This Is A Serious Attack on Religious Freedom

Bishop Thomas Tobin

Bishop Thomas Tobin

War Monument Cross is to Religious For Atheist Group

by Dee DeQuattro:  Bishop Thomas Tobin says the challenge to the war monument that features a cross in Woonsocket by a Wisconsin atheist group is a “serious attack on religious expression and religious freedom” and that the atheists are bullying those who have faith.

“The majority now is being bullied by the minority, by the atheists and by the secularists and we feel like we are on the defensive, we are being bullied and that is not a good feeling to have,” Tobin told WPRO’s John DePetro.

“We are seeing a slow but steady erosion of a basic American value and that is the freedom of religious expression,” said Bishop Tobin. Tobin said the cross should not be taken down but he is open to relocating it to an area of more prominence where it will not be an “issue.” Mayor Leo Fontaine of Woonsocket said he is looking at spaces on private land that the monument could be relocated to if necessary. A rally scheduled for next Wednesday May, 2 at 4:30 p.m. at the monument aims to urge the city to keep the monument where it is.

Tobin told John DePetro that religion is everywhere in American society and various faiths are represented. He said that it is impossible for someone “offended” by the presence of religion to avoid it completely so they need to come to terms with it. “It is very hard to be immune to all that. If people are offended by that they have to deal with their issues,” said Tobin. “They cannot live in a bubble. They cannot isolate themselves completely from every religious expression in our nation, in our culture, in our society.”

Tobin said he does not believe the monument violates the separation of church and state despite accusations from the Freedom from Religion Foundation that the memorial is an egregious violation of the constitution. “This certainly has nothing to do with the separation of church and state. This is not the establishment of a denomination, it is not the establishment of a particular church by the state,” said Tobin, “this is a cultural symbol, this is a religious symbol that speaks to most of our people especially when it is dedicated to our war veterans I think it has a very special reverence.”

Tobin described a cross or a Star of David as a very basic expression of faith and said they are very natural symbols for U.S. citizens. Tobin said this challenge is a “very grave threat to our way of life as Americans and our freedom of religion.”

Tobin said that Rhode Islanders are in a battle for the cross and he hope that the cross will come out on top. “This whole debate about the cross is taking place during Easter season when we celebrate a victory of the cross, so, I think we need another victory of the cross in Woonsocket and I hope that will ultimately prevail,” said Tobin.

Dee DeQuattro | WPRO News




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7 comments to This Is A Serious Attack on Religious Freedom

  • karen lyons

    I have being bullied for my Faith, but never gave in to it; so it made my Faith stronger, it made me stronger, I love those who bullied me for this, most of all as it helped shape me as a person; to find, my way; in Faith, without having to hide my Faith. I can now speak out loud about my Faith; in thanks to my bullies. I Love them with all my heart, and they think the opposite, I pray for them from the bottom of my soul, they still matter to me. I love them and I pray; they know this. I am a free person in thanks to my Faith and Love of God. I am not ashamed of being bullied; I am glad I was bullied, I carried my bulling just like a cross, I accepted this defeat; for my Faith with all my heart. My Faith grew, what more can you ask for, than to have a stronger Faith. in public. Here your Faith reaches out to the whole World, in thanks to those bullies. I am a Roman Catholic and very very proud to be. Our Lady Appeared to me. Amen Carrie

  • Frank

    I see hollywood liberals and these wisconsin atheists attacking Christianity but you never see them attack islam??? hollywood liberals are afraid of muslims so they avoid any attacks or mention of islam (unless it’s in a good light) because of threats they received last time they even went near islam.

    I don’t see these atheists in dearborn michigan where mosques blast the “call to prayer” from huge loudspeakers on the outside of their mosques and it can be heard in neighboring cities and miles around whether you like it or not the words are very clear and the noise is quite loud.

    Why don’t we see atheist groups protesting the dearborn michigan mosques?? are the atheists just too afraid of muslims? well they should be because 4 Christians were arrested for handing out christian fliers by the muslim dearborn police.

    The atheists are either hypocrites or just cowards for their cause when they only go after religions they know won’t harm or kill them so their cause will always be a lost one when they are scared of islam and avoid them like the plague.

  • Rita

    You are so right Bill, the people in Wisconsin, should stay in Wisconsin if they don’t want to see it!!

  • FINALLY!!! Some common sense discussion on this subject of people wanting to remove crosses. Imagine if they had succeeded with something like this in Europe….we would have lost all the tradition and artwork!

    I really appreciate this article. Its worded in a way that appeals to the intellect and tolerance that is needed by others of our Christian faith!

    Julie G.

  • […] This Is A Serious Attack on Religious Freedom Posted in: Priests- USA   Tags: bishop, bishop thomas tobin, cross, king, mayor, monument, private, religion, thomas, wisconsin […]

  • Bill

    The good Bishop is actually right on this one. Nobody as asking the people practice any kind of religious rite. Just don’t go near the monument if it offends you.

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