The following is excerpted from the Church Newsroom. To read the full article, CLICK HERE.

“May we celebrate together in this symposium our equality before God and the strength that comes from it in order to further strengthen coexistence, peace and respect for all,” remarked Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The Apostle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began Brigham Young University’s (BYU) first religious freedom symposium held in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday evening.

The symposium is being held March 23–25 by BYU’s International Center for Law and Religion Studies at the J. Reuben Clark Law School in Provo, Utah, in partnership with the Brazilian Center for Studies in Law and Religion.

Over the next few days, the symposium will feature international speakers from Argentina, Chile, Spain, Italy, Portugal, the United Kingdom and Uruguay. Discussion topics include paths to peaceful coexistence, protection of liberty as a fundamental right, the importance of religious communities, the need for peace and reconciliation, Latin American religious perspectives, and religious freedom in the workplace.

“Religious freedom is the architecture of a healthy society,” said Elder Soares in his remarks. “It keeps the diverse parts in place, makes room for the expression of conscience and allows differences to contend without violence.”

According to the Apostle, the promotion of opposites also promotes truth. “Our minds seem to be trained to see opposites. We lock ideas and people into opposing corners without testing their compatibility, without trying their capability to adapt and grow. The prophet Joseph Smith said: ‘By providing contraries, the truth is made manifest.’”

To read the full article, CLICK HERE.