Freedom of religion and Israel Folau

Anglican Church Diocese of Sydney

Media Transcript

This is a transcript of comments reported in The Australian, April 17, and made by Bishop Michael Stead, chair of the Religious Freedom Reference Committee, on the Israel Folau matter.

The sacking of Israel Folau sets a dangerous precedent for ­religious debate in Australia, a leading figure in the Anglican Church has warned.

“If a rugby player can be sacked by doing nothing more than posting on his social media page what is essentially a summary of the Bible then it’s a signal to the rest of us that we better keep our mouths shut,” Anglican Bishop Michael Stead, who leads the south Sydney diocese, told The Australian yesterday.

Bishop Stead, who is also chairman of the Religious Freedom Reference Committee for Sydney, said Australians should have the right to have religious conversations without fear of a backlash.

“It’s time for our leaders to pass legislation to protect ­religious debate and provide a space for respectful con­versation,” he said.

Reported here 

April 17th, 2019

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