Posts in Europe
Pilgrimage: A journey to Lithuania’s enigmatic Hill of Crosses

As you walk a long, bricked and gravel pathway to the hill, you start to notice odd and sundry versions of the cross and crucifix emerging from the strange mound. High crosses. Low crosses. Gold crosses. Black crosses. Silver crosses. Some forged from metal. Others carved from wood.

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UK Christians: Dangerous anti-extremism measures ‘threaten Christian freedom’

(COMMENTARY) British evangelicals have mounted a protest against “extremism” policies they claim are “a real threat to gospel freedom”.

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As European blasphemy laws endure, journalists should consider how words can get them in trouble

(COMMENTARY) This is an issue journalists — whether they’re writing opinion/analysis pieces or constructing hard news stories — should stay tuned into to avoid crossing the wrong side of a shifting line.

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Government considered abolishing UK’s equality commission

(ANALYSIS) A report identifies serious failings in the Equalities and Human Rights Commission revealed in its ten-year review. The stunning admission comes on top of a catalog of failures that reveal that most stakeholders do not know what the quango exists for, or what its priorities are.

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1,000 years of Orthodoxy history loom over today's Moscow-Istanbul clash

(COMMENTARY) There are three distinct Ukrainian Orthodox strains with differing loyalties to Russian and Turkish Orthodox patriarchs. While an Istanbul patriarch has lifted a condemnation of Ukrainian Orthodoxy, a Moscow patriarch has severed ties with Kiev.

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The Death of Free Speech in Europe

(COMMENTARY) Europe took a dystopian turn last week when the European Court of Human Rights ruled that governments can punish citizens for criticizing the prophet Muhammad if such criticism “conflicts with the right of others to have their religious feelings protected.”

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Jamal Khashoggi and the Middle East’s Game of Thrones

Jamal Khashoggi may have signed his own death warrant with his opinion column in The Washington Post when he criticized the White House’s democratic efforts in the Arab world, including both the Obama and Trump administration.

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The role of online journalism and the Catholic Church sex-abuse scandal 

A whistleblower says the Vatican – and specifically Pope Francis –  was aware of immoral sexual abuse behavior years ago. When it was revealed that two Catholic journalists helped him to edit and distribute the letter making those claims, it shed a light on the increasingly polarized Catholic Church and the growth and influence of conservative news and opinion websites that oppose Pope Francis and what they believe is the pontiff’s assault on orthodoxy. 

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Fatwas on Social Mixing: the UK Government’s new integration strategy (Part 2)

(COMMENTARY) In part two of her look at the UK Government’s new integration strategy, Dr. Jenny Taylor examines how the ground is set in Britain for a showdown between the secular state’s need to govern its disparate peoples but without a religion to bind it together. Religio means ‘to bind’ but in the UK, despite historical precedent, the majority do not believe and the religions that there are have their own versions of transcendent accountability.

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‘Multiculturalism is defunct’: British Government signals U-turn on 70 years of social policy

(COMMENTARY) The British Government’s Green Paper, published on March 14, outlines a strategy that signifies a 180-degree U-turn in the direction of nearly 70 years of public policy since the Second World War.  The final report of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Social Integration’s own inquiry into the integration of immigrants (2017) declared last year that ‘multiculturalism ... is defunct’.

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The ‘pope’s astronomer’ finds harmony between science and dogma

Guy Consolmagno has a profound love for studying space, reading and watching science-fiction as well as Jesus and the Gospels. As director of the Vatican Observatory, he is embraced by both the scientific and the religious communities, and is in the business of shattering myths about the compatibility between science and religion.

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