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All articles in category Religious liberty

News

March 2021
News > Religious liberty

Tory MP compares prayer to rape and calls for a ban on ‘conversion therapy’

A Conservative MP has listed ‘prayer sessions’ alongside abhorrent acts such as ‘corrective rape’ as she called on the government to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’. Campaigners want a complete ban on any institution urging anyone, by any means, to change or resist LGBT practices. This could make it illegal for churches to advocate biblical…

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News

February 2021
News > Religious liberty

Local councils in England accused of ‘pressuring’ churches to close

Several local councils in England wrote to churches last month urging them to close during the lockdown, even though the law allows them to remain open. When the lockdown in England was announced, the Prime Minister made it clear that people could leave their homes for ‘communal worship’ at a church. But a letter…

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News

January 2021
News > Ethics > Religious liberty > Society

Victory for student midwife banned over pro-life views

A midwifery student who was banned from her hospital placement over her pro-life views has won an apology and settlement from her university. Julia Rynkiewicz was suspended from her placement after a lecturer at the University of Nottingham reported her involvement with the university’s Students for Life society. She was subject to a four-month…

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News

January 2021
News > Religious liberty > Society

Scottish hate crime bill is amended but still ‘dangerously flawed’

Scotland’s much-criticised hate crimes bill – which could have made parts of the Bible illegal – has been amended, but serious concerns remain. Christian and secular groups alike all feared the bill would attack free speech. Concessions have been made by the Scottish government, but free speech campaigners still want more to be done.…

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News

January 2021
News > Religious liberty

UK restrictions on worship among the strictest in Europe

Worshippers in the UK have experienced some of the most severe restrictions on public worship anywhere in Europe, according to a report. The European Centre for Law and Justice looked at worship restrictions across Europe. The UK – together with Ireland, France, and Belgium – had the most severe rules. The Centre reported, ‘It…

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News

January 2021
News > Religious liberty

MP is ‘appalled’ by how easily we gave up freedoms

Conservative MP Desmond Swayne says he is ‘appalled’ at the ease with which people have allowed their religious freedoms to be ‘dispensed with’ during the Covid-19 lockdown. In a speech in parliament, Swayne said that government-imposed restrictions continue to impede a number of individual freedoms. He expressed horror at the lack of meaningful protest…

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News

November 2020
News > Religious liberty

Call to outlaw churches that teach biblical sexual ethics

Churches should face ‘high-profile prosecutions’ in the future if they preach, pray, or offer pastoral counselling according to biblical sexual ethics. That’s the call that has been made by former evangelical, Steve Chalke, who has organised a conference on the issue. A press release sent by Chalke’s organisation, the Oasis Charitable Trust, outlandishly claims…

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News

October 2020
News > Persecution > Religious liberty

Belfast hotel says sorry for ending marriage meeting

A church minister in Northern Ireland has won his legal battle against the hotel that shut down his meeting about traditional marriage after it was already underway. Revd Harry Coulter was set to take his case to trial, but the Balmoral Hotel in Belfast has settled out of court and apologised for ending the…

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News

October 2020
News > Religious liberty

I will ban the Bible using Hate Crimes Bill, says atheist

An atheist has written to a newspaper saying he welcomes Scotland’s proposed Hate Crimes Bill because he will be able to monitor all holy books and sermons and report any ‘hatred’ to the police. The letter, by Ian Stewart, Convener of Atheist Scotland, stated, ‘Atheists see some merit in Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf’s Hate…

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News

September 2020
News > Religious liberty

‘Arbitrary’ limit of 50 worshippers in Scottish churches is ‘not legal’

Churches in Scotland have been told they should not have more than 50 worshippers in their services because of the Covid-19 crisis, but the limit is not legally binding. The Scottish government’s guidance may change, but that is the latest situation at the time this edition of ET went to print. The Scottish government…

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News

August 2020
News > Religious liberty

Court rules adoption agency can keep its evangelical ethos

An evangelical adoption and fostering agency has been told it can keep its religious ethos following a case in the High Court. However, the judge also ruled that the agency must allow same-sex couples to foster and adopt. Cornerstone (North East) Adoption and Fostering Service took the case to court because Ofsted had demanded…

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News

May 2020
News > Ethics > International > Religious liberty > Society

Sweden: Pro-life midwives denied court hearing

The European Court of Human Rights has refused to hear the case of two midwives who were denied employment in Sweden because they refused to perform abortions. The two midwives, Ellinor Grimmark and Linda Steen, were told their application was ‘inadmissible’. Their lawyers have called the decision a ‘dangerous departure from protecting fundamental freedom’.…

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