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Religious Liberty: “It’s a claim about what a human being is”

By April 18, 2016No Comments

The only way to insure respectful and flourishing human communities is to respect a notion of the human person that integrates all aspects of their humanity.

This year’s “Fortnight for Freedom: Witnesses to Freedom” will take place from June 21 to July 4, 2016.

The USCCB has published a video entitled “The Right to Religious Freedom” that explores the foundation of Church teaching on religious liberty. The video details the importance of a constitutional protection so basic to our understanding of the person and human freedom that we forget it can be eroded and diminished and our nation’s character altered unless we protect it.

The video highlights the contribution of the Second Vatican Council document, Dignitatis Humanae, in illuminating the issues at stake in the current Supreme Court challenge by the Little Sisters of the Poor. In interviews, the video details how a nations’ position on the right to religious freedom is the major test of how it interprets human rights and government authority.

According to Church teaching, the view of the person that denies the vital spiritual component of each individual denies their dignity and freedom by denying reality. When a government adopts the narrow view of the human person for its own ends, and its own authority, it can ultimately justify denying all individual freedoms.