UPDATED: Bendigo: War, Faith and Peace

fromellesUnited Religions Initiative, in collaboration with Bendigo Interfaith Council, Bendigo TAFE and Cultural Infusion will deliver a Public Forum on War, Faith and Peace at the Bendigo College of TAFE on Friday, August 26. The Forum will be followed by free conflict resolution training for young people (open for those aged 18-30).
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‘Spiritual but not religious’: What the census won’t say about Australians’ beliefs

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Over the last few decades, the number of people who answer the census question about religion with ‘no religion’ or ‘not specified’ has been on the rise. But just because someone doesn’t subscribe to organised religion doesn’t mean they’re not spiritual. Unlike in France and the United States, the Australian census contains a question about religion. This year, for the first time, ‘no religion’ will be the first option.

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Bendigo: War, Faith and Peace

fromellesUnited Religions Initiative, in collaboration with Bendigo Interfaith Council, Bendigo TAFE and Cultural Infusion will deliver a Public Forum on War, Faith and Peace at the Bendigo College of TAFE on Friday, August 12. The Forum will be followed by free conflict resolution training for young people (open for those aged 18-30).
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Out of the Blue ~ Mooroopna and Numurkah

oobsParticipant Faith Communities in the Shepparton Interfaith Network are significantly aware of the current milk price farmgate crisis and involved in community care. “Out of the Blue” is set in a hotel bar, where locals are gathered to pay tribute to one of their mates that they have lost to suicide. The play is both funny and sad but very relevant today, especially in regional and rural areas where the threat of suicide is a concern to many communities. This play will be presented in Mooroopna on Wednesday 3 August, and Numurkah on Friday, 5 August.

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The Parable of the Good Muslim: Feeling Safe in Australia

goodmuslimThe parable of the Good Samaritan is a sobering challenge to people who should know better … Some right leaning Christian politicians and commentators were not satisfied when a wise man told them you should love your neighbour as yourself. “And who is my neighbour,” they asked. The wise man replied: A conservative Member of Parliament was walking back home from church …
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Beyond Belief: Hugh Mackay to speak in Shepparton

beyondbeliefSocial researcher, author and commentator, Hugh Mackay, will present a challenging, sometimes confronting, but most of all enlightening account of the messages in his two latest books Beyond Belief (2016) and The Art of Belonging (2014) at Harder Auditorium on Friday, August 12, 2016 at 7 pm.
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Radio National: Is religious violence a scrap in backyard compared to secular violence?

uswhiteAs Islamic extremists explode bombs and spray bullets across Baghdad and Bangladesh, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, it’s surely impossible to deny the reality of religious violence.

But renowned religious scholar William Cavanaugh of De Paul University in the United States disputes the idea. His book, The Myth of Religious Violence: Secular Ideology and the Roots of Modern Conflict, argues that violence in the name of faith is no greater, maybe even less, than religion in the name of secular ideologies.

Bill Cavanaugh is in Australia this month to speak at a conference at the Australian Catholic University in Melbourne, and at the Centre for Public Christianity in Sydney. How does he explain the latest bout of Islamist carnage if it isn’t religious?

You and listen to this podast on ABC Radio National.


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Open Letter on Occasion of Eid

eidmuburakThe Shepparton Interfaith Network writes an open letter to the Islamic Community of Shepparton and the Goulburn Valley. The month of Ramadan – observed by the Islamic Community of the Goulburn Valley – has passed and today is the day of Eid-al-Fitr, the conclusion of the Holy Month. The Shepparton Interfaith Network offers the acclamation Eid Mubarak! to all muslims of the Goulburn Valley. Blessings on your Feast Day and throughout the Year!
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The 2016 National NAIDOC Poster Competition

balzanArtists entering the competition were asked to submit an artwork which represented their interpretation of this year’s NAIDOC theme – Songlines –The living narrative of our nation. There was a great response to this year’s competition. While more than 100 outstanding entries were received, the Committee was unanimous in its selection of Ms Balzan’s artwork. Lani Balzan is a proud Aboriginal woman from the Wiradjuri people of New South Wales (NSW) and this year’s 2016 National NAIDOC Poster Competition Winner. Her winning artwork titled, Songlines tie all Aboriginal people together, represents all of the Songlines coming together to create our nation.Read more…

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Shepparton: NAIDOC WEEK ACTIVITIES

Shepparton: NAIDOC WEEK ACTIVITIES
songlinesNAIDOC (National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee) Week is an Australian observance lasting from the first Sunday in July until the following Sunday. NAIDOC Week celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.[2] The week is celebrated not just in the Indigenous communities but also in increasing numbers of government agencies, schools, local councils and workplaces. In 2016, Naidoc Week will run from Sunday, 3 July until Sunday, 10 July 2016. Shepparton will celebrate NAIDOC Week 2016 with many local events.
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Update: Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into End of Life Choices

inquiryFollowing last month’s release of the final report of the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into End of Life Choices, the Victorian Government has released a position paper Simplifying medical treatment decision making and advance care planning. The position paper explains new legislation the Government is developing on substitute decision making and advance care planning. The legislation’s development honours a pre-election commitment and is consistent with the Parliamentary Committee’s finding that the current legal framework for substitute decision-making and advance care planning needs to be updated and simplified.

Government is interested in feedback on the best ways to plan for and implement the legislative changes and invites feedback via email at acp.responses@dhhs.vic.gov.au. Feedback closes at 4pm on Friday 29 July 2016.


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The Dalai Lama and Lady Gaga

tenzin-gagaEvery now and then, we hear about a “new voice in the neighbourhood” and it turns out that the so-called new voice is the voice of youth. And the Dalai Lama – along with his friend Desmond Tutu – often spend time listening to youth. And this time, the Dalai Lama was with one of the well-known icons of youth, Lady Gaga, who frequently represents gender fluidity. Here, the Dalai Lama, Lady Gaga, and the billionaire business tycoon Philip Anschutz shared a stage on Sunday during a panel presentation for The United States Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis.
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