Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
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9/18/11  3:38 pm
Commenter: Taylor K. Hughes

Preserve Religious Freedom in Virginia and America

I am told by my religious authorities that on April 20, the State Board of Social Services correctly upheld the fundamental right of faith-based agencies to continue their great work without governmental intrusion into the practice of their faith. This is very good.

Faith-based agencies have a right, under federal and state law, to make decisions that are consistent with their religious beliefs, including their beliefs about marriage and family life. This right must be respected and preserved.  To do otherwise would be to violate our rights as God-loving and God-fearing Americans as the original Founding Fathers intended.

Many birthparents and prospective adoptive parents (like me and my wife) hold these beliefs as well, and they and we have every right to work with agencies that share their and our values.

Forcing agencies and individuals to choose between following their own values or following the law would be an unprecedented violation of religious freedom in Virginia. As I implied and expressed above, religious liberty is foundational to our Commonwealth and our Country.  It must be respected. 

Faith-based agencies provide vital services to our communities. They must be allowed to continue the great work they are doing.  Their right to exist and act peacefully, morally, loyally and freely according to their beliefs must be honored.

CommentID: 18536