USCCB Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty Issues Major Statement on Religious Liberty

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We speak frankly with each other when our freedoms are threatened. Now is such a time. As Catholic bishops and American citizens, we address an urgent summons to our fellow Catholics and fellow Americans to be on guard, for religious liberty is under attack, both at home and abroad.

This has been noticed both near and far. Pope Benedict XVI recently spoke about his worry that religious liberty in the United States is being weakened. He called it the "most cherished of American freedoms"—and indeed it is. All the more reason to heed the warning of the Holy Father, a friend of America and an ally in the defense of freedom, in his recent address to American bishops

Read it all and ote there is a PDF version if you prefer that.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchHistoryLaw & Legal IssuesReligion & Culture* International News & CommentaryAmerica/U.S.A.* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman CatholicPope Benedict XVI* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

Posted April 13, 2012 at 7:45 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Jackson wrote:

The RC church in America is laying down a pretty dark thick line on the ground over religious freedom. I think they are justified. But I am scared for them.
Now is the time that all the investment in religious education, CCD, formational sacraments, seminary life, good homilies and work on the local level is going to be tested at the national level. If the Catholic populace have been well-formed then they will stand up and support and it will be loud. If they haven’t, it will be much quieter. This push is going to show everyone, including the bishops, who is truly on-board with their vision for the world. Its a very scary time, I think, because my hunch from talking to Catholics in my life, is that they don’t agree on the church’s view on contyraceptives (bad formation) and thus they don’t care about this initiative.

April 13, 12:03 pm | [comment link]
2. Jim the Puritan wrote:

The fact is that this will affect all Christian believers, Catholic or not.  If the Catholic hierarchy loses this challenge to the federal government, the Left presently in control in many parts of the country will feel more and more emboldened to marginalize and persecute Christians.  A lot of folks are sitting there passively believing that that the First Amendment will continue to protect us.  It won’t—the main way it will occur is in continuing to try to force Christians to approve homosexuality as a civil rights issue.  We already have folks here talking about passing laws to provide that churches must allow homosexuals as pastors and to marry them or their tax exemptions will be revoked, and the only way they can stop this is by no longer being a “public accommodation.”  In other words, if you open your churches to the public for worship on Sundays you must allow homosexuals to become ministers and be married there.  Otherwise, you must become like a private club, where only “members” are permitted by law to attend worship services.  This is right around the corner, folks, it will be on your doorsteps in a couple of years.

And it’s already happening: colleges and universities are banning Christian organizations as exclusionary and homophobic; in many places a practicing Christian can forget about becoming a judge because he or she will never be confirmed, and so you have an increasingly hostile judicial system that will look at imposing restrictions on religious freedom.

Just as an example, you need look no further to what is happening in the mainline denominations of churches as a microcosm of what is happening in the larger society.  In many parts of the mainline churches, Christians are no longer welcome.

April 13, 2:40 pm | [comment link]
3. Albany+ wrote:

Just look at England.

April 13, 5:05 pm | [comment link]
4. NoVA Scout wrote:

No. 2 states that “in many places a practicing Christian can forget about becoming a judge . . .”  This surprises me.  Has a Christian ever (let alone in “many places”) been barred from serving on the bench because of his religion?  My practice is largely in the federal courts (which is the level that the commenter is referring to, I assume, given the reference to confirmation).  My sense of it based on subjective, informal sampling is that the vast majority of the judges I appear before or encounter in one form or another are Christians.

April 14, 1:03 pm | [comment link]
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