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Freedom of Religion Is Inherent in Latter-day Saint Beliefs

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Everyone should have the privilege of worshipping God according to the dictates of their own conscience, however, wherever or whatever they choose. This is a strong belief and one of the fundamental tenets of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

In 1842 the Prophet Joseph Smith responded to a request from John Wentworth, editor of the Chicago Democrat, with a list of thirteen points summarizing the basic beliefs of the Latter-day Saints. Later titled 'Articles of Faith', they were first published in the Nauvoo Times and Seasons in March 1842. They are now regarded as scripture in the church. The Eleventh of these states, “We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.”

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Professional broadcaster and director of public affairs for the Church in Edmonton, Alberta, Eileen Bell is one of the organizers of the Interfaith Religious Freedom Community Conversation on March 18, 2017, to which all are invited at 9010 85 Street N.W., one of the Church’s buildings in Edmonton.

“Muslims, Jews, Christians and [people of] other faiths will be talking about supporting all of God’s children and our rights to worship and express our beliefs, which rights we are granted by law,” says Bell.

“Faith groups in today’s world face opposition on a lot of fronts, and some issues are more serious than others. By serving together for purposes of common good, we get to know each other better,” continues Bell. “We all benefit from the richness of the different faiths we celebrate. We find out that the differences can strengthen us, not divide us.”

The freedom to assemble and worship as we choose is a constitutionally protected right granted under section 2 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which states:

“Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:

  • (a) freedom of conscience and religion;

  • (b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;

  • (c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and

  • (d) freedom of association.”

Links: Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints