HHS Acts to Preserve Religious Freedom at Hospitals During Pandemic

Virginia Allen @Virginia_Allen5 

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services took two important steps Tuesday to protect religious freedom during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The agency’s Office for Civil Rights announced that patients at hospitals within the University of Maryland Medical System may receive visits by clergy amid the pandemic.

And, the office said, a medical student at Staten Island University Hospital in New York City may follow his religious belief by not shaving his beard despite having to wear a mask.  

“We can protect people’s physical safety and their spiritual and emotional well-being at the same time,” Roger Severino, director of the HHS Office for Civil Rights, said on a conference call with reporters Tuesday afternoon. “Those two things are not in tension and when we protect both, we actually protect the mental health as well as the physical health.” 

Religious liberty doesn’t cease to be a fundamental human right during a pandemic,” Ryan T. Anderson, a research fellow specializing in religious liberty at The Heritage Foundation, said in an email to The Daily Signal. “As these HHS resolutions demonstrate, we can combat COVID-19 and respect religious liberty.” 

Jerry Falwell Jr.: ‘No Question’ Evangelical Christian Support for Trump Is Up from 2016

Evangelical Christian support for President Donald Trump will be greater in 2020’s presidential election than in 2016, predicted Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University, sharing his comments on Tuesday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Tonight with host Matt Boyle.

Ninety percent of Evangelical Christians support Trump’s reelection, according to a recent Democracy Institute/Sunday Express poll. Boyle invited Falwell’s remarks on the poll’s findings.

Falwell replied, “There’s no question about it. The Evangelical support [for Trump] has strengthened. I have board members who travel. I have one board member who lost his legs in Vietnam. He travels from military base to military base, from church to church. He says everywhere he goes [he meets] people who were hesitant to vote for Trump in 2016, [but] Evangelicals are 100 percent behind him, now.”

Falwell continued, “I have pastors on my board to tell me the same thing. They can see the support. They can feel it.”

Falwell shared, “Every Evangelical I’ve run into at every major event has [told me], ‘We were hesitant. We thought you were a little nuts for supporting [Trump] in 2016, but we are 100 percent behind him, now.’ It doesn’t surprise me a bit. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was higher than 90 percent.”

Falwell highlighted the importance of Supreme Court nominations to Evangelical Christians. The Supreme Court is “one place the president can make a difference on social issues,” he said.

Sen. Hawley Blasts Supreme Court’s Bostock Decision, Urges Religious Conservatives to Reject Establishment GOP Deal

In a ringing 13-minute denunciation of the Supreme Court’s Bostock sex discrimination decision, the youngest man in the U.S. Senate urged America’s religious conservatives to demand a new “bargain” from Republican leaders as a condition for their future support.

“If this case makes anything clear, it is that the bargain that has been offered to religious conservatives for years now is a bad one, it’s time to reject it,” Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) declared on the Senate floor June 16.

“The bargain has never been explicitly articulated, but religious conservatives know what it is,” Hawley said. “The bargain is you go along with the party establishment, you support their policies and priorities, or just keep your mouth shut about it, and in return, the establishment will put some judges on the bench who supposedly will protect your constitutional rights to freedom of worship, to freedom of exercise.

“That’s what we’ve been told for years now, and we were told that we’re supposed to shut up while the party establishment focuses more on cutting taxes and handing out favors for corporations, multinational corporations who don’t share our values, who will not stand up for American principles, who are only too happy to ship American jobs overseas.

“But we’re supposed to say nothing about that, we’re supposed to keep our mouths shut, because maybe we’ll get a judge out of the deal.”

Hawley’s ire was sparked by the high court’s June 15 decision in the Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia case in which by a 6–3 vote, the justices said the 1964 Civil Rights Act’s bar against sex discrimination in hiring isn’t limited to biologically determined sex but also covers sexual orientation and gender identity (including gender change).

Article taken in part by Mark Tapscott    Epoch Times

Trump and Religious Freedom

PRESIDENT TRUMP SIGNS EXECUTIVE ORDER ON ADVANCING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to further protect religious freedom around the world. On behalf of the over two million members and supporters of the Faith & Freedom Coalition, we commend President Trump for making it absolutely clear that protecting religious freedom is a domestic and foreign policy priority.

The executive order outlines that the U.S. will budget at least $50 million per year for programs that advance international religious freedom. The White House will expand available economic tools to support our allies on religious freedom and address bad actors, whether by increasing religious freedom programming, realigning foreign assistance to better reflect country circumstances, restricting the issuance of visas, or deploying Global Magnitsky sanctions where appropriate. This order will also mandate more federal employees who work abroad to undergo training on international religious freedom.

“We are grateful to have a leader such as President Trump, who has made it so clear that he supports religious freedom and wants everyone to worship God freely,” said Timothy Head, executive director of the Faith & Freedom Coalition. “Our brothers and sisters are facing severe persecution around the world for their faith. Through this Executive Order, Trump is showing that he cares for the persecuted and is reaching out to protect and help them.”

In September 2019, President Donald J. Trump made history as the first American President to convene a meeting of global leaders at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to address International Religious Freedom.  The President was clear when he called upon “the nations of the world to end religious persecution.”  This Executive Order fully integrates the President’s vision – a vigorous defense of International Religious Freedom rights for all – into key aspects of United States foreign policy. Yet again, President Trump is taking a decisive action to keep his promise to people of faith around the world.

To learn more about the Faith & Freedom Coalition, visit ffcoalition.com/.