"Students of Faith" Video
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN A MINUTE
A network of California churches filed a lawsuit in July against Gov. Gavin Newsom after he re-imposed a coronavirus lockdown with orders against holding church services and bans on singing, chanting and all private home religious gatherings. "We've been essential for 2,000 years," said a CA Pastor, Che Ahn. (1)
"Newsom encourages tens of thousands of people to gather for mass protests, (but) he bans all in-person worship and home Bible studies and fellowship. Such repression is well-known in despotic governments and it is shocking that even home fellowship is banned in America," said Matt Staver, chairman of Liberty Counsel. "This outrage will not stand." (2)
Gov. Newsom is not the only governor unconstitutionally restricting church activities. Federal lawsuits are also pending in Courts of Appeal against Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, and Virginia. However, federal courts around the country are split on whether religious liberty protections of the 1st Amendment will stand during a pandemic. It is troubling that court in New Mexico recently ruled against the First Amendment.
Defending Religious Freedom
"Gathering, in short, is at the core of faith and religion. ... This time of restriction and confinement has confirmed for me that no freedom is more important than religious freedom," said Elder David Bednar of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. "Protecting a person's physical health from the coronavirus is, of course, important, but so is a person's spiritual health. ... Never again must the fundamental right to worship God be trivialized below the ability to buy gasoline."(3)
cbsnews.com, 7/20/20(1); (lc.org,7/17/20(2); newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org, 6/1/20(3); USCCB Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship (4); washingtonpost.com, 7/17/20; pjmedia.com, 7/13/20
Silent No More!
The Bishops of the United States remind us that, “In the Catholic Tradition, responsible citizenship is a virtue, and participation in political life is a moral obligation.” (4)
Elected officials and their staff listen to, read and tabulate citizens’ concerns and opinions when making decisions for their state and for the country. Do not be silent. Please contact one or more Senator or Congressman each week to encourage those who share your Catholic values and to inform others.
*Call Switchboard at 202-224-3121 to be connected to any Representative or Senator’s office
"The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty is staked on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people." - George Washington
Beginning June 22, the Feasts of Saints Thomas More and John Fisher, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) celebrates religious freedom and urges Catholics to pray, reflect and take action on religious liberty.
In response to the call from the USCCB, please join Catholics for Freedom of Religion (CFFOR) in praying to Mary Immaculate, Patroness of America, for the healing of our Nation and full restoration of religious freedom.
In the Secret of the Rosary, Saint Louis de Montfort states: “Public prayer is far more powerful than private prayer to appease the anger of God and call down His mercy.”
The Rosary for America, which dedicates each bead to one of our 50 states, will be recited in public prayer outside many churches during Religious Freedom Week and instituted as a weekly public devotion to Mary Immaculate on behalf of our Nation.
The text of the Rosary for America is used by many individuals, ministries and churches as ongoing prayer for our Nation and can be downloaded by clicking here.
To request a complimentary printed booklet of the Rosary for America, email your name and address to: info@CatholicsforFreedomofReligion.org
or call 631-896-8331
Religious Freedom Week
June 22 – 29
Begins Campaign for Weekly Public Prayer of Rosaries for America
STUDENTS MAY PRAY IN SCHOOL
ARE NOT “GOD-FREE ZONES”
America’s children need not leave their faith outside the school house door.
For students to be silenced or disciplined by a school authority for appropriate religious expression should never happen. Sadly, young students may well conclude…
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By submitting this form, you are granting: Catholics for Freedom of Religion, Seminary of the Immaculate Conception, 440 West Neck Rd., Huntington, NY 11743 permission to email you.
AT WORLD MEETING OF FAMILIES: DEFENDING FREEDOM OF RELIGION
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM RALLY 2018
IN SERVICE TO THE CHURCH
Click here to watch Barbara on TeleCare TV.
NATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM DAY
Click here to view a video about National Religious Freedom Day 2014.
Barbara Samuells, president of Catholics for Freedom of Religion and a parishioner at St. Matthew’s, Dix Hills, shares her experience at the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia.
Pope Francis has observed that “religion [cannot] be relegated to the inner sanctum of personal life, without influence on societal and national life.” Evangelii Gaudium. . . , no. 183. In insisting that our liberties as Americans be respected, Pope Benedict XVI said that this work belongs to “an engaged, articulate and well-formed Catholic laity endowed with a strong critical sense vis-à-vis the dominant culture.” Therefore, catechesis on religious liberty is not the work of priests alone. If religious liberty is not properly understood, all people suffer and are deprived of the essential contribution to the common good, be it in education, health care, feeding the hungry, civil rights, and social services that individuals make every day, both here at home and overseas.
CATHOLICS FOR FREEDOM OF RELIGION
America’s First Amendment guarantees its citizens five freedoms, the first of which is Freedom of Religion. Freedom of Religion includes the freedom to worship according to one’s beliefs as well as the freedom to practice that faith in everyday life according to one’s conscience.
So that this First Amendment freedom may be practiced and preserved for generations yet unborn it is essential that Americans understand this freedom and the circumstances from which it came. A fitting place for the development of this understanding and protection of Religious Freedom is inside all faith communities.
Catholics for Freedom of Religion offers resources to parish members who work to support Religious Freedom by initiating parish laity groups with these suggested goals:
To educate and inspire for Freedom of Religion
To remain non-partisan, advocating for no candidate or party
To invite and include other faith communities
To become a permanent group within each parish to educate every generation of Catholics about our Freedom of Religion…how rare it is, how dearly it was purchased for us and how certainly it is being lost.
To recognize and oppose attacks on Freedom of Religion from any source
“We hold it for a fundamental and undeniable truth, that religion, or the duty we owe our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence. The religion then of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate. This right is in its nature an unalienable right.” James Madison
“While Americans presume that the Constitution guarantees their rights, in practice our rights survive or disappear based on how firmly we defend them.” Archbishop Charles J. Chaput