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

Warning to Oz: Smacking ban more harm than good

NZ Family First

A family group in New Zealand is warning Australian parents to reject any proposed ban on smacking, saying that from experience, it will do more harm than good, will have no effect on child abuse rates, but will criminalise good parents raising great kids. “The rates of child abuse deaths in New Zealand have stayed at the same rate as they were before the anti-smacking law was passed. The ban has targeted good parents, rather than the rotten parents who are abusing their children, and has wasted valuable time and resources of the police and social agencies,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “Any claims that a ban on smacking will lower child abuse rates are simply ‘hot air’.”


Mother of all rows: online group slams door on haters

Julie Power - SMH

Vicious cyber bullying by mothers towards other mothers has prompted the managers of one of the largest Facebook communities for parents to tell the mama trolls to shut up or get off.


Man sues casino in Columbus, Ohio after $38,000 in gambling winnings stolen


A man who was robbed at home of more than $US35,000 ($38,000) in gambling winnings sued the casino where he won the money, arguing a cashier should have issued him a check instead of cash. Police said 29-year-old David Hayes was robbed at gunpoint of the stack of $100 bills when two armed men woke him at home hours after he left the Hollywood Casino Columbus in Ohio with his winnings on October 21.


UK: Party drugs linked to alarming rise in HIV amongst gay men

Charlie Cooper - The Independent

HIV infections among gay men in London are soaring, with sexual health workers saying that a “chaotic and harmful” link between high-risk drug use and gay sex in the capital is fuelling the increase. Latest figures from Public Health England show that the rate of infection in the capital leaped by more than 20 per cent in 2012. Charities have warned that the virus is once again one of the most serious public health crises in the UK today.

Thailand’s MSM face alarming HIV rates


Health officials are struggling to stem alarming rates of HIV among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Thailand. “This is a real public health emergency,” said Timothy Holtz, director of an HIV and sexually transmitted disease (STD) research programme at the Silom Community Clinic, located near Bangkok’s gay and bisexual entertainment district. According to a new report released on 28 June by Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health and the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the HIV prevalence among MSM has risen sharply, from 17 percent in 2003 to 29 percent in 2011.


NSW a step closer to gay marriage


NSW is one step closer to allowing same-sex marriage after a parliamentary committee found it can be legislated at a state level. The findings have been welcomed by a cross-party working group, which described it as "a momentous step forward" for marriage equality.

Nationwide push for same-sex marriage

Herald Sun

A nationwide push to allow same-sex marriage is under way after a NSW parliamentary committee found it can be legislated at a state level. NSW looks set to be the first Australian state to make the move, with both Premier Barry O'Farrell and Opposition Leader John Robertson having previously voiced support for same-sex marriage.

UK: Exporting gay marriage - the Gospel of St Dave

Alexander Boot - Archbishop Cranmer Blog

Many have risen in anger upon hearing how Dave wishes to improve our trade balance. Rather than exporting manufactured products, he decrees that we must be exporting the same-sex marriage Bill instead. “Many countries are going to want to copy this,” spoke Dave to a select LGBT group. “I talk about how we’ve got to export more, so I’m going to export the Bill team. I think they can take it around the world.”

Prostitution & Slavery

Filipino woman treated as a slave in Canberra after accepting housekeeping job


She came to Australia with the promise of a job, but in reality she ended up being the victim of a sinister trade. Gloria (not her real name) came to Australia in 2011 from the Philippines, after answering a job advertisement for a live-in housekeeper for a foreign diplomat.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Nigeria: Christian girls at risk of abduction

Christian Today

Christian girls in northern Nigeria are increasingly at risk of abduction by Muslims who are then forcing them to renounce their faith. Professor Daniel Babayi, of the Northern Christian Association of Nigeria, told Barnabas Fund that Christian girls below the age of 18 were being targeted.

Syrian Christian describes religious cleansing of city by Islamic extremists


In a recent visit as part of a humanitarian aid mission to Syria, Dr. John Eibner, CEO of Christian Solidarity International (CSI), met with a Syrian Christian man from the city of Qusayr who described the religious cleansing of his home by Islamic extremists. According to CSI, before the civil war the city of Qusayr, located in eastern portion of Syria near the Lebanese border, had around 40,000 people, including 7,000 Christians.

Sexualisation of Society

Overexposure is making teens pawns to porn

Melinda Tankard Reist - Brisbane Times

A 15-year-old boy confided in me after I addressed his class at a Sydney school last year. He cried as he told me he had been using porn since the age of nine. He didn't have a social life, had few friends, had never had a girlfriend. His life revolved around online porn. He wanted to stop, he said, but didn't know how.

Teenage girls posting suggestive photos on Ingastram a concern for Wahroonga mother Alex Merton-McCann

News Local

A worrying trend of teenage girls posting pictures of themselves in online beauty contests on Instagram has prompted a Wahroonga mother to take action. With the click of their smartphone, girls are putting their sometimes provocative poses online to be judged by strangers.


The rise of the Christian Left in America

Jonathan Merritt - The Atlantic

The religious right has been in decline for years. Can progressives build a new "moral majority"?

Australia's Irene 'Mama' Gleeson, 68, farewelled by thousands in Uganda

Ilya Gridneff - SMH

You do not find many Sydney grandmothers in an African war zone but for Irene Gleeson, who dedicated more than 20 years to giving hope to thousands of Ugandan children fleeing the Lord's Resistance Army, she did not want to be anywhere else – it was home.

Tattoo regret becomes the latest trend

Lucy Kippist - News Ltd

Tattoos might be all the rage but tattoo regret is just as common. A drunken night out in Sydney's Kings Cross left Rachel Vance with a tattoo on her arm - two tiny stars and a spade. The experience cost her $100 and she regretted it instantly. Louise Smith got five tattoos at different stages throughout her twenties. One was a butterfly, another commemorated a friend's death and the rest just seemed like a good idea at the time. Until now.

Pope scolds bishops: Go outside your churches

John Johnson - Newser

Pope Francis delivered a simple simple message to Latin American bishops in Brazil today—if you're going to help the needy and keep people from straying from the church, you've got to get outside and actually meet them.