Catholics have long been staunch defenders of God-given religious liberty. Today, such liberty is threatened in our country by government intrusion. Both the federal and state governments have made attempts to inhibit – and even to make illegal – efforts by Catholics and Catholic institutions to operate according to their faith. It has touched areas of health care, immigration, education, Church structure, adoption services, refugee services, humanitarian aid, and more.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has sounded the alarm on these infringements on religious freedom. In respond, Catholics across the country came together in numerous venues to observe a "Fortnight for Freedom" from June 21 through July 4 this summer. Central to this nationwide initiative, the U.S. Bishops Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty issued a statement called "Our First, Most Cherished Liberty" which seeks to educate Catholics on matters regarding religious freedom. Prior to the Fortnight for Freedom, Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron also issued his own letter to the faithful, encouraging them to pray, to learn more, and to get involved. Below is a homily he preached at a Mass for Freedom on June 24 at Detroit's Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament.
Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron's Homily from June 24 Mass at the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament
Video on Religious Freedom, shown at the Freedom Rally National Shrine of the Little Flower in Royal Oak
Fortnight for Freedom Message from Pope Benedict XVI
Archbishop Charles Chaput's Homily from Fortnight for Freedom Closing Mass in Washington D.C.