August 29, 2008

Beauty contest for nuns cancelled

by David Masters

A priest in Italy has called off an online beauty contest for nuns after the idea was criticised by church leaders. Father Antonio Rungi cancelled the Miss Sister Italy 2008 contest and closed the corresponding blog on August 26th after intervention from his superiors. The contest, due to start in September, would allow nuns to […]




August 28, 2008

Dalai Lama cancels visits due to exhaustion

by David Masters

Tibetan Buddhist leader, the Dalai Lama, has cancelled all his engagements for the next three weeks due to exhaustion. A statement released from the Dalai Lama’s office said he has been experiencing ‘discomfort’ due to his exhaustion, and will be visiting a doctor in Mumbai for medical tests. The 73 year old monk’s trips to […]




August 27, 2008

Pope speaks out against Hindu-Christian clash

by David Masters

Pope Benedict has condemned both the increasing violence by Hindus against Christians in Orissa, India, and the murder of a Hindu leader in the region that sparked the violence. At least eleven people have been killed in the clashes, most of whom were Christian. Christian homes, churches and orphanages have been ransacked and destroyed by […]




August 26, 2008

Democrats host interfaith gathering

by David Masters

America’s Democratic Party held its first ever interfaith gathering on Sunday in Colorado. Presented as an opportunity to ‘honour the diverse faith traditions inside the Democratic Party’, the gathering of 5,000 listened to speeches touching upon topics as wide ranging as warfare and forgiveness. A gospel choir led the meeting in worship. The meeting was […]




August 21, 2008

MI5 shatters myth of ‘Islamic terrorist’

by David Masters

The stereotype of terrorists as religious fundamentalists, fanatics, or loners has been shattered by new research from Britain’s security service. Researchers from MI5 found it impossible to construct a profile for a typical ‘British terrorist’. In a leaked classified report, MI5 boffins confess that there is no easy way to work out who is likely […]




New eco-church dedicated to God

by David Masters

A dedication service for a new eco-friendly church building took place in Scotland last night. The service, led by Rt. Rev. David Lunan, was held at Bridge of Allan Church to dedicate the new church building to God. Four years ago two churches in Bridge of Allan merged, and the new congregation pledged to build […]




August 20, 2008

Publishers censor story of Mohammed’s wife

by David Masters

A US publisher has withdrawn a controversial novel from sale over fears of reprisals from the Muslim community. ‘The Jewel of Medina’ by American journalist Sherry Jones is a fictional biography of the life of one of Mohammed’s wives, Aisha. Jones’s novel starts with Aisha’s engagement to Mohammed at the age of six and ends […]




August 19, 2008

Bible smugglers caught in China

by David Masters

A stand-off between Chinese officials and an American missionary group has ended after the missionaries feared for their safety. Members of the missionary group Vision Beyond Borders attempted to take 300 Bibles into Yunnan, south west China, for distribution among the local population. However, they were stopped at Kunming airport, and the Bibles were confiscated. […]




August 4, 2008

Conference calls for UN interfaith body

by David Masters

Delegates at the World Conference on Dialogue in Madrid have called upon the United Nations to create an interreligious council. The Saudi-funded three day conference, held last month in Madrid, was attended by 250 religious leaders from 50 countries. Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and other faiths were all represented. A report from the conference […]




Muslim folk singer wins libel case

by David Masters

Muslim folk singer Yusaf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, has won libel damages and a formal apology from the World Entertainment News Network. The London-based news agency published an article in March 2007 which claimed that Mr Islam refused to speak to unveiled women at music awards ceremonies. The article, published online, labelled Mr […]




FEATURE: Apocrypha

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