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Women Stand for Religious Freedom Worldwide

Women all over the world are standing for what they know is right, even amid religious persecution.

"When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful." -Malala Yousafzai

Photo by Ayyappa Giri

For those of us who live in nations with religious freedom, it’s easy to take that right for granted. In many countries all over the world, though, people are struggling to obtain the same religious rights. Often, when religious persecution is present in a country, the people who suffer most are women and girls of that country. In the article “Women of Conscience,” Mormon Newsroom spotlights several women who are standing up for religious freedom in their respective countries.

The article quotes Valerie Hudson, a foreign policy scholar, who states, “There is a strong and highly significant link between state security and women’s security. In fact, the very best predictor of a state’s peacefulness is not its level of wealth, its level of democracy, or its ethno-religious identity; the best predictor of a state’s peacefulness is how well its women are treated.” In other words, the more religious freedom a country allows and the more a country encourages the empowerment of women, the more security and economic success a country experiences.

Despite religious persecution, women are standing for what they believe in. Whether they practice Christianity, Islam, Baha’i, or another religion, strong women are defending both women’s rights and their right to practice the religion of their choosing, even when doing so is dangerous. Women such as Malala Yousafzai, Nadia Murad, and Ma Huichao are paving the way for women around the world to experience religious freedom.

As we look to these incredible women and emulate their examples, we can see how religious freedom “enables women to determine their own beliefs, to speak out when they see shortfalls in the practice of their faith traditions, to choose a different religion and to participate in society.” Together, we can move toward this kind of religious freedom worldwide.

Read “Women of Conscience” to learn more about the role women play in international religious freedom.

Source: Mormon Newsroom

—Morgan Lewis, Mormon Insights

feature image by annie spratt

Find more insights

Read “A Partner in the Cause of Peace,” the first part of the seven-part series on international religious freedom, to learn about the impact religious freedom has on a country’s peace.

Gain insight about how religious freedom protects minorities in “A Bridge Between the Strong and the Weak,” the second article in the seven-part series.

Learn about the LDS Church’s stance on religious freedom by reading Alissa Holm’s Mormon Insights article “The LDS Church and Religious Freedom: Five Key Beliefs.”

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