Religion News Selection

January 19 – 25, 2020

A selection of religion news stories from Australia

(Research: Greg Spearritt)



Historic Christian Brothers sexual abuse case receives letter admitting repeated rape of orphan (ABC News)
Jan 21 – In an open letter, delivered on the eve of a WA trial, the Christian Brothers have admitted several brothers sexually abused child migrant John Thomas Lawrence for years from the age of nine in two Perth boys’ homes.

Christian Brothers trial hears child migrant was bashed and raped after reporting sexual abuse (ABC News)
Jan 25 – A child migrant sexually abused by Catholic brothers in Perth has testified he was raped by his school principal after reporting the abuse.

Catholic church attempts to stop one of its own priests from suing it for child abuse (The Guardian, Australia)
Jan 25 – The Catholic church is attempting to stop one of its own priests from suing it for child abuse because he took too long to come forward, prompting criticism that it has learned nothing from the royal commission.


We need to talk about a better National Day for Australia (Brisbane Times)
Jan 23 – (Opinion: Dr Peter Catt) This week, as a nation, we find ourselves once again challenged to explore what it is to be Australian, and to reflect on how we celebrate our national life.

Anglican Church

Sex is for married heterosexual couples only, says Church of England (The Guardian, Australia)
Jan 23 – The Church of England has stated that sex belongs only within heterosexual marriage, and that sex in gay or straight civil partnerships “falls short of God’s purpose for human beings”.


Trump knows all he needs for evangelical votes is to crack down on women’s rights (The Guardian, Australia)
Jan 26 – (Opinion: Arwa Mahdawi) Donald Trump gave up some of his precious “executive time” on Friday to speak at the annual March for Life in Washington.


Margaret Court ceremony at Australian Open to be awkward sideshow for Tennis Australia (ABC News)
Jan 25 – Tennis Australia’s (TA) event recognising the 50th anniversary of Margaret Court’s Grand Slam promises to be one of the most awkward moments in Australian sport.

Satanists play devil’s advocate (The Australian)
Jan 21 – (Opinion: Alice Workman) The Noosa Satanists have weighed in on the proposed religious discrimination bill.

‘Virginity’ harms and excludes many of us. Is it time we got rid of it? (ABC News)
Jan 22 – (Opinion: Kellie Scott) Look, I never expected to be getting sex education from celebrities, but I must credit them for recently reigniting conversations about virginity.