Exclusive Brethren sect claims it is being villified

Brown refers Exclusive Brethren matters to Senate committee

Greens Leader Bob Brown has moved a notice of motion to refer a number of matters concerning the Exclusive Brethren Christian sect to the Senate’s Community Affairs Committee.

Senator Brown wants the Committee to examine public funding and tax arrangements which may advantage Brethren members.

He says the inquiry would examine the education opportunities for Brethren children, who are not allowed to attend tertiary institutions.

Exclusive Brethren
Many of the Exclusive Brethren movement’s teachings and practices are abusive to such an extent that this movement can rightly be labeled as an abusive church, and possibly even as a cult of Christianity. The movement certainly does not represent or demonstrate Biblical Christianity.
While the group’s members were long not allowed to vote, the cult engaged in political smear campaigns and made financial donations to various politicians and political parties.

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“It would also perhaps look at the $10 million paid to five Brethren schools around Australia in January this year, those schools have a population combined of just 2,000 students,” he said.


– Source: Brown refers Exclusive Brethren matters to Senate committee, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Aug. 26, 2008

Bob Brown ‘vilified’ Exclusive Brethren

The Exclusive Brethren has accused Australian Greens leader Bob Brown of vilifying its church and members.

Senator Brown yesterday urged the Upper House to conduct a wide-ranging inquiry into the activities of the Exclusive Brethren sect, saying it had prevented thousands of young Australians proceeding to tertiary education.

But Exclusive Brethren spokesman Daniel Hales said Senator Brown’s attempt to refer the church to the Senate’s community affairs committee was based on a “fictional account” of the group’s activities.

“Senator Brown’s remarks in the Senate were characterised by many factual inaccuracies,” Mr Hales said in a statement.
[…]

“Church members, their businesses and schools are subject to exactly the same regulations, laws and scrutiny by government agencies, tribunals and courts as other Australian individuals, businesses and schools.

“We obey the law scrupulously.”
[…]

The sect was embroiled in controversy before last year’s federal election, when it was alleged it was campaigning for then-environment minister Malcolm Turnbull in his marginal seat of Wentworth in Sydney’s east.

– Source: Bob Brown ‘vilified’ Exclusive Brethren, AAP, via News.com.au, Australia, Aug. 27, 2008 — Summarized by Religion News Blog

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Aug. 27, 2008 News Summary
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