The Baptist Joint Committee is the only faith-based agency devoted solely to religious liberty and the institutional separation of church and state. Since 1936, the BJC has continuously provided reliable leadership on church-state issues as it leads coalitions of groups striving to protect both the free exercise of religion and to defend against its establishment by government. Read more.
Baptists value religious freedom and separation of church and state because we suffered the hard lessons of history. The Baptist commitment to religious liberty is centered on our freedom to worship without efforts by the government to advance or restrain religion. God has made us all free – free to say yes, free to say no, and free to make up our own minds about our spiritual destiny. The BJC believes that a threat to anyone’s religious liberty is a threat to everyone‘s liberty. Read more
The separation of church and state is a shorthand metaphor for expressing a deeper truth: religious liberty is best protected when church and state are institutionally separated and neither tries to perform or interfere with the mission and work of the other. It does not require a “segregation” of religion from public life, but it serves both religion clauses in the First Amendment, insisting upon no establishment of religion and ensuring the free exercise of religion. Read more
A follow up case to Trinity Lutheran may not be far off. It could be a school funding dispute in one of the many states that have chosen to protect against government support for religious education.
Labor Department staff charged with enforcing employment nondiscrimination rules for federal contracts were instructed Friday to “bear in mind” the religious objections of organizations and closely-held businesses.
Would a state constitutional amendment authorizing public schools to display the Ten Commandments settle the issue and bar litigation challenging the move? Not by a long shot.
We must all advocate for a more complete and inclusive understanding of religious liberty for people of all faith traditions and those who do not adhere to any religion.
For the second year in a row, President Donald Trump used the National Day of Prayer to unveil an Executive Order purporting to protect religious liberty that threatens to do the opposite.
BJC General Counsel Holly Hollman looks at the “travel ban” case heard by SCOTUS and its possible ruling implications.