Every last week of June, every year, Americans get treated to what’s essentially a great civics lesson, a reminder of the enduring importance of the third branch of our constitutional system, as the Supreme Court releases major decisions, clearing its docket before its July recess.
And this June was a huge day at the United States Supreme Court in terms of our nation’s history on the issue of religious liberty.
The case I’m referring to most immediately is that of Trinity Lutheran vs. Comer—where a church was turned down by the state of Missouri for state funds from a state program that refurbished playgrounds using recycled equipment from tires.
With a 7-2 majority, the Supreme Court sent a decisive signal—making clear that the state of Missouri does not have the right to refuse the funds even to a Christian or religious school for the general kind of purpose that was reflected in this playground resurfacing for the safety of children.
It’s one of the biggest religious liberty decisions in decades—and it matters for us all.