Religious Liberty  Press Release  Religious Freedom  Religious Liberty

Russell Moore calls Trinity Lutheran Supreme Court ruling “triumph for religious freedom”

WASHINGTON, June 26, 2017—The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 7-2 today in favor of Trinity Lutheran Church in the religious liberty case, Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia Inc. v. Comer, upholding that the state cannot deny an institution a public benefit simply because of its religious status.  

“Today's decision is a triumph for religious freedom and a victory not just for this church, and not just for people of faith, but for all who believe American citizens should be treated equally by their government,” said Russell Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.

“This case was about fair play: do religious organizations have access to the public square, or will they be penalized for holding religious convictions? I oppose any establishment or funding of religion, but a house of worship taking advantage of a universally accessible program does not constitute an establishment. Throughout our nation’s history, churches have been at the forefront of American life serving their communities. I'm glad this ruling insists that no American—whether religious or not—should be disadvantaged simply because of what they believe. The Supreme Court got this right, and the only unfortunate thing about this case is that a principle so foundational to basic American freedoms would even be in question.”

Trinity Lutheran Church was denied government funds to resurface its playground for preschoolers due to a provision in Missouri's constitution that bars state funding for religious entities. The church argued that the government funds were used to support a secular government objective: ensuring the children’s safety.

Related Content

Christian political guide

ERLC Publishes New Resource, ‘The Nations Belong to God: A Christian Guide for Political Engagement’

WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 7, 2024—The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist...

Read More

Religious freedom impacts economic prosperity, political rights, Johnson says

Baptist Press

WASHINGTON (BP) — Religious freedom impacts economic prosperity and political rights, U.S. House Speaker...

Read More
White House

Religious liberty celebrated as key freedom in the U.S. and abroad

Baptist Press

Just a day after remembering the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., Americans are...

Read More
303 Creative

ERLC President Brent Leatherwood Commends Supreme Court Ruling in 303 Creative Free Speech Case

People are free to speak, create, and operate in ways that are consistent with their deepest-held beliefs—even when those beliefs are deemed culturally unpopular.

Washington, D.C., June 30, 2023—Brent Leatherwood, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics &...

Read More
Supreme Court Groff v. Dejoy case

ERLC President Brent Leatherwood Applauds Unanimous Religious Liberty Ruling in Postal Worker Supreme Court Groff v Dejoy Case

‘Your profession of faith should not be a barrier to your professional vocation.’

Washington. D.C., June 29, 2023 —Brent Leatherwood, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics...

Read More

ERLC 2023 Public Policy Agenda to Focus on Religious Liberty, Sanctity of Human Life, Family & Marriage, Human Dignity

WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 30, 2023—The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist...

Read More