Brigham Young University Prelaw Review


Supreme Court, Corporation of the Presiding Bishop v. Amos, religious practices


The Supreme Court has long sought for a consistent principle in constitutional theory that will "be a master principle that can guide the interpretation of both religion clauses" (Tushnet, 1691). Indeed, at times both the Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause seem to contradict. Such an instance arose in Corporation of the Presiding Bishop v. Amos. In this case the Court applied the religious accommodation principle to allow a religious group the right to remain an autonomous entity thereby maintaining protection guaranteed under the Free Exercise Clause, also recognizing "that the government may (and sometimes must) accommodate religious practices and that it may do so without violating the Establishment Clause" (480 U.S. 136, 144-5).

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