Why America’s ‘nones’ don’t identify with a religion


Six-in-ten religiously unaffiliated Americans – adults who describe their religious identity as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” – say the questioning of religious teachings is a very important reason for their lack of affiliation.

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Brahma Kumaris: Sister Shivani to tour Australia

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World-renowned empowerment speaker Sister Shivani is coming to Australia for a national speaking tour. The tour is being promoted by Brahma Kumaris Australia and will take in all capital cities plus the Gold Coast. Sister Shivani has been a practitioner and teacher of Raja Yoga Meditation with The Brahma Kumaris since 1996.

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Malala Yousafzai is coming to Australia to share her remarkable story

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Nobel Peace Prize recipient Malala Yousafzai will be making her first trip to Australia later this year.

She’ll be speaking at events in Melbourne and Sydney in December, organised by the The Growth Faculty, headed up by Karen Beattie.

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Pope Francis changes Church Teaching to say death penalty ‘inadmissible’

Evangelium Vitae

Pope Francis has given a new stance on death penalty, which now reads that, “the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person”.

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#YouCanTalk

#YouCanTalk is a joint national suicide prevention campaign aimed at giving people the confidence to respond to friends and family when they need help and guide them to the right support services.

The campaign is a collaborative effort by beyondblue, Black Dog Institute, Everymind, headspace, Lifeline, ReachOut and R U OK?, which aims to empower and increase confidence when it comes to talking about suicide.

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UNICEF: Faith for Social and Behavior Change Initiative

(Bangkok, 10-12 July 2018) As part of the ongoing Religions for Peace (RfP)-UNICEF Global Partnership, UNICEF and RfP launched a new initiative entitled “Faith for Social and Behavior Change Initiative” at a global workshop in Bangkok from 10-12 July 2018, in partnership with Joint Learning Initiative (JLI) and Rissho Kosei-kai (RKK). The workshop brought together UNICEF country offices and faith-based organizations from more than 30 strategically selected countries.

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International: Passing of Cardinal Tauran

French Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, died on the evening of July 5, 2018 in the United States, at the age of 75. His death was announced by Vatican media the following day. The French cardinal was described as a “craftsman of the interreligious dialogue.” His particular openness to the Muslims enabled much progress worldwide in Christian-Muslim relations. A great friend of interfaith relations has passed over. He was recently promoted to Camerlengo, which would have placed him in charge of the Church during a period of Papal vacancy.

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International: A Faith-sensitive Response to Humanitarian Action

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On 29 June, the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW) published guidance aimed at helping humanitarian agencies attune their work to the faith and background of people affected by conflict, disaster and displacement.

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UN: Strengthening Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue through Knowledge Sharing: Opportunities and Challenges

The United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the KAICIID International Dialogue Centre are co-organizing an event entitled “Strengthening Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue through Knowledge Sharing: Opportunities and Challenges”, to be held on 10 July 2018, 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM, at the United Nations Headquarters, ECOSOC Chamber

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Ecumenism: World Council of Churches–Roman Catholic relations




To mark the visit of Pope Francis to the World Council of Churches (WCC) on 21 June, a special online “Virtual Issue” of the WCC’s quarterly journal, The Ecumenical Review, is offering a set of articles about relationships between the WCC and the Roman Catholic Church.

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Pope, World Council of Churches leaders share platform at ecumenical meeting

Pope Francis joined the general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC) and the moderator of its Central Committee at an ecumenical meeting during his landmark 21 June visit to the WCC to celebrate its 70th anniversary at an ecumenical meeting in Geneva.

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21 June: International Day of Yoga

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India. The word ‘yoga’ derives from Sanskrit and means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness.

Today it is practiced in various forms around the world and continues to grow in popularity.

Recognizing its universal appeal, on 11 December 2014, the United Nations proclaimed 21 June as the International Day of Yoga

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Shalom Shabbat: the Divine Presence in the World

Recently, I spent Shabbat at Kibbutz Tzuba which is nestled in the Judean Hills. Tzuba is also the home of URJ Heller High, where Reform Jewish students live and study during a semester in Israel. Tzuba is a remarkably beautiful place that exudes the spirit of the classic kibbutz experience.

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Religions for Peace Leaders Gather in Greece for International Ecological Symposium

From 5-8 June, theologians, scientists, political and business leaders, as well as activists and journalists from around the world are convening in Greece for an international ecological symposium sponsored by the Ecumenical Patriarchate entitled “TOWARD A GREENER ATTICA: Preserving the Planet and Protecting its People.”

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