whitlam: a faithful husband and father, FamilyVoice Australia, 21/10/2014. 


Overseas News

1. Canada – attacks by Islamic converts on soldiers and at the parliament
A gunman has attacked Canada’s Parliament House this week in Ottawa – and a soldier was killed at a nearby war memorial. The gunman in the parliament was shot dead. The incidents have been linked to Islamic militants, perhaps in response to Canada cancelling passports of people suspected of going to fight with ISIL/IS. Extremists.

The attacks followed an attack in Quebec earlier in the week, when two soldiers were attacked, and one of them killed.

BOTH the gunmen, in Ottawa and Quebec were Canadian “converts to Islam”.

Article: Canada's parliament attacked, soldier fatally shot nearby, Reuters, 22/10/2014.

2. On being relevant or Biblical? More on the statements by Hillsong and Brian Houston
Michael Brown has written an insightful article about churches and church leaders wanting to be ‘relevant’… addressing the recent controversy about Brian Houston’s press conference in New York (see our detailed report here).
Article: On Gay Marriage and the Hillsong Movement: Did Jesus Call Us to be Relevant or Biblical?, Michael Brown, Christian Post, 20/10/2014.

James White, of Alpha and Omega Ministries, wrote on Facebook about ‘cultural relevance’:

“Brian Houston says, "he notes that the Western world is shifting its thinking on this issue, and churches are struggling to stay relevant." Relevant to whom? The Church has an audience of One before whom "relevance" is to be judged. Our aim is to be pleasing to Him (2 Cor. 5:9), not to the "Western world." In fact, a biblical worldview would lead brother Houston to recognize that the more pleasing we are to Christ, the more of a stench of death we will be in the nostrils of those who have been given over in judgment to their own lusts and rebellion. Relevant? Was Elijah relevant during the judgment of drought and famine? Was Jeremiah relevant as the armies of Nebuchadnezzar marched on Jerusalem? I guess it all depends on one's perspective as to what "relevance" is all about.
Read comment on Facebookclick here.

Statements by the Assemblies of God on homosexuality
I mentioned that the Assemblies of God (now Australian Christian Churches) had changed their position paper regarding homosexuality in March 2006, just a few months after homosexual activist Anthony Venn-Brown had met with the executive.
Since then I have found the original 1992 position and the March 2006 position papers both posted on a website by Rowland Croucher, who now fully supports homosexual ‘marriage’.
Both statements posted at http://www.jmm.org.au/articles/20522.htm


3. USA: Idaho has homosexual ‘weddings’
The state of Idaho has legalised homosexual ‘marriage’, from 15 October, following a federal court decision which had overturned a ban on homosexual ‘marriage’.
Two Christian ministers, Donald and Evelyn Knapp, who run the ‘Hitching Post’ wedding chapel, which includes Christian services, have been told they may be required to perform ‘wedding ceremonies’ for homosexual couples since they are a ‘business’ – or face fines or jail time. They received a letter from their local town officials, at Coeur D'Alene, which has passed a non-discrimination ordinance.
The couple are being legally supported by Alliance Defending Freedom.

Article: City in Idaho may arrest two ministers for not performing gay weddings, Right Wing News, 19/10/2014.
Article: Idaho ministers face fines, jail time for refusing to perform same-sex ‘marriages, Lifesite News, 20/10/2014.


4. UPDATE: The sermons of the Houston pastors
Last week we reported that five pastors in Houston had been ordered to turn over their sermons and communication that mentioned homosexuality to the City of Houston – so the City could see if they were talking about politics (specifically the Equal Rights ordinance demanding shared bathrooms) or the mayor, Annise Parker, who is a lesbian ‘married’ to her female partner.

The pastors had run a ‘petition drive’ to collect signatures to have the issue placed on the ballot paper during the next election. The bid for a ballot was thrown out, with claims they didn’t have enough valid signatures – but the pastors sued, claiming that thousands of valid votes were rejected. The subpoenas were a bid to get information about what was being said in churches for the city to ‘defend’ the legal case.

Following a national outcry about the imposition on freedom of speech, Mayor Annise Parker partially backed down on her demand – changing it from ‘sermons’ to ‘speeches’!
The subpoena's new wording removes any mention of "sermons". The Mayor said "We don't want their sermons, we want the instructions on the petition process.”

However, she acknowledged that this COULD actually include ‘sermons’!

Alliance Defending Freedom is representing the pastors. World Net Daily reports, “Christiana Holcom, ADF litigation counsel, dismissed the notion that the city had in any way backed off. “The shame that the city of Houston has brought upon itself is real, but the claim that it has changed course is not. The city has so far taken no concrete action to withdraw the subpoenas. Furthermore, the subpoenas themselves are the problem – not just their request for pastors’ sermons,” she said.”

Defend Christians reports that their letters to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott resulted in him writing “to the Houston city attorneys demanding that they stop bullying these pastors!” Now they are asking that the Mayor and City of Houston take note of the letter.
Read report at World Net Daily: 'Houston 5' pastor: Sermon fight 'hit nerve' for America, 21/10/2014.
One of those 'ah-ha moments' exposing 'path to tyranny'

Alliance Defending Freedom report:  Houston We Have A Problem…And A Constitution!, 15/10/2014.

Article: Mayor Parker revises, narrows sermon subpoena request, Chron News, 17/10/2014.



5. Another Houston pastor… Joel Osteen prayed at Annise Parker’s swearing-in!
Joel Osteen is a pastor in Houston – of the largest church in the USA.
At the 2010 swearing-in ceremony of lesbian Mayor Annise Parker, he provided the ‘Prayer’.

Now the End Begins provides a video of the prayer – and notes his comments on homosexuality. They report that he said on a TV interview ‘he grudgingly admits that the bible does indeed say that homosexuality is a sin’ – but says repeatedly that he doesn’t preach against it…”

Article: Houston’s Lesbian Mayor And Why Joel Osteen Won’t Preach Against Homosexuality (VIDEO), Now the End Begins, 17/10/2014.


6. Pakistan: Asia Bibi’s death sentence upheld by Lahore Supreme Court
Please PRAY for Asia Bibi...
Asia Bibi, a Christian mother in Pakistan, has been on ‘death row’ in Pakistan on charges of ‘blasphemy’ against Islam for years. Asia Bibi had appealed to the Lahore High Court – last week (16/10) the Lahore High Court upheld the death sentence against her. The appeal was initially scheduled for March 2014, but was delayed until October.

Asia Bibi has now appealed to Pakistan’s Supreme Court to have the death sentence overturned.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide has called on the Supreme Court to ‘expedite the hearing’. CSW also called for “proper security for Bibi” – They said she who has "endured gruelling conditions in nearly four years of detention on death row, much of it spent in solitary confinement. Her health has suffered and she has had severe restrictions on visitors."

And what is the charge of ‘blasphemy’ based on?

Christian Post writes, “Bibi was sentenced in 2010 following an incident the previous year where she was harvesting berries with a group of Muslim women in Sheikhupura. The Muslim women accused her of drinking from the same water bowl as them, which was considered unclean as she is a Christian. Following an argument, the women went to a local cleric and told him that Bibi had blasphemed against Islam.”
Article: Pakistan's Supreme Court Urged to Expedite Asia Bibi Hearing After Her Death Sentence for Blasphemy Upheld, Christian Post, 19/10/2014.

 

Coming Events

National Prayer Breakfast
The National Prayer Breakfast will be held in Canberra next Monday, 27 October.
Please pray for our federal parliamentarians who are Christians, and for Christians from across Australia who will meet at Parliament House in Canberra for the Prayer Breakfast.

Prayer for Victoria’s Elections
It is important that we pray for our Government and the coming election.

The Victorian Parliamentary Prayer Network will be holding a public prayer meeting for the elections on Saturday afternoon, 15th November from 1 - 3.15pm.
It will be in Queens Hall, Parliament House, Spring St. East Melbourne.
There is easy access from Parliament Station.
An offering will be taken to cover costs.
Inquiries to Lynn,   Mob. 0407525335

 

 

News Update – 17 October – Homosexual convictions, porn in parliament, racism, censorship, discrimination…

News jigsaw Fotolia 59083953 320x200I started this News Update thinking there wasn’t much to report – but, as always, there is a lot going on, both here in Australia and overseas…

The Victorian parliament passed legislation to remove ‘convictions for homosexual sex’, a former adviser claims pornography was distributed in the Victorian parliament, kinders claim ‘Baa baa black sheep is ‘racist’, ‘Secularist Manifesto’ signed in the UK (by a homosexual activist’) and the City of Houston demands to see pastors’ sermons (as part of a legal case regarding homosexuality and city ordinances)….

Jenny

___________________________________

News for 17 October 2014

Australian News

1. Vic: Parliament passes legislation to “expunge historical convictions relating to homosexual sex’

2. Claim: Pornography distributed inside Victorian parliament

3. ‘Baa black sheep’ accused of being ‘racist’ (and ‘purple penguins’)

4. Australia - decrease in asylum seeker deaths
5. Norfolk Island Homosexual Marriage Bill

Overseas News

1. UK: Secularist Manifesto calls for removal of religion and likens Christians to terrorists

2. USA: Now it’s ‘National Coming Out Day’

3. USA: Houston demands pastors SUBMIT THEIR SERMONS

4. Refusing to print homosexual ‘Pride’ T-Shirts – against the law!

Coming Events

International Day of Prayer (IDOP) for the Persecuted Church
_______________________________________________

Australian News

1. Vic: Parliament passes legislation to “expunge historical convictions relating to homosexual sex’
The Victorian Parliament has passed legislation that will enable people who have convictions for homosexual sexual activity prior to 1981, when homosexuality was decriminalised, to have them ‘expunged’ or removed from their criminal record.

Attorney-General Robert Clark said,

"It is generally accepted that consensual sexual acts between two adult men should never have been a crime, and the legislation passed today recognises this. Historical convictions have caused ongoing harm and hurt to those who were prosecuted and can limit their employment, travel and volunteering options. People should not be subjected to unjust discrimination on account of their sexuality, and this reform will help to put an end to the harm these convictions have caused."

Mr Clark’s statement continued:

“Mr Clark said people who were convicted of a range of offences designed to target homosexual behaviour such as buggery, gross indecency and public morality offences (such as loitering for homosexual purposes) will be able to apply to have these convictions expunged.

Under the scheme, a person with such a conviction will be able to make a confidential application to the Secretary of the Department of Justice. Applications will also be able to be made on behalf of a person who is deceased.

The Secretary will assess the application together with any relevant official records to determine whether the person was convicted because of the homosexual nature of the conduct and whether that conduct would be legal today.

When an application is approved, the Secretary will notify the courts, police and office of public prosecutions and the records of the conviction will be expunged.

"Once a conviction is expunged, the applicant will be treated as if the conviction had never occurred," Mr Clark said.

Attorney-General’s Media release: Historical homosexual convictions to be expunged, 16/10/2014.

 

2. Claim: Pornography distributed inside Victorian parliament
Former political adviser Don Coulson has claimed that he distributed pornography from inside the Premier’s office whilst he was working as an adviser to former Liberal Premier Ted Baillieu.

Coulson is suing the government for ‘wrongful dismissal’ – he was sacked shortly after Denis Napthine became the Premier. The Premier said he was sacked for an unrelated matter, but in ‘cleaning out the office’, pornography was found on USB memory sticks. It is said that the pornography was “inappropriate” but “not illegal”.

Coulson is now claiming the pornography was not for his own use, but was ‘exchanged’ amongst Members and staff so they did not have to download it on to government computers.

Mr Napthine has said that the story is “bizarre” and that during meetings with Mr Coulson and his advisers the ‘pornography story’ had not been mentioned.

Articles:
Former Liberal adviser says pornography was distributed inside Victorian Parliament, The Age, 16/10/2014.

Victorian Premier Denis Napthine: MP porn claims bizarre and absurdThe Australian, 16/10/2014.

 

3. ‘Baa black sheep’ accused of being ‘racist’ (and ‘purple penguins’) 
First we had restrictions on ‘golliwogs’ because they were thought to be racist – Enid Blyton’s ‘Noddy’ books were ‘rewritten in the 1980s with the golliwogs being replaced by teddy bears…

Now, in the latest example of political correctness, some kindergartens have BANNED ‘Baa black sheep’ because of some perceived connection to ‘racism’! Well, at least the ‘black’ is being banned - the colours of the sheep might be changed “to reflect a multicultural community”. Fortunately one pre-school, Bubbles, said they were sticking with the original words.

Of course, the fact that some sheep ARE black seems to have totally escaped the politically correct brigade.

But some kindergarten teachers said there was also consideration being given to changing the line, “one for the little boy who lives down the lane” in case it could be deemed sexist!!

Article: Racial connotations over black sheep prompts changes to Baa Baa Black Sheep at Victorian kindersHerald Sun, 17/10/2014.

Meanwhile, on the subject of 'gender',  in the USA, one school district in Nebraska provided information to teachers about how to be more ‘gender inclusive’ – one suggestion was to call the children ‘purple penguins’ instead of ‘boys and girls’ or ‘guys’!
Some reports claimed that was a mandated instruction to teachers, but the schools have said it was just some information provided to teachers! Nevertheless, a lot of information was provided to teachers by the ‘gender equity office’ – read more details at this article…

Article: Purple Penguins and the Radical Gender Agenda, Front Page, 15/10/2014.

 

4. Australia - decrease in asylum seeker deaths 
The Inter­national Organisation for Migration has released a report highlighting the dramatic decrease in deaths of people trying to reach Australia by boat.

The Australian states, “The 212-page report — Fatal Journeys, Tracking Lives Lost during Migration — counts one asylum-seeker death in 2014– there was one death last year… The one recorded death compares with 212 fatalities in 2013 and 356 in 2012 during the flood of asylum-seeker boats under Labor…”

In contrast there were “up to 3072 migrants are believed to have died in the Mediterranean — accounting for about 75 per cent of all migration-­related deaths — and “making it the deadliest sea in the world for migrants’’. This compared with an estimated 700 deaths in 2013...”. 
Article: Dramatic decrease in asylum-seeker deaths, The Australian, 14/10/2014.

Click here for IOM Press release and the REPORT.


5. Norfolk Island Homosexual Marriage Bill
Please continue to pray about the debate on this private member’s Bill.
If you would still like to write, please contact the Administrator Mr Gary Hardgrave, asking that he not give his ‘assent’ to the Bill.

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">

 

Overseas News

1. UK: Secularist Manifesto calls for removal of religion and likens Christians to terrorists

Christian Institute reports,

“A manifesto calling for the establishment of an “international front against the religious-Right and for secularism” has been signed by homosexual-rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, the National Secular Society’s president Terry Sanderson and prominent atheist A C Grayling. The Christian Institute has criticised the signatories for equating Christians with groups such as the Islamic State and Boko Haram….”

Of course, these people ALSO have a WORLDVIEW that is equally forthright – if someone called for ‘secular’ ideals’ to be removed from public life they would be outraged!

Listing Christian groups alongside Boko Haram and Islamic State as ‘terrorist’ groups is totally offensive.

Homosexual activist Peter Tatchell commented:

“The launch of the Manifesto for Secularism is a challenge to the global rise of the Religious Right and its menacing values. Even when religion has little or no formal political power, such as in the UK and US, the Religious Right has often sabotaged women’s reproductive rights and equality for LGBT people.”

Interestingly the Manifesto is not available online at the original link on Peter Tatchell’s website.

Read the Christian Institute’s report…

Christians likened to terrorist groups in secularist manifesto, Christian Institute, 15/10/2014.


2. USA: Now it’s ‘National Coming Out Day’

The US lobby group, the National LGBTQ Task Force, is always celebrating SOMETHING! 
Last week the National LGBTQ Task Force celebrated ‘Bisexual Awareness Week’, saying bisexuals are “misunderstood”. That, of course, is mostly because they embrace BOTH homosexual AND heterosexual relationships!

This week, they are celebrating the “26th Annual National Coming Out Day” with the tagline “Be You!”

Interestingly, they state, “We know that coming out, sharing our personal stories, has significantly contributed to the rise in support for the LGBTQ community. In fact, today 75% of Americans say they have a family member, friend, or co-worker that is LGBTQ—compared to only 24% in 1985.”

Which just goes to prove how MUCH acceptance they have gained in recent years – yet they still claim ‘prejudice’ and ‘discrimination’!

3. USA: Houston demands pastors SUBMIT THEIR SERMONS

Yes, the city of Houston is demanding that pastors submit their sermons for inspection by local government authorities. Any sermons dealing with dealing with homosexuality, gender identity or Annise Parker (the mayor) are being asked for!

Why has that happened?
The city has a new ‘discrimination ordinance’ - they passed the ‘Equal Rights Ordinance’ in May 2014. Among other things, it allowed men to use women’s restrooms.

World Net Daily reports, “A lawsuit challenging Houston’s move alleges the city violated its own charter in its adoption of the Equal Rights Ordinance, which in May designated homosexuals and transgender persons as a protected class.” The lawsuit was filed against the city and the Mayor by a coalition of people, including some local pastors.

WND reports that the city wants to see the sermons as part of their defence of the lawsuit against the city: “The recent move came in a subpoena from the city to pastors for copies of their sermons and other communications in the city’s legal defense of a “non-discrimination” measure that allows “gender-confused” people to use public restrooms designated for the opposite sex.

The mayor, Annise Parker, is a lesbian who “married" her female partner in California earlier this year. She has acknowledged that the ordinance “is all about me”.

The Alliance Defence Fund is defending the pastors and opposing the subpoena that demands the sermons to be submitted!

Article: Houston demands oversight of sermons, World Net Daily, 14/10/2014.

Bill Muehlenberg comments:  Revealed: Big brother is a homosexual activist


4. Refusing to print homosexual ‘Pride’ T-Shirts – against the law!

A Christian who refused to print T-shirts for the Lexington homosexual Pride Festival has been found to have acted unlawfully…

Christian Institute reports:
“The Gay and Lesbian Services Organization (GLSO) asked Hands On Originals, a Christian-run business, to print t-shirts for its Pride Festival in 2012. Blaine Adamson of Hands On Originals, which is based in the Lexington-Fayette area of Kentucky, declined the order because he did not want to promote the message of the event.

But last week an administrative law judge Greg Munson concluded that the Christian printer had acted unlawfully by refusing the order. Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission will now decide whether to adopt or modify Munson’s recommended ruling….”

But would a homosexual owned printing company want to print T-Shirts saying ‘Homosexuality is a sin’ or something similar?
Perhaps more importantly, would they be FORCED to by the law?

Article: US Christian’s refusal to print gay pride t-shirts ‘unlawful, Christian Institute, 16/10/2014.

 

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International Day of Prayer (IDOP) for the Persecuted Church
IDOP 2014: Sunday 2 or 9 Nov.  
For full information and prayer points, see: Critical Prayer Requests (CPR) 

 

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