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Interview: George Weigel on Pope St. John Paul II and Religious Freedom

Witness to Hope: The Biography of John Paul II. Mr. Weigel is Distinguished Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, where he holds the William E. Simon Chair in Catholic Studies.


Faith, Reason, and the War Against Jihadism. What, in your view, would John Paul II advise in order to sharpen the focus of the Catholic-Muslim dialogue and push forward the religious freedom agenda?

In his 1995 address to the United Nations, John Paul II called religious freedom “the cornerstone of the structure of human rights and the foundation of every truly free society.” Here he is enunciating principles like those embraced by the American founders. You have written of the theological and philosophical foundations of Wojtyla’s defense of religious freedom (The Irony of Modern Catholic History, 150-51). How did those foundations differ in your view from those of James Madison and his colleagues?

How do you think John Paul II would respond to the decline of religious freedom in the West in the last several years? Would he be surprised or do you think he anticipated it? Would his prescription today be different than in 1979, or 1995?

https://www.religiousfreedominstitute.org/blog/pope-st-john-paul-ii-and-religious-freedom-an-interview-with-george-weigel

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