Religious Freedom and the Churches: Contemporary Challenges in the United States Today
Studies in Christian Ethics, Vol. 32, Issue 4 (2019)
19 Pages Posted: 18 Jul 2019
Date Written: July 17, 2019
A crucial, but often overlooked, dimension of the human and constitutional right to religious freedom is the autonomy of religious institutions, associations, and societies with respect to matters of governance, doctrine, formation, and membership. Although the Supreme Court of the United States has affirmed this autonomy in the context of American constitutional law, it is vulnerable, and even under threat, for a variety of reasons, including a general decline in the health of civil society and mediating associations and a crisis of confidence and authority caused by clerical sexual abuse and churches' failure to respond to it.
Keywords: Religious freedom, Freedom of Religion, Religious liberty, pluralism, Freedom of association, Hosanna-Tabor, clergy abuse, First Amendment, Religion clauses, Ministerial exception, Secularism
JEL Classification: K10, K38, K30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation