July 10, 2009

Methodists banned from joining BNP

by David Masters

The Methodist Church has banned its members from joining the British National Party. A resolution passed this week by the annual Methodist Conference makes it the first UK church to ban BNP membership for church members and employees. “No member of the Church can also be a member of a political party whose constitution, aims […]

Hindu pilgrim dies in helicopter crash

by Sara Levy

A woman pilgrim was killed on her way to a Hindu shrine in Kashmir when the helicopter she was travelling in crash-landed Thursday, officials have confirmed. The pilot and four other passengers were injured in the crash, which occured two miles short of the Amarnath cave temple in the Himalayas. The cause of the crash […]

Anti-Muslim pamphleteers released without charge

by Benjamin Graham

Three Lancashire men arrested for handing out leaflets claiming that Muslims were responsible for the heroin trade will not be prosecuted. The leaflet, which urged people to ‘heap condemnation’ on Muslims, was distributed in Burnley and reportedly circulated as far afield as Yorkshire and Cumbria. British National Party supporters and members, including leader Nick Griffin, […]

July 9, 2009

Christians fear being ‘gagged’ on homosexuality

by Sara Levy

Conservative Christian groups have raised fears that the government’s proposed Equality Bill would gag them from condemning homosexual acts as sinful. A petition of 20,000 signatures was handed in to Downing Street this week urging the government to rethink its proposals. The petition, organised by Christian Concern for our Nation, aims to draw attention to […]

Burger King’s run-in with a Hindu goddess

by David Masters

Fast food chain Burger King has apologised to Hindus for running an advertising campaign displaying a Hindu goddess above a meat sandwich. Hindus around the world were outraged by posters in Spanish Burger King stores displaying the goddess Lakshmi, a meat sandwich, and the phrase “La Merienda es Sagrada” – “A snack that’s sacred”. Hinduism […]

Islamist preacher recalled to jail

by Benjamin Graham

Radical Islamic preacher Abu Izzadeen has been sent back to jail after breaching the terms of his release. Izzadeen, otherwise known as Trevor Brooks, gained notoriety four years ago when he heckled the then home secretary John Reid at a public meeting. The 34-year-old was jailed last year for four and a half years for […]

Funeral held for Egyptian “headscarf martyr”

by David Masters

The life of an Egyptian woman stabbed to death in a German courtroom was commemorated this week. Over 1,000 mourners, including representatives from the Egyptian government and the German embassy, attended the funeral of 32-year-old Marwa Sherbini, known as the “headscarf martyr”. Sherbini, three months pregnant with her second child, was stabbed 18 times in […]

Pope laments ‘sinful’ and ‘destructive’ unregulated capitalism

by Benjamin Graham

Pope Benedict XVI has called for a “profound” restructuring of the global economy to ensure that financial markets work for the “common good”. In an encyclical letter, the highest form of papal teaching, the Pope demanded that the United Nations be given “real teeth” to tackle global injustice and poverty. The global economy has been […]

Creationism question ‘misleading’ admits GCSE examiner

by Sara Levy

GCSE biology students who sat an AQA exam paper this year were asked a ‘misleading’ question on creationism, the AQA exam board admitted this week. Pupils taking the exam were asked how the Bible’s theory of creation explains the origins of life. A review of the paper, commissioned after complaints from teachers and a university […]

July 8, 2009

Faiths compete for converts on Turkish TV

by David Masters

Contestants on a new Turkish television game show are to be taught how they could win the ultimate prize of eternal life. A Greek Orthodox priest, a rabbi, an imam, and a Buddhist monk will attempt to convert atheist contestants to their respective religions. Each episode of Penitents Compete will see the four faith guides […]

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