This January 16, we again celebrate the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, written by Thomas Jefferson and passed by the Virginia General Assembly 233 years ago on January 16, 1786. In doing so, we commemorate the role religious freedom has played in the founding of our nation and continues to play in our society today.
While it has long been woven throughout the fabric of American life, religious freedom is not merely our right, but an inherent human right for all people everywhere. This leads us to protect it at home and abroad – and to recognize the inextricable link between the two. If we fail to protect it at home, we will be unable to protect it abroad.
Join us this Religious Freedom Day as we celebrate religious freedom here in the United States and highlight current efforts to share it around the world.