All News Articles

Constitutional Convention to debate same-sex marriage

By Admin on 12th April 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

The Constitutional Convention is set to consider the issue of same-sex marriage this weekend. The Convention's 100 members, comprised of 33 politicians, 66 ordinary citizens, plus Chairman, Tom Arnold, will hear from opponents and supporters of same-sex marriage.

Ireland tenth best country in world for children says Unicef

By Admin on 12th April 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family,Schools and Education

Ireland is the tenth best country in the world for children, according to a new report from a key UN agency. The report, Child Well-Being in Rich Countries, was produced by Unicef, the UN agency for children.

New equality guidelines recognise some conscience rights but not others

By Admin on 11th April 2013. ~ Categories: Freedom of Conscience and Religion

The conscience rights of vegetarians and ecologists in the workplace have been recognised in new UK equality guidelines, but not those of family lawyers who believe in the traditional family. Among other things, the guidelines suggest that ecologists could ask to be excused from duties that increase CO2 emissions, such as flying to business meetings.

Ban surrogacy or regulate it says expert

By Admin on 10th April 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Irish law must either ban surrogacy or regulate it, a leading child law expert has said. Geoffrey Shannon, the Government's Special Rapporteur on Child Protection said that the recent High Court decision which allowed an Irish couple to be recognised as the legal parents of two children born to a surrogate mother did not create legal certainty on the issue.

Conflicting accounts of events prior to Savita death emerge at hearing

By Admin on 9th April 2013. ~ Categories: Other

Conflicting accounts as to the sequence of events leading up to the death of Mrs Savita Halappanavar have emerged at an inquest into her death. Claims made by Mrs Halappanavar's husband Mr Halappanavar as to who was present and the time and place of certain events have been challenged by lawyers representing the HSE, the Irish Independent reports.

US army presentation attacked for calling Catholic and Evangelicals ‘extremists’

By Admin on 9th April 2013. ~ Categories: Religion and Religious Practice,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

A presentation made by the U.S. Army which classified Catholics and Evangelical Christians as “extremist” religious groups alongside al Qaeda and the Ku Klux Klan has been criticised as “dishonorable” and “anti-religious” by groups representing army chaplains. The presentation detailed a number of extremist threats within the U.S. military, including white supremacist groups, street gangs, and religious sects.

More US couples than ever cohabiting say new figures

By Admin on 8th April 2013 . ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

More US couples are cohabiting than ever, according to new figures from the National Centre for Health Statistics. According to the data, almost half of US women are choosing cohabitation rather than marriage as their "first union".

Medical organisation rejects three abortion motions

By Admin on 6th April 2013. ~ Categories: Other

The representative body for the medical profession in Ireland has rejected three motions calling for the legalisation of abortion under various circumstances. The Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) voted against a motion supporting regulation of abortion in line with the X Case and with Government legislative plans.

Website reveals reasons for children being taken into care

By Admin on 5th April 2013. ~ Categories: Other

A new website which highlights the reasons why children are taken into State care by the HSE has been launched. It will be the first time that the reasons for HSE interventions will be revealed, as up until now, the in camera rule in family law cases has prevented this information from being revealed.

‘Significant’ binge drinking among teenagers

By Admin on 4th April 2013. ~ Categories: Other

One in five teenagers is drinking at least once a week by the time they are in fifth year in school, new research suggests. “Significant bingeing" was evident at that stage, researchers said and the drinking patterns of boys and girls did not differ significantly, The Irish Independent reports.

Viewing of pornography almost universal among 14 year olds suggests new research

By Admin on 4th April 2013. ~ Categories: Other

Viewing of pornography among 14 year old boys is almost universal, unpublished research by Britian's children's watchdog suggests. The research by the Children's Commissioner into access to pornography found that every boy and half the girls in a year group of 14-year-olds in one school had watched pornography.

Knights make submission to Constitutional Convention

By Admin on 3rd April 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

Amending the Constitution to allow same-sex couples to marry would involve the wholesale redefinition of the institution of marriage, not simply its extention, the Knights of Columbanus have said in their submission to the Constitutional Convention.

Fifty-four percent of Irish people still attend church at least monthly

By Admin on 3rd April 2013. ~ Categories: Religion and Religious Practice

Just over one third of Irish people attend church at least once a week. Of these, nine percent attend more than once a week, according to a new survey. The research, conducted by Behaviour and Attitudes for the Sunday Times, also showed a further 10pc said they attended Mass once every two to three weeks, while another 10pc said they went once a month.

Little demand for hand-over of Catholic schools say bishops

By Admin on 2nd April 2013. ~ Categories: Schools and Education,Religion and Religious Practice,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

A Department of Education survey on school patronage in 38 areas has revealed only a “limited request for change”, the Council of Education of the Catholic bishops has said. Education Minister Ruairi Quinn has said that the survey showed “sufficient demand for change” and the Department has recommended that schools be transferred to new patrons from the Catholic Church in 23 separate areas.

Almost half of UK families have only one child

By Admin on 30th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Nearly half of all UK families have only one child, according to new official figures. The number of one-child families has increased by almost 700,000 in 15 years, and they are likely to be in the majority within a decade, the data suggests.

Ireland sets out current stance on ‘gender reassignment’ to Council of Europe

By Admin on 29th March 2013. ~ Categories: Other

The Government is set to recognise the altered birth certs of people who have had their genders ‘reassigned’ overseas, but they are not yet changing the birth certs of people who have had their gender reassigned in Ireland. In addition, it will allow that person to marry a person of the ‘opposite’ sex.

Varadkar attacked over child care remarks

By Admin on 28th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Transport Minister Leo Varadkar has been attacked for suggesting that childcare costs will have to be taken into account in insolvency arrangements if the outlay exceeds income and is preventing parents from making mortgage repayments. The National Council of Women of Ireland described his remarks as “extremely anti-women and anti-children”.

Number of deaths of children and teenagers in HSE care doubles

By Admin on 27th March 2013. ~ Categories: Other

The number of children and teenagers who died of unnatural causes while in the care of the HSE more than doubled last year. Figures supplied under the Freedom of Information Act show that 16 young people died in 2012, up from six in 2011, the Irish Examiner reports.

Health Minister calls for review of "threesomes" teen website

By Admin on 26th March 2013. ~ Categories: Other

Health Minister James Reilly has said that the HSE is to review a website partly-funded by the state that gives young people information about group sex. The move comes amid reports that the site,, carries information which appears to encourage teenagers to participate in “threesomes”.

Hundreds of thousands protest same-sex marriage in Paris

By Admin on 26th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Hundreds of thousands of protesters gathered in Paris on Sunday to protest government plans to legalise same-sex marriage. Organisers suggested that up to 1.4 million had attended, while police suggested that there were at least 300,000 at the march.

Cameron promises to stand against aggressive secularism

By Admin on 25th March 2013. ~ Categories: Religion and Religious Practice,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

David Cameron has claimed that he will stand against the “aggressive secularisation” of British society. The Prime Minister promised Christians that his Government “cares about faith” despite clashes with religious groups over same-sex marriage, the Daily Telegraph reports.

Parents want sex education to have moral content says new report

By Admin on 23rd March 2013. ~ Categories: Schools and Education

Parents in the UK believe sex education should be taught in its “moral context” with an emphasis on marriage and the importance of the legal age of consent, according to a new Government report. Over half of respondents to an official consultation also said it was vital that sex and relationship classes promote self-respect and ensure children “value their own bodies,” the Daily Telegraph reports.

Convention receives a thousand submissions on marriage in just three days

By Admin on 22nd March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

The Constitutional Convention received a late surge of submissions on the topic of same-sex marriage in the three days before the deadline expired. The Convention has said that over a thousand submissions were made in the final three days before Tuesday's deadline.

Survey shows support for one child having three genetic parents

By Admin on 22nd March 2013. ~ Categories: Other

Most Britons favour allowing a form of gene therapy which would involve the birth of children with three genetic parents, according to a survey of public attitudes carried out by the UK's IVF watchdog. The consultation, carried out by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), showed widespread support for the therapy, designed to help women in danger of passing on mitochondrial disease to their babies.

British Government accused of insulting stay-at-home mothers

By Admin on 21st March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

The British Government has been accused of insulting stay-at-home mothers after Downing Street suggested that they will be excluded from receiving child care support because they do not want to “work hard and get on”. The Government announced that working parents earning up to £150,000 each will get up to £1,200 per annum to help with child care because they have a “greater need” than those who do not work.

Child Benefit could be cut again under two-tier system

By Admin on 21st March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Some parents could be hit with another reduction in Child Benefit payments in the next 18 months if the Department of Social Protection goes ahead with plans to implement a two-tier system aimed at saving up to €200m a year, the Irish Independent reports.

‘Government must allow parents to choose the child-care they want’ says think tank

By Admin on 20th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Governments should give more freedom to families to choose whether to care for their children themselves or to put them in childcare, a leading UK think tank has said. Civitas were responding to reports suggesting that the UK's Coalition Government was to increase support for childcare by up to £2,000 a year.

Labour want same-sex marriage referendum this autumn

By Admin on 19th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

Labour has drafted a bill to legalise same-sex marriage with a view to holding a referendum this autumn. The move is being made in order to pressurise Labour's coalition partners Fine Gael into backing the proposal, the Sunday Times reports.

Police investigating assisted suicide doctor

By Admin on 19th March 2013 . ~ Categories: Other

Scottish police are investigating the actions of a GP after he confessed to assisting the suicide of a number of patients. GP Dr Iain Kerr says he prescribed particular drugs and gave advice to some of his patients who wanted to end their own lives.

“Get thee to a nunnery”, religious freedom advocates told

By Admin on 18th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

Efforts to insert a religious freedom clause into a civil union bill in Colorado were defeated last week with the bill's senate sponsor, Pat Steadman, telling those backing the clause, “Get thee to a nunnery and live there then. Go live a monastic life away from modern society, away from the people you can’t see as equal to yourself.”

US state considers making divorce harder to obtain

By Admin on 16th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

The US state of Iowa is considering legislation to make divorces more difficult to obtain. A sub-committee of the state's lower house has approved a bill which would make it harder for couples to end their marriages if those marriages involve children.

School RE survey ‘misleadingly presented’ says Catholic education chief

By Admin on 15th March 2013. ~ Categories: Schools and Education,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

One of the Catholic Church's leading spokesmen on education has said he has “serious problems” with the recent media coverage of a new Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO) survey into religious education. Speaking to the Irish Catholic, Fr Michael Drumm, the head of the Catholic Schools Partnership has said that the suggestion made in media reports that only 49 per cent of primary schools teachers are willing to teach religion put forward by several media outlets is “completely false”.

‘Equality’ being misused to redefine the family says Vatican official

By Admin on 15th January 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

The concept of equality is being misused in order to radically redefine the family, a leading Vatican official has said. Bishop Jean Laffitte, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family, spoke to an audience at the Student Union Hall of St. Mary’s University College in Twickenham on “Marriage and the Family in a Culture of Relativism".

Government to support anti-religious freedom legislation

By Admin on 14th March 2013. ~ Categories: Schools and Education,Freedom of Conscience and Religion

The Government is to take up a private members' Bill sponsored by Labour Senators and TDs aimed at curtailing the freedom of religious institutions to hire staff who will respect their ethos. The bill, which was debated in the Seanad yesterday, proposes to amend Section 37 of the Employment Equality Act.

Same-sex marriage advocate says multi-partner marriage "the next step"

By Admin on 14th March 2013. ~ Categories: Marriage and the Family

A pioneer of the same-sex marriage movement has admitted that multi-partner marriage is the next logical step in the evolution of the institution of marriage. Boris Dittrich, a former Dutch MP sometimes called the father of the global campaign to legalise same-sex marriage, told a French online magazine, Yagg, that there was now a movement in the Netherlands to legalise polygamy.

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