Government officials, religious leaders and public policy experts from across the nation discussed a host of topics including the new Health and Human Services mandate requiring religious organizations to provide health care coverage for contraceptives.
The day-long event featured discussions on issues ranging from contraceptive coverage under the Affordable Care Act to state laws requiring health care providers to perform procedures or provide services that are against their religious beliefs. Several Catholic organizations filed a lawsuit against the federal government this week, alleging that the Affordable Care Act violates their First Amendment rights.
Leaders representing the faith community talked about tactics for combating threats to religious freedom and rights of conscience in the U.S. and how to unite Americans of faith in these battles.
The event included a plan to launch "Religious Freedom Caucuses" in the 50 state legislatures.
Archbishop-designate of Baltimore William E. Lori, Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, will give a keynote address.
The National Religious Freedom Conference is hosted by the Ethics and Public Policy Center, which lists its priorities as "respect for the inherent dignity of the human person, individual freedom and responsibility, justice, the rule of law and limited government."