RC priest abducted in Syria
A FRANCISCAN Roman Catholic priest, Fr Dhiya Aziz, has reportedly been abducted in Syria by militants. An organisation of Franciscan missionaries, the Custody of the Holy Land, said on Monday that Fr Aziz, one of their number, was taken away by armed men for an interview with the local “emir”, and has not been seen since. The Iraqi priest had been working in the predominantly Christian village Yacubiyeh, in Idlib province.
Facebook look-alike for Christians goes online
BRAZILIAN Evangelicals hoping to chat with friends on social media without compromising their faith have a fresh alternative to Facebook — Facegloria. The website has been set up to imitate Facebook, and to appeal to morally minded Christians, AFP reports. Swearing is banned, as are any violent or sexualised photos. “We want to be morally and technically better than Facebook,” Facegloria’s co-founder, Atilla Barros, said.
Blasphemy decriminalised in Iceland
ICELAND has repealed a 75-year-old law that criminalised blasphemy. The idea was put forward by the Pirate Party, which campaigns for internet freedoms, after the terror attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January (News, 9 January). The national Lutheran Church of Iceland backed the changes, but the Roman Catholic and Pentecostal Churches on the island opposed the repeal.