Warning: Freedom of religion and freedom of worship are two very DIFFERENT things!

Faced with what they see as dangerous trends in the Obama administration, the bishops recently announced the creation of their own Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty. The goal is to address church-state trends that in recent decades have primarily been attacked by Protestant conservatives.

Anyone seeking the source of this development in American religion — including recent blasts at the White House by the archbishops of New York and Los Angeles — needs to study a 2009 Georgetown University speech by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. It received relatively little attention at the time.

“Our human-rights agenda for the 21st century is to make human rights a human reality and the first step is to see human rights in a broad context,” she said, speaking on a campus known for its leadership on the Catholic left. “To fulfill their potential, people must be free to choose laws and leaders; to share and access information, to speak, criticize and debate. They must be free to worship, associate and to love in the way that they choose.”

Conservatives cried foul, noting that the secretary of state had raised gay rights — the right for all to “love in the way that they choose” — to the same level as freedoms explicitly articulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. They also noticed that she mentioned a narrow right “to worship” instead of using more expansive terms such as religious “freedom” or “liberty.”

“Religious freedom, rightly understood, cannot be reduced to freedom of worship,” argued George Weigel, a Catholic conservative best known for his authorized biography of the late Pope John Paul II.

“Religious freedom includes the right to preach and evangelize, to make religiously informed moral arguments in the public square and to conduct the affairs of one’s religious community without undue interference from the state. If religious freedom only involves the freedom to worship, then … there is ‘religious freedom’ in Saudi Arabia, where Bibles and evangelism are forbidden but expatriate Filipino laborers can attend Mass in the U.S. Embassy compound in Riyadh.”

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1 Comment

  1. One must make exceptions for HILLARY as BARACK they
    through many lives having gained much in knowledge / as
    much in sacrifice in their gaining of such knowledge / thus
    their ability to share their wisdom should not over criticised
    but rather applauded not seen via mind /but rejoicement of
    ones heart. One understand those in clinging to old beliefs
    old ideas whom fear they are losing their power //as means
    of wealth // where collecting contributions from promises of
    (death of body) the soul entering a fictional heaven some-
    where beyond the clouds / (after death meaning no refund).

    The reality though their field presently being of the political
    realm /both HILLARY as be BARACK in their spiritual terms
    are far more advanced in spiritual development // than are
    religious leaders throughout the world. Such a blessing on
    the USA / its people indeed are fortunate in having not one
    but two souls /whom cap[able of great depth of compassion.

    In saying the above I would not say the democrats having a
    complete monopoly of the best (though true compared unto
    the republicans // democrats a far more stable force to be in
    govt /// republicans having truly lost the plot as lost their way
    in a destructive mixture of politics as religion which in having
    brought death as destruction on a massive scale/as through
    greed corruption brought nations unto poverty & bankruptcy.

    However there be some emerging light from the republicans
    in young SARAH P she having through lives gained respect
    in her actions / though it be she must learn more controlling
    religious fantasy // as use religion in gain of votes // as such
    many republicans do of which makes an mockery of freedom
    of democracy /thus one should not in politics / sell ones soul.

    To put aside such further awareness as learning for SARAH
    she approaches HILLARY & BARACK at their level of ability…

    In such she is capable where bringing the heart back into the republican party // to end its warmongering heartless attitude
    bringing the party its policies back into the light of day/ not as
    the present creatures of the night /bringing death destruction.


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