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Church autonomy

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First Amendment

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Sacred Spheres: Religious Autonomy As An International Human Right, Diana V. Thomson, Kayla A. Toney May 2023

Sacred Spheres: Religious Autonomy As An International Human Right, Diana V. Thomson, Kayla A. Toney

Catholic University Law Review

How should courts resolve thorny human rights disputes that arise within religious groups? According to an emerging international consensus, they shouldn’t. When a case involves sensitive internal decisions by a religious organization, such as choosing who is qualified to teach the faith, courts are increasingly taking a hands-off approach. This global consensus has formed across international treaties, tribunals, and domestic courts in European and American nations. Every major human rights instrument and many international and domestic courts recognize that religious freedom must extend to religious communities, especially houses of worship and schools where believers gather to practice their faith and …