A political campaign supported by a social media campaign advocated the removal of the tax exemption granted to the Catholic Church. The supporters of the proposal claim that the Church money would help Italy to overcome its financial crisis, and would therefore make other governmental spenditure cuts unnecessary. The Catholic Church properties are exempted from tax because of the community service they provide and the social function church buildings serve. In the fall of 2011, the issue was dropped.
Volker Beck, member of the German Bundestag (parliament) and speaker on human rights issues of the Green party, has launched an initiative to engage the German Medical Association against the German Union of Catholic Physicians (BKÄ). On their website, the BKÄ provides informations about therapeutic options in case of unwanted same-sex attraction.
On August 21st a crucifixion group was defaced with black paint in Wassenberg-Myhl by strangers.
Belfast's Gay March 2011 was (again) marked by anti-Christian offensive signs. One sign read: “Jesus had two dads (and he turned out just fine)”. Another protester bore a placard that said “Jesus protect me from your followers”.
A UK Christian electrician who won a fight with his employer over his right to display a small Palm leaf cross in his van is now saying that the company has reneged on its agreement. 64-year-old Colin Atkinson was asked by his employers, Wakefield and District Housing (WDH) in West Yorkshire, to remove the cross after an anonymous complaint from a WDH tenant. The company threatened Atkinson with disciplinary action when he refused, but backed down when their threats prompted a public outcry and criticism from prominent religious leaders, including the former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey.
In the first year after the centre-left’s victory at local elections, local politicians decided to prohibit the traditional Ascencion Day barbeceue – at which „Crostine“ and „Salamelle“ (special Italian sausages) have been indispensable for decades. The reason was that Ascension Day took place during Ramadan. Not to offend the Muslim minority, the local government decided to serve only water melon instead of the traditional barbeceue.
The Swiss club of immigrants Secondos Plus demands that the Swiss Cross be removed from the flag of Switzerland because it "didn't correspond anymore to the multicultural Switzerland of today." As alternative, they suggest to go back to the national flag of 1799 which contains green, red and yellow stripes.
A demonstration against the Catholic Church and the visit of the pope during the major Catholic event of World Youth Day, resulted in the young Christian visitors be booed, spat and shouted at. Several World Youth Day participates were physically attacked, one had to be treated in hospital for being kicked in the stomach. Eight anti-pope demonstrators were jailed.
A hospital in London that recently attempted to force two Christian nurses to commit abortions has backed down after legal threats using the Equality Act to protect the nurses pro-life beliefs.
New guidelines issued by the UK pharmaceutical regulatory board tends towards stripping pharmacists of their right to conscientious objection with regard to refusing the sale of the morning-after pill, an abortive device.
Vandals started a devastating fire in the parish church of Saint-Lucie in Begijnendijk (Flemish Brabant). They entered the church through a window and put fire to the curtains and chairs. The damage is significant and the church was closed for several weeks.
On May 31st, 2011, Catholic Care of the Diocese of Leeds has applied for leave to appeal the latest decision against it in the long-running case sparked by the Charity Commission’s refusal to allow it to prevent gay couples from using its adoption service. The appeal was granted in August 2011.
The office of Johannes Bucher, the European Regional Director of Human Life International’s (HLI), was attacked after a pro-life march in Salzburg, Austria. The office suffered seven broken windows, causing thousands of Euros in damage.
The cemetery of Champniers and its surroundings were vandalized at the end of July 2011. Crosses were tossed, and statues of Marie damaged, flower pots thrown to the ground.
Shortly after his ruthless murder of at least 76 innocent men, women, and children Anders Breivik has been called a “Christian fundamentalist,” “Christian terrorist,” and “Christian extremist.” The media picked up the solitary, premature and unjust comment of a police officer right after the incident.
Unknown perpetrators urinated into a Holy Water vessel of St. Ann Catholic church, in Ascheberg. They also damaged organ pipes, several apostle statues and a censer. The damage amounts to several thousand Euros. The police has not yet convicted the vandals and does not rule out that they are a gang of teenagers.
The media group Premier Christian Radio's advertizment on the marginalization of Christians in the workplace was banned by the Radio Advertising Clearance Centre (RACC) for being “politically motivated”. Even though the ad was modified and redone several times, RACC upheld the ban.
The Church of Saint Jean Baptiste of Bessans (Savoie) was vandalized in the night from July 26th to July 27th. Swastika were painted on the door of the church and "Adolf Hitler" written on the church steps. The vandals apparently tried to break open the door but did not succeed.
The left wing radicals praised themselves for their actions by saying: „Over 50 emancipated people were present to block and disturb and they were not affraid of nervious cops. They prevented stupid prayers and managed to disrupt the pro life manifestion in a way that it had to be ended early. During almost the entire pro life manifestion, they made their feminist viewpoints clear by shouting paroles. They showed that militant resistance against anti-emanzipatory conditions and ass-holes is possible.“
The church of Saint-Jouin-Bruneval in the Seine Maritime department of Normandy has been vandalised during the night from Saturday 15th to Sunday 16th of July. An unknown number of person came through the door of the church tower, descended a ladder and took a choir bench to break down the door of the sacristy which they completely wrenched. They tumbled the candles and the candle-holders and then ripped off a wooden chest near the main altar. Finally, they broke open the offertory-box were to take its contents.
French daily „Liberation“ smashes Christianity by depicting Jesus as a loser, drug user and egocentric. The French Catholic bishops’ conference issued a statement in support of freedom of expression but saying that this requires respect of the one it actually offends. The bishops also mention that Christians always forgive.
SPUC - director blogs of new developments in the field of education: "Parents of primary-school children from across the country are furious that Nick Gibb, the schools minister, has told Parliament that schools can teach children, including in primary school, about sex in science lessons." The problem is that parents cannot withdraw their children from sience - and contents might be unacceptable for many parents.
In Freiburg, the Agency for Public Order restricted access around the entrance area of Pro Familia (an organisation which offers pregnancy conflict counseling including the option of abortion) for counsellors of the faith-based nonprofit association „Centre of Life - Helpers of God’s Precious Infants“ (Lebenszentrum - Helfer für Gottes kostbare Kinder e.V.) The aim of the associaton is to encourage and support expecting mothers in conflict to give birth to their child by offering differents kinds of support.
Unknown perpetrators ravaged in the church of St. John’s in Heidelberg on June 1st. Police confirmed that they sloshed around drinks on the altar and in the area of the organ, put meatballs in the organ pipes and dog dirt on the clavier.
The cemetery of La Moutonne of Saint-Lys in the department of Haute-Garonne has been vandalized in the night from Thursday to Friday, June 30th, 2011. Memorial plaques were lying on the ground, damaged. A bench of the cemetery had been split into pieces, urn compartments had been opened and no less than twenty graves had received stroke of large stones flung against them, thus breaking plaques, ceramics and flower pots.
Fifteen Christian graves were damaged in the cemetery of Belleville-sur-Meuse and many crosses and statues broken into pieces. Ashes of three deceased have been scattered. Several crosses, marbles and plaques were broken into pieces and scattered on the ground. Statues of Christ were wrenched and let to lay on the floor.
The churches of Rieux-Minervois and of Toucy had to be closed after several acts of vandalism and thefts.
In the parish St. Giuseppe Calasanzio (Milan) activists wanted to harass a priest for his views on homosexuality. They interrupted mass, carrying banners, shouting and josteling. The case was responded to the Turin Sociologist Massimo Introvigne, representative of OSCE for, amongst others, combatting intolerance and discrimination against Christians.
Poland's life-protecting abortion law, which is inspired by its strong Christian identity, is under attack by international and supranational bodies. This disrespect of national sovereignty targets Christian aspects and is therefore a case of intolerance against Christians in the area of morals.
Marriage commissioners in a district of Amsterdam will be forced to undergo annual evaluations to ensure they support same-sex “marriage” after revelations that two commissioners had refused to officiate at the ceremonies. Since 2007, the government in Amsterdam’s Nieuw-West district has only employed commissioners who agree to perform same-sex “marriages,” and officials apparently believed the district was free of “conscientious objectors.”
The BBC is widely regarded as displaying an anti-Christian attitude in its programming, according to the Corporation’s own research.
(ongoing) Lesley Pilkington was suspended by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (“BACP”) for giving therapy to a homosexual man (an under-cover freelance journalist) who pretended to be a Christian wishing to stop practicing homosexuality. A key witness has been threatened by homosexual activists, causing hearing to be adjourned.
Richard Scott, a MD with a 28-year spotless work record, has been given a disciplinary call for sharing his faith with a patient.
The local authorities in Munich (Kreisverwaltungsreferat, KVR) have prohibited all pro life activity in front of Germany’s biggest abortion clinic (Dr. Friedrich Stapf, 4000 abortions per year) and called the so-called side-walk counselling a serious impropriety („grobe Ungehörigkeit“) to be punished by a fine of 500 €.
Cayo Lara, General Coordinator of the United Left party has blamed the Catholic Church for 400,000 Spanish citizens currently unemployed. According to Lara the Catholic Church received public funds amounted in 10.000 millions of euros per year, money that could be used to create job positions for those without a jobs.
With the approval of the Council of Ministers of Spain, the State Department of Education, submitted a motion to the Congress to deny public funds to schools that teach their students in gender-separated classrooms. This method of education has been applied mostly by Christian school in Spain. The same was previously attempted in the regions of Asturias, Cantabria, and Andalucía.
Evangelical Premier Media conducted a survey called "Freedom of the Cross Consultations" in May 2010. 12 % of the respondants answered that they had experienced discrimination personally, another 10% that they knew someone who had. Read here some quotes in the area of government funding.
Sandra Yagüe, member of the PSOE and second in command to the City Hall of Azuqueca de Henares, one of the largest cities in the district of Guadalajara, has created a Facebook page to called "public sinners wishing excommunication". On this page she displays profane and pornographic materials using the images of Jesus and the Virgin Mary in disturbing contexts.
The 200-year-old Greek Orthodox Chapel of Saint Thekla in the village of Vokolida, Cyprus was demolished, allegedly by accident. The demolition was condemned publicly by the Turkish Cypriot authorities and two individuals were arrested for destroying the church and a promise was made to rebuild it. Nevertheless, due to several reasons, this has not yet been performed.
Unknown perpetrators knocked over gravestones and pulled out plants in a cemetery located in Velen.
Burglars broke into the church of Lukavac and stole various objects.
“Holy smoke” is the expression the Scottish media has used in reference to David Mach´s claim to set on fire the head of Jesus in the name of art. The artist plans to burn a head of Jesus made with matchsticks outside the City Art Centre of Edinburgh, which is hosting this religious-themed exhibit with taxpayers money in celebration of the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Bible. The exhibit will run from 30 July to 16 October. Mach, who described himself as a non believer, says he wants to use religious themes to "expose the hypocrisies of the contemporary world".
14-year-old UK students enrolled in GCSE (general certificate of secondary education) philosophy courses are being taught about euthanasia by viewing a video featuring Dr Philip Nitschke, a notorious assisted suicide campaigner and euthanasia fanatic. Nitschke, the Australian founder and director of the euthanasia group “Exit International”, known internationally as “Dr Death”, presents in a video a machine which delivers lethal injections.
The campaign “Calling the Pope to Account” sued Pope Benedict XVI at the International Criminal Court in The Hague for crimes against humanity. The charges are: “the preservation and leadership of a worldwide totalitarian regime of coercion, which subjugates its members with terrifying and health-endangering threats; the adherence to a fatal forbiddance of the use of condoms, even when the danger of HIV-AIDS infection exists; and the establishment and maintenance of a worldwide system of cover-up of the sexual crimes committed by Catholic priests and their preferential treatment, which aids and abets ever new crimes”. The campaign is supported by posters and a book publication.
One of the routes to the main Austrian Catholic Shrine, MariaZell, located in the Austrian mountains, leads through the forest of Mr. Josef Rothwangl. In May 2011, Mr. Rothwangl put up a sign prohibiting priests to enter his property when accompanying children or youth. He says that he was a victim of abuse by Catholic priests himself, when he was a student at a Catholic high school. It is not clear, whether such a prohibition is legally permitted or not. The social effects are in any case problematic: The measure defames and stereotypes priests by implying that all Catholic priests are child abusers.
On 13th of May 2011 in Madrid, a group of atheist demonstrated „against religion“ mocking religious symbols of Christians. While such a manifestation is everyone’s freedom of expression, it is important to pay attention to the feelings of believers as well as to offer a contribution to the public debate instead of spreading hatred and intolerance.
An attempt of arson was noticed by a neighbour at Immaculate Heart of Mary church in Elmar on May 13th. Stranger(s) tried to set fire to several items in the church, including curtains, carpets and cushions. Locals extinguished the fire with water. The damaged amounts to about 2000 €.
The Swedish Parliament voted to campaign against a European resolution, which reiterates the right to conscientious objection for health professionals who do not want to perform abortions.
The parish church of “Nuestra Señora de la Asunción” suffered great damage on Sunday May 8, as several religious images made of plaster were destroyed. Local police arrested the assailant, a 35-year-old male local resident, who had made previous threats toward the church. As stated by Pastor Marcos Fermin, this is not only a financial problem for him - but bears also great emotional pain.
The Diálogo library in Madrid suffered serious damage as an unidentified pertpetrators smashed the window in which books related to the beatification of Pope Juan Pablo II were displayed. The library is well-known for specializing in religious subjects.