The Backhouse Lectures are public lectures on contemporary issues delivered annually at the national gathering of Quakers in Australia. They were initiated by Australia Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) on its establishment in 1964. Friends from both Australia and overseas have presented lectures. The 2020 Backhouse Lecture, Seeking Union with Spirit: Experiences of Spiritual Journeys, will be presented by Fiona Gardner on Monday 6 July at 7.15pm via Zoom.
On Tuesday, 29 November 2016 the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, asked the House of Representatives Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade to inquire into and report on The status of the human right to freedom of religion or belief. That Committee has a Human Rights Sub-Committee which conducted the inquiry.
An interim report of the committee was issued in November, 2017. On Wednesday, 3 April 2019, the Sub-Committee tabled its second interim report for the Inquiry into the status of the human right to freedom of religion or belief. In this article, we select excerpts of the domestic experience of freedom of religion or belief as expressed by various religious communities in the report.
Melbourne Quakers are running Spirit in Spring – series of Saturday afternoon Discussion Groups. These events are offered at the renovated Victorian Friends Centre, 484 William Street, Melbourne.