Views from the News
CHRISTIANS CONDEMN UNIVERSITY BAN ON 'GAY CURE' ABSTINENCE COURSE
Christian leaders have condemned Edinburgh University for banning students belonging to the Christian Union from teaching an abstinence course on campus. The row centres on the decision by university chiefs that literature promoting the six-week course, entitled ‘Pure’, broke equality and diversity rules, following claims that it included stories from people who had been ‘cured’ of their homosexuality. The Christian Union is considering legal action against the university under human rights laws after it was forced to teach the course from a student's flat. Laura Stirrat, vicepresident of Edinburgh University's Christian Union, said, ‘The university is effectively closing down free speech’. A university spokeswoman said the course was ‘contrary to our equality and diversity values’ and not appropriate to run on university or Students Association premises. Source: New Scotsman.com
CHRISTIANS STILL ‘SWINE’ AND JEWS ‘APES’ IN SAUDI SCHOOLS
Saudi Arabia has been accused of continuing to foster religious hatred in its schools, despite its repeated assurances since the September 11th attacks that it would rewrite textbooks that refer to Jews as ‘apes’ and Christians as ‘swine’. The charges come after Freedom House, a non-partisan American research group which monitors civil rights worldwide, examined textbooks that it had smuggled out of Saudi Arabia. The group found that despite promises of change from leading Saudi officials schoolbooks in the kingdom still promote hatred of those who do not practise its strict form of Wahhabi Islam. The report also alleged that some of the textbooks are used in official Saudi schools around the world. Senior staff at the King Fahd Academy in Acton, West London, which has 750 pupils, said that it was not for the school to comment. ‘Even if a small percentage of the people who are exposed to this take it to heart and act on it, that’s still a lot of people’, said Nina Shea, Freedom House’s director, after the release of the 39- page report, Saudi Arabia’s Curriculum of Intolerance’. But, according to Tanya Hsu, a political analyst in Riyadh with close ties to the education ministry, there is anger behind the scenes at an alleged propaganda campaign designed to make the government look bad. ‘The charges are absolutely not true’, she said. ‘We’re really just looking at a few sentences and a few words. I don’t know of any country in the world that doesn’t have a few mischosen words in textbooks’.
Source: The Sunday Telegraph
SIXTH FORMERS GIVEN OPT-OUT OF WORSHIP
Sixth-formers are to be given the rights to opt out of acts of collective worship, the Government has said. Lord Adonis, the Education Minister, accepted an amendment to the Education and Inspection Bill to relax the laws on compulsory attendance. The announcement comes less than a fortnight after Alan Johnson, the Education Secretary, said there were no plans to allow pupils to exempt themselves. Collective worship is mandatory in all state schools unless parents request that their child be excluded. The Liberal Democrats had claimed the current laws could breach pupils’ human rights and yesterday’s amendment was proposed by Lady Walmsley during the Bill’s Lords committee stage. ‘It is contradictory to say we think young people are old enough at 16 to work and pay taxes, get married and even fight for their country but then not give them the right to choose whether they participate in worship’, she said. It comes three weeks after students at St. Luke’s, a Roman Catholic sixth-form college in Bexley, South-East London, boycotted Mass, accusing the school of being ‘more concerned about religion than education’.
Source: The Daily Telegraph
TEMPLE TREASURES ‘BACK IN HOLY LAND’ CLAIM
Treasures from the Jerusalem Temple destroyed in AD70 now lie hidden beneath a monastery after they were returned to the Holy Land in the seventh century, a specialist claims. Dr. Sean Kingsley says that a decade of research has enabled him to trace the route of the biblical treasures that were stolen after Roman forces pillaged the Temple and expelled the Jews from Jerusalem. According to Dr. Kingsley’s findings, the treasures were publicly displayed in the Temple of Peace in Rome between AD 75 and the early 5th century. Various records then document their journey to Carthage in Tunisia and then to Constantinople. Finally, Dr. Kingsley believes they were spirited back to Israel and hidden in a monastery in Judea. ‘The treasure’s final hiding place – in the modern West Bank, will rock world religions’, he said.
Source: The Times
The purpose of this page is to make believers aware of major developments that are taking place in the world today that may adversely affect Christians or their freedom to live and spread the gospel. Our objective is not to promote false teaching or ungodly people but to stimulate intelligent prayer and awareness of the issues that we are confronted with in an ungodly and condemned world. Please pray that in our day the 'word of the Lord may have free course and be glorified', 2 Thess. 3. 1.