World Bulletin / News Desk
The German postal service is set to issue a stamp reminding Germans that 2,000 years ago Jesus underwent circumcision as an eight-day-old baby, a ritual religious practice that a German court has controversially banned in part of the country.
The stamp, marking the 200th anniversary of the German Bible Society on Sept. 11, shows a page from the New Testament that includes a description of Jesus being circumcised.
The Bible Society says the stamp's design was finalised well before the heated debate over circumcision began, but it does not intend to delay the date of issue.
The 85-cent stamp bears a passage from the Gospel of Saint Luke that includes the words, "On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus."
A court in Cologne, ruling in the case of a Muslim boy taken to a doctor with bleeding after circumcision, said in June that the procedure should not be carried out on young boys, but could be practised on older males who gave consent.
The ruling, which applies only to the Cologne area, incensed Jews and Muslims and led to an emotional debate about the rights of children and families and about religious freedom in a country that is very sensitive to charges of intolerance because of its Nazi past.
Jewish religious practice requires boys to be circumcised from eight days old, while for Muslims, circumcision is required but the age at which it is carried out varies according to family, country and branch of Islam.
"We don't want to add fuel to the fire," said Stefan Wittig, a Lutheran pastor who works for the Bible Society.
Niger Delta Avengers have brought oil production in delta region to historic low
UN says hundreds of refugees, migrants reached Greek islands in past 24 hours
Blast occurred near presidential palace in Mogadishu, confirms minister
Spokesman hits out at 'highly discriminatory' restrictions on concealing swimwear
Since 2011, Tunisia has been rocked by spate of militant attacks that have left scores of soldiers and foreign tourists dead
Constitutional Court considers petition to annul result opposition claims was rigged
The Guardian says UN aid is going to groups closely linked to Bashar al-Assad's supporters
'I extend the warmest of welcomes to each and every one of our Syrian arrivals', Obama's national security advisor says
David Duke has urged white supremacist supporters to vote for Donald Trump
Three prominent pro-democracy leaders that have been held for more than a year have been released after their detention was deemed illegal
Two pilots are to appear in court after being arrested on suspicion of being drunk as they prepared to fly a passenger jet from Scotland to the US.
A European Commission spokesman said “the ball is still rolling” a day after Germany’s economy minister said the talks had “de facto failed.”
Caught between chronic economic instability and large numbers of migrants, Athens feels abandoned by fellow EU states
'We would oppose efforts to move south and engage in activities against the Syrian Democratic Forces,' Ben Rhodes says
'High-grade' nickel discovered in northwestern Kaduna state