Today the New York Daily News published an opinion piece that I wrote on the importance of religious freedom around the world. I thought you might want to read it.
Here is an excerpt:
Faith communities are also vital participants in public debates and often help hold governments accountable to their people. From neighborhood parish schools to faith-based soup kitchens and immigrant resource centers, religious ministries are essential to the social fabric.
And religious freedom reinforces other freedoms — of conscience, of the press and of assembly, to name just a few.
You’d think that governments would encourage religious liberty as a way to help their societies advance. But as Pope Francis has said, “In the world today, freedom of religion is more often talked about rather than put into practice.” Instead, many restrict religion and feed societal animosities toward religious minorities in the name of “good order” and control.
The result is too often violence and social conflict.
You can read the whole op-ed here.