Photo and Commentary ©2018 by Bev Riter
Sunday, January 21, 2018

Our U. S. Constitution‘s religious freedom amendment guarantees people to have a right to religious belief and expression and that the government will not prefer religion over non-religion or favor particular faiths over others. Not all people in the world have this protection. And…people in some countries now have religious freedom where in the past they didn’t.

My image, shown above, is one of 27 crosses in Prague’s Old Town Square (Czech Republic) that represents 27 noblemen who lost their lives in mass execution on June 21, 1621 because they didn’t have religious freedom. They were Protestants who refused to recognize the Catholic Hapsburg heir to the throne which resulted in Catholicism being imposed. The Thirty Years’ War against the Protestants was aimed at restoring Catholicism as the only religion in the empire. Many Protestants fled to other countries, fearing for their lives. This beheading ended Czech independence for over 300 years. (Note: The year 1621 was a century after Martin Luther took his historic stand against the Catholic Church and its teachings.) Even today, Christians and people of other faiths in some countries are being persecuted. We can be thankful we live in a country where we can worship as we choose.