US Observes January 16 as Religious Freedom Day (Download PDF)

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Since 1993, by Presidential Proclamation, January 16 is declared Religious Freedom Day in United States. Its aim is to promote and protect student’s religious expression rights by informing educators, parents, and students about their liberties.

Religious Freedom Day - January 16th

Religious Freedom Day - January 16th

Religious Freedom Day - January 16th

About Religious Freedom Day

  • Observed by: United States of America
  • Related to: National Day of Prayer, Thanksgiving
  • January 16 is declared Religious Freedom Day in the US.
  • Obama urged the country’s citizens to reject politics that seeks to target people because of their religion.
  • Religious liberty is a “cornerstone” of American life and a universal and invaluable right.
  • The day marks the anniversary of the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, a key development of church-state relations in the United States.

About Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom

Jefferson's tombstone, Declaration of American Independence

Jefferson’s Tombstone, Declaration of American Independence

Jefferson’s tombstone, Declaration of American Independence

  • The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was drafted in 1777 by Thomas Jefferson in the city of Fredericksburg, Virginia.
  • On January 16, 1786, the Assembly enacted the statute into the state’s law.
  • The statute disestablished the Church of England in Virginia and guaranteed freedom of religion to people of all religious faiths, including Catholics and Jews as well as members of all Protestant denominations.

About Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson was an American Founding Father who was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence. He later served as the third President of the United States from 1801 to 1809.

Thomas Jefferson: U.S. Vice President, U.S. Governor

Thomas Jefferson: U. S. Vice President, U. S. Governor

Thomas Jefferson: U. S. Vice President, U. S. Governor

- Published/Last Modified on: March 17, 2017

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