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The Rise of Corporate Religious Liberty$
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Micah Schwartzman, Chad Flanders, and Zoë Robinson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190262525

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190262525.001.0001

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The Freedom of the Church

The Freedom of the Church

(Toward) An Exposition, Translation, and Defense

(p.39) 3 The Freedom of the Church
The Rise of Corporate Religious Liberty

Richard W. Garnett

Oxford University Press

This chapter proposes that “freedom of the church” is a still-important, if very old, idea, which is not out of place in current thinking about law and religion. If “freedom of the church” can be retrieved and translated, then it should be, not out of nostalgia or reaction but so that the law will better identify and protect the things that matter. In addition to restating claims made elsewhere—regarding church-state separation, the no-establishment rule, legal and social pluralism, and the structural role played by religious and other institutions—this chapter attempts to strengthen the argument that “freedom of the church” is not a relic or anachronism but instead remains a crucial component of any plausible and attractive account of religious freedom under and through constitutionally limited government. The chapter includes with suggestions for some workable and—it is hoped—faithful translations for use in present-day cases, doctrine, and conversations.

Keywords:   freedom of the church, religious institutions, church autonomy, Hosanna-Tabor, constitutionalism and religion

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