Welcome to the NSL Weekend Wrap for 1 August 2021, where you can catch up on the latest secular-related news from around the country.
Don’t forget that the Weekend Wrap, which aims to help secular-minded Australians keep abreast of the latest news on current issues, is also published on our Facebook page!
At the National Level
Attorney-General Michaelia Cash is facing an uphill battle to develop long promised religious freedom legislation, as members of her own party warn they will not accept proposed elements of the bill. (Out in Perth)
The Sydney-based co-founders of the global Pentecostal Christian church Hillsong preached in person at a service in Mexico on Monday and have been based in the United States for several months, despite the Australian border being closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (SMH)
A demographer at the Australian National University says it is common for people to respond to the census question on religion according to the religion of their family upbringing rather than their current beliefs or practices. (SMH)
Around the Country
VIC: The first of Kevin O’Donnell’s victims to report the paedophile priest to police has received a landmark settlement that assists other victims who are seeking compensation from the Catholic Church. (The Age)
QLD: A Right to Information application by the Noosa Temple of Satan has revealed lobbying directed at Education Minister Grace Grace by multiple religious groups, including "multi-faith groups", pushing against Satanist inclusion in state school religious instruction. (Noosa Temple of Satan)
NSW: Churches, mosques and community centres will be used as pop-up vaccination clinics in Sydney’s COVID-19 hotspots, as the worsening crisis triggers the suspension of all non-urgent surgery in hospitals across the city. (SMH)
Commentary and Analysis
Brian Morris (of Plain Reason and the NSL) speaks on ABC Central Victoria on why census question 23, on Religious Affiliation, is biased and greatly inflates the level of religious belief reported in Australia. (Plain Reason)
Martyn Iles of the Australian Christian Lobby spoke out against Satanists being allowed to participate in religious education at schools, saying that "not all religions are equal". (Noosa Temple of Satan)
In this episode of 3CR's InYaFace, Reverend Josephine Inkpin talks about One Nation's bills in NSW and the Australian Government's Religious Discrimination Bill, while Monash University Associate Law Lecturer and Victorian Pride Lobby board member Liam Elphick discusses the Lobby's campaigns, anti-discrimination law in Victoria and the federal Religious Discrimination Bill. (3CR Radio)
A gay conversion survivor details his experiences and says that there is dishonesty in labelling such practices as "therapies". Conversion practices are now outlawed in three Australian jurisdictions. (Star Observer)
Events and Advisories
Sign up to the Census21 - Not Religious? Mark 'No Religion' campaign (in which the NSL is involved) to learn more about the census's role in inflating the religiosity figure in Australia.
The Noosa Temple of Satan is currently running a federal parliamentary petition to remove Christian prayers from parliament. The practice of reciting an exclusively Christian prayer discriminates against non-Christians. Related article
Dying With Dignity NSW has a tool that makes it easy for people to contact their federal MPs and senators to request help in repealing the "Andrews Bill", the 1997 legislation which denies the Territories the right to pass legislation on Voluntary Assisted Dying.