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We also have a list of religious intolerance news items for this month.

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DEC-1: USA - Industry-employee relations: According to the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR):
A dispute was settled between Solectron Corporation and 30 of its Muslim employees in a plant near Atlanta, GA. "Founded in 1977, Solectron Corporation is a worldwide provider of electronics manufacturing services to leading original equipment manufacturers." The problem arose over the request by some employees to take two prayer breaks during each shift -- each five minutes in duration. (Muslims take five such breaks each day.) Solectron will augment their statement of commitment to diversity in the workplace with an addendum on the specific workplace needs of Muslims and other religious groups. They will also make a contribution to the refugee relief agency that serves the Somali community in the Atlanta area. (The employees involved were all Somali immigrants.) The company will provide floating break periods to coincide with sunset prayers, quiet rooms where employees may pray, and restroom facilities so that they can wash before prayer.


DEC-1: Northern Ireland religious cooperation: According to ReligionToday:
"Northern Ireland's Protestants and Catholics have agreed to set up a partnership government. A cabinet that includes pro-British Protestants and pro-Irish Catholics was being hailed as a triumph in the province, where 30 years of violence has claimed 3,600 lives. The agreement activates the main elements of the 1998 Good Friday peace accord, which had been stalled by political wrangling...A similar government collapsed in 1974 when Protestant political parties called a general strike."


DEC-6: Israel: Inter-church cooperation in Bethlehem: According to ENI:
"In an historic display of unity, the heads of the 13 traditional churches of Jerusalem gathered together in Bethlehem's Manger Square at the weekend to pray for a joyful Christmas and to launch the millennium celebrations for Christianity's 2000th anniversary. At the official launch patriarchs, archbishops and other church heads and officials from the Holy Land were joined by church representatives - Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox  - from around the world and by thousands of pilgrims."


DEC-7: United Nations meeting: According to ReligionToday:
"The United Nations will host a world 'spiritual summit' to promote peace. The Millennium World Peace Summit is the first meeting of its kind ever sponsored by the world body. It is expected to bring 1,000 religious and spiritual leaders together Aug. 28-31, a few days before the world's political leaders gather for the U.N. Millennium Heads of State Summit. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan will give the welcoming address at the religious summit, which is intended to investigate ways that the religious leaders can ease tension in world zones of conflict."


DEC-5: World Parliament of Religion Conference: According to Bobby Jordan of The Sunday Times, Saxonwold, South Africa: "A gathering of the world's faiths in Cape Town is judged a great success despite protests and a jittery start." The meeting, sponsored by the Council for a Parliament of the World's Religions is the third in a series. Previous meetings were in 1983 & 1993. "Many delegates...said God was plainly visible in the spirit of tolerance and learning that prevailed at the event, which drew together thousands from diverse faiths." Some fundamentalist groups appeared to be distressed at the tolerance shown by the attendees, who represented a wide range of faiths. Some Muslims called the event a global conspiracy. Some Christians asked God to combat the "demonic" world gathering. (Some fundamentalist Christians believe that non-Christian religions, including Neopaganism, are led by Satan and demons).


DEC-10:  World Parliament of Religion Conference: According to ENI:
"A 'Parliament of the World's Religions' has ended in Cape Town, South Africa, with a call to religions to engage other institutions in tackling critical problems in the world. The Cape Town gathering, modeled on the Parliament of the World Religions held in Chicago in 1993, had a two-fold aim, according to organizers, of engaging a wide range of religious leaders in inter-religious dialogue and encouraging them to collaborate for social change with government, labor, commerce, science, business, media, education and other spheres of influence."


DEC-10: Catholic/Lutheran agreement: According to ENI:
"Pope John Paul II and Bishop Christian Krause, president of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF), have praised a recent theological agreement between the Vatican and the LWF. Speaking at their first meeting, yesterday, 9 December, since the signing in Augsburg at the end of October of the joint declaration on the doctrine of justification, Bishop Krause described the agreement as a 'sign of hope.' Pope John Paul said that the joint declaration was an important step towards the recovery of full Christian unity."


DEC-17: Nigeria: Request to preserve religion/state separation: According to ENI: 
"As a third Nigerian state moves towards officially implementing strict Koranic laws, the country's leading Christian organization has threatened to mount a legal challenge, claiming that Koranic law is unconstitutional and jeopardizes the unity of the country. The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), an umbrella body for the country's Roman Catholic and Protestant churches, said it had written to the Nigerian attorney general asking him to challenge the imposition, six weeks ago, of Sharia law in Zamfara state, northern Nigeria.

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  1. Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has a web page at http://www.cair-net.org They have an mailing list called ISLAM-INFONET. To subscribe, send an Email with  subscribe cair-net  in the body of the message to majordomo@cair-net.org  
  2. 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 
  3. ENI (Ecumenical News International) provides free bulletins and subscriptions to full text articles. Their home page is at: http://www.eni.ch Its postal address is: PO Box 2100, CH - 1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
  4. Newsroom is a service of Worldwide Newsroom Inc. Their articles are written by "a network of journalists, scholars and other professional contacts in country." You can subscribe to their free service from their website at http://www.newsroom.org/ 
  5. 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
  6. Reuters is "the world's leading financial information and news group. Their web page is at: http://www.reuters.com/ 

Originally written: 1999-DEC-1
Latest update: 1999-DEC-13
Author: B.A. Robinson

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