Download Church and State: Australia's Imaginary Wall (Briefings) by Tom Frame PDF

By Tom Frame

Few Australians observe that the structure doesn't officially separate Church and country. Tom body argues that a few touch among prepared faith and govt is either inevitable and, in a few situations, hugely fascinating. yet there are carrying on with and pointless tensions, for which Christians are mostly in charge. This publication explores the character of the tensions, and the way to accommodate them.

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Extra resources for Church and State: Australia's Imaginary Wall (Briefings)

Sample text

The Preamble was acceptable to all except hardened secular humanists and Christian exclusivists. ” Section 116 sought, among other things, to preserve Australia’s religious pluriformity. The provision’s drafters recognised that there would be religious sentiments, hopes and aspirations among the Australian people but they were determined no denomination would be permitted to use political or legal processes to advance its cause nor would any individual be disadvantaged because they had a particular religion or none at all.

I cannot think of any place on earth than the United States where it is easier to give God what is his. Nor can I think of a place where the State asks so little of what the religious man cannot give. When it does, the religious man can make a conscientious appeal and the State will listen… Where is the Church in a healthier condition? The existence of such confidence in some quarters is not to suggest, however, that all Americans believe there is a settled relationship between church and state or that everyone agrees on how the First Amendment is (or ought to be) interpreted.

The number of people who belonged to churches as a proportion of the population steadily decreased during the 1960s while the level of participation in worship began to decline. Just as the churches may have felt less of a need for state sanction or sponsorship, many states believed they could ignore the churches. After all, they represented a substantially reduced element of the population. As humanist ideology overtook religious conviction as the prevailing sentiment in the ruling classes of most western nations, a new tension emerged as triumphant secularists sought to undermine persisting Christian influences on social and political life while moving to prevent the church from mounting a rearguard action to recover lost ground.

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