Religious Freedom Conference
in Tempe, Arizona January 2017
First of all, for the very best resource to find out:
– What is religious freedom?
– Why is religious freedom important?
– How do I stand up for religious freedom?
Go to this Religious Freedom website. It is very well done and applies to people of all faiths, nationalities and orientations.
Von G. Keetch, the first speaker, spoke about Johnny, the volunteer fire fighter to stay in his assigned area with fire hose ready. He was to blast the fire, when it came to him, instead of go to the fire (where other fighters were assigned) and keep the sparks from spreading the fire to neighboring warehouses. This analogy applies to standing up for religious freedom. We can defend our rights better as a whole if we each stay were we live and speak up for religious freedom as concerns come into our current social circles, work place, or community.
My notes read: The constitution was crafted amid differences of opinion, requiring balanced compromise. The hard work of citizenship is to use the process of government in defense of our human rights.
Long gone are the days when we can just keep our focus on our own families. The apostles of the Lord issue a clarion call. It is as in the times of Captain Moroni. We must run to the title of liberty!
Take stock of your talents and current activities. Be prayerful. Seek the Holy Ghost. Lift where you stand. (There are wonderful articles about this HERE.)
Here are some ideas I wrote down from his talk:
– Teach the kids about religious freedom
– Stay involved in committees and boards so that I can defend religious freedom when issues arise in these community circles.
– There are articles about religious freedom in every Ensign magazine over the last couple of years. (I didn’t know that!)
– Clip newspaper articles that relate to religious freedom issues and talk about them with the kids.
– Ask the kids what they notice at school.
– Attend religious freedom events.
– Write to elected officials.
Next, there was a panel that was great. They demonstrated every day issues with and ways to stand up for FAIRNESS FOR ALL all around us.
– Be willing to listen.
– Speak from the heart.
– Don’t compromise your beliefs. They are your human right – as well as everyone else’s right.
– Be an example of a believer of Jesus Christ, who was a perfect example of how to handle difficult situations.
– Refuse to be silenced.
– Be the kindest neighbor.
– Love everyone.
– Defend ALL faith’s religious rights.
– The Lord will qualify each of us.
The final speaker was Elder Dallin H. Oaks. He spoke of how moral agency is the basis of humanity. It is that each can choose what he will believe and do in his life. The Plan of Salvation depends on religious freedom because it depends on each person being able to choose FOR HIMSELF. This is fundamental so that each human can be accountable for their own actions and not blame them on others.
We live in the world and not of it. Jesus said that we are the leaven, lifting the mass.
Religious Freedom is like a two sided coin. One side is love and tolerance for all people. The other side is truth. We can’t have religious freedom without both sides. THIS ALLOWS for FREEDOM FOR ALL.
We have a long path ahead of us, which will require patience and vigilance.
You can read much more about this subject, including talks by all three of these men on this same subject. I recommend it. I have watched many youtube videos and read many articles on religious freedom. I believe in Fairness for All. I want to stand for this basic human right wherever I am.
We are in this together. 🙂