Freedom of Religion
Did you know that you have two Freedoms
granted by the First Amendment regarding Religion?
Pilgrims were called Separatists back in England because they wanted independence from the established Church of England. In 1620, they sailed the stormy Atlantic for 63 days on the tiny Mayflower, seeking freedom of religion in the New World.
The First Amendment contains two clauses about the Freedom of Religion. The first part is known as the Establishment Clause, and the second as the Free Exercise Clause.
The Establishment Clause prohibits the government from passing laws that will establish an official religion or preferring one religion over another. The courts have interpreted the establishment clause to accomplish the separation of church and state.
The Free Exercise Clause prohibits the government from interfering with a person’s practice of his or her religion. However, religious actions and rituals can be limited by civil and federal laws.
Religious freedom is an absolute right, and includes the right to practice any religion of one’s choice, or no religion at all, and to do this without government control.
Your rights to Freedom of Religion and the free exercise thereof means:
- The Freedom of Religion is an inalienable right.
- The First Amendment provides for the Freedom of Religion for all Americans.
- The Free Exercise Clause provides that government will neither control nor prohibit the free exercise of one’s religion.
- The government will remain neutral.