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Free to Worship

Post by: Rebecca Emmanuel

Hello Everyone! My Name is Becky Emmanuel, and I am currently a third-year law student at Regent University. This semester I have the privilege of doing research on restrictions of religious worship and gathering with a Canadian organization called Christian Legal Fellowship, CLF. CLF is a charitable association of legal professionals that aim to deepen their faith and include Biblical principles in the law. My research so far has been focused on how the federal appellate courts have treated restrictions on places of worship by states in the United States during the pandemic. Many of the cases have been from California, as the second wave of COVID-19 has been taking the lives of many. It has been interesting reading the opinions of the judges as they sort through the complication of health risks and the freedom of expression and association.

While researching this topic, I am reminded of my internship last summer with Jubilee Campaign. Jubilee Campaign is a non-profit that promotes human rights and religious liberty around the world. During my time working with Jubilee, I worked on reports for human rights issues like religious persecution going on in Nigeria, China, etc. It was humbling to see the level of commitment victims had in their religious beliefs, even to the point of death. The lock-down during the pandemic isolated religious groups and made them an easy target for persecution. Even though the severity of the issues with restrictions on religious worship in Canada and the U.S. might be different from other countries, the discriminatory restrictions still affect the freedom of expression, association, and religion that citizens are entitled to.

This post was written by a Center for Global Justice Student Staff member. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect those of Regent University, Regent Law School, or the Center for Global Justice.

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