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About Religious Liberty

"At the very heart of human freedom is the right to religious freedom, since it deals with man’s most fundamental relationship: his relationship with God." - Pope John Paul II, Address to Diplomats, January 2005

Religious Liberty at USCCB


Faith in the Public Square

We affirm our religious liberty, which is guaranteed in both the U.S. Constitution and the California state constitution.

Download a backgrounder on Faith in the Public Square

August 20, 2015 Faith in the Public Square

Do Catholic schools have the right to insist that teachers they hire help promote the Church’s mission and refrain from contradicting Catholic teachings in the classroom and in their public actions?

March 24, 2015 Faith in the Public Square

A case that could impact Catholic and other religious institutions and non-profit organizations in California and throughout the country is now before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in Denver.  Oral arguments were heard on Dec. 8, 2014.

August 13, 2014 Faith in the Public Square

Escalating violence in northern and central Iraq has caused devastation and mass displacement of 1.2 million people since January. Fear looms as the Islamic State of Iraq and greater Syria (ISIS) has taken control of large swaths of the Ninewa, Salah Al-Din and Diyala provinces.

(This article is re-posted from CRS website detailing unfolding emergencies throughout the world.  Please visit for more information on Iraq, Gaza, Africa and other areas.)

June 30, 2014 Faith in the Public Square

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Supreme Court's decision today in favor of Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties means "justice has prevailed," said Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. bishops' Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty. The Court ruled that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) "preventive services" mandate violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) as applied to these employers to the extent that it would have forced them to provide insurance coverage for drugs and devices that violate their religious convictions on respect for human life. The statement follows:

Faith in the Public Square

During his recent speech to Congress on September 24, Pope Francis paid special tribute to the contributions of four great Americans – two Catholics, Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton, and two non-Catholics, Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In this final installment, we examine the life and legacy of the great civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.