Conferences sponsored by the International Center for Law and Religion Studies in 2015 will include
- Conference of the African Consortium of Law and Religion: "Religious Freedom and Religious Pluralism in Africa: Prospects and Limitations" (May 18-19 in Windhoek, Namibia)
- Oxford Journal of Law and Religion Summer Academy: "Magna Carta and Freedom of Religion or Belief" (June 21-24 at St. Hugh's College, Oxford)
- Religious Freedom Annual Review (July 6-8 in Provo)
The International Center for Law and Religion Studies announces the creation of four Facebook pages, a YouTube Channel, and a Twitter account. Please visit soon and often!
We are pleased to announce that the 21st Annual International Law and Religion Symposium can now be remembered in many ways.
- Audio and video recordings of individual presentations and entire sessions, some of them in as many as 14 languages, are now available on the website and on our YouTube Channel.
- The Photo Album is available here.
- Reports of individual sessions, prepared by our students and by volunteer reporters, are available here.
- See the Symposium on Facebook, and join the discussion!
Each year the International Center for Law and Religion Studies welcomes a group of outstanding scholars who have completed their first year of study at the J. Reuben Clark Law School into the Research Fellows Program.
The program brings the students into the worldwide work of the Center, as they complete internships with the offices of the legal counsels of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City and in many other parts of the world, participate in Center research, writing, and publishing projects, and help to maintain the Center's ever-increasing international web presence.
This year's group of 14 students will spend time in Brazil, South Africa, Germany, Argentina, New Zealand, Mexico, Hong Kong, Peru, Russia, and Salt Lake City.
For his tireless advocacy and record of legislative accomplishment, the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society and the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University were pleased to present the Religious Liberty Award to retiring Congressman Frank Wolf. Throughout his 33-year career in Congress, Representative Wolf has championed efforts to alert the United States and the world to the plight of men, women, and children who are persecuted for living their religious convictions. Representative Wolf authored the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act, which established the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) and the International Religious Freedom Office at the... more
Kelly Thomas, Audra Savage, Paul Baumgardner, Paul Quast
Winners of the 2014 Religious Liberty Student Writing Contest were announced at the Fifth Annual International Religious Liberty Award Dinner in Washington D.C. on October 9. The contest is sponsored annually by the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society and the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University.
Director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies, W. Cole Durham, Jr., presented awards for their excellent papers to Audra Savage, Paul Quast, Paul Baumgardner, Kelly Thomas, and Zachary Phillipps.
1st Place: Audra L. Savage, Center for the Study of Law and Religion, Emory University
Paper: Turning the Other Cheek: The Persecution of the Christian Minority
Report by Laurie Williams Sowby, Deseret News, October 31
It began with a Jewish piano teacher who was dismissed from her job at a European music conservatory because she refused to give exams on Saturdays, the day she honored as the Sabbath. When he heard of the case, Professor Heiner Bielefeldt knew religious freedom in the workplace was an issue he wanted to pursue. Dr. Bielefeldt, human rights professor at the University of Erlangen-Nürnburg in Germany, was appointed as U.N. Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief in 2010 with a three-year renewal of his appointment in 2013. He presented his report at the United Nations Oct. 23 and headed panels on the topic Oct. 23 and... more
The 21st annual International Law and Religion Symposium, this year featuring 80 invited delegates, from 40 countries, addressed the theme "Varieties of Secularism, Religion, and the Law." The Symposium opened Sunday evening, 5 October, with welcoming remarks by BYU Law School Dean, James R. Rasband, and President of Brigham Young University, Kevin J Worthen. The Keynote Address was given by United States Senator for Utah Orrin Hatch, who also was presented with the Center's Distinguished Service Award, by Professor W Cole Durham, Jr., Director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies.
This year's delegates included scholars, government officials, journalists... more
Credit to the BYU Law School News Team for content of this article
Robert T. Smith, Managing Director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies, testified on 18 September 2014 before the US House of Representatives Committee on Oversight & Government Reform on the topic "Protecting International Freedom." Mr. Smith's testimony specifically addressed ways to improve international religious freedom through better implementation of the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act. With international tensions running high due to violence caused by religiously motivated groups such... more
The 21st Annual International Law and Religion Symposium opened on Sunday evening, October 5, 2014, in the Moot Court Room of the J. Reuben Clark Law School on the campus of Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Those in attendance and listening in via live webinar were welcomed by Law School Dean James R. Rasband and Brigham Young University President Kevin J Worthen. Professor W. Cole Durham, Jr., Director of the Symposium's sponsoring organization, the International Center for Law and Religion Studies, presented the Center's Distinguished Service Award to Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), who... more
Center Supporters Robert Orton and Helen Leon
The International Center for Law and Religion Studies and the delegates to its 2014 International Law and Religion Symposium are grateful for the indispensable help of a group of outstanding people who volunteered to assist in hosting the delegates and making them feel welcome. A great many delegates come from half a world away, and many do not speak English. The kind attention of the Center's generous friends makes the Symposium an unparalleled cultural and academic experience. The Hosting Committee was chaired once again this year by Linda Nearon and Lynn Anderson, who with their husbands, ... more
The International Center for Law and Religion Studies Center Student Management Board is composed of second- and third-year BYU Law students selected for their interest in the worldwide work of the Center and for expertise in such areas as research, writing, editing, languages, and website management.
The group for 2014-2015 includes third-year students Heather Binks, Christina Champenois, James Heilpern, Bryant Hinckley, Lynn Nouri, and Alex Storms, and second-year students Ryan Andersen, Eva Brady, Bennett Briggs, Tara Fitzgerald, Roman Harper, Travis Hyer, Jedi Knight, Aline Longstaff, Annalee Moser, Lauren Robins, and Jarvis Yau. Languages... more