Topic: Religion

Last updated: January 23, 2019

Freedom of Religion
Religion in the Colonial US was very diverse, and many of these religious groups were established on basis of their religious beliefs. The treacherous, 3,000 mile trip from Europe to North America was taken by many who sought after religious freedom. One of these religious groups, in particular, was known as Puritans. Puritans were a group of people who grew displeased with the Church of England and decided to work towards religious and societal reformation.
The Puritans came to New World for the freedom to establish their own community and church according to their beliefs, instead of being forced to conform to a church in which the disagreed with. They believed in God and the Bible and applied it to every area of living. Puritans also believed that the only way to keep their community pure was by religious conformity. Those who chose to reside in the colonies had to conform to the same religious views and practices.
Puritans with opposing views were called Dissenters. Dissenters soon began to emerge in the community vocalizing their opinions and beliefs. They questioned the faith and beliefs of people in the colony which caused controversy. Two of the most prominent Dissenters were Anne Hutchison and Roger Williams. The Puritans saw them both as a threat and wasted no time banishing both from Massachusetts’s. Punishment also included being fined, arrested, beaten, and hung.
There was no religious freedom in areas colonized by Puritans. They moved to a completely different country to find religious freedom, only to not offer it to people migrating into their settlements. Immigrants were forced to make a decision to either stay and adapt or move to another place that more is accepting of religious freedom. The same people that traveled thousands of miles away to find a place accepting of their religion was in no way empathic to newcomers. Their idea of religious freedom was restricted only to the Puritan religion.
After the American Revolution War different denominations were created. The different denominations consisted of various unified religious congregations and churches. The religion in the Colonies combined the religious practices of many denominations. The religion in the colonies included the Protestant, Puritan, Catholic, Anglican, Episcopalian, Congregationalists, Baptists, Evangelists and Unitarian. These were all Christian religions based on the Old Testament and the teachings of Jesus as embodied in the New Testament and emphasizing the role of Jesus as savior. (2018)


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