Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Practical Reference to Religious Diversity in NZ

This overview of religious practices in New Zealand is published by the Mäori Pacific Ethnic Services Police National Headquarters.

It looks at the major religious groups in the country in turn, beginning with Maori, moving to Buddhist, then to Christian, Hindu, Islamic, Jewish and Sikh (those after Maori are in alphabetical order, in case it isn't obvious). In each case there is an overview, a discussion of death and related issues, information about gender roles and family, physical contact and other sensitivities, and finally a section on the various religious practices - and policing.

Since the booklet is laid out for police workers primarily, things are focused from their viewpoint (hence the last section in each case). This in no way makes it un-useful for people outside the force; in fact, because it is laid out in a clear and succinct way, it is definitely of value for anyone wanting to have some basic information at hand about religions other than their own.

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