Religious Freedom

The following statement was made after the bill’s announcement and expresses the Church’s view of the proposed legislation in Arizona.
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January 10, 2022 10:50 AM MST
Last week, President Oaks visited one of the world’s religious centers, Rome, Italy, and spoke about the global indispensability of religious freedom.
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July 02, 2021 02:06 PM MDT
A new Church News video interviews religious leaders and scholars at the inaugural Notre Dame Religious Liberty Summit, which was held June 28–29 on the university’s campus.
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June 17, 2020 06:57 PM MDT
In an address given Wednesday, June 17, 2020, Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said the COVID-19 crisis is a wake-up call for religious freedom.
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July 04, 2019 09:36 AM MDT
With both Memorial Day and Flag Day having come and gone in the past couple months, the season of celebrating freedom in the United States is approaching its peak on July 4, when the country commemorates the day it declared its independence.
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July 02, 2019 01:23 PM MDT
"We come together as neighbors, we come together as a family, we come together as friends," Cardinal Dolan said. "See, that gives a counterexample to those who would love to caricature us as these bigoted, hateful, violent people. And we can't allow that to happen."
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Twenty-five years ago, without really knowing it, I had my first experience with religious freedom. Looking back, this shouldn’t surprise me, given the religious uniqueness of my hometown: mostly Catholic, a strong contingent of atheists, and a smattering of other faiths. But as a senior in high school, when I began to explore my own spirituality in an overt way, exposing myself to both ridicule and opposition, religious liberty was a friend and constant companion for which I am only now beginning to show proper gratitude and reverence.
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May 13, 2019 01:12 PM MDT
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is deeply concerned that the ongoing conflicts between religious liberty and LGBT rights is poisoning our civil discourse, eroding the free exercise of religion and preventing diverse Americans of good will from living together in respect and peace. Lawmakers across the nation, including members of Congress, are working to enact or strengthen laws that ensure LGBT persons fair access to important rights, such as nondiscrimination in areas like housing, employment and appropriate public accommodations. The Church is on record favoring reasonable measures that secure such rights.
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December 03, 2018 05:00 PM MST
Two leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined more than 200 global religious leaders, politicians and experts in Baghdad, Iraq, November 10–11, 2018, for a conference designed to raise worldwide support to end religious persecution.
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August 10, 2018 12:34 PM MDT
"Because we love our school, we hope it reconsiders and lets religious groups continue to authentically reflect their religious groups," said InterVarsity's student president, Katrina Schrock, in a statement.
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January 06, 2018 02:00 PM MST
This article is republished with permission from Book of Mormon Central. For more inspiring and instructive content on the Book of Mormon visit Book of Mormon Central, subscribe to our mailing list, see our YouTube videos, and follow us on Facebook.
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October 05, 2017 07:15 PM MDT
How eye-opening to learn the history behind this temple that was never built.
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September 26, 2017 12:12 PM MDT
America is known as the “land of the free.” And perhaps the most precious of the liberties that we enjoy as Americans is the gift of religious freedom. The specific protection of the right of religious conscience and practice is among those liberties that are uniquely protected in the United States. The safeguards afforded religion under the First Amendment to the Constitution is a radical departure from the norm in world history.
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September 19, 2017 06:29 PM MDT
With all the persecution faced by those around the world, it's not difficult to appreciate what religious freedom means.
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By  LDS Living
July 28, 2017 04:12 PM MDT
While the world often disregards basic moral values, their importance is what helps shape society and give meaning to life.
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June 12, 2017 06:35 PM MDT
While speaking at a religious freedom symposium, Elder Renlund mentioned a "medicine" that can help a society "that would otherwise be aggressive and sick.”
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June 09, 2017 05:16 PM MDT
Religious freedom is a reoccurring theme in the Book of Mormon, with many examples of righteous leaders who defended it. Today, there is much we can still learn about standing up for religious freedom from these leaders, particularly Moroni.
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March 29, 2017 12:59 PM MDT
On Tuesday, March 21, the Iowa Senate held a debate over lifting the state's firework ban. During the debate, things took a personal turn when State Senator Matt McCoy decided to bring up State Senator Jake Chapman's Mormon faith.
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January 31, 2017 01:54 PM MST
This article, published on Mormon Newsroom, is the first in a seven-part series on religious freedom around the world.
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January 24, 2017 08:16 PM MST
A known advocate of religious freedom, Elder Dallin H. Oaks and other Church leaders urged members to advocate for religious freedom while refraining from angry and hurtful rhetoric.
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November 04, 2016 01:11 PM MDT
After Pax Dickinson, Business Insider's former CTO and a high-profile Trump supporter (who even claims to be one of Trump's researchers), threatened Mormons with a holocaust on Twitter, relatively few media outlets even mentioned this attack.
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October 12, 2016 03:10 PM MDT
Recently, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined several other U.S. faith leaders to create a letter sent to President Barack Obama, Sen. Orrin Hatch, and House Speaker Paul Ryan in response to a report issued by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.
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September 30, 2016 03:40 PM MDT
It's encouraging to see senators supporting religious freedom and rights.
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September 14, 2016 06:45 PM MDT
The following is an opinion piece written by the editorial staff at the Deseret News.
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September 12, 2016 12:47 PM MDT
A tragic yet “largely invisible part of war and conflict” and the resulting refugee crisis is the sexual violence inflicted upon women, said Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, an apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Elder Holland addressed a gathering of humanitarians, scholars, faith and government leaders at a conference sponsored by the AMAR Foundation at Windsor Castle in the United Kingdom titled “Religious Persecution: The Driver for Forced Migration.”
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August 20, 2016 03:44 PM MDT
LDS leaders are developing a new page on lds.org to help Mormons understand religious freedom laws and current issues. The site will include videos that portray common workplace and public school scenarios.
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August 16, 2016 01:01 PM MDT
Note: LDS Living does not endorse any political candidates but merely reports on current news.
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August 10, 2016 03:50 PM MDT
In an exclusive article written for the Deseret News, Hillary Clinton shared her beliefs in religious freedom and how that relates to LDS Church history.
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July 08, 2016 02:20 PM MDT
Elder Lance B. Wickman, the general counsel for the LDS Church, said Thursday that believers have to prioritize religious freedoms, defending those at the innermost core of importance and compromising when needed on those that aren't as critical.
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July 04, 2016 11:04 AM MDT
"We live in challenging times. Religious freedom is indeed under fire,” Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said on June 26 in Brigham Young University’s Marriott Center. Elder Christofferson was the keynote speaker at the Freedom Festival Patriotic Service, during which he spoke about America’s heritage of religious liberty and encouraged the audience to “defend that heritage before it is too late.”
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June 27, 2016 02:20 PM MDT
The Church is releasing a new series of videos to help members address sensitive issues they often come across in their day-to-day lives. What do we do when people attack us or judge us as bigoted based on our beliefs? How do we overcome differences while still standing for our beliefs?
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June 09, 2016 02:10 PM MDT
"We demand as a matter of constitutional right a place in the public square," Elder Dallin H. Oaks told members of the British Parliament at Westminster Palace in London on Wednesday as part of a panel to discuss religious freedom in foreign policy.
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May 24, 2016 01:55 PM MDT
Research shows freedom of religion or belief contributes to better economic and business outcomes, Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the LDS Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said.
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May 05, 2016 03:30 PM MDT
The Most Rev. Joseph Kurtz, visiting Salt Lake City at the invitation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, says the two faiths "stand together on issues that are good for America."
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May 03, 2016 06:00 PM MDT
Former Relief Society Stake President and Nevada resident Sandra Jolley was appointed to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)—a government organization dedicated to protecting international religious freedom.
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April 12, 2016 06:57 PM MDT
When the American Library Association published its list of the 10 Most Challenged Books in 2015, something unprecedented happened. Appearing on the list with titles like Fifty Shades of Grey was one sacred book all Christian families, including the Latter-day Saints, are familiar with: The Holy Bible.
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March 28, 2016 12:59 PM MDT
Understanding and civility are indispensable ingredients to bring an end to the culture wars that trouble our pluralistic nation. So said Elder Dallin H. Oaks Friday, March 25, 2016, at the Claremont Graduate School's conference, "Religious Freedom in the 21st Century."
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February 18, 2016 01:59 PM MST
The Church recently expressed concerns that new Utah legislation could upset the balance between religious liberty and LGBT rights in Utah.
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February 09, 2016 07:59 PM MST
"Understanding religion and religious freedom is essential to understanding world affairs,” Elder Oaks said in an address at Johns Hopkins. Elder Oaks then went on to challenge the claim that religion is the source of great atrocities, citing current and past events.
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February 09, 2016 02:45 PM MST
Check out this fascinating history of NASA from the article. I had no idea!
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February 01, 2016 05:20 PM MST
In 1989 through 1990, the government of Ghana banned all Latter-day Saint Church activities throughout the country. This freeze came as a result of misinformation and fear and left many Church members wondering if they could ever worship openly again.
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January 15, 2016 02:30 PM MST
Here are some great highlights from Dr. Daniel Mark, an Orthodox Jew and religious freedom expert who recently spoke in a standing-room-only lecture at BYU:
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December 08, 2015 05:31 PM MST
Recently, politicians and presidential candidates have been highlighted in the news for their controversial statements regarding the regulation of Muslims in the United States. Amidst this climate of debates, the Church reaffirmed the stance it has held on religious freedom from its foundation.
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October 22, 2015 04:33 PM MDT
Elder Dallin H. Oaks is making national news for his comment this week about Kim Davis, the county clerk in Kentucky who refused to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
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October 21, 2015 03:56 PM MDT
A Washington, D.C.-based organization has asked the University of Utah to stop the school’s football coaches from teaching an optional LDS religion class for players.
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October 21, 2015 01:30 PM MDT
MR says: For more from Elder Oaks on achieving balance and accommodation amidst cultural wars, read or view his full speechhere.
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October 07, 2015 06:18 PM MDT
Watch the newest music video from acclaimed violinist Jenny Oaks Baker which focuses on religious liberty and features a beautiful rendition of Paul McCartney's "Yesterday."
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September 23, 2015 08:45 PM MDT
MR says: Following Pope Francis' arrival in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, an LDS Senator began a series of eight speeches on what he described as the "vital subject" of religious liberty.
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September 18, 2015 05:44 PM MDT
MR says: For the first time, a General Authority asked students to send their questions, concerns, and experiences regarding difficult issues like gay rights to his personal Facebook page. The response was overwhelming!
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September 16, 2015 04:30 PM MDT
MR says: You won't want to miss this inspired counsel that helps Church members understand how they can champion religious freedom even while they respect the rights of others.
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August 08, 2015 02:15 PM MDT
MR says: An interesting finding. What would your answer have been?
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July 15, 2015 06:58 PM MDT
MR says: Check out this powerful video that explains how Latter-day Saints and members of other religions can defend their faith and preserve their religious freedom.
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January 28, 2015 09:04 PM MST
Following is a timeline of statements and actions from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints regarding religious freedom and nondiscrimination: 1835: A general assembly of the Church held in Kirtland, Ohio, on Aug. 17 unanimously adopts a declaration of belief regarding governments and laws: “We believe that religion is instituted of God; and that men are amenable to him, and to him only, for the exercise of it, unless their religious opinions prompt them to infringe upon the rights and liberties of others."
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