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  • Writer's pictureGarrett Fahy

The Government’s First Priority Post-Shutdown Must Be Advancing Religious Freedom

As the 2019 partial government shutdown ends, it’s a good time to reflect on government’s first priorities, what the federal government did right in 2018, and what it should do in 2019, now that it is reopened.

When thinking about Washington’s biggest priorities in 2018, several come to mind: Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation battle, Robert Mueller’s investigation, Andrew Brunson’s return to the United States. If we lost you with the last one, you’re not alone. Pastor Andrew Brunson may not be a household name, but for Americans concerned about rights of conscience and religious freedom, his harrowing story highlights one of the most important but underreported issues in 2018: the advance of international religious freedom.

After living in and serving the people of Turkey as a missionary for over 20 years, Pastor Brunson was arrested on trumped-up charges of aiding a coup attempt and held hostage for two years. His life-threatening nightmare ended in October when the Trump administration intervened and he was released and allowed to return to the United States. What would have happened under a different administration less committed to international religious freedom? Thankfully, we don’t have to speculate.

Though you wouldn’t know it from the mainstream media’s coverage of the administration, 2018 was a groundbreaking year for the cause of religious freedom, as senior administration officials made the plight of the religiously oppressed abroad a central plank of the administration’s foreign policy.... Read More on Western Journal

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