Patently, the rudiments of religion are responsible for shaping the world we live and enjoy today. The absence of religious tolerance that pushed colonists from Europe to the newly founded England colonies sprang from the belief, held by both Protestants and Catholics, that unity of religion must exist in any given society at a given time. The belief basically said that one religion must completely dominate a country for a peaceful time of actuality. This conviction rested on yet another belief that there was one absolute true religion and that it was the duty of the government to ensure the dominance of this unity, with force, in the interest of "saving the souls" of all people in the government's grasp. Opposition grew during this time against the supposed correct sense of religious unity.
Although this harsh view may shock modern-day anything-goes Americans it is a legitimate and understandable view when one remembers the Separatists previous experiences. The reason that the Separatists left England was so that they could create a perfectly unified church. This was the reason why they could not allow dissenters. The Separatist's strict policies created the need for dissenters to leave the Plymouth community and start their own communities. They also required that people of other denominations start their own communities.
Times are changing and America is no longer predominantly white, Christians. In order for America to remain the melting pot we are all so proud of, we must accommodate all beliefs. A separation between church and state is necessary if America wants to give all of its citizens their religious rights. The First Amendment gives its citizens the freedom of religion, not the freedom to only practice the beliefs instated by Christianity: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceable to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” (Amendment I, The Constitution of the United States of America) Although this amendment does not specifically state that the government can have no religious influence, it does state that no citizen’s religious practices should be regulated by the government. ... ... middle of paper ... ...First Amendment right of religious freedom applies not only to white, Christians, but to all ethnicities and religions.
The Contrasting Views of Roger Williams and John Winthrop People immigrated to America for many reasons, most people shared in the same ideas of going to the New World to start new lives away from England. Roger Williams and John Winthrop both joined in the Puritan dissent to New England, but while they were living in Boston, Massachusetts they did not agree on several matters. These two men had contrasting views when it came to Christianity, separating from the Church of England and religious liberty. First, Roger Williams does not believe that Christianity was the only religion of God. He believes that God created human beings and endowed them with the inborn right to make choices in the matters of faith.
The Impact of Puritans on the Development of America and its influence on modern society The Puritans came to America in search of greater freedom for religious liberty. They felt unable to worship and practice their theological perspectives as long as they were under the umbrella of the Church of England. The puritans views with the Church of England began differ greatly and they felt they could no longer be under their control. The Puritans decided that they needed to break free from the Church of England and find a place where they could practice their religion without persecution or interference. The new world in the American colonies provided a great opportunity for the Puritans to branch out and form their own communities with their own religion and government.
This “perverse wall of exclusion can be seen today It’s hard to argue that when envisioning this country, the founding fathers had any other vision than that of strict separation. When America was first formed, many of the new settlers came here fleeing religious persecution. Certainly it was not lost on these men and women the importance of establishing a country where you were free to practice your religion, or not, without fear of being chastised by others. That being said, they must also have realized the importance of keeping religion separate from government, the fear of another Church of England should have been enough to convince them.
The English Civil war was partially a religious conflict, which brought Church and State against Parliament. Under the reign of James I, England saw the rise in Protestants dissenters. Groups like Barrowists, Puritans, Fifth Monarchists, Quakers, and many more demanded for more religious reform. They felt that the Church of England’s liturgy was too Catholic for a Protestant church. James VI and I accepted the more moderated Puritans and other dissenters, and he was able to keep his kingdom in peace.
Our rights are given to us by God not government. The Constitution protects us, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press. ” This also goes for the school system, people have the right to religious references. When America was founded, the religious freedom was what brought the pilgrims here in the first place. America was founded on the Christian religion and freedom.
The church expected everyone to turn to the Catholic religion. They worked toward religious reforms, so they could purify the church and their own lives. However, they discovered the church was far beyond reform because it was so powerful (Kizer, Kay). They realized the only way to purify their lives was to break away from the Church of England. They came to America where they could freely practice their religion.
Puritans paved way to democracy by demanding religious choice from the Church of England. By getting freedom, the Puritans planned to for justice and good. Another reason Puritans living in the colonies wanted to break free from the Church of England was due to the fear of losing their religious liberty. The same fear would also play a major role of development of American nationalism. Unlike the Church of England, Puritans wanted to build a church one would join voluntarily and be active in the running of the congregation.