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Religion

  • 2nd April 2007

    Homophobic preacher harassing Swedish royal family 2

    The Westboro Baptist church has protested at over 100 funerals of soldiers killed in the line of duty in Iraq.

    4:29 PM — A spokesman for Sweden's royals has confirmed that American preacher Rev Fred Phelps has been faxing hate messages to them.Phelps and his Westboro Baptist church are best known for their "God Hates Fags" campaigns in the United States.They were the subject of a BBC2 documentary by Louis Theroux broadcast last night.

  • Bishop compares gay rights to incest 11

    A newspaper article later said the Archbishop was merely using incest and paedophilia as examples of changing morality.

    11:03 AM — The new head of the Italian Bishops Conference has been heavily criticised by politicians for comparing moves to give gay couples some rights to incest and child abuse.Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco, who was appointed last month, is in charge of the Roman Catholic church campaign to block a new law that would allow unmarried couples, gay and straight, some legal protection.

  • 1st April 2007

    Stonewall backs gay youth worker in case against bishop 11

    Mr Reaney was told the job was his if the bishop approved.

    10:38 AM — The Rt Rev Anthony Priddis, the Bishop of Hereford is accused of blocking the application of a gay man to work within his diocese.John Reaney, 42, was previously employed as a youth officer for the Norwich and Chester Church of England diocese.Within the application form for a similar job in Hereford, Mr Reaney admitted that he was gay. Following a successful interview, he was told that subject the consent of the Bishop, he would be appointed.

  • 30th March 2007

    Church must be safe haven for gays says Williams 3

    Archbishop Williams has conceded in the past that the church could split over gay issues.

    11:13 AM — The Archbishop of Canterbury has said that the Anglican church must listen to gay and lesbian people and provide a safe place for them.He was responding to an internal church report into the progress of dialogue within the Anglican communion.At a conference in Lambeth in 1998 the church promised to listen to the experience of gay and lesbian people.

  • 29th March 2007

    Cardinal questions loyalty of Catholic church to Britain 8

    In a lecture in London, the Cardinal said that Roman Catholics and other Christians and faith groups were going to demand their rights.

    10:30 AM — The head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales has claimed that religion is under attack in this country.In his strongest condemnation yet of legislation designed to protect gay, lesbian and bisexual people from discrimination, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor last night became the first Catholic leader in nearly 200 years to question whether the policy of the government is at odds with practising the Roman faith.

  • 28th March 2007

    Bishops warn MPs about civil rights for gay Italians

    Members of Parliament have been strongly lobbied by the Catholic Church.

    6:18 PM — The Italian bishop's conference has today released a statement saying that the government attempt to legally recognise civil unions is unacceptable.The bishops called the idea that Catholic politicians might vote in favour of the proposals "incomprehensible."Italy has been gripped by the conflict between traditionalists and progressives.

  • Gay Humanist retires after 25 years activism

    Mr Broadhead co-founded GALHA in 1979.

    11:32 AM — Veteran gay activist George Broadhead has resigned as secretary of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (GALHA) after 25 years service.Mr Broadhead co-founded GALHA in 1979 and took on the role of itsadministrative secretary and principle spokesperson two years later.He had previously been involved with the Campaign for Homosexual Equality.

  • 27th March 2007

    Conservative Rabbi school allows gay admission 2

    Gay men and women can become rabbis in both the Reform Jewish movement and the smaller Reconstructionist wing of the faith.

    12:39 PM — A prestigious Conservative Jewish seminary in New York has taken a step towards equality by opening its doors to gay students.The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) announced on Monday that it would begin to accept applications from LGBT students, but that the decision was not taken lightly.The change in policy comes three months after the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards voted to allow the ordination of gays and lesbians.

  • 22nd March 2007

    US Anglicans reject gay advice 1

    The US bishops also took the opportunity to draw attention to the persecution of gay and lesbians in Nigeria.

    12:46 PM — The bishops of The Episcopal church in the United States have decided to reject the instructions of the worldwide Anglican communion over gay issues.Their decision makes a split in the church more likely.Last month a meeting of the primates from across the world instructed the wayward American church to stop ordaining gay bishops and to desist from giving church blessings to same-sex couples.

  • Brazil’s considers outlawing homophobia

    Last year, the Brazilian government sponsored a debate on GLBT rights at a Mercosur conference of ten South American nations.

    10:30 AM — Debate continues in Brazil over government proposals to criminalise homophobia.Under the proposals, Roman Catholic priests and other clergy might face two to five years in prison for preaching against homosexuality.A rector of a seminary who refuses admission to a homosexual student could face three to five years.

  • 20th March 2007

    Russian faith groups come out against Pride march 4

    If the march is banned again, the organisers will appeal with the European Court of Human Rights.

    5:25 PM — Russia's Orthodox Church announced today that it is opposed to the planned Moscow gay Pride parade, as it believes homosexuality is harmful to society.Gay activists plan to hold the parade on the 14th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in Russia.Representatives of Russian Muslims and Jews joined the calls for a ban on the parade.

  • Italian family day out to oppose gay rights 1

    The rally will take place in Rome's central San Giovanni Square.

    3:56 PM — Catholic organisations in Italy have announced that May 12 will be "Family Day", featuring a demonstration in Rome against legislation which will could give legal rights to civil unions.The planned civil unions will be both for heterosexual and homosexual couples, a proposal that has outraged the Catholic Church.The Family Day manifesto does not specifically mention the laws, but focuses on calls for legislation promoting more traditional families.

  • Anti-gay propaganda from Christian activists on YouTube

    The Christian protest against the SORs will be held in Parliament Square tomorrow at 12 noon for one hour.

    2:18 PM — An offensive video created by an unnamed Christian group denouncing the new Sexual Orientation Regulations is circulating on YouTube.The footage shows a primary school teacher reading about homosexuality to a group of small children.It comes with a warning that nobody aged under 18 should view it.

  • 19th March 2007

    Swedes could be allowed gay church weddings 3

    photo: megan ann@flickr

    11:40 AM — The Church of Sweden has given its support to proposals that would allow gay couples to marry in church ceremonies on the same basis as heterosexual couples.An official government report, due to be presented next week, would amend existing marriage laws to ensure that all couples have the same marriage rights regardless of their sexual orientation.Bishop Claes-Bertil Ytterberg, head of the Church of Sweden's Västerås diocese, signalled his support for the changes.

  • 16th March 2007

    Cardinal says Pope should stop giving orders

    Earlier this week the Pope said that politicians have a moral duty to vote against gay marriage or partnership legislation.

    5:43 PM — An Italian cardinal has criticised other church leaders for opposing the legal recognition of same-sex partnerships.Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini told Italian pilgrims in Bethlehem yesterday that, "The Church does not give orders."His statement is seen by many as a clear rebuke to the Pope's stance in the current Italian same-sex union row.

  • Gay students to study at conservative rabbi school 1

    In 1992 Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson wrote a paper advocating gay ordinations and unions. The paper also advocated lifting the ban on gay sex.

    11:40 AM — A Los Angeles college of Conservative Judaism has accepted openly gay applicants for the first time since the ban on gay ordination was lifted.A spokeswoman for The Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies (L.A. University of Judaism) announced on Tuesday that a gay man and a lesbian will enrol at the school in the autumn.At the Conservative movement's beacon school, the Jewish Theological Seminary, the policy is still being debated.

  • 15th March 2007

    Gay bishop says coming out is God at work

    “If you want to know my homosexual agenda, it's Jesus,“ Bishop Robinson said.

    5:37 PM — The openly gay bishop of New Hampshire, Gene Robinson, has robustly defended his position.At a public meeting in Washington DC Bishop Robinson claimed that of the nearly 8000 parishes in the American Episcopal Church, only 47 have sought guidance from outside bishops after his ordination."If you want to know my homosexual agenda, it's Jesus," Bishop Robinson said.

  • Southern Baptist in “babies born gay” row 1

    While being gay might be a biological reality, it is still sinful.

    1:18 PM — One of America's foremost evangelical clergymen has angered many Christians by saying there might be a biological explanation for homosexuality.Rev. R. Albert Mohler wrote in an article on his website earlier this month entitled "Is Your Baby Gay? What If You Could Know? What If You Could Do Something About It?"In it he says that while being gay might be a biological reality, it is still sinful.

  • 14th March 2007

    Vatican attacks kids attending gay rights rally 1

    L'Osservatore Romano  is published daily in Italian and weekly in several other languages.

    11:14 AM — The official newspaper of the Vatican has lambasted the demonstration in Rome on Saturday to demand legal rights for unmarried same sex couples. L'Osservatore Romano said that children attending the event were the victims of abuse.50,000 activists took to a Roman piazza and rallied in support of a bill that would offer greater legal protection to unmarried couples.

  • 13th March 2007

    Clergyman refuses to marry straight couples

    The Americans had caused tension with traditional churches by performing the blessings.

    5:09 PM — An American Episcopal clergyman has announced that he will not perform marriage ceremonies as a protest against the church's bar on gay unions.A conference of Anglican primates from around the world last month urged the American communion, known as Episcopalians, to desist from appointing openly gay bishops and blessing gay partnerships.The Americans had caused tension with traditional churches by performing the blessings.

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