Religion News Australia 2014 - 34 (Sept 14 - 21)

  (21 September 14)
  by Greg Spearritt

Religion News Australia

September 14 - 21, 2014

Religion news stories from Australia

(Research: Greg Spearritt)


Please note: the next Religion News roundup will appear in early October



abuse / catholic church  / international stories / islam / politics / religion & society





Hillsong Church to come under scrutiny at royal commission into child sex abuse (Brisbane Times)
Sept 18 - The popular Hillsong Church will come under the scrutiny of the child sexual abuse royal commission when it examines Australia's Pentecostal institutions at its next public hearing in October.



Catholic Church names Bishop Anthony Fisher as Cardinal George Pell's successor (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 - The Bishop of Parramatta, Anthony Fisher, has been appointed the ninth Archbishop of Sydney, replacing the controversial Cardinal George Pell.

Also: ‘Mud on boots’ of new chief Catholic Anthony Fisher (The Australian)
Sept 19 - POPE Francis last night promoted the Bishop of Parramatta, ­Anthony Fisher, 54, as the new Archbishop of Sydney to replace Cardinal George Pell.

Also: Archbishop-elect Anthony Fisher pledges a humbler Catholic Church: 'No excuses, no cover-ups' (Brisbane Times)
Sept 20 - Before Gloria Fisher's son entered the priesthood, he had a few girlfriends.



Catholic Church

Vatican car seized with cocaine, cannabis (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 17 - The Vatican has been left red-faced after it emerged that a car bearing its diplomatic plates had been stopped in France with four kilograms of cocaine on board.


Iranian 'Happy' video youth sentenced (
Sept 19 - A DEFENCE lawyer in Iran says six young Iranian men and women videotaped dancing to Pharrell Williams' Happy and the video's director have been sentenced to suspended jail terms and lashes.

Gay-friendly mosque launches quiet 'revolution' in South Africa (The West Australian)
Sept 20 - Cape Town (AFP) - Against a global background of rising Islamist militancy a new mosque where gay people are welcome, Christians too, and women are treated equally to men opened peacefully in Cape Town on Friday despite threats of violence.

Rise of Islamic schools causes alarm in secular Turkey (The West Australian)
Sept 21 - Istanbul (AFP) - When Turkish pupils received their school entry exam results after the end of last term, textile worker and father Halil Ibrahim Beyhan received an unpleasant surprise.

Religious Violence

Indonesian terrorists discuss reprisal attacks over action against IS, increasing threat to Australians, researcher says (ABC News)
Sept 15 - Indonesian terrorists have begun talking about targeting Westerners again, in response to United States air strikes in Iraq.

British PM David Cameron vows to 'hunt down' killers of 'British hero' David Haines (ABC News)
Sept 15 - British prime minister David Cameron said he would take "whatever steps are necessary" to bring the "fanatical" killers of a British aid worker to justice.

British medical student who joined Islamic State poses with severed head (
Sept 15 - A WOMAN thought to be a UK medical student who left Britain to join the Islamic State has posted a Twitter selfie of her holding a severed head.

Brother of murdered hostage David Haines quotes Koran against jihadi evil (The Australian)
Sept 15 - THE brother of British hostage David Haines murdered by Islamist militants has issued a tearful video statement about growing religious radicalisation in which he quoted a verse from the Koran.

Dabiq: The apocalyptic magazine the Islamic State uses to recruit and radicalise foreigners (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 17 - This is not the beginning, the magazine says. It is the end.

al-Qaeda appeals to Islamic State to release British hostage Alan Henning (Perth Now)
Sept 17 - TAXI driver Alan Henning gave up Christmas with his family in the UK last year to deliver medical aid to refugees 6,400km away in Syria.

US bombs Islamic State militants near Baghdad (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
Sept 17 - THE United States has bombed militants near Baghdad in support of Iraqi forces, striking close to the capital for the first time in its expanded campaign against Islamic State jihadists.

Islamic State purportedly releases video of captive British journalist John Cantlie to reveal 'facts' (ABC News)
Sept 19 - Islamic State (IS) militants fighting in Iraq and Syria have released a video which they said shows British journalist John Cantlie in captivity, saying he will soon reveal "facts" about the group to counter its portrayal in Western media.

British journalist John Cantlie purportedly shown in IS video (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 - A man identified as British journalist John Cantlie has purportedly appeared as a captive of Islamic State militants in a video posted by the organisation's supporters online.

How ISIS uses social media to spread their messages to the world (
Sept 19 - ISLAMIC State has a slick and professional media arm, which uses social media to disseminate its messages and garner support around the world.

France launches first air strike on Islamic State militants (ABC News)
Sept 20 - French jets have carried out their first air strike against Islamic State militants in Iraq, successfully destroying their target.

Islamic State has offered to trade hostages for imprisoned 'superstar' (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 20 - For months, Islamic State militants have engaged in a high-stakes game of deadly extortion, threatening to behead American captives they are holding in the Middle East unless their demands are met, including an end to US airstrikes targeting their strongholds in Iraq.

US 'communicating' with Iran over Islamic State but being rebuffed (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 20 - Washington: Washington has been "communicating" with its arch-enemy Tehran, searching for openings that might lead to a co-ordinated campaign to achieve Barack Obama's stated objective – to "degrade and destroy" the so-called Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Yemeni government and Houthi rebels reach agreement, U.N. envoy says (The West Australian)
Sept 20 - SANAA (Reuters) - The Yemeni government and armed Shi'ite Houthi rebels reached an agreement on Saturday to end the worst violence for years in the capital Sanaa, U.N. special envoy Jamal Benomar said.

#Notinmyname campaign sees young Muslims fight IS on social media (
Sept 21 - YOUNG Muslims are taking a stand against IS with a powerful internet campaign.

Islamic State adapt Grand Theft Auto game into ‘virtual jihad’ recruitment drive for kids (
Sept 21 - EXECUTIONS in the streets.

ISIS jihadists close on Syria Kurdish town (The Australian)
Sept 21 - ISLAMIC State jihadists were closing in on Syria’s third-largest Kurdish town today after their capture of surrounding villages sent tens of thousands of refugees streaming into Turkey, a monitoring group said.


Nigeria church collapse survivor found (The Australian)
Sept 17 - A WOMAN has walked away only slightly injured after being pulled from the rubble of a building that collapsed in Nigeria four days ago.

Albania's lesson in Muslim-Christian tolerance (The West Australian)
Sept 21 - Malbardh (Albania) (AFP) - Perched up an Albanian mountain, the mediaeval church of St Nicolas was rebuilt from a crumbling ruin with help from local Muslims after the fall of communism, a symbol of the religious tolerance Pope Francis will be celebrating here on Sunday.



Father of Australian Islamic State fighter warns parents to be vigilant about extremist behaviour (ABC News)
Sept 15 - The father of an Australian Islamic State (IS) fighter has told parents at a family picnic day to take their children's passports if they think their offspring plan on joining extremists.

Muslim leaders denounce Islamic State, fear radicalisation at home (The Australian)
Sept 15 - AUSTRALIAN Muslim leaders say there’s nothing Islamic about the murderous actions of militant group Islamic State.

Also: Isis doesn't deserve to be called Islamic, Australian imams say (The Guardian, Australia)
Sept 15 - Australian imams have called for the term “Islamic” not to be used when referring to the Islamic State (Isis) group, saying it serves only to give credibility to the group’s claims of religious authority.

Stuck at the frontline, the Kiwi jihadi who wants to come home (The Australian)
Sept 16 - HE is the “adventurer” who travelled to Syria, posed with ­machines guns and claimed to have joined al-Qa’ida.

Gold Coast mosque application: Council taking legal advice (Brisbane Times)   
Sept 16 - A controversial mosque planned for the Gold Coast has been knocked back by the city's council.

Also: Mayor rejects Gold Coast is 'anti-Islamic' after vote against mosque (Brisbane Times)
Sept 17 - Gold Coast mayor Tom Tate says he has no fears the tourist strip will be viewed as "anti-Islamic", after the council on Tuesday rejected an application to build the city's third mosque at Currumbin Waters.

Accused jihadi fundraiser wants bail because he misses his children ‘enormously’ (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
Sept 17 - A BRISBANE man behind bars on terror-related charges is missing his children “enormously” and is worried his relationship with them will be “irreparably damaged” if he is refused bail, court documents show.

Australia’s Islamic leaders must strongly condemn IS (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
Sept 17 – (Opinion: Editorial) WHEN President Barack Obama addressed the American people a week ago about his strategy for dealing with the Islamic State militants, he began by saying it needed to be remembered this group was “not Islamic and not a state”.

Police searching for material linked to Islamic State, al-Qaeda, says man targeted (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 18 - A man targeted during counter-terrorism raids across Sydney said police were searching for any material that could link his family to al-Qaeda or Islamic State.

Authorities thwart 'beheading' plot in Australia's biggest ever counter-terrorism raids (ABC News)
Sept 19 - The emerging reality of terrorism in Australia struck home just before dawn on Thursday when more than 800 police launched synchronised raids on houses and vehicles across Sydney's west and north-west, and Brisbane's south.

Terrorism raids: plot to kill Aussies on video by top terrorist Mohammad Baryalei (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 - Top terrorist recruiter Mohammad Baryalei is behind an Islamic State plot to murder Australians on video, police say, sparking the nation's biggest ever counter-terrorism raids and prompting warnings of a high alert for a further 18 months.

Muslim leaders angry at treatment of Imam (The West Australian)
Sept 19 - Muslim leaders are fuming at what they claim is the unacceptable treatment of a senior cleric by officials at Sydney airport.

Lakemba protest by Muslims who believe Australian terror raids were ‘unjust policing’ (
Sept 19 - AN URGENT meeting was called last night by members of the Muslim community who are furious about yesterday’s anti-terror raids in Sydney.

Australian terror raids: Parliament House attack plans intercepted (
Sept 19 - SECURITY is being ramped up at Parliament House, homes will be searched closely and ASIO has seized passports of Melbourne men, amid Australia’s largest counterterrorism raids in history.

Islamic State horror hits home: plot to abduct and behead Australians (The Australian)
Sept 19 - THE threat of Islamic State has spread from the war-torn Middle East to the other side of the world, after police claimed to have smashed an imminent plot to abduct and behead an Australian civilian as part of the terror group’s global propaganda campaign.

Terror accused, Omarjan Azari, had ‘unusual level of fanaticism’ (The Australian)
Sept 19 - A SYDNEY man who police ­allege played a key role in a plot to seize someone at random from the city’s streets and behead them was motivated by “an unusual level of fanaticism”.

The order to kill that triggered Operation Appleby (The Australian)
Sept 19 - THEY began as small-time local recruiters of wannabe jihadist fighters in western Sydney, picking up the business for a mate who had been thrown into jail.

Australian terror raids: AFP, ASIO move on suspected terrorists (
Sept 19 - A PUBLIC execution of a random Australian was designed to shock the community, a Sydney court has heard.

Terrorist raids: family say they were terrified (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 - Rabie el Achwah, 22, was downstairs in his home in Hector Street, Bass Hill, pouring himself a glass of milk before morning prayers at 4.45am, when he was startled by violent thumps on the front door and the front window shattered.

Sydney Muslims launch protests over counter-terrorism raids that thwarted alleged beheading plot (ABC News)
Sept 19 - Hundreds of people from Sydney's Muslim community have protested against the biggest anti-terror raids in Australia's history, accusing authorities of drumming up hysteria.

Terror raids: 800 police, and only two men charged (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 - It was hard to believe the awkward, spotty youth sitting in the Central Local Court on Thursday was capable of planning such a horrific act of public violence.

Seeking calm amid violence, fear and outrage (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 19 – (Opinion: Waleed Aly) It's the sheer randomness of it that makes it so terrifying.

Hundreds protest in Sydney about counter-terrorism raids (The Guardian, Australia)
Sept 19 - Over 200 people in western Sydney attended a protest about the pre-dawn counter-terrorism raids that occurred across the country.

Queensland premier alleges arrested man had planned an onshore attack (The Guardian, Australia)
Sept 19 - A man arrested by Queensland police was allegedly planning an onshore terrorist attack, the premier said.

Muslim leaders question evidence behind counter-terrorism raids (ABC News)
Sept 19 - Muslim leaders say questions are mounting about what evidence police had to justify yesterday's massive anti-terrorism raids in Sydney and Brisbane.

Muslim leaders to meet ACT Government after anti-terrorism raids in Sydney, Brisbane (ABC News)
Sept 19 - A series of meetings have been organised between the ACT Government and the local Muslim community in the wake of counter-terrorism raids in Sydney and Brisbane.

Islamic leaders call for calm in the wake of the recent terror raids (
Sept 19 - ISLAMIC leaders have broadly decried alleged terrorists planning to commit violence on Sydney’s streets, but have warned against Australians turning on their Muslim neighbours.

Muslim protesters in Lakemba - who were they? (
Sept 19 - DID the protesters who called police “pigs” and “dogs” in the aftermath of Australia’s biggest anti-terror operation really represent the wider Muslim community?

Brisbane locals want to understand Islam (
Sept 19 - "CAN you please take my photo, my daughter will never ever believe I'm in here," asks Tracey Jaggers.

Youth rebellion that embraces authority (The Australian)
Sept 20 – (Opinion)  IT is not just the threat of particular horrific acts of terror on the streets of Sydney that Australia has woken up to this week.

Sydney police patrol around mosques (The West Australian)
Sept 20 - Police will patrol mosques across Sydney under an operation established to head off any reprisals from Thursday's anti-terror raids, but they insist it's for community protection and confidence.

We are the ones being terrorised, Muslims say (The Age, Melbourne)
Sept 21 - A car has been damaged and daubed with offensive comments, threatening letters have been sent and women have been abused in the street.



Abbott declares war on the Islamic State 'death cult' (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 15 - Two hundred elite special forces soldiers could be on the ground in Iraq within days after the Abbott government agreed to a US request to provide planes and 600 personnel to the region as part of a multinational strike force against Islamic terrorists rampaging through Iraq and Syria.

I won't put time limit on Iraq: Abbott (Brisbane Times)
Sept 15 - Prime Minister Tony Abbott won't put a time limit on Australia's commitment to the fight against Islamic State extremists, saying its deployment to the Middle East could last "many, many months".

There are clear and achievable objectives in Iraq, says Tony Abbott (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 15 - Prime Minister Tony Abbott has warned Australian Muslims they will be acting "against God" if they join Islamic State and said they would find themselves in more danger as a result of the Australian military being deployed to help destroy the militant group.

Jacqui Lambie calls for supporters of sharia law to ‘get out’ of Australia (
Sept 15 - JACQUI Lambie wants those in Australia who support sharia law to “pack up their bags and get out of here”.

Also: Ban the burka photo shared by Jacqui Lambie believed to be of Afghan policewoman  (ABC News)
Sept 20 - A photograph of a Muslim woman with a gun used as part of an online campaign to ban the burka is believed to be of an Afghan policewoman who died fighting Taliban extremists.

Also: Jacqui Lambie says Islamic law involves terrorism as she stands firm on burqa ban (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 21 - Palmer United Party senator Jacqui Lambie claims Islamic law "involves terrorism" and says the burqa is a "national security" risk.

Also: Jacqui Lambie refuses to back down from call for sharia law supporters to leave Australia (
Sept 21 - SHE claims she doesn’t have a problem with Muslims, but Jacqui Lambie is still refusing to back away from her call for Sharia law supporters to get out of Australia.

Also: Palmer refuses to back Lambie's Muslim stance (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 21 - Clive Palmer has distanced his party from incendiary statements on the burqa and sharia law by PUP senator Jacqui Lambie.

Australian jihadists facing coalition attack in Iraq ‘know the risks’ they face: Tony Abbott (The Australian)
Sept 15 - AUSTRALIAN jihadists facing bombardment by RAAF aircraft in Iraq have chosen to stand “against our common humanity” and “know the risks”, Tony Abbott says.

Tony Abbott warns Australians fighting for Islamic State could be targeted by RAAF bombs (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 15 - Tony Abbott has revealed Australians fighting with Islamic State terrorists would be among those targeted by Australian bombs when the full multinational air assault on the insurgents is launched in coming weeks.

'Stupid and ignorant': Cory Bernardi's comments  (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 21 - Comments by a Liberal senator linking terror raids with a campaign to ban the burqa have been described as "stupid and ignorant" and designed to "feed prejudice".

Muslim leaders lash out at Jacqui Lambie and Cory Bernardi (Brisbane Times)
Sept 20 - Muslim leaders say Cory Bernardi and Jacqui Lambie are assisting the Islamic State to recruit potential terrorists in Australia with their "divisive and inflammatory" statements on burqas and sharia.

RAAF just days from striking Islamic State (The Australian)
Sept 20 - RAAF  Super Hornet fighter-bombers are expected to begin bombing Islamic State terrorist group targets in Iraq within days.

Barack Obama adding to terrorism crisis, says John Howard (The Australian)
Sept 20 - A COMPLACENT US President and the failure of Australian Muslims to integrate into the mainstream are two factors identified by John Howard as contributing to the terrorism crisis.



Climate activism's new frontier is targeting fossil fuel investors (Brisbane Times)
Sept 15 - In mid-July, the peak body of the Uniting Church in Australia voted to sell its investments in fossil fuels.

Salvos' van joins frontline against violence in memory of Thomas Kelly (Sydney Morning Herald)  
Sept 15 - Salvation Army officers will join the frontline battle against alcohol-fuelled violence – helping young people at risk of becoming a victim or perpetrator – at "safe place" vans planned for Sydney city and Kings Cross.

Sydney church our Lady of Lebanon targeted by ISIS threats (
Sept 19 - CHURCH-goers in Sydney’s west have been left shaken after a stranger shouted death threats from a car bearing the Islamic State flag.


From the Archive…

Religion News Australia 2014 – 33 (Sept 7 - 14)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 32 (Aug 31 – Sept 7)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 31 (Aug 24 - 31)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 30 (Aug 17 - 24)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 29 (Aug 10 - 17)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 28 (Aug 3 - 10)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 27 (July 27 – Aug 3)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 26 (July 20 - 27)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 25 (July 13 - 20)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 24 (July 6 - 13)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 23 (June 29 – July 6)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 22 (June 22 - 29)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 21 (June 15 - 22)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 20 (June 8 - 15)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 19 (June 1 - 8)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 18 (May 25 – June 1)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 17 (May 18 - 25)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 16 (May 11 - 18)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 15 (May 4 - 11)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 14 (April 27 – May 4)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 13 (April 20 - 27)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 12 (April 12 - 20)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 11 (Mar 30 – April 12)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 10 (Mar 23 - 30)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 9 (Mar 16 - 23)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 8 (Mar 9 - 16)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 7 (Mar 3 - 9)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 6 (Feb 23 – Mar 3)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 5 (Feb 16 - 23)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 4 (Feb 9 - 16)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 3 (Feb 2 - 9)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 2 (Jan 26 – Feb 2)

Religion News Australia 2014 – 1 (Jan 4 - 26)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 53 (Dec 29 – Jan 4)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 52 (Dec 22 - 29)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 51 (Dec 15 - 22)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 50 (Dec 8 - 15)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 49 (Dec 1 - 8)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 48 (Nov 23 – Dec 1)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 47 (Nov 17 - 23)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 46 (Nov 10 - 17)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 45 (Nov 3 - 10)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 44 (Oct 27 – Nov 3)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 43 (Oct 20 - 27)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 42 (Oct 13 - 20)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 41 (Oct 6 - 13)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 40 (Sept 29 – Oct 6)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 39 (Sept 22 - 29)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 38 (Sept 15 - 22)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 37 (Sept 8 - 15)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 36 (Sept 1 - 8)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 35 (Aug 25 – Sept 1)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 34 (Aug 18 - 25)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 33 (Aug 11 - 18)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 32 (Aug 4 - 11)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 31 (July 28 – Aug 4)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 30 (July 21 - 28)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 29 (July 14 - 21)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 28 (July 7 - 14)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 27 (July 1 - 7)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 26 (June 23 - 30)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 25 (June 16 - 23)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 24 (June 9 - 16)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 23 (June 2 - 9)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 22 (May 26 – June 2)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 21 (May 19 - 26)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 20 (May 12 - 19)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 19 (May 5 - 12)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 18 (Apr 28 – May 5)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 17 (Apr 21 - 28)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 16 (Apr 14 - 21)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 15 (Apr 7 - 14)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 14 (Mar 31 – Apr 7)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 13 (Mar 24 - 31)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 12 (Mar 17 - 24)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 11 (Mar 10 - 17)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 10 (Mar 3 - 10)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 9 (Feb 24 – Mar 3)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 8 (Feb 17 - 24)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 7 (Feb 10 - 17)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 6 (Feb 3 - 10)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 5 (Jan 27 – Feb 3)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 4 (Jan 20 - 27)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 3 (Jan 13 - 20)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 2 (Jan 6 - 13)

Religion News Australia 2013 – 1 (Dec 30 – Jan 6)


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