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.




British women to get morning-after pill by bike courier

A new service starting in London will allow women to get the morning after pill delivered by bike messenger so it arrives within two hours at their home or office. For £20 ($32), women would be able to order the emergency contraception online by filling out a form on internet medical practice The forms will be assessed by doctors before pills are dispatched by courier within two hours on a working day. They could also be ordered overnight for delivery the following morning.


Religious belief – a gift of the Press Council

Catallaxy Files

The Council concluded that the newspaper was entitled to publish the article, even though it was likely to cause widespread offence, provided that it gave opportunities for prompt and extensive expression of other views. Simply astonishing. Note what the person [Margaret Court] said. "Let me be clear. I believe that a person’s sexuality is a choice. In the Bible it said that homosexuality is among sins that are works of the flesh. It is not something you are born with". As far as I can see there was no factual assertion – the author is saying what she believes to be true and then asserts what the bible says on the issue. The only ‘authoritative source’ I can imagine is a Minister/Priest/Rabbi telling us that the bible says no such thing.


Press Council factually wrong in free speech-quashing ruling against tennis great Margaret Court


The Press Council is mistaken in its ruling this week against former world number one tennis champion Margaret Court and has set a dangerous precedent against free speech, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.

Anders Behring Breivik spent a year playing World of Warcraft role-playing game online

The Telegraph

Between 2006 and 2007, the 33-year-old Norwegian mass killer spent his days and nights immersed in a world of fantasy monsters, wizards, and knights performing violent "missions". During the time, Breivik, who has admitted killing 77 people last July, lived at his mother's Oslo flat, the court heard, supporting himself from his savings. World of Warcraft – a virtual world where 10.3 million players attempt to achieve the position of "Justicar" – has been criticised for its addictiveness. Prosecutor Svein Holden described the game as "violent". Breivik broke into a broad smile when Mr Holden projected an image of "Justicar Andersnordic", Breivik's avatar in the game, onto a screen in the courtroom.

Violent video games withdrawn from Norwegian stores after Oslo attacks

The Age (3 August 2011)

Two video games used by far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik in planning his July 22 killing spree have been withdrawn from a number of stores across Norway, one co-op chain said. Coop Norge, one of the country's major grocery store chains and its main co-op, said it took the decision "out of respect" for the families of the 77 people slain in the twin attacks.

Drugs & Alcohol

Plain packaging legal fight heats up

Naomi Woodley - ABC

Several tobacco companies have spent the day fighting the Federal Government's Plain Packaging Act in the High Court, saying the law leaves them with no way to distinguish their products from competitors.

Australia's serious booze problem


A vast majority of Australians think the country has a serious booze problem and that binge drinking by young people is a blight on society. The Annual Alcohol Poll, released on Tuesday, found that 76 per cent of those surveyed thought Australia suffered from a drinking problem. Seventy-nine per cent believed the issue would either worsen or remain the same over the next five to 10 years.


Green loan scheme to be 'Abbott-proofed'

Lenore Taylor - SMH

The Gillard government has moved to ''Abbott-proof'' its Clean Energy Finance Corporation by ''appropriating'' the $10 billion five-year budget in legislation to be passed this year. The move means the corporation could continue lending to clean energy projects at the rate of $2 billion a year, making it difficult for a future Abbott government to repeal the legislation setting it up. It would also pave the way for another parliamentary showdown over climate change, alongside the carbon tax, as a future Coalition government would likely face a hostile Senate.


The cost of poverty is way more expensive than the dole

John Falzon - The Punch

It’s easy to blame people for being outside the labour market or on its low-paid fringes. It’s easy when you’re passing judgment from a comfortable vantage point, well above the fray. The members of my organisation, the St Vincent de Paul Society, however, are painfully close to the reality of poverty in a prosperous nation. Every day, we see how hard it is to survive on social security payments. The people who have been left out of the economic prosperity that has been generated in this lucky country are waging a daily battle for survival. It’s a battle that is being waged from below the poverty line.


Nationals begin blitz on Labor territory

Richard Willingham - SMH

The Nationals have launched a blitz on Labor-held seats in northern NSW, believing the electorates are ripe for assault because of electricity price rises from the carbon tax. Over the past two days Nationals MPs have targeted two ALP-seats in northern NSW - Page, held by Janelle Saffin, and Richmond, held by Justine Elliot. Both seats are in play, the party says, following double-digit swings to the Nationals at the state election.

And Bob's your dinner partner

Matt Buchanan and Scott Ellis - SMH

The NSW Labor Party is offering new memberships at the bargain basement price of $5 each. Not only that, members who recruit two new members go into a draw to win the big prize - dinner with Bob Hawke. Yes, yes, we know what you're all thinking: 1. They truly expect people to pay? Wake up and smell the empty hall, guys. And 2. What's second prize? Two dinners with Hawkey? And so on. But it turns out they're deadly serious. The ''recruiting to win'' campaign is being called the Bob Hawke Challenge.

Will evangelicals Vote for a Mormon candidate?

Tobin Grant - Christianity Today

With Rick Santorum out of the Republican contest for the presidential nomination and Mitt Romney all but the official nominee, the political question of the moment is whether evangelicals will support Romney in the general election. In the general election, most Republican evangelicals will likely vote for Romney, based on previous elections. Overall, around two-thirds of evangelical voters are expected to vote Romney in the general election. In head to head between Romney and President Obama, 72 percent of evangelicals would vote for Romney, compared to 25 percent who would vote for Obama, according to Pew. Just 21 percent of evangelicals approve of Obama, compared to 51 percent of Americans.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

India: Muslim extremists persecute Christian villagers

Catholic Culture

Christians in a predominantly Muslim village in West Bengal have been victims of intensifying persecution over the last month, according to a news report. After a 22-year-old woman gave thanks for a healing in Jesus’ name, residents of Nutangram, including her parents, beat her nearly unconscious; she has since left the village. Later, extremists entered a home where Christians were praying. Calling the Christians pagans, they beat them until they fled, at which point a crowd of 500 gathered until police arrived.


Man finds faith, then confesses

Zara Dawtrey- The Mercury

A 77-year-old man who says he has found God has confessed to torching his car and house in an insurance scam nearly two decades ago. The Supreme Court in Hobart heard Blackmans Bay man Jan Kikkert could no longer live with the guilt of two insurance frauds that netted him and his wife close to $100,000 in 1994 and 1995.

Baillieu bows to pressure on church sex-abuse probe

Josh Gordon - The Age

The Catholic Church and "religious organisations" are to be subjected to a year-long parliamentary inquiry into the handling of criminal abuse of children. Premier Ted Baillieu today said the inquiry will have powers to compel witnesses to give evidence and to elicit documentary and electronic information and will be conducted by the bipartisan Family and Community Development Committee of Parliament. It is to report to Parliament by April 30 next year.

British Library pays $14m for saint's gospel


Its chief executive, Dame Lynne Brindley, said on Monday: ''This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to secure the Gospel for the nation and we were both grateful and touched that so many people felt moved to support our campaign.''

Daniel survives

David Palmer - On line Opinion

Last Friday I wrote that I was disappearing Daniel like into the cavernous space of the lions’ den also known as the Melbourne’s Convention Centre. Well, I survived, I kept my anonymity, but truth to tell it was a close run thing when PZ Myers likened Christians to sheep and Atheists to wolves and then to thunderous applause from the 4,000 wolves present, warned that the eyes and claws of all those wolves were upon the sheep present. The organisers are to be congratulated for a very well run programme with a number of outstanding speakers, both Australians and the big names from overseas.

Philip Adams in schism with the Dawkinsonians

Michael Mullins - Eureka Street

While the second Global Atheist Convention at the weekend was a highlight for some, it disappointed others. Some would be attendees stayed away because they could see that the dominance of comedy and derision would exclude any serious or productive exploration of the issues. Others went along prepared to live with the frustration, or perhaps enjoy the event as if it was part of this month's Melbourne Comedy Festival.

Giving up tech, and never looking back

David Braue - SMH

Like many Christians, Liosa Rafferty commemorated Lent by giving up something that was dear to her for 40 days. In her case, however, that something wasn't chocolate, or coffee; it was Facebook. And, with Easter now out of the way, she's not sure she'll ever go back.