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In Southern Mexico, Religious Liberty Continues to Grow Despite History of Intolerance

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April 3, 2013

More than 25,000 people attended Saturday’s festival of “Friendship and Religious Freedom” at Victor Manuel Rayna Stadium in Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, Mexico. This was the largest celebration of its kind in a region that has seen thousands of Protestants persecuted for their faith. (CMUM)

TUXTLA GUTIÉRREZ, Chiapas - A large-scale festival of religious liberty here in the Southern Mexican state of Chiapas underscores how freedom of conscience continues to improve in this region with a history of persecution against some religions.

Saturday’s festival of “Friendship and Religious Freedom” brought more than 25,000 people to the Victor Manuel Rayna Stadium in the city of Tuxtla Gutiérrez. The event was also broadcast on Internet radio.

“People in Chiapas know what religious persecution means, they know the costs of following your conscience,” said John Graz, secretary-general of the International Religious Liberty Association (IRLA). “We’re grateful for the progress of religious freedom, where people can choose their faith without resistance.”

Graz later said the event was held to thank the state of Chiapas, its governor, and state authorities for religious freedom.

He said the event was the largest such celebration in the region.

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