ACL compiles a daily media monitoring service of stories of interest to the Christian constituency relating to children, family, drugs and alcohol, marriage, human rights, religious freedom etc. Visit the ACL’s website each day to see what’s of interest in the news. Please note that selection of the articles does not represent ACL endorsement of the content.


Children & Family

Is fatherhood fading out?

Alexandra Kuykendall - Christianity Today

A Christian response to the boom in absent dads. As a girl, Father's Day underscored the other 364 days of the year, bringing a blaring reminder there was no father around to celebrate. The absence of that single, critical male relationship didn't just make me feel lonely and left out, it impacted my understanding of the world and my place in it.

Elder abuse a growing form of family violence in Qld homes

Ava Benny-Morrison - Sunshine Coast Daily

Close to 66% of elderly victims experience financial abuse, even from their own kids. It's sadly not uncommon to hear of child abuse or domestic abuse. Many people wouldn't blink an eye lid at the mention of alcohol or drug abuse. But despite 30,000 Queenslanders over 65 likely to experience elder abuse each year, the increasing and disturbing trend is largely under recognised.


Booze ad complaints pour in

Cathy O'Leary - The West Australian

A watchdog set up by WA health groups to monitor alcohol advertisements has received 200 complaints in its first year - more than double the number made to the industry's own voluntary regulator. The first annual report of the Alcohol Advertising Review Board, set up in March last year, claims self-regulation is failing, leading to dozens of irresponsible promotions linking alcohol to football, fast cars, scantily-clad women and university life.


Great Barrier Reef on the brink as politicians bicker

Oliver Milman - The Guardian

The federal government insists it is striving to avoid the Great Barrier Reef being listed "in danger" ahead of a crunch UN meeting, after rejecting a Senate recommendation to block new port developments near the World Heritage ecosystem. The world heritage committee begins an 11-day conference in Cambodia this week, where the UNESCO body will review the status of various prized ecological areas.


US: Mother and caregiver kill autistic teen to “end his suffering”

Wesley J. Smith - Life News

An autistic teenager was murdered by his mother to “end his suffering. Cook County prosecutors said a west suburban woman and family caregiver planned for at least a week to kill the mother’s 14-year-old son, because they believed he wasn’t getting sufficient care for his autism.

Please, doctor, put him out of our misery

Michael Cook - Mercator Net

In a stunning development, Dutch doctors say that the anguish of parents is another reason to euthanase disabled babies.


Packer project will cost state $14m in taxes, says Echo boss

Sean Nicholls - Sydney Morning Herald

James Packer's proposed hotel and casino at Barangaroo would ultimately see NSW stripped of $14 million in gambling taxes each year, an analysis disputing key claims about the benefits of the project says. The figure is highlighted by John O'Neill, the chairman of Echo Entertainment, owner of the Star casino, in a letter to the government panel considering the proposal.

Human Rights

“Enough, Enough, Enough…”: Powerful Video on the Plight of Christians in Syria

Greg Kandra - Patheos

The promising future that the so-called Arab Spring foretold has become rather a nightmare in Syria: an escalating conflict that has forced thousands of Syrians to leave their country. Christian families in particular face a hardship reality in the refugees camps in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan. CRTN and Aid to the Church in Need present in this short film the testimony of men and women longing to go back to their homeland in peace and harmony.


Leading Christian opponents of same-sex marriage knighted

Archbishop Cranmer Blog

Both awards are undoubtedly merited for defending the Faith if not distinguished dedication to public service. But His Grace will forgive those cynics who might infer that the Prime Minister is engaged in a little Church-placating.

Overseas Aid

Want to change the world? Sponsor a child

Bruce Wydick - Christianity Today

What can an ordinary person like me do to help the poor?" When people find out at parties and social gatherings that I am a development economist (and yes, we economists do attend such events), often they ask me this question. For a long time my response was the same: "Perhaps sponsor a child?"


Male support for PM crashes

Mark Kenny - SMH

Julia Gillard's controversial attempt to rescue Labor by claiming Tony Abbott would marginalise women and change abortion rights has backfired, with support among male voters collapsing. In a finding certain to ratchet up pressure on the Prime Minister's besieged leadership, the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll has found Labor's standing has continued to slide, led entirely by a 7 per cent exodus of men, while failing to lift substantially among female voters.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Central Java: fatwa against Catholic schools, "forbidden" to Muslims

Mathias Hariyadi - Asia News

In a "controversial" statement, the local Ulema Council in Tegal said that such schools are haram, "morally unsound." Politics and local authorities have fuelled the controversy for electoral advantage. However, the families of Muslim students have defended the schools, claiming the right to free choice in matters of education.

Raids and fines restart in Belarus; Eviction again suspended for now

Jeremy Reynalds - ASSIST News Service

Raids and fines against Baptists in Belarus who meet for worship without state permission have restarted. According to a story by Olga Glace for Forum 18 News Service, after separate raids on Sunday worship services at both congregations of the Council of Churches Baptists in the south-eastern town of Gomel, three local leaders have been fined.


The Islamic future of Britain

Vincent Cooper - The Commentator

Britain is in denial. There is no real public debate on a historic event that is transforming the country. Mention of it occasionally surfaces in the media, but the mainstream political class never openly discuss it. What is that historic event? By the year 2050, in a mere 37 years, Britain will be a majority Muslim nation. This projection is based on reasonably good data. Between 2004 and 2008, the Muslim population of the UK grew at an annual rate of 6.7 percent, making Muslims 4 percent of the population in 2008. Extrapolating from those figures would mean that the Muslim population in 2020 would be 8 percent, 15 percent in 2030, 28 percent in 2040 and finally, in 2050, the Muslim population of the UK would exceed 50 percent of the total population.

Why atheism is powerless against the new barbarians

Jonathan Sacks - ABC Religion and Ethics

Future intellectual historians will look back with wonder at the strange phenomenon of seemingly intelligent secularists in the twenty-first century believing that if they could show that the first chapters of Genesis are not literally true, that the universe is more than 6,000 years old and there might be other explanations for rainbows than as a sign of God's covenant after the flood, the whole of humanity's religious beliefs would come tumbling down like a house of cards and we would be left with a serene world of rational non-believers getting on famously with one another.

Gay-to-straight conversion therapy ban OK'd by New Jersey Assembly panel

Susan K. Livio - The Star-Ledger

Over the objections of a conservative family group's threat to sue, the Assembly Women and Children's Committee today approved a bill that would prohibit licensed therapists from providing gay-to-straight conversion therapy to children. Testimony from dueling mental health professionals and activists dominated the 2-1/2 hour hearing at the Statehouse, with proponents arguing the treatment has been discredited as ineffective and harmful to kids, and opponents insisting the bill tramples parental rights. Before the hearing ended, John Tomicki of the League of American Families, called the bill unconstitutional, vowing "if we have to, we will bring a legal challenge."

Rick Perry signs 'Merry Christmas' bill into law

Will Weissert - Associated Press

Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday signed a law protecting Christmas and other holiday celebrations in Texas public schools from legal challenges — but also stressed that freedom of religion is not the same thing as freedom from religion. It was a serious tone for an otherwise fun bill-signing and should bolster the governor's Christian conservative credentials before he travels to Washington for the Faith & Freedom Coalition's "Road to Majority" conference.

Retiring Archbishop of Sydney Peter Jensen farewelled at ceremony


The retiring Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, Peter Jensen, has been farewelled at a ceremony at St Andrew's Cathedral. NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell and Governor Marie Bashir were among a crowd of well-wishers, family and friends who gathered in the cathedral to honour Dr Jensen.