The Protestant Transition to Religious Liberty

That traditional Christian doctrine and morality curtails freedom has been a common theme in the ongoing controversy concerning religion and society in the western world. This is being challenged by a new initiative of the Religious Freedom Project at Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion Peace and World Affairs.

An initial symposium on the project was held Friday, December 14, at Georgetown University. In the first of two panels, moderator Timothy Samuel Shah, Associate Director of the Religious Freedom Project , indicated a common assumption by both liberal and conservative theorists is that the “Christian and liberal traditions are at odds.” But panelists showed that religious freedom has roots in ancient and even medieval Christianity, and indeed, the very concept of religious liberty first appears in history with the development of pre-Enlightenment Christianity.

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