The Journey team selects stories that got us talking this week. Check back in every Friday to see the latest wrap up of religious news that made us think and reflect.
No more shouting to the Lord
Relevant reports on Hillsong senior pastor Brian Houston’s decision not to include the popular Shout to the Lord and worship juggernaut Oceans (Where Feet May Fail) in Hillsong Church’s worship lineup. His reasoning: “When it comes to influence, predictability is our enemy.” What do you think of their decision to drop popular songs? Let us know in the comments below.
Northern Territory loses its Lifeline
The ABC looks at the closure of the Top End’s Lifeline service after ten years, who’s to blame and what does it mean for the territory’s residents. Calls to Lifeline will still be answered by the national phone lines, but face-to-face counselling will come to an end.
Tebow tends to sick fan
The New York Post covers news of American sports star and noted Christian Tim Tebow’s “miraculous” off-field work in helping a sick fan recover from a seizure. Tebow allegedly said a prayer as he comforted him before the man’s episode calmed. This isn’t the first time either Tebow has helped those in need with prayer according to the Post.
Toowoomba signs up for the anti-porn crusade
The ABC reports on a campaign launch in Toowoomba to rid the city of pornography: attendees included the city’s mayor Paul Antonio, civic leaders and workers, as well as religious campaigners.
Mayor Antonio was careful to clarify that the campaign was not aimed at the city’s adult shops, brothel and strip club, but instead talking “about the people who are impacted by pornography, and its impact on relationships.”
Interested in reading more about pornography and its impact on relationships? Why not take a look at our feature article from last year which tackled hardcore porn and the damage it can cause to youth.
Same-sex marriage booklet approved by Sydney Anglicans
News from the Sydney Anglicans details the Sydney Synod’s authorisation of a booklet being distributed that deals with the consequences of same-sex marriage for families and society.
The What has God joined together? booklet aims to “engage, equip, and embolden Sydney Anglicans to be a part of the debate on same-sex marriage”, and that it would be “moderate, reasonable and non-defensive” in tone.
Aussie thoughts on religious-based vetting for migrants
The Guardian puts together a datablog exploring Australian feelings on religious-based vetting of immigrants. On the back of an Essential poll which suggested 49 per cent of people supported Pauline Hanson’s proposal for a ban on Muslim immigration, the article explores social cohesion, polling variations and personal attitudes towards Muslims.
Disagree on same-sex marriage? You’re fired!
Time magazine reports on one of America’s largest evangelical organisations on college campuses, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship USA, and their new position that staff members must agree to their positions on sexuality and gay marriage or face the sack.
The organisation holds firm that any sexual activity outside of a husband and wife is immoral. Disagree? If you work for them you might be subject to an “involuntary termination”.
Chris Pratt, Proverbs and an inspiring hospital visit
Hollywood superstar Chris Pratt took to Instagram to post a photo for his massive following of his visit to a children’s hospital in Seattle. Pratt, a noted Christian actor in Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic World, The Magnificent Seven and The Lego Movie, included a line from Proverbs 3:27 with his post.