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8 - 14 February

Controversial son of a preacher man visits Australia; an American diocese ups the ante on gun control; and a Melbourne Anglican shares why he loves the Anglican Church.

February 14 2019

Franklin Graham’s Australian tour

Evangelist Franklin Graham is touring Australia in February. This year marks 60 years since his father Billy Graham’s ground-breaking Australian tour which saw him speak directly to about 30 per cent of the population. But Franklin Graham is both more controversial and more political his father. He has labelled Islam a “wicked and evil religion”, and claimed that “God’s hand” was in the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States. He speaks here to Andrew West on the ABC’s Religion and Ethics Report.

Kidnappers murder Nigerian priest and demand ransom for release of his family

Reports from Nigeria say that a priest from the Diocese of Sokoto has been murdered by kidnappers who are continuing to hold his family.

George Washington’s faith under scrutiny after sale of ‘God letter’

The sale of a 230-year-old letter in which America’s first president speaks of “Providence” guiding the fledgling republic’s affairs has rekindled interest in how George Washington saw religion, a subject long debated among scholars, supporters and sceptics.

Christchurch welcomes new bishop outside quake-damaged cathedral he has pledged to reinstate

The new Bishop of Christchurch, Dr Peter Carrell, has been consecrated and installed as efforts to reconstruct the city’s earthquake-damaged cathedral finally begin. Dr Carrell was consecrated at the Christchurch Boys High School Auditorium ahead of an installation service in Cathedral Square, outside the cathedral. The cathedral was all-but destroyed in the June 2011 earthquake. Years of dispute and legal wrangling over its future came to an end in September 2017 when the diocese agreed to rebuild the cathedral, with funding support from the national and local governments.

A conversation with Katelyn Beaty, former editor of Christianity Today

Katelyn Beaty broke the glass ceiling in Christian media, becoming the managing editor of Christianity Today at age 27. In this interview on the ABC’s Soul Search, she talks about conservative church culture and secular feminism in Donald Trump's America.

Pop-culture preaching in the 1910s

Evangelical megachurches often come under fire from more traditional Christians for drawing crowds with dynamic rock-star pastors rather than biblical teaching. But religion historian Margaret Bendroth writes that the dilemma of the entertaining preacher has long been an issue. In the 1910s, for example, a former baseball player named Billy Sunday drew huge crowds of both sexes to his vaudeville-inspired church services.

Why be Anglican? My story

Anglican priest and Ridley College lecturer Dr Michael Bird’s story of his faith journey – which he says started in a wonderful Baptist Church in Sydney – is also an account of what he loves about Anglicanism. “It’s the church I love and it is where I love the church,” he writes.

US-based Episcopal Church arms itself with shares in battle for responsible gun control

The Diocese of Western Massachusetts has purchased shares in the owner of Smith and Wesson to advocate for greater gun safety.

Faith: Generation Z and the question of belief

A recent study into Australian teens’ attitudes to religion made headlines for its negative findings, but Barney Zwartz argues that the results are not only unsurprising, but not “desperately negative” for religion.

The national apology 11 years on

As we approach a federal election it is hard to think of a more encouraging action by any government during the last 20 years than the apology made by the then prime minister Kevin Rudd to Indigenous Australians who had been removed from their parents, writes Andrew Hamilton in Eureka Street.