One of our greatest freedoms in the US is the right to worship as we please. As it says in the first amendment to the Constitution, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Those words came on the heels of the “Thirty Year’s War” which was fought between Protestants and Catholics in Europe between 1618 and 1648. Approximately 8 million people were killed. The cost of religious intolerance was clear to our founding fathers. The cost remains clear today: we need only see the consequences of violent religious intolerance in places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Burma, and much of the Middle-East. In that context, the religious tolerance and freedom that our founding fathers gave birth to is something to celebrate – and something each of us can uphold personally. We wish you the very best for the holidays. Photo Credit: Jim Lukach.