‘Faith protections doomed under Yes vote’ — John Howard

“John Howard is warning that broad protections for religious freedoms are unlikely to pass the Senate if the Yes vote wins, following Labor’s decision to back a same-sex marriage bill proposed by West Australian Liberal senator Dean Smith.

The former prime minister — a key campaigner against gay marriage — argued the decision by Labor to lock in behind Senator Smith’s bill was an ‘added reason’ for Australians to vote No in the $122 million postal survey … saying a Yes outcome could force faith-based schools, charities and social-service providers to close or change the way they operate. …”

– Story from The Australian. (Subscription.) Photo: ABC.

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.)

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.

‘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.

Coalition for Marriage calls for ‘respectful and peaceful’ national conversation

This afternoon, the Coalition for Marriage has released this statement:

“As the ABS mailout of plebiscite ballot papers nears its conclusion, more and more Australians are speaking up and participating in the debate about marriage.

Freedom of speech is a central issue in this campaign. It is absolutely crucial that people are able to speak up and participate in a national conversation about marriage in a respectful and peaceful manner.

They need to be able to do so without fear of intimidation, bullying, sackings or violence.

Equally, it is incumbent on all those seeking to participate in the debate to do so in a respectful manner.

This weekend there will be a number of events and rallies across the country. Some of these are organised by the ‘yes’ and ‘no’ campaigns. Others are not.

We call on all Australians to participate in the process peacefully and respectfully and will continue to encourage this throughout the course of the campaign.”

Law Society faces fresh row over same-sex marriage

“The Law Society is facing a fresh row over its support for same-sex marriage as members agitate for an extraordinary general meeting to censure the organisation for publicly backing a change in the law.

The society, which represents the state’s 30,000 solicitors, has come under fire over a joint statement it issued on August 19 with the NSW Bar Association and the state division of the Australian Medical Association supporting a change to the Marriage Act. …”

– Story from The Sydney Morning Herald.

Related: “Barristers, solicitors and doctors unite to support marriage equality laws.” – The Law Society of NSW, August 19, 2017.

“The President of the New South Wales Bar Association Arthur Moses SC, the President of The Law Society of NSW Pauline Wright and the President of the Australian Medical Association (NSW) Professor Brad Frankum have come together to express their support for same sex marriage legislation at the federal level. …”

Fascinating Political Times

“I had the good fortune of reading Eric Metaxas’ biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer in my holidays.

In a vacuum of leadership Metaxas writes, ‘…the German people clamoured for order and leadership. But it was as though in the babble of their clamouring, they had summoned the devil himself…’

Nations can do that when good people do nothing. Without even realising, with a little slumber, a folding of the hands you can allow the summoning of a devil that has a nation reap the whirlwind. …”

– Rick Lewers, Bishop of Armidale, writes of the disarray our nation is facing. Where can stability and hope be found?

Constitutional challenge to anti-discrimination laws

“Two preachers subject to a complaint for preaching against homosexuality and same-sex marriage have launched action to halt the case on constitutional grounds, in a challenge that could invalidate state anti-discrimination laws.

A complaint against Hobart Pres­byterian pastor Campbell Mark­ham and street evangelist Da­vid Gee was accepted last month by Tasmania’s Anti-Discrimination Com­miss­ioner Sarah Bolt. But the preachers have filed a Supreme Court application seeking to strike out the complaint on the ground the state’s Anti-Discrimination Act is unconstitutional…”

– Story by Matthew Denholm in The Australian. (Subscription)

Related:

I was born in a free country – Campbell Markham.

Why I fight for free speech – Campbell Markham.

Albert Mohler on the Australian Plebiscite

In his daily commentary, The Briefing, for 17th August 2017, Albert Mohler speaks about the Australian plebiscite on same-sex marriage.

Worth hearing an outsider’s perspective.

Related: ABC offer helpline to staff distressed by same-sex marriage debate – Nine News.

Why marriage should be between a man and a woman

” ‘On the issue of marriage I think the reality is there is a cultural, religious, historical view around that which we have to respect. The party’s position is very clear that this is an institution that is between a man and a woman.’

If I told you that was a quote from Cory Bernardi, Lyle Shelton or worse, that oft condemned unreconstructed traditionalist Tony Abbott, would you consider it just more evidence of their homophobia? Many commentators would. It seems right now no one can make any statement in favour of marriage without being condemned for being a ‘hater’ or ‘bigot’.

However, the statement doesn’t come from Mr Bernardi, but from that other strong-minded senator from South Australia, Penny Wong. …”

– Read the full article by Michael Kellahan, executive director of Freedom for Faith, at The Sydney Morning Herald. (Subscription.)

See also: Churches lay out plebiscite fears for PM, The Australian. (Subscription.)

The Anglican Archbishop of ­Sydney, Glenn Davies, and leading Catholic officials have written to Malcolm Turnbull demanding that any proposed bill on same-sex marriage be released before Australians are asked to vote on the issue. …

“This timeframe is inapprop­riately short, particularly given there remain a number of un­resolved questions concerning the postal plebiscite process,” ­Archbishop Davies wrote.

John Anderson on what’s happening in Australia over the same-sex marriage plebiscite

Former Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson spoke about his very real concerns for Australia – on ABC News.

Well worth watching – on YouTube. (9’30”.)

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