On Tuesday, Pastor John MacArthur and Grace Community Church got some very good news. The county…well, they’re not so happy.
On Monday, Pastor John MacArthur gave an update to Allie Beth Stuckey, a conservative reporter on The Blaze network.
Los Angeles county was seeking a temporary restraining order against Grace Community Church to ban indoor gatherings until a hearing on September 4. The court denied the order. The county was not happy.
“It is deeply disappointing that the Court decided not to grant the County’s request for a temporary restraining order prohibiting Grace Community Church from holding indoor services,” county officials said in a statement. “We look forward to a favorable ruling when a full hearing is heard on the matter.”
It was quite a different mood over on the Grace Community Church side.
The church and its attorneys celebrated Tuesday’s victory, which extends a streak of favorable rulings. “We look forward to fully vindicating our clients’ constitutionally protected rights in subsequent proceedings for this important case,” said Paul Jonna, one of the church’s attorneys.
The county’s lawsuit, which was filed Aug. 12, has encountered setbacks from the start, with a county judge allowing the church to hold indoor services if congregants wear face coverings and practice social distancing.
Source: Los Angeles Times
The county public health officer, Dr. Muntu Davis has stated that he’s very concerned about indoor religious gatherings as a source of “significant outbreak of COVID-19 cases among the attendees.”
That’s a wee bit hypocritical since there have been large-scale protests across the country, including in L.A. county, that have not just been condoned, but actively encouraged by officials like Governor Gavin Newsom. Newsom had famously warned against Fourth of July gatherings while simultaneously giving a nod to the BLM protests.
So, protests are fine, but attending church services is not.
Perhaps that’s why Pastor MacArthur said to his congregation on August 9, “Welcome to the Grace Community Church peaceful protest.”
Pastor MacArthur has defended his defiance against the state mandate saying that his mandate is to follow the Word of God.
Attorney General Bill Barr has a less spiritual but equally dogmatic position–there is no pandemic clause that suspends the Constitution. AG Barr has assured faith leaders that the federal government would support them from unconstitutional measures imposed by state and local governments.
So far, the courts have largely been siding with Grace Community Church, but it’s nice to know that there’s still that federal “Trump card” in their pocket if needed.
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