religious liberty

BEFORE THE CROSS | Remembering the past as we face challenges

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson hosted a meeting Nov. 9 with Missouri bishops and major superiors of religious congregations at the Cardinal Rigali Center. They celebrated Mass in the St. Vincent de Paul Chapel at the Cardinal Rigali Center. Archbishop Carlson smiled as he listened to a homily by Father Roger Landry, an attaché to the Holy See Mission to the United Nations.

Imagine a time when nominally faithful people adopted the values of the surrounding culture because it was hard to be different.

Imagine a time when people hid their religious identity so that they could get along with others who didn't share their faith.

Imagine a time when a nation's ruler decided that everyone should abandon their particular religious ideas in order to be united -- and many of the faithful agreed. Imagine that this same ruler offered positions of honor to those who betrayed their faith and persecuted those who did not.

Independence Day Mass closes U.S. bishops' annual Fortnight for Freedom

People sang and danced July 4 outside the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington before attending a Mass on the final day of the U.S. bishops’ Fortnight for Freedom campaign.

WASHINGTON -- Miami Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski called religious freedom "the human right that guarantees all other rights" in his homily July 4 at the closing Mass of the U.S. bishops' fourth annual Fortnight for Freedom.

"We remember that the glory of our government is its protection of religious freedom," he said at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington. That right "has its foundation in the very dignity of the human person. ... Peace and creative living together will only be possible if freedom of religion is fully respected."

Survey: 133 percent increase in attacks on religion in past three years

WASHINGTON -- A new report from the Liberty Institute in Plano, Texas, shows that incidents of "religious hostility" have more than doubled in the United States over the past three years.

The report, "Undeniable: The Survey of Hostility to Religion in America, 2014 Edition," chronicles a series of more than 1,300 court cases recently handled or monitored by the institute, a nonprofit legal group that represents plaintiffs who feel their religious liberty has been violated.

Faithful called on to continue defense of religious liberty

Red, white and blue greeted St. Louis Catholics on the front steps at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis a little before the noon hour on July 2.

On an unusually pleasant St. Louis summer day, the Stars and Stripes waved in the wind, with members of LIFE Runners holding the flag, as Church-goers signed a banner that read "Defend Religious Liberty."

Religious liberty includes being able to live faith's values, pope says

Pope Francis arrived to celebrate Mass on the feast of Corpus Christi outside the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome June 19

VATICAN CITY -- Real religious liberty includes the freedom to live according to the values taught by one's faith, Pope Francis said.

"Religious freedom is not just a matter of thought or private devotion," the pope said June 20. "It is the freedom to live -- both privately and publicly -- according to the ethical principles that are a consequence of the truth found."

GUEST COMMENTARY | Challenging the culture as we celebrate Independence Day

When we observed the Fortnight for Freedom in 2012, I naively thought it would be a one-time event. I assumed that the HHS mandate would soon be overturned and our congregation of Little Sisters of the Poor would quickly fall out of the public eye. But this month marks our third Fortnight, and our lawsuit against the federal government over the HHS mandate is still pending as I write this.

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