As if the addition of two world figures to the roster of folks visiting the city of Philadelphia weren't enough, the area will also welcome the arrival of a new exhibit to coincide with the visits of the Pope and Dalai Lama.
The Religious Liberty and the Founding of America exhibit debuted at the National Constitution Center in August 2015 and will run through Jan. 3, 2016.
This exhibit takes the theme of religious freedom and examines how it rose to become a basic right in the United States.
Wander the halls of the National Constitution Center, and experience the beginning of this country all over again — Photo courtesy of Alex Harden
The 20-something documents featured allow visitors to look at a theme already hot on the minds of folks all over the region and the country – religious freedom – and take it back to its start in the U.S.
Colonists valued this specific kind of freedom and wanted it included in the creation of their new nation. Today, this right still stands strong, and it remains a defining concept of American reality.
Included in the documents are proclamations from George Washington, as well as letters to both Roman Catholic and Jewish religious leaders, that played a part in creating the standard of religious freedom in America.
The many freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution are a fascinating lesson in history — Photo courtesy of Stefan Ogrisek
The documents also include newspaper clippings and speeches detailing how the idea of this inalienable right moved from a proposal to the First Amendment we know it as today.
It's important for all of us to take the time to remember that, should the leaders at the beginning of this nation's creation not made such a point of recognizing this basic right to religious freedom, those who choose a faith outside of the expected norm would not be able to openly practice what they believe in or follow the religious path that makes the most sense to them.
It's not something that they took lightly, and neither should we – as beneficiaries of this great right.
Being able to step back into time a bit and witness the beginnings of these freedoms being written and approved and made into law can be both humbling and awe-inspiring.
The three themes featured in this exhibit include Religious Liberty in Colonial America, Religious Liberty in the Constitution and The Legacy of Religious Liberty.
Come experience this special exhibit with friends, family, neighbors, coworkers or fellow travelers. Folks of almost all ages are sure to get something out of it.
Visitors to the Constitution Center can gain access to the exhibit as a part of their regular admission price. Those interested in seeing the exhibit who are also attending the World Meeting of Families can get discount admission prices as a part of their visit.