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President Obama pays tribute to religious freedom

January 17, 2017

President Barack Obama paid tribute to religious liberty in a presidential proclamation for Religious Freedom Day.

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The day, observed on January 16, commemorates the anniversary of Thomas Jefferson’s landmark Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.

“Religious freedom is a principle based not on shared ancestry, culture, ethnicity, or faith but on a shared commitment to liberty—and it lies at the very heart of who we are as Americans,” President Obama wrote.

He added:

America has changed a great deal since Thomas Jefferson first drafted the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, but religious liberty is a right we must never stop striving to uphold. Today, let us work to protect that precious right and ensure all people are able to go about their day in safety and with dignity—without living in fear of violence or intimidation—in our time and for generations to come.


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Show 4 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: aclune9083 - Jan. 18, 2017 11:49 AM ET USA

    The CWN headline blurs the distinction between "tribute" and "lip service."

  • Posted by: R. Spanier (Catholic Canadian) - Jan. 18, 2017 11:29 AM ET USA

    The following earlier stories on this website show where Mr. Obama really stands on defending religious freedom: 'Archbishop Dolan blasts Obama’s decision not to defend DOMA' 'Cardinal Dolan: Obama promised to respect conscience' 'Archbishop Dolan "terribly let down" by Obama's HHS decision'.

  • Posted by: skall391825 - Jan. 18, 2017 3:35 AM ET USA

    He has no shame. His Party's voting base may buy his hypocrisy, even applaud it, but truly religious Americans must be appalled.

  • Posted by: [email protected] - Jan. 17, 2017 10:13 PM ET USA

    What a hypocritical President! Given everything he has done to denigrate religious beliefs and freedom over the years he now says we must protect that right. It is a right he has not stopped trying to destroy or be told by government what it will allow. He is a laugh.