United Kingdom extends religious freedom to Catholics – April 13, 1829
This week marks the anniversary of when the British Parliament passed the Emancipation Act, which broadened religious liberty rights for its Catholic minority.
Also known as “An Act for the relief of his majesty's Roman Catholic subjects,” the Act specifically allowed professing Catholics to hold public office, vote, and serve in the military.
“Its immediate positive effects were small. Few Irish and next to no English and Scottish Catholics were returned to Parliament or given high office for more than a generation,” explained Encyclopedia.com.
“On a long-term basis the act made possible the building up of the Catholic Church in both [England and Ireland], though the change was not so apparent in Britain until the great Irish immigration of the mid-century.”