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The Pope’s Alarming Message on American Religious Freedom

January 22, 2012 Leave a comment

The Pope’s Alarming Message on American Religious Freedom

Catholic Culture ^ | 1/19/12 | Phil Lawler

Posted on Sunday, January 22, 2012 5:55:21 PM by marshmallow

Is it humiliating for American political leaders to read that Pope Benedict sees an erosion of religious freedom in our country? It should be.

If there is one boast that Americans have traditionally made before the world, it is the claim that our country is a bastion of freedom. And of all the freedoms we cherish, religious freedom takes pride of place. In our nation’s history it was the search for religious freedom that drove the Pilgrims to Massachusetts. When the founders presented the people of the newly independent States with a proposed Constitution, popular demand required the addition of the Bill of Rights, beginning with a First Amendment that listed freedom of religion—not of speech—first.

Yet today the Bishop of Rome warns American bishops that their country is losing its status as a nation that honors and promotes freedom of religion. And sad to say, he is right.

When he delivered this unhappy message, in an address to a visiting group of American prelates, Pope Benedict was not telling his guests anything that they did not already know. On the contrary, he said that he was basing his remarks on what the American bishops had told him during their ad limina visits. And what had they told him?

* that the “Obamacare” plan will involve all American taxpayers in a process that subsidizes abortion;

* that Catholic adoption agencies have been forced out of business, because of their refusal to comply with orders to place children in the homes of homosexual couples;

*that a program administered by the US bishops’ conference to help victims of sexual trafficking has been stripped of federal funding because it does not provide for abortion services;

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