Lyle Shelton National Press Club Address

The Australian Christian Lobby has published an abridged version of Lyle Shelton’s address to the National Press Club in September 2017.

You can also watch the full address at the link. (Image: ABC TV.)

Life as God’s gift

“An ongoing push in Australian parliaments for euthanasia or ‘assisted dying’ has been unanimously rejected by Sydney’s Synod on its first sitting day.

As the NSW Parliament prepares to consider a new Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill, Synod also called on state MPs to reject the legislation and prioritise the improvement of palliative care, encouraging Anglicans across the Diocese to contact their local member as well as engaging in any public debate on the issue. …”

– Judy Adamson reports at SydneyAnglicans.net. (Photo: Anglican Media Sydney.)

Related: Earlier posts on euthanasia.

Sydney Catholic Archbishop says religious believers could lose their jobs

“Religious believers would be vulnerable to discrimination suits and some could lose their jobs, promotions, businesses and political careers if same-sex marriage is legalised, the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney says. …”

– Story from The Australian (subscription).

See also: Same-sex marriage: Governments should ‘keep out of the bedroom’ Catholic Archbishop says – ABC News.

Responding to the Transgender Revolution

“… In light of such a divide, and the social, medical, political, and legislative changes being wrought by the widespread acceptance of transgender claims, Christians have an urgent need to search the Scriptures carefully and prayerfully to see how God would have us think about and respond to such revolutionary developments.

The main purpose of this essay is to begin such a search and to outline such a response. However, before we embark on this task, it will help us, firstly, to clarify a number of key terms that are a basic part of the current discussion and, secondly, to probe a little more deeply into contemporary gender theory and where it is taking us as a culture. …”

– Here’s a very helpful article by Rob Smith, republished at The Gospel Coalition Australia.

‘Anglican Bishop of North West Australia threatens to ditch registering marriages if Yes prevails in SSM survey’

“The conservative Anglican bishop of north-west WA is threatening to abandon registering marriages if the Yes vote prevails in the same-sex marriage survey and religious protections are weak.

Criticising the Federal Government’s handling of the postal survey, Bishop of North West Australia Gary Nelson said details of the legislation should have been released before the vote began. …”

– Story from The West Australian.

Archbishop of Sydney’s Letter to churches

The Diocese of Sydney has published the text of the letter (dated Wednesday October 11, 2017) from Archbishop Glenn Davies to Sydney Anglican Churches. It was also read at Synod.

We reproduce it here for your convenience. It is also available from SydneyAnglicans.net, and as a PDF download.   Read more

Sydney diocese donates $1m to no campaign

“The Sydney Anglican diocese has made a $1m donation to the no campaign in Australia’s postal survey on same-sex marriage.

Archbishop Glenn Davies announced the donation on Monday in his address to the 51st synod of the diocese of Sydney, telling the church that ‘removing gender from the marriage construct’ would have ‘irreparable consequences’ for society.

‘Brothers and sisters, the stakes are high and the cost is high,’ Davies said. …”

– Story from The Guardian.

(Archbishop Davies’ Presidential Address can be read via this link – PDF file.)

‘Freedom of speech challenged’ as No campaign denied bookings

“The Catholic Archbishop of Hobart, Julian Porteous, has warned of a ‘direct challenge to freedom of speech’ after the No campaign was denied bookings by both the University of Tasmania and Wrest Point Casino for an event on Friday evening.

Archbishop Porteous had been due to speak at the function along with Australian Conservatives Senator Cory Bernardi; Victorian Liberal MP, Kevin Andrews; Australian Christian Lobby managing director, Lyle Shelton, as well as ‘mummy blogger’ Marijke Rancie.

The Archbishop issued a statement this evening saying: ‘Despite signing contractual agreements and paying hire fees in full, Wrest Point Casino has advised the No Campaign that the venue is now unavailable.’…”

– Story from The Australian. (Subscription) See also The Herald Sun.

Labor MP Chris Hayes seeks safeguards for religious freedoms

“Labor MP Chris Hayes has spoken out to defend those who fear same-sex marriage could curb ­religious freedoms, arguing that the issue of protection must be ­addressed to ensure ‘laws do not violate one’s genuinely held ­beliefs and conscience’.

Mr Hayes, the chief opposition whip, said he ‘appreciated’ ­arguments that enacting same-sex marriage could ‘impact on ­religious freedoms, teaching of doctrine, and the functioning of faith-based organisations such as schools, aged-care and welfare agencies.’…”

– Story from The Australian (subscription).

Mr Hayes’ statement may be read here (PDF).

“ … I appreciate the fears of religious institutions that enacting same sex marriage could impact on religious freedoms, teaching of doctrine, and the functioning of faith based organisations such as schools, aged care and welfare agencies. These are legitimate concerns and matters I believe have to be addressed in order to ensure laws do not act to violate one’s genuinely held beliefs and conscience.

However, it is not just the issue of same sex marriage that may impinge on religious freedom. Therefore, I believe steps should be taken to protect religious liberty. …”

Photo: Chris Hayes’s website.

‘I should have thought that one through’

“Asked … if gay sex was sinful, [Archbishop of Canterbury Justin] Welby said: ‘You know very well that is a question I can’t give a straight answer to. Sorry, badly phrased there. I should have thought that one through.’…”

– Story from The Guardian.

Related: a warning from Albert Mohler:

“This is a moment of decision, and every evangelical believer, congregation, denomination, and institution will have to answer. There will be no place to hide.

The forces driving this revolution in morality will not allow evasion or equivocation. Every pastor, every church, and every Christian organization will soon be forced to declare an allegiance to the Scriptures and to the Bible’s teachings on marriage and sexual morality, or to affirm loyalty to the sexual revolution.

That revolution did not start with same-sex marriage, and it will not end there. But marriage is the most urgent issue of the day, and the moment of decision has arrived.”

– from Which Way, Evangelicals? There is Nowhere to Hide, June 10, 2015.

“The Conversation” and impacts of same sex marriage

“Two pieces in the Australian online forum ‘The Conversation’ today make misleading statements about the possible impacts of the recognition of same-sex marriage in Australia, and warrant some response.

One article suggests that there is no doubt that churches will still be able to decline to solemnise same-sex marriages. The other is a ‘fact check’ on assertions about the mandatory nature of ‘safe schools‘ programs following such a change. In my view both pieces are likely to mislead. …”

– At Law and Religion Australia, Associate Professor Neil Foster responds to two articles published in The Conversation today. (The first article was also republished by the ABC.)

‘No need to speculate’

Freedom for Faith, have published this video featuring Professor Iain Benson, an expert in religious freedom.

He speaks about the Canadian experience.

Other videos are being posted on the Freedom for Faith website.

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