"Students of Faith" Video
"Freedom of conscience is the core of all freedom." -Pope Benedict XVI
Colorado website designer, Lorie Smith, is appealing a lower-court decision depriving her of the right to conduct her business according to her religious beliefs. "I have clients ranging from individuals to small business owners to nonprofit agencies," Smith said. "I have served and continue to serve all people, including those who identify as LGBT. I simply object to being forced to pour my heart, my imagination and talent into messages that violate my conscience." (1)
"The government shouldn't weaponize the law to force a web designer to speak messages that violate her beliefs. This case involves quintessential free speech and artistic freedom...," said an Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) attorney. (2) The 10th Circuit's ruling "holds that the more unique a product, the more aggressively the government may regulate access to it - thus the less First Amendment protection it has." The lower court’s decision "empowers the government to force everyone to speak government-approved messages and subverts our core understandings of the First Amendment." (3)
In a similar case involving CO cake artist Jack Phillips, the U.S. Supreme Court scolded Colorado for its "hostility" to Christianity.
"If the Freedom of Speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter." - George Washington
The Importance of Faith to America's Founders: John Adams
Throughout his life, this Founding Father and 2nd President of the United Sates, exhibited a profound respect for the Bible and references it frequently in his writings. He wrote to fellow Founder Benjamin Rush in 1807, "The Bible contains the most profound Philosophy, the most perfect Morality, and the most refined Policy, that ever was conceived upon the Earth." (4) About the newly written Constitution, he wrote, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious People. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."(5)
The Founders knew a virtuous people would courageously defend the rights endowed by their Creator and restored by the blood of patriots. But a fearful people would readily give up these rights in exchange for a fleeting sense of security.
Princeton Professor Robbie George explains, "People lacking in virtue could be counted on to trade liberty for protection, for financial or personal security, for comfort - for having their problems solved quickly." (6)
(dailycaller.com, 9/24/21(1); wnd.com, 9/25/21(2)(3); harbingersdaily.com, 9/27/21; adflegal.org, 10/28/19; joshuatcharles.com, 12/11/18(4); constitutionallaw.regent.edu (5)(6); lawliberty.org)
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN A MINUTE
Web Designer Petitions Supreme Court to Affirm Religious Freedom
October 17, 2021
May God bless our children as they begin
a new school year
As parents we are entrusting precious time and influence over our children to others.
Just as we would not turn over our most precious jewel to an individual and walk away, we cannot leave our children in school without knowing what is being taught and by whom it is being taught.
As our children return to school, be aware of the teachers and policies that envelope them each school day:
- Does the school's education agree with your values?
- Does the school teach beliefs and behaviors you would welcome for your children?
- Are your children's rights to express their faith in school respected and protected?
The best equipped school building, welcoming administrators and well credentialed teachers mean nothing if the attitudes and values in the school and in your child's classroom are antithetical to your family's values. The only way to monitor this is active questioning, consistent interaction and frank conversations with our children, their teachers and school administrators.
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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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