A recent news article reports that a Phoenix, Arizona pastor is in jail for holding Bible Studies on his own property. It seems that for seven years he has hosted Bible Studies on his more than 4 acre property, but now the city says he is in violation of some code. As a result, he is serving a 60 day jail sentence rather than give up his right to practice his religion.
When I was writing about Alexei Brynza, a pastor who endured persecution for his faith in the former Soviet Union, I never thought that anything resembling what he endured could happen in the United States. But here we, just like in the USSR, pastors unable to hold religious meetings in their homes.
And like in the USSR, the reasons for claiming the pastor was in violation of the law is not the practice of religion. Instead, some kind of safely concern is cited.
This is a troubling development. I’m reminded of the tactics of the Soviets, who used any means to discourage religious practice. Have we really come to this here? Are we really losing our religious freedom?