A Week For Freethought (November 1995)

“Freethought Week,” commemorating the termination of the Salem Witch Trials on October 12, 1692, was celebrated for the second year in a row in San Antonio, thanks to efforts by Catherine Fahringer.

New San Antonio Mayor William E. Thornton signed a proclamation honoring the edict by Governor William Phips.

“There have been many observances of saints and prayer thus it is proper that a special week be also set aside to commemorate reason, freethought and the constitutionally-mandated separation of church and state,” states the San Antonio proclamation.

Last year Gov. Ann Richards signed a state proclamation at Catherine’s request. Although the new governor, George W. Bush, did not issue a proclamation this year, he sent “congratulations on your annual Freethought Week celebration.”

“Freethought Week” was first proposed by Foundation member David Schreiber to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the end of the witch trials in 1992. Several mayors, governors and city councils around the country have since proclaimed the week, at the behest of Foundation members.

Catherine organized a local Friday, the 13th “Freethought Week” dinner featuring journalist Craig Phelon. She will also present a Governor Phips Award to former San Antonio Mayor Nelson Wolff, for being the first mayor in Texas, and one of the few in the country, to proclaim Freethought Week.

“Let’s celebrate reason!” urges Catherine.

If interested in promoting Freethought Week in your area in 1996, write the Foundation for copies of the original Foundation wording of the proclamation or those issued by public officials.

Freedom From Religion Foundation