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The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law

Religion Law

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Articles 1 - 30 of 93

Full-Text Articles in Law

Church And State And Child Endangerment, Raymond C. O'Brien Jan 2020

Church And State And Child Endangerment, Raymond C. O'Brien

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

As media in the United States revealed the number of minors sexually abused by clergy, the gravity of the offenses, and the inability to prosecute the offenders, a second offense was revealed. Gradually it was illustrated that bishops and their diocesan administrators knew of credible sexual crimes against children committed by clergy and they responded by protecting offenders, ignoring victims, and knowingly reassigning credibly accused clergy to other placements where they could endanger additional minors. In response to these developments the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops published policies to protect children, enacted norms to be followed in each diocese ...


At The Intersection Of Due Process And Equal Protection: Expanding The Range Of Protected Interests, Vincent J. Samar Mar 2019

At The Intersection Of Due Process And Equal Protection: Expanding The Range Of Protected Interests, Vincent J. Samar

Catholic University Law Review

Are the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses interconnected? Justice Kennedy in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court case holding the fundamental right to marry includes the right to a same-sex marriage, stated that they are profoundly connected in that each clause “may be instructive as to the meaning and reach of the other.” But exactly what instruction each doctrine might afford the other, Justice Kennedy did not say. An earlier Supreme Court decision, Plyler v. Doe, also suggested a connection, when the Court held unconstitutional a Texas statute baring funding for the education of undocumented children. But there too ...


The Religious Roots Of The Progressive Income Tax In America, Joshua Cutler Jan 2019

The Religious Roots Of The Progressive Income Tax In America, Joshua Cutler

Catholic University Law Review

I examine the debate over the first peacetime income tax in the United States in 1894 to investigate the role of religion in enacting the tax and providing moral legitimacy. I find that congressional proponents repeatedly and explicitly argued that a progressive income tax was a biblical tax that best conformed to Judeo-Christian teachings on economics and fundraising. I discuss the history of American religious fundraising practices, including the trend leading up to 1894 that advocated for proportionate giving of income as the best method of giving, as well as the related tithing movement. I document that congressional income tax ...


Introduction: The Future Of Religious Liberty In America, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2019

Introduction: The Future Of Religious Liberty In America, Mark L. Rienzi

Catholic University Law Review

No abstract provided.


Recognizing Anti-Zionism As An Attack On Jewish Identity, Alyza D. Lewin Jan 2019

Recognizing Anti-Zionism As An Attack On Jewish Identity, Alyza D. Lewin

Catholic University Law Review

This article answers the false assertion that Zionism is nothing more than a political movement that should be abandoned by Jewish students on American university campuses. Yearning for the Land of Israel and Jerusalem is, in fact, a deep spiritual integral part of Jewish identity. It dates back 3000 years to Biblical times. The connection of Jews to Zion is a key component of Jews' shared ancestry and ethnicity and has persisted throughout Jewish history. This dedication is demonstrated today by the custom that concludes a Jewish wedding ceremony and by the declaration ending the Passover Seder. Harassment of students ...


A Hollow History Test: Why Establishment Clause Cases Should Not Be Decided Through Comparisons With Historical Practices, Alex J. Luchenitser, Sarah R. Goetz Jan 2019

A Hollow History Test: Why Establishment Clause Cases Should Not Be Decided Through Comparisons With Historical Practices, Alex J. Luchenitser, Sarah R. Goetz

Catholic University Law Review

Some judges, scholars, and advocates have criticized the Supreme Court’s Establishment Clause jurisprudence, arguing that existing Establishment Clause tests give courts too little guidance and too much discretion, and calling on the Court to replace those tests with a test that compares challenged practices to long-standing historically accepted ones. But such a historical-practice test would be much more difficult to apply than the Court’s current jurisprudence and would engender greater confusion among lower courts than there is now.

That’s because there are very few long-standing historical practices that are legitimate candidates for serving as evidence of the ...


Mastering Masterpiece, Kristen K. Waggoner Jan 2019

Mastering Masterpiece, Kristen K. Waggoner

Catholic University Law Review

Religious freedom ensures that every person has the right to explore life’s deepest questions and to live out their religious convictions in public life. Free speech similarly ensures that all have the liberty to express their views and pursue truth without fear of government punishment. Free exercise of religion and free speech are durable rights that do not turn on cultural popularity or political power; these freedoms enable us to coexist peacefully with each other despite deep differences. Yet these freedoms are being sorely tested today by government efforts to suppress the rights of creative professionals—painters, filmmakers, printers ...


Administrative Power And Religious Liberty At The Supreme Court, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2019

Administrative Power And Religious Liberty At The Supreme Court, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

The Supreme Court has recently seen an increase in the number of religious exercise cases in which the conflict was caused by an act of administrative power, rather than an act of legislative power. There are probably several reasons for this increase, including the growth, size, and flexibility of the administrative state, political convenience, and the fact that administrators tend to be specialists who may be unaware of or undervalue competing interests like religious liberty.

While the sheer size, reach, flexibility, and specialization of the administrative state means we will likely continue to see more religious exercise conflicts caused by ...


Religious Organizations As Partners In The Global And Local Fight Against Human Trafficking, Mary Graw Leary Jan 2018

Religious Organizations As Partners In The Global And Local Fight Against Human Trafficking, Mary Graw Leary

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

This paper explores the role of religious organizations as effective partners in the fight to end modern day slavery. As a crime with both global and local dimensions, trafficking must be combatted with tools that are both global and local. Such tools include the world’s religions and religious organizations. They have been addressing human trafficking for decades, and through their work with the poor, immigrants, and sexually exploited, they possess significant knowledge of the manifestations of this form of exploitation and can be important stakeholders in combating it. The paper concludes by offering several recommendations for how policymakers can ...


Constitutional Anomalies Or As-Applied Challenges? A Defense Of Religious Exemptions, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2018

Constitutional Anomalies Or As-Applied Challenges? A Defense Of Religious Exemptions, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

In the wake of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby and now in anticipation of Craig v. Masterpiece Cakeshop, Inc., the notion that religious exemptions are dangerously out of step with norms of Constitutional jurisprudence has taken on a renewed popularity. Critics increasingly claim that religious exemptions, such as those available prior to Employment Division v. Smith and now available under the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), are a threat to basic fairness, equality, and the rule of law. Under this view, exemptions create an anomalous private right to ignore laws that everyone else must obey, and such a scheme will ...


Tears In Heaven: Religiously And Culturally Sensitive Laws For Preventing The Next Pandemic, Eloisa C. Rodriguez-Dod, Aileen Maria Marty, Elena Maria Marty-Nelson Jan 2017

Tears In Heaven: Religiously And Culturally Sensitive Laws For Preventing The Next Pandemic, Eloisa C. Rodriguez-Dod, Aileen Maria Marty, Elena Maria Marty-Nelson

Catholic University Law Review

This Article argues that laws created to curtail the spread of deadly contagious diseases need to be drafted and implemented in ways that maximize acceptance of an affected communities’ cultural and religious beliefs. When laws are put in place that are inconsistent with community mores, the overall goal of stopping an epidemic is threatened. Communities often distrust government and other relief organizations who mandate rules and regulations that impinge their religious and cultural beliefs; thus, these regulations geared at helping communities can paradoxically undermine the goal of preventing the spread of infectious disease.

This Article focuses on the need for ...


Exceptionalism Unbound: Appraising American Resistance To Foreign Law, Mark C. Rahdert Jun 2016

Exceptionalism Unbound: Appraising American Resistance To Foreign Law, Mark C. Rahdert

Catholic University Law Review

In a statewide referendum, voters approved a change to the Oklahoma state constitution, adopting restrictions on state judges’ ability to use of foreign law. Dubbed the “Save Our State” (“SOS”) Amendment, the measure forbade Oklahoma state judges from considering or using international or foreign law, except where required to do so by federal statutes or treaties. The SOS Amendment particularly prohibited the use of Sharia law. Similar measures (usually without specific references to Sharia law) have been proposed or adopted elsewhere.

These Amendments, as well as other developments in American politics, reflect a vigorous new strain of a deep-seated tendency ...


At The Intersection Of Religious Organization Missions And Employment Laws: The Case Of Minister Employment Suits, Jarod S. Gonzalez Mar 2016

At The Intersection Of Religious Organization Missions And Employment Laws: The Case Of Minister Employment Suits, Jarod S. Gonzalez

Catholic University Law Review

Reviewing the intersection of a religious organization’s right to select employees based on their goals and mission and modern employment law, this article argues that the analysis of the ministerial exception will depend on the type of suit brought. Specifically, the Article identifies five analytical categories: (1) employment discrimination/employment retaliation claims; (2) breach of employment contract claims; (3) whistleblower claims; (4) tort claims; and (5) miscellaneous claims.

The Article begins by describing the ministerial exception and ecclesiastical abstention doctrines that exist under the First Amendment through the lens of the Supreme Court’s decision in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran ...


Fool Me Twice: Zubik V. Burwell And The Perils Of Judicial Faith In Government Claims, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2016

Fool Me Twice: Zubik V. Burwell And The Perils Of Judicial Faith In Government Claims, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

This article proceeds in three parts. Part I examines the three government concessions that made the Supreme Court’s Zubik decision possible and how those concessions ultimately revealed that it is possible to protect both contraceptive access and religious liberty. Part II discusses how the circuit courts were brought to emphatically adopt positions the government would ultimately abandon under the slightest pressure. Part III concludes with some key lessons lower courts should take from Zubik to better protect the integrity of both the court system and religious-liberty laws.


Two Aspects Of Liberty, John H. Garvey Jan 2016

Two Aspects Of Liberty, John H. Garvey

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Liberty in the constitutional sense is always a right against state interference (a “freedom from”). The First Amendment begins by saying that “Congress shall make no law”; it forbids Congress to license or fine or jail people for speaking, or publishing, or assembling. Liberty is also, always, a right to do something (a “freedom to”): to speak, to assemble, to practice religion, to get married, etc. So “freedom from” and “freedom to” are always parts of the same idea, just as “flying from” and “flying to” are aspects of the same airplane trip. Freedom is always the right to do ...


Laudato Si’ And Care For Our Common Home: What Does It Mean For The Legal Profession?, Lucia A. Silecchia Jan 2016

Laudato Si’ And Care For Our Common Home: What Does It Mean For The Legal Profession?, Lucia A. Silecchia

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Pope Francis’s recent encyclical, Laudato Si’ (“Praised Be You”), has been one of the most widely anticipated papal documents in recent memory. It has also received far more popular commentary than would be expected of a papal encyclical. Yet, while Laudato Si’ has been widely dubbed “the climate change” encyclical, it is far broader than that. It is also a far-reaching analysis of a number of political, economic, social and legal issues, in addition to being an extensive exposition on human duties toward creation.

In the text of this encyclical, there are also some important lessons to be gleaned ...


“Social Love” As A Vision For Environmental Law: Laudato Si’ And The Rule Of Law, Lucia A. Silecchia Jan 2016

“Social Love” As A Vision For Environmental Law: Laudato Si’ And The Rule Of Law, Lucia A. Silecchia

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

In the years of his still-young papacy, Pope Francis has often spoken and written about ecological responsibility, addressing both the Catholic and global communities in his exhortations on environmental matters. In June of 2015, he released his most extensive exposition on these issues in his encyclical letter, Laudato Si: On Care for Our Common Home.In this wide-ranging encyclical, Pope Francis expressed a fascinating paradox with respect to law and ecology. On the one hand, Laudato Si’ contains a stunningly enthusiastic endorsement of a strong local, national and, in particular, international legal system empowered to impose strict environmental and economic ...


The Catholic Law School & Constitutional Self-Government, The Honorable Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain Feb 2015

The Catholic Law School & Constitutional Self-Government, The Honorable Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain

Catholic University Law Review

Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain serves as a Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. This talk was delivered at the Columbus School of Law, The Catholic University of America on September 15, 2014 for the 2014 Brendan F. Brown Lecture and has been adapted and updated for this article format.


Pope Francis And The Vocation Of The Lawyer: Reflections On Service And Responsibility, Lucia A. Silecchia Jan 2015

Pope Francis And The Vocation Of The Lawyer: Reflections On Service And Responsibility, Lucia A. Silecchia

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Through the years, Catholic lawyers have had many opportunities and invitations to reflect on their profession as a vocation due to the guidance that can be found in Sacred Scripture, the examples of saints who were themselves members of the legal profession, the teachings of church leaders, and the insights of religious writers on the vocation of the lawyer, to name but a few.

More recently, Pope Francis has also offered guidance as to what a life in the law might mean and what might characterize the vocation to practice law today. This guidance is not to be found in ...


Substantive Due Process As A Two-Way Street: How The Court Can Reconcile Same-Sex Marriage And Religious Liberty, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2015

Substantive Due Process As A Two-Way Street: How The Court Can Reconcile Same-Sex Marriage And Religious Liberty, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Last month, the potential conflict between same-sex marriage and religious liberty prompted death threats, arson threats, and the temporary closure of a small-town pizzeria in Indiana. The restaurant’s owner had admitted to a reporter that she could not cater a hypothetical same-sex wedding because of her religious beliefs (even though she otherwise serves gay customers in her restaurant). Threatened with violence over her unpopular religious belief, the owner was forced to close the restaurant, uncertain if she could ever reopen.

Leading up to oral argument in the same-sex marriage cases, it was reasonable to wonder whether the Indiana episode ...


Rluipa: Re-Aligning Burdens Of Proof, Clarifying Freedoms, And Re-Defining Responsibilities, George P. Smith Ii, Philip M. Donoho Jan 2015

Rluipa: Re-Aligning Burdens Of Proof, Clarifying Freedoms, And Re-Defining Responsibilities, George P. Smith Ii, Philip M. Donoho

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Into the breach primed by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Employment Division Department of Human Resources v. Smith in 1990, Congress plunged headlong, dragging along with it a judiciary charged with enforcement of a mandate only defined ambiguously. Thus, in 2004 the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) was passed and heralded as a legislative sum certain — a “clear” articulation of Congress’ balancing of local zoning prerogative with idiosyncratic religious use. It has proved anything but; for, since its passage, the results of litigation have remained resolutely immune to coherent explanation, as the Federal Circuit ...


“A Witness First Lives The Life He Proposes:” Evangelization And The Catholic Lawyer, Lucia A. Silecchia Jan 2015

“A Witness First Lives The Life He Proposes:” Evangelization And The Catholic Lawyer, Lucia A. Silecchia

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

This essay was presented at the lecture for legal professionals in Baltimore, Maryland, on May 21, 2015. The roots of the word evangelization are, literally, in the words that mean “to bring good news.” We live in a world that craves good news and, by virtue of our Baptism, all of us – lawyers included – are called to bring good news to a world that, despite all appearances to the contrary, aches for good news and deeply yearns to know the God from whom all good news comes, and to whom all good news leads. I am convinced that there is ...


Neutral No More: Secondary Effects Analysis And The Quiet Demise Of The Content-Neutrality Test, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2013

Neutral No More: Secondary Effects Analysis And The Quiet Demise Of The Content-Neutrality Test, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

When the Supreme Court introduced the “secondary effects” doctrine to allow for zoning of adult businesses, critics fell into two camps. Some, like Justice Brennan, predicted dire consequences for the First Amendment, particularly if the doctrine were used in political speech cases. Others, like Professor Laurence Tribe, predicted secondary effects analysis would be limited to sexually explicit speech, and would not threaten the First Amendment. The modern consensus is that the doctrine has, in fact, been limited to cases about sex.

Recent cases demonstrate, however, that the impact of the secondary effects doctrine on the First Amendment has been broader ...


God And The Profits: Is There Religious Liberty For Money-Makers?, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2013

God And The Profits: Is There Religious Liberty For Money-Makers?, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Is there a religious way to pump gas, sell groceries, or advertise for a craft store? Litigation over the HHS contraceptive mandate has raised the question whether a for-profit business and its owner can engage in religious exercise under federal law. The federal government has argued, and some courts have found, that the activities of a profit-making business are ineligible for religious freedom protection.

This article offers a comprehensive look at the relationship between profit-making and religious liberty, arguing that the act of earning money does not preclude profit-making businesses and their owners from engaging in protected religious exercise.

Many ...


On "Unease" And "Idealism": Reflections On Pope Benedict Xvi's Educating Young People In Justice And Peace And Its Message For Law Teachers, Lucia A. Silecchia Jan 2013

On "Unease" And "Idealism": Reflections On Pope Benedict Xvi's Educating Young People In Justice And Peace And Its Message For Law Teachers, Lucia A. Silecchia

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Pope Benedict XVI recently wrote about the challenges facing those who have the responsibility for the education of the next generation. His insights, expressed last year, were addressed not simply to a Catholic audience but to all who look to the future and see the obligation to train young people "in justice and peace" to be a noble vocation and one solution to some of the difficulties that face the modern world. Although it was not directed to, or intended primarily for, law professors, the document has much to say to those whose vocation lies in legal education. This essay ...


Unequal Treatment Of Religious Exercises Under Rfra: Explaining The Outliers In The Hhs Mandate Cases, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2013

Unequal Treatment Of Religious Exercises Under Rfra: Explaining The Outliers In The Hhs Mandate Cases, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Ongoing conflict over the contraceptive mandate promulgated by the Department of Health and Human Services ("HHS") has resulted in more than two dozen lawsuits by profit-making businesses and their owners seeking protection under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act ("RFRA"). To date, the businesses and their owners are winning handily, having obtained preliminary relief in seventeen of the cases, and being denied relief in only six. Last month, in fact, a panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals took the extraordinary step of reconsidering and reversing its own prior ruling and granting a preliminary injunction to a business seeking ...


Family Law's Challenge To Religious Liberty, Raymond C. O'Brien Jan 2012

Family Law's Challenge To Religious Liberty, Raymond C. O'Brien

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

This Article argues that challenges made to family law structures have provoked a significant reaction from persons and religious organizations advocating a distinctive worldview based on religious and historical values. Additionally, as family law changes from being a product of a religioushistorical worldview to being a product of private-ordering, the religious liberty of worldview adherents has been challenged. The struggle is apparent in the debates during the 2012 presidential election and is evidenced in government mandates that include, among other requirements, that employersincluding religious organizations-provide insurance coverage for employees that include contraception. Although many aspects of family law have been ...


The Constitutional Right Not To Kill, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2012

The Constitutional Right Not To Kill, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Federal and state governments participate in and/or permit a variety of different types of killings. These include military operations, capital punishment, assisted suicide, abortion and self-defense or defense of others. In a pluralistic society, it is no surprise that there will be some members of the population who refuse to participate in some or all of these types of killings. The question of how governments should treat such refusals is older than the Republic itself. Since colonial times, the answer to this question has been driven largely by statutory protections, with the Constitution playing a smaller role, particularly since ...


A Standard For Salvation: Evaluating “Hybrid-Rights” Free-Exercise Claims, William J. Haun Jan 2011

A Standard For Salvation: Evaluating “Hybrid-Rights” Free-Exercise Claims, William J. Haun

Catholic University Law Review

No abstract provided.


The Constitutional Right Not To Participate In Abortions: Roe, Casey, And The Fourteenth Amendment Rights Of Healthcare Providers, Mark L. Rienzi Jan 2011

The Constitutional Right Not To Participate In Abortions: Roe, Casey, And The Fourteenth Amendment Rights Of Healthcare Providers, Mark L. Rienzi

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

The Fourteenth Amendment rights of various parties in the abortion context – the pregnant woman, the fetus, the fetus’ father, the state – have been discussed at length by commentators and the courts. Surprisingly, the Fourteenth Amendment rights of the healthcare provider asked to provide the abortion have not. Roe and Casey establish a pregnant woman’s Fourteenth Amendment right to decide for herself whether to have an abortion. Do those same precedents also protect her doctor’s right to decide whether to participate in abortion procedures?

The Court’s substantive due process analysis typically looks for rights that are “deeply rooted ...