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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Celebrate Right to Religious Freedom

January 16th is the date of the anniversary that Virginia claimed religious freedom breaking ties with the Church of England. Since that time the president of the United States has formally recognized the date of January 16th as Religious Freedom day. Perhaps this is the time that the world as we knows it should stop and celebrate our commitment to the religion of our choice

The great author Thomas Jefferson drafted a measure that would be passed into law in 1786. The measure took the state church out of establishment, abolished the parish taxes and protected the civil rights of citizens to express their religious beliefs without fear of censure or reprisal. Early on one of the goals of those arriving in the new country wanted to have religious freedom with the ability to be free to live out their faith without the government trying to control their personal faith.

This movement by Jefferson and the other settlers was bold and radical at the time. Today, many simply take our religious freedom for granted. Nearly 250 years ago the connection between church and state was very much alive. Jefferson's argument was that religion should be a matter between an individual and God and that state should not force faith or interfere with the relationship between God and man.

Personally I am thankful that I can choose how to praise my Lord. I do not have to go through anyone in the government to be able to talk to my Jesus. No matter your religion you have the right to celebrate your belief

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