A Swedish Court recently ruled that it was "Ok" to masturbate in public after acquitting a 65-year-old man charged with sexual assault for openly masturbating on a beach in Stockholm.
According to a report in Sweden's The Local, the man was on the Drevviken beach on June 6 when he stripped himself of his shorts and started pleasuring himself close to the water triggering the sexual assault charge.
In the judgment handed down in the Södertörn District Court, however, it was noted that while it "may be proven that the man exposed himself and masturbated on this occasion," there was no evidence demonstrating that an offense was committed against a specific person. more >>
Stephen Hawking, the British cosmologist who has been revered as one of the greatest thinkers of our time, has come out and publically endorsed the right for people who are terminally ill to choose how and when their life ends while implicitly stating there should be safeguards in place for those who make that decision.
The debate over assisted suicide has been a point of contention between those advocating to ending a person's pain a suffering and those dedicated to protecting all life.
Hawking, who was diagnosed with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS at age 21 and told he had only a few years to live, has been in a wheelchair for most of his life and has long foregone the ability to speak without a computer. The 71-year-old is still one of the world's leading scientists and best known authors with his international bestseller "A Brief History of Time." more >>
The head of the Roman Catholic Church and the Bishop of Rome recently stated that if one is to be a "good Christian" they should pray for their political leaders, even if they do not agree with them.
Pope Francis made these remarks Sunday in Rome as part of a two-hour closed door meeting with clergy wherein the Pontiff talked about the need to pray for leaders.
"Pray for him, pray for her, that they can govern well…A Christian who does not pray for his leaders is not a good Christian," said Pope Francis. more >>
A pro-life petition made to the European Union's legislative arm, which would define life as beginning at conception, has garnered over one million signatures.
Championed by the "One of Us" campaign, the personhood petition reached and passed the milestone last week, meaning it will likely receive attention from the European Commission. "Juridical protection of the dignity, the right to life and of the integrity of every human being from conception in the areas of EU competence in which such protection is of particular importance," reads the initiative in part. "To ensure consistency in areas of its competence where the life of the human embryo is at stake, the EU should establish a ban and end the financing of activities which presuppose the destruction of human embryos, in particular in the areas of research, development aid and public health."
Registered last year, the petition garnered signatures from citizens of eleven EU member nations. The One of Us campaign received support and advice from Personhood USA, an American organization with similar goals. more >>
The discovery of a peace sign design inside the pages of a Dutch Christian school planner has led to the administration sending the 3,000 books to the shredder.
After a parent complained that one of the students on the cover of the planner was wearing a peace sign, Pieter Zandt Scholengemeenschap administrators did a Google search and concluded that the symbol's connotations were anti-Christian.
School board chairman Johan Van Puten told Dutch newspaper, Trouw, that according to his research, in the Roman era the peace symbol was actually a "Nero cross" representing the torture and persecution of Christians. He also noted that in the 1970's many Christians claimed the sign had cultish ties and was associated with Satanists. more >>
A godless congregation in London, which meets monthly on a Sunday "to hear great talks, sing songs and generally celebrate the wonder of life" with no hope of the hereafter, is launching satellite assemblies in over 20 cities across the U.K., the United States and Australia.
The Sunday Assembly, which came into existence about eight months ago, will announce on Sunday the formation of satellite congregations in more than 20 cities across Britain and beyond, including in New York, San Diego, Melbourne and Sydney, The Guardian reports.
The "godless congregation," as they describe themselves, plans to plant 40 atheist churches in one year, and as many as 1,000 worldwide within a decade. more >>