Press Roundup Tuesday 8 December 2009

By Press Office
December 8, 2009

A selection of stories from today's press and other media that relate to Ekklesia's work, produced daily by James Vincent and covering papers such as The Times, Daily Telegraph, Independent and Guardian.

Religion & Society

Friend of Dr Rowan Williams feels 'betrayed' by his stance on gays
A close friend of the Archbishop of Canterbury who was tutored by him at theological college said he felt betrayed by Dr Rowan Williams’ new-found opposition to gays and lesbians in the ordained ministry of the Anglican Communion.

Irish bishop is first to quit over child sex abuse scandal
An Irish bishop flew to Rome yesterday to hand in his resignation after days of angry and intense pressure over his handling of cases of child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church.

Pope to break with mass tradition
The Pope will break with tradition this year and celebrate Christmas Eve Mass in St Peter's Basilica at 10pm instead of midnight, the Vatican announced.

Comment: Election of lesbian bishop divides Anglican community
Mary Glasspool's election raises the question of what the archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, will do next.

Comment: A lesbian bishop need not mean Anglican handbags at dawn
Canon Mary Glasspool, who lives openly as a lesbian, has just been elected as an assistant bishop in Los Angeles. This is good news for the Church, says George Pitcher.

Comment: A bishop Anglicans can live with
In electing a lesbian bishop for Los Angeles, the Episcopalian church has acted in the best traditions of Anglicanism.

Comment: Should clergy make their voices heard in Wootton Bassett and Afghanistan?
In my latest column for the Church of England Newspaper, reprinted below, I pointed out that vicars and bishops have not spoken out during any of the dozens of occasions on which crowds have gathered in the Wiltshire town of Wootton Bassett to honour fallen soldiers. Should representatives of the state religion discuss the war in Afghanistan, or do you think it would damage morale if they were to make critical comments?

Comment: A declaration of hypocrisy
The Manhattan Declaration's piously intoned 'right to life' is a right that was ignored in Iraq, and for decades in Latin America.

Ecology & Environment

Gordon Brown: EU cuts must go deeper to get Copenhagen climate deal
Gordon Brown is pushing European leaders to commit to deeper cuts in carbon emissions in an attempt to seal a global deal, he revealed as representatives of 192 countries began negotiations at the climate change summit in Copenhagen.

Climate chief David Kennedy advocates 'stronger levers' to change our habits
David Kennedy’s pedigree suggests that he is a firm believer in government being forceful in promoting laws to beat climate change.

US set to regulate greenhouse gases
The US edged towards regulating greenhouse gas emissions with a government agency confirming that global warming threatened public health and welfare and was the direct result of human activity.

Heathrow’s third runway passes the carbon test
Climate change advisers have decided that an extensive building programme at Heathrow — including the construction of a third runway — can proceed without jeopardising the Government’s carbon emissions targets.

Comment: Roll up, roll up for the great Copenhagen emissions-fest
Do world leaders truly believe what they say about the imminence of planetary disaster?

Comment: Africa can and must be part of the solution to climate change
It’s now 25 years since the Ethiopian famines of the 1980s and the British public’s unprecedented outpouring of generosity to their fellow human beings on another continent. The question I’m always asked, of course, is: was it all worth it, what’s changed in Ethiopia and in Africa as a whole?

Comment: The climate denial industry is out to dupe the public. And it's working
Think environmentalists are stooges? You're the unwitting recruit of a hugely powerful oil lobby – I've got the proof.

Community & Family

Harriet Harman: not Government’s role to support marriage
Harriet Harman, Labour’s deputy leader, has put marriage at the heart of the election battlefield by saying that it is not the role of the Government to protect the institution.

Marriage law forces bride to leave UK
A couple lost a High Court battle against Government immigration rules on forced marriages – even though they are genuinely married.

Globalisation & Development

UN warns of rising tensions as refugees flood into cities
Mass movement to urban centres is huge problem for developing countries, says UN.

North Korea defends human rights record
North Korean officials appeared before a UN human rights organisation yesterday amid accusations of widespread abuses such as forced labour, public executions and torture.

Peace & War

Ministers were braced for death of 100th soldier in Afghanistan this year
The death of the 100th British soldier in Afghanistan this year is an event for which ministers and defence chiefs have been bracing themselves, bringing as it does the total of troops killed in Helmand province to very nearly double the 51 killed during all of last year.

Comment: Building peace without Obama's interference
A promising, independent Palestine is quietly being developed, with Israeli assistance.

People & Power

Iranian police shoot at unarmed protesters during Tehran demonstrations
Iranian police fired tear gas and live bullets as they fought back thousands of unarmed protesters on the streets of Tehran.

Comment: There’s a hint of hypocrisy about the royal privacy plea
The Queen's decision to get tough with the paparazzi who loiter on the Sandringham Estate is understandable. But only to a point, says Andrew Pierce.

Economy & Politics

City in uproar at plan for bonus 'supertax'
Alistair Darling will impose a one-off "supertax" on big bonuses paid to individual bankers but has ruled out a windfall tax on banks' profits.

Life & Death

American state changes the way it executes prisoners... so that they die more slowly
Condemned killer Kenneth Biros could become the first person in America executed with a single dose of an intravenous anaesthetic if his execution proceeds tomorrow.

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