Skip to main content

Obama Moves away from 'Freedom of Religion' toward 'Freedom of Worship'? Comments

Since the initially strong language on religious freedom used in President Obama's Cairo speech, presidential references to religious freedom have become rare, often replaced, at most, with references to freedom of worship. A purposeful change in language could mean a much narrower view of the right to religious freedom. Does this change of language indicate a change of policy? As Catholics, this is an area where we must remain vigilant. ... Continue Reading

111 - 120 of 144 Comments

  1. don
    4 years ago

    That Obamacare no one read and Harry Reid pushed through.
    you bunch of HYPOCRITES you are now going to personally pay for abortions.
    You say you believe in Heaven and Hel* then you better pack your firesuits and get ready to explain to the GOD you worship.

  2. fb0252
    4 years ago

    this is new. what is this heresy "freedom of religion"? Inquisition, anyone?

  3. Paul Raffile
    4 years ago

    The "tipping point" for Notre Dame occured 14 months ago, when they gave Obama an Honorary Degree. And still they refuse to

    Shame on those who lead Notre Dame.

  4. Joel Weymouth
    4 years ago

    Freedom of Religion is not the same as freedom of worship. Worship suggests a private practice whereas religion is a public profession.

    First we saw this with the "demonizing" of proselyting. Of course you have some that are obnoxious in trying to convince someone about their faith: but in the end: if you are not interested, tell them to "get lost". True Christians have NEVER converted others by persecuting them or coercing them at the end of a bayonet.

    The next thing was that Christians could not declare that the wicked would be turned into hell. That Christianity was the only way. That was considered unenlightened.

    The next thing was that Christians could not express their outrage at immorality. That is judging others.

    The next thing secularists demand is that religion be confined to the church and in no way impose itself on others in any matter.

    What Obama is suggesting with Freedom of Worship is that Religion be private, almost secret. This is the same model that was practiced in the Soviet Union and is practiced in the PRC, Cuba, North Korea, etc.

    The Bible says that the wicked shall be turned into hell and ALL NATIONS THAT FORGOT GOD. America at one time was country that loved God and followed Him. It seems to have forgotten God.

    Our great and wonderful Country - is dead: And that is one of the greatest tragedies of the last 1000 years.

  5. Jack Blade
    4 years ago

    This is no surprise coming from Obama! When you look at his background, particularly his "religious" upbringing and then listen to his speeches about the subject closely. You will see that he has a very "humanist" type view on religion. Personally I do not believe he is actually a Christian, but merely believes in the general concept of religion from a humanist perspective. In other words he believes for example, that people are getting together in church to help each other and stay acquainted more as a social interest rather than as a spiritual exercise to worship Christ. Thus the actual belief in God,the Father, Son and Holy Ghost is not his forte! Whether he believes in the actual existence of God at all is a matter of debate? I do not believe he does, but believes more in the Darwinian concept of human origin rather than the Divine concept. This is not exclusive to Obama, but is a general belief amongst the majority of those on the extreme Left. The anti-religious, humanist elements in the Liberal party have made gains in power as well as political influence in recent times and it shows in their candidates and political icons religious beliefs or lack thereof! There is a push towards this more humanist view of religion, not just in the US, but worldwide! For example people who in the past would have been considered merely as devout or Traditional in their respective religons are now "labeled" by the Liberal media as "extremists"! They also infer that in general these religious extremists are somehow "dangerous"? This humanist view of religion is accompanied by a political element which has increasingly been beating the drum towards a one world government concept in which the individual's rights and freedoms should no longer be the "model" but rather the good of the "whole" is most important? While this type thinking may be packaged as some type of "new" way of thinking it really is not. Actually it's a rehash of Socialist/Communist thinking put into a global concept! Religion in the New World Order way of things is viewed as a destructive influence which divides us and is the cause of conflict and thus needs to be abolished! There are some on the extreme Left here in the US who would have done so if they had that power? Luckily for us, there is a document called the US Constitution which prevents this for the time being! However this does not mean that this could never happen since those same interests have even proposed either amending or doing away with the Constitution altogether? This would serve several purposes for the "one worlder's" first, it would remove US sovereignty which is seen as a major obstacle to a "one world government", secondly, it would also allow the abolishment of religion which is also seen as an obstacle to the "new" way of thinking! This "freedom of worship" language is troubling since China claims to allow freedom of worship? Which is true to a limited extent, but it is well known that Christians, including Catholics of course are persecuted in China? So if religious freedom diminishes here in the US and is replaced by the "freedom of worship" concept I fear it won't be long before Christians, particularly Catholics, are persecuted here as well? This scenario was predicted in the Bible in the Apocalypse of St.John where there would be a world government as well as a one world religion which would not be a Christian religion, but would be presided over by the Antichrist! The prophecies of St.Malachy predicted the line of Popes which would take place until the End! According to St.Malachy's prophecies the current Holy See is second to the last? There is of course much debate about the meaning of the prophecies, especially the last Pope? Some believe he will be an "antipope" and others believe he will be the last Pope and will guide the Church through the Tribulation? There are some who believe that Benedict XVI is the last Pope because in the prophecies the last "numbered" Pope (number 111) is Benedict XVI? Either way there has been a "falling away" from the Church as well as an increasingly accepted humanist belief in society which discounts the existence of God? The play is afoot and the preparations are beginning to take shape for the One World Government as well as a One World Religion with the Beast and False Prophet at the head! All one can do is hold fast to the Faith in Christ and pray for deliverance of our own souls as well as those who refuse to believe! Jesus said "all these things must come to pass" before His return! God Bless!

  6. don
    4 years ago

    Seeing as how the largest religious group that voted for Obama.
    Seeing as how this same group hollers about no abortion and killing babies.
    Seeing as how this group has it's support to the libs. and itself is liberal from the pulpit to the collection plates.
    I guess you Catholics don't have much of a gripe.
    What goes around comes around and you are going to get the Obama up yours.
    You deserve any and all.
    Vote Democrat
    Vote for destruction of the Republic.
    War in Afganistan and dead troops not being reported daily like Bush had to endure.

  7. Anthony Gill
    4 years ago

    My mistake in the previous comment. I thought it was written by Keith Fournier. It was actually written by Randy Sly. Again, it would be good to get Randy Sly on our podcast program.

  8. Anthony Gill
    4 years ago

    This is a very thoughtful article that highlights how very small changes in policy can have major implications in the life of everyday folks. I would have highlighted the fact that "freedom of religion" implies the ability of institutions -- such as the Catholic Church -- to pursue their own goals in society, whereas "freedom of worship" is basically an individual right. The difference here is huge because most individual religious worship is done in an institutional setting. Despite the popular saying that "my spirituality is a private thing to me," in reality religion is celebrated as a public expression for the vast, vast majority of people. Institutional freedom includes the right to manage one's own property as one sees fit and use it for purposes one deems necessary to forward the practice of one's faith. As the number of religious land use violations increases in society this becomes a major concern for people of all faiths.
    It would be great to get Deacon Fournier on our program Research on Religion ( to discuss this matter in depth as I am very interested in matters of religious liberty, having written a recent book on the topic. Prof. Anthony Gill
    Author of The Political Origins of Religious Liberty

  9. Mark
    4 years ago

    Give me a break. The Obama administration change in the use of language means nothing. Stop acting like a martyr, no one is persecuting you.

  10. Peter Goodman
    4 years ago

    As an Episcopalian, I was raised with the belief that the right of one to worship God as one see fit has been a fundamental aspect of our branch of Christianity. This holds true to me in regards to all religions for I am not the ultimate judge. I choose not to be a part of one religion or another for my reasons alone. My judgment from God will be for my beliefs and my sins. The Episcopal Church was created for a variety of reasons but most of which was to allow those did not believe in the papal power to express their faith without interference from Rome.
    When the left in the 1960s expressed śFreedom FROM religionŁ they used idealistic and legalistic concepts for their argument. Including the break from the church that Lutherans and Episcopalians as well as other religions followed, that was, they had the right to NOT to be ruled by Rome, or in their case NOT to believe in God.
    In this same time frame, the very same people who expressed distain for established religionsŁ and who would later sing songs about imagining there is no religion was in fact the ones who brought forth their ideology of the eastern philosophies and helped push the śnew Age: movement. This as well as the concept that there is not absolute powerŁ. Today, that seed sewn so long ago in rivalry to establishment now has brought forth a bitter fruit. The youth of that day are now the leaders of the Free WorldŁ today. They show absolute distain for not only religion, but human life, and rights of the individual as a whole.
    Yes Virginia, elections matter. Staying at home in Protest has led to such bramble bush type leaders like Obama. With his nomination of Elena Kagan for Supreme Court, it is becoming g clear that he has no intention of respecting religion, or for that matter worship. How much longer before worship becomes internal faith or an outright ban of religion all together? Our society must go through this tribulation for a variety of reasons, but most of which we must be purged of the extremity of the left AND the right in the political arena and fight as individuals and as a whole for morality, truth and freedom.
    Simply because one disagrees with policy makers on such factors as gun control, or other social issues should not be a reason why one does not vote. It is not only Catholicism under attack here. This is a clear and unmistakable assault upon the religious right and especially the Pro-Life crowd and Christians in particular. Regardless if you are Catholic, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Methodist, or any other, this is a clear shot across the bow of our combined faiths by those who hold hate within their hearts. Regardless of political affiliation, all of us must start vetting out the leaders we choose over their individual beliefs of the rights of everyone else, rather than elect someone because of affiliation or because one wishes to śbe a part of history and elect the first_______ president. Simply fill in the blank.
    Pray for this nation, because we WILL need it now!

Leave a Comment

Comments submitted must be civil, remain on-topic and not violate any laws including copyright. We reserve the right to delete any comments which are abusive, inappropriate or not constructive to the discussion.

Though we invite robust discussion, we reserve the right to not publish any comment which denigrates the human person, undermines marriage and the family, or advocates for positions which openly oppose the teaching of the Catholic Church.

This is a supervised forum and the Editors of Catholic Online retain the right to direct it.

We also reserve the right to block any commenter for repeated violations. Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.

We ask that you NOT post your comment more than once. Catholic Online is growing and our ability to review all comments sometimes results in a delay in their publication.

Send me important information from Catholic Online and it's partners. See Sample

Post Comment

Newsletter Sign Up

Saint of the Day

March 26 Saint of the Day

St. Margaret Clitherow
March 26: St. Margaret Clitherow was born in Middleton, England, in 1555, ... Read More