By: Anthony Gill.
John Owen makes a strong case for caution when advocating for religious freedom in countries lacking basic human liberties. He correctly points out that sudden changes in the legal structure of a nation may often harm the individuals whom those changes seek to protect, using the case of sixteenth-century France to nicely illustrate his point.
Permanent Link: https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/cornerstone/2016/7/26/religious-freedom-now-everywhere-proceed-slowly-from-the-bottom
By: Matthew Carnes
In his recently completed visit to Latin America, Pope Francis set a new tone for religious dialogue in the region. Offering 22 speeches over the course of his weeklong journey to Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay, he addressed both the Catholic faithful and a broader set of social actors—representing indigenous faiths, social movements, labor unions, women’s organizations, farmers, and landless peasants. Throughout, he practiced a new approach to the Church’s engagement in this heavily-Christian region, one that emphasizes humility, listening and accompaniment, and a gentle (re-)invitation to a shared faith.
Permanent Link: https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/cornerstone/2016/7/14/embracing-a-new-era-of-religious-dialogue-in-latin-america
By: Anthony Gill
It is widely assumed that religious freedom benefits minority faiths. Without legal protections, dominant confessions historically have used the power of government to restrict the activities of upstart sects and missionaries. But can religious liberty be beneficial to the majority religious group? Latin America offers a clear-cut answer to this question: Religious freedom emphatically benefits all religions, minority and majority alike.
Permanent Link: https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/cornerstone/2016/7/14/religious-liberty-benefits-all-faiths-in-latin-america
By: Brian Grim
The high level of religious freedom in Brazil is notable as the country arguably undergoes one of the most dynamic religious shifts in the world today, with no religious or sectarian conflict. In light of recent research showing that religion is on the rise worldwide, the Brazilian example is worth highlighting and understanding, particularly when day to day we witness stories from across the world on the role of religion in conflict situations.
Permanent Link: https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/cornerstone/2016/7/14/brazil-a-lesson-in-the-peaceful-navigation-of-religious-change
By: Anthony Gill
As the first-ever Africa Summit gets underway in Washington, DC this month, Fr. Robert Dowd does an excellent job outlining the contemporary challenges facing sub-Saharan Africa when it comes to religious tolerance and violence. The problems seem intractable, and indeed they may be for the foreseeable future. While not an expert in the African situation, I nonetheless can offer some observations from other times and places regarding the troubled waters that may lie ahead and signal hope for the calm seas that lie beyond.
Permanent Link: https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/cornerstone/2016/6/30/religious-liberty-violence-and-tolerance-lessons-for-africa-from-the-americas