The constitution states no law may be passed to establish a state religion or impair the free exercise of religion. It states, “No law may deny or impair freedom of expression, peaceable assembly, association or petition” and “No law may be passed respecting an establishment of religion or impairing the free exercise of religion.”
Because of COVID-19-related border closures (and government restrictions to counter COVID-19), some foreign missionaries, church workers, and religious teachers from various churches departed the country. Multiple religious leaders reported many of their staff and congregation members were able to return to the country following the opening of the borders in August. The government continued to provide grants to private, church-affiliated schools for nonreligious activities, and stated it made no distinction between public and private schools in its grant programs. All private schools were either Catholic or Protestant.
In May, Ahmadi Muslim community organizers revived an Ahmadi community center in Pohnpei State when the organizers were able to return to the country via a repatriation flight. Ahmadi Muslims reported that the closure of the center, inactive since 2020, was related to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and was not related to any mistreatment of their community. The Interdenominational Council in Pohnpei stated it encouraged unity among religious groups by addressing local social problems and promoting cooperation among religious communities. Senior government officials regularly met with religious leaders to promote the government’s commitment to freedom of religion.
U.S. embassy officers held discussions with senior government officials and local religious leaders to promote religious inclusion and tolerance, including in Pohnpei, Yap, and Kosrae States.