Romney: ‘Good People’ With No Faith Try to ‘Lead a Purpose-Driven Life’

By Melanie Arter | May 14, 2012 | 1:57 PM EDT

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney delivers the commencement address at the Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va, Saturday, May 12, 2012. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

( GOP presumptive nominee Mitt Romney said “good people” with no faith try to “do right and lead a purpose-driven life” during a commencement speech at Liberty University on Saturday that addressed the issue of religious liberty.

“Someone once observed that the great drama of Christianity is not a crowd shot following the movements of collectives or even nations. The drama is always personal, individual, unfolding in one’s own life. We’re not alone in sensing this. Men and women of every faith and good people with none at all sincerely strive to do right and lead a purpose-driven life,” he said.

There is “no greater force for good in the nation than Christian consciences in action,” Romney said.

“And whether the cause is justice for the persecuted, compassion for the needy and the sick, or mercy for the child waiting to be born, there is no greater force for good in the nation than Christian consciences in action,” he said.

“Religious freedom opens a door for Americans that is closed to many others around the world, but whether we walk through that door and what we do with our lives after we do is up to us,” Romney added.

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Romney noted that religious liberty is “the first freedom in our Constitution.”

“It strikes me as odd that the free exercise of religious faith is sometimes treated as a problem – something America is stuck with instead of being blessed with. Perhaps religious conscience upsets the designs of those that feel that the highest wisdom and authority comes from government, but from the beginning, this nation has trusted in God, not man,” he said.

Romney also declared marriage as “a relationship between one man and one woman” during his speech, one week after President Barack Obama announced his support for gay marriage.