Day Ten of the Fortnight For Freedom
Fortnight For Freedom is a national campaign beginning June 21 and ending July 4 sponsored by the U.S. Catholic Bishops for teaching and witness in support of religious liberty. Each day during this fortnight we will feature a quote from the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration on Religious Liberty. Please reflect upon these important teachings and share them with others.
Finally, government is to see to it that the equality of citizens before the law, which is itself an element of the common welfare, is never violated for religious reasons whether openly or covertly. Nor is there to be discrimination among citizens. It follows that a wrong is done when government imposes upon its people, by force or fear or other means, the profession or repudiation of any religion, or when it hinders men from joining or leaving a religious body.
All the more is it a violation of the will of God and of the sacred rights of the person and the family of nations, when force is brought to bear in any way in order to destroy or repress religion, either in the whole of mankind or in a particular country or in a specific community.
Declaration on Religious Liberty
(Dignitatis Humanae), no. 6
December 7, 1965
Excerpts from The Documents of Vatican II, Walter M. Abbott, SJ, General Editor, copyright © 1966 by America Press, Inc. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2012, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.
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