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We also have a list of religious tolerance news for this month. 
Sad to say, these are usually much shorter lists.

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bullet2004-SEP-12: LA: Jimmy Swaggart alleged threat to kill gays: On his SEP-12 telecast, Fundamentalist televangelist Jimmie Swaggart was discussing his opposition to allowing same-sex couples to marry. He said: "I've never seen a man in my life I wanted to marry...And I'm going to be blunt and plain: If one ever looks at me like that, I'm going to kill him and tell God he died." His audience responded with extended laughter and applause. The program was broadcast on a Toronto station, and someone lodged a compalint with the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council. Swaggart Ministries also receive complaints from gay-positive groups. He apologized on SEP-22, saying that he was joking. He said that he has used the expression "killing someone and telling God he died" thousands of times. He didn't mean any harm. He said: "If it's an insult, I certainly don't think it was, but if they are offended, then I certainly offer an apology." 15
bullet2004-SEP-17: PA: Church posts hate sign: The Living Hope Church, a non-denominational congregation in Whitney, Pennsylvania, posted a sign that blames all Muslims for the terrorist attack of 9/11. It read: "To really remember 9/11, you must remember Islam is the enemy." Pastor Ken Tucci planned to keep the sign in place for about a week.
bullet2004-SEP-21: USA: Wal-Mart removes hate literature from online bookstore:  The Russian Secret Police in the early 20th century forged a document called "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion." It was based on an earlier French novel, and was promoted as evidence of an international Jewish conspiracy to rule the world. It is still circulated by some rabidly antisemitic groups, and is referred to by the media in some Muslim countries. It is  available from Amazon.com and other online bookstores, who inform their buyers that the book is an anti-semitic forgery. 16 It was also also sold at Wal-Mart's online bookstore. Their web site implied that there is no conclusive proof that it is a forgery and suggested that if they are genuine, " it might cause some of us to keep a wary eye on world affairs." Under pressure, Wal-Mart removed the book from their bookstore. More details.
bullet2004-SEP-21: Scotland: Wiccan wedding solemnized: Two Canadians, Paul Cameron Rickards, 37, and Laurie Schendler, 42, were married in a Wiccan ceremony deep in the underground vaults of Edinburgh's historic Old Town. The couple are not Wiccans, but chose to have this type of ceremony because it appealed to their sensibilities and general beliefs. The ceremony was conducted at the Niddry Street Temple of the Source Coven of the Blue Dragon by George Cameron and Lady Felina, the coven's High Priest and Priestess. Hamilton said: "This is the most important event to have happened in the religion for over past 50 years, since the repeal of the Witchcraft Act in 1951, the year of my birth....We’ve already been approached by a company who wish us to carry out weddings for them and we expect to have hundreds of weddings in the future." Bill Wallace, a former convener of the Church of Scotland’s board of social responsibility and a minister in Wick, said: "I think this illustrates people’s desperate need for some spiritual dimension in their lives and their willingness to go to any wild extreme....It would be a sad reflection on the state of our country [if more weddings like this took place]. It emphasizes all the more need for Christian affirmations." More details. 13,14
bullet2004-SEP-23: World: Anglican Communion urged to withdraw Israeli investments: According to Nancy Dinsmore, director of development for the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, world Episcopalian leaders are recommending that the church withdraw investments from Israel to pressure the country to ease the "draconian conditions" imposed on the Palestinians.
bullet2004-SEP-23: UK: BBC drops cartoon show: The British Broadcasting Corporation has terminated "Popetown" -- a cartoon featuring Pope John Paul II on a pogo stick. This follows a flood of complaints by Roman Catholics. The TV show was commissioned for the BBC's digital channel BBC3. It featured corrupt cardinals and an infantile pope who bounced around on a pogo stick.
bullet2004-SEP-23: USA: Muslim singer banned from the U.S. Yusuf Islam, 56, formerly called Cat Stevens, was refused entry to the U.S. and was returned to the UK. Yusuf Islam is arguably the best known moderate Western Muslim in the world. He has promoted peace within Islam. He commented: "Everybody knows who I am. I am no secret figure. Everybody knows my campaigning for charity, for peace. There's got to be a whole lot of explanation." Since 9/11, he has spoken out repeatedly against violence and has donated funds from his music royalties to the victims of those attacks.  He is the director of an Islamic primary school in London. He raised funds for child victims in Bosnia, and is a vocal opponent of the war in Iraq. His name appeared on a U.S. government watch list which implies an alleged connection to terrorism.

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  1. DayWatch is a daily service of Maranatha Christian Journal. It provides "a daily summary of news headlines with a Christian perspective..." The newsletter is free on request. Their web site is at: http://www.mcjonline.com 
  2. ReligionToday™ provides free newsletters to which you can subscribe at: http://www.ReligionToday.com. These summaries are part of GOSHEN.net, which also includes LiveIt.net, Devotionals.net, ChristianShareware.net, ChristianClassifieds.net, ChristianMessageBoards.net, BibleStudyTools.net, MediaManagement.net, WorldNewsToday.net, WebCastGuide.net, and ChristianCollegeGuide.net
  3. Reuters is "the world's leading financial information and news group. Their web page is at: http://www.reuters.com/ 
  4. Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR): E-mail: cair1@ix.netcom.com
    URL: http://www.cair-net.org To join CAIR-NET, CAIR's read-only mailing list: Send subscribe cair-net in the body of a message to majordomo@cair-net.org
  5. EWTN News carries Roman Catholic news from Catholic World News, Vatican Information Service, ZENIT, CWNews.com. See: http://www.ewtn.com/news/ 
  6. Ecumenical News International (ENI) in Geneva Switzerland distributes news free religious news highlights to subscribers. They can be contacted at PO Box 2100, CH - 1211, Geneva 2, Switzerland. Telephone: (41-22) 791 6087/6515. Fax: (41-22) 788 7244 Email: eni@eni.ch. Their web site is at http://www.eni.ch 
  7. ZENIT.org is "an International News Agency based in Rome. Our mission is to provide objective and professional coverage of events, documents and issues emanating from or concerning the Catholic Church for a worldwide audience, especially the media." Their web site is at: http://www.zenit.org/english/ 
  8. Anglican Communion News Service provides information from an Anglican perspective. See: http://www.anglicancommunion.org/acns/index.html A companion Episcopal News Service is at: http://www.ecusa.anglican.org/ens/ 
  9. AANEWS is distributed by American Atheists.
  10. CNSNews.com -- Cybercast News Service -- is a conservative news source. Their home page is at: http://www.cnsnews.com
  11. "Islam Sign Outside Latrobe-Area Church Stirs Controversy," ThePittsburghChannel, 2004-SEP-17, at: http://www.thepittsburghchannel.com/
  12. "Singer barred from U.S.; vows to find out why," The Toronto Star, 2004-SEP-24, Page A14.
  13. "New Hats Abound at White Witch Wedding," Scottish Press Association, 2004-SEP-21, at: http://www.religionnewsblog.com/
  14. Sam Halstead & Gareth Edwards, "A nice day for a witch Wedding," 2004-SEP-16, Evening News, at: http://news.scotsman.com/
  15. "Threat to kill gays just a joke: Swaggart," Ottawa Sun, 2004-SEP-23, Page 7.

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Copyright © 2004 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2004-SEP-18
Latest update: 2004-SEP-24
Author: B.A. Robinson

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