A satirical cartoon depicting Pope Benedict XVI was shown in Italy’s public television RAI2. In the cartoon, the Pope says about Silvio Berlusconi since he “likes minors, he can always become a priest”. This caused quite an uproar as it was considered as defamatory.
Christian Copts in Europe, particularly in France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Italy, celebrated Christmas on January 6th under special police protection.
On Saturday January 1st between 12 a.m. and 3 p.m. the church of Montfermeil was severely damaged and partially burned. According to sources, a group of individuals forced and broke the door to the place of worship with the help of a car. They then set fire to a bunch of paper that was inside the church. Thus, three additional rooms, including the room used for worship of children, were damaged and must now be rebuilt.
The parish church Sainte Claire of Aiguefonde (Tarn) was victim of series of vandalism attacks. Given the amount of the damage, the church will have to be completely restored in order to prevent the window and vault from collapsing.
The Council of the European Union proposed a visa liberalisation action plan for Moldova without much room for negotiations about the conditions: in a unilateral document, it was required to accept policies which would potentially infringe on the freedom of conscience or expression as well as that of religious institutions and organisations.
Faithful of the parish St John in Avignon are being annoyed, often during the mass service, by insults and agressions, thefts, attempts of arson, and even a car bomb left by Muslim youth. The little community of Christians in a city which hosts an arabic-moslem majority begins to feel afraid of praying together. The parish priest understands that there is a "startling code of silence both for media and politics about the issue".
An increasing wave of violence is experienced by students, faculty and staff who are used to attend mass at the University of Barcelona (UB). The media reported extensively a graffiti found in the university restrooms: "Christians are like rats. Shoot accurately". The students affirmed that messages were left also in their writing desks.
Dr Boyle runs a fertility treatment service along Catholic guidelines at Galway clinic, which is a Catholic hospital. He was summoned before the Fitness to Practice Committee of the Medical Council in 2010 because he would not accept a cohabiting couple for treatment because of his belief on traditional marriage.
The City Hall of Barcelona approved a monument to honor the gay, transsexual and lesbian lifestyle in front of Sagrada Familia, the Barcelona Basilica. The proximity of location as well as the political message in relation to the dedication of the Basilica is troubling to Christians.
Cayo Lara, the General Coordinator of the IU (United Left wing) told media that machismo and gender violence are strongly related to religious education. Lara also referred to the Catholic wedding vows in which partners should be united "until death", as proving "without any need of further discussion" that the Church is in favor of the discrimination of women and treats women as "the property of men."