LONDON The head of the third largest Christian denomination in the world is reaching out to churches with a message of hope to be brave, imaginative and honest in the face of the global HIV and AIDS pandemic.
Archbishop of Canterbury Dr. Rowan Williams' message of encouragement was prepared ahead of this Saturdays World Aids Day. It marks the first time that the Anglican heads message was made available in video format on the internet.
In his message, Williams praised the active engagement and dedication of churches in the global response to HIV and sharply criticized the limited access to drugs and treatment in some of the poorest parts of the world as "a scandal." more >>
Figures released this week by the World Health Organization and the United Nations AIDS agency showed a slight decline in the number of people living with HIV worldwide.
While churches and Christian NGOs welcomed the news, they say there is still much to be done.
"We welcome any indication that fewer people are living with HIV, whether it is through more accurate statistics or because a strong response in some areas is making a positive impact," said Linda Hartke, coordinator of the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance. more >>
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka Religious leaders at the recent International Interfaith Conference on HIV/AIDS in Sri Lanka pledged to fight against the deadly disease by utilizing their places of worship, educational and available health facilities.
More than 200 Buddhist, Christian, Hindu and Muslim delegates across Asia attended last weekends conference, which began ahead of the 8th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP) that also took place in Colombo.
The three-day event themed "Response of Faith Communities to HIV and AIDS - Have We Kept the Promise?" was the collaboration of the Asian Interfaith Network on AIDS, the Christian Conference of Asia, and the Geneva-based Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, which is linked to the World Council of Churches. more >>
The top priority at a conference on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific was the battle against stigma and discrimination a topic that consumed some three-quarters of a four-day AIDS conference which ended Thursday.
This is a critical time for national human rights institutions to engage in AIDS response, said UNAIDS executive director Peter Piot at the 8th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP) in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
We have learned that we will not succeed against HIV unless we address discrimination, gender inequality and other human rights abuses that drive the epidemic, he told some 2,500 conference delegates from 70 countries, according to World Vision. more >>
The Anglican Church in Nigeria has imposed a nationwide condition that couples take an HIV test before they are married by the church.
HIV tests are required to help couples make more informed choices when choosing marriage partners, said the Rev. Akintunde Popoola,,a spokesman for the Anglican Church in Nigeria.
The aim is to help intending couples to make informed decisions because we dont want anyone to be kept in the dark about their partner, he said, according to the BBC News website Friday. more >>
Governments cannot be expected to win the fight against AIDS alone, said the head of the largest international funder of anti-pandemic programs.
"The fight against AIDS cannot only be won by countries, it has to involve the civil societies, which has to involve the community affected by the disease, Dr. Michel Kazatchkine, the executive director of The Global Fund, told reporters at the International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP).
It has to get more and more involvement of the private sector," he added. "We need more resources not only more resources, resources that are sustainable." more >>