Statement by CV President on Trump Visit to JPII Shrine (and Trump’s Executive Order)

All Conflict, All the Time, by Francis X. Maier
June 3, 2020
The Church Obedient, by Emily Finley
June 3, 2020

By Brian Burch, Catholic Vote, June 2, 2020

CatholicVote President Brian Burch released the following statement in response to the visit by the President and First Lady to the St. John Paul II Shrine in Washington, D.C.

“The fact that the President of the United States chose the shrine of Saint John Paul II to announce a new Executive Order protecting religious minorities should have been celebrated by all those who love the Church, religious freedom, and the courageous example of St. John Paul II. It is regrettable that the Archbishop of Washington chose this occasion to engage in a partisan attack on the President, especially when the country is in desperate need of healing and unity. Millions of Catholics in the United States, including many within the Archbishop’s own flock, are grateful for today’s Executive Order. The protection of religious minorities is a bipartisan issue that has enjoyed unanimous support in Congress as well as the Trump and Obama administrations. Today’s unfortunate partisan attack needlessly politicizes this important issue, and distracts from the plight of vulnerable religious minorities around the world.”

You can read the Executive Order for yourself here, or below is our summary for you.

Statement by Archbishop Gregory:

The Executive Order would:

  • Require the Department of State and USAID to deliver long-term strategic plans to implement how they will advance the cause of international religious freedom in U.S. foreign policy;

  • Provide $50 million per year for programs that advance international religious freedom;

  • Require international religious freedom efforts be integrated into U.S. diplomatic efforts. Specifically, the EO would require the Secretary of State, along with Chiefs of Mission, to develop international and country-specific action plans for prioritizing religious freedom and would make religious freedom a priority in bilateral and multilateral fora;

  • Require international religious freedom training for all personnel assigned to positions overseas; and

  • Provide flexibility for the use of economic tools – including the realignment of foreign assistance, visa restrictions, or sanctions – to advance the Administration’s International Religious Freedom agenda and priorities.

News coverage of the event: