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Judge issues injunction against MacArthur’s church

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 9/11/20, 06:53 am

California Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff sided with Los Angeles County Thursday, banning Grace Community Church from holding indoor worship services because of health concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic. If the Sun Valley, Calif., church pastored by John MacArthur decides to hold outdoor services, congregants must wear masks and implement social distancing rules, Beckloff added.

Does this end the legal battle? The Thomas More Society, which represents the church and MacArthur, said it will appeal the ruling to protect its client’s constitutional right to worship. Special counsel Charles LiMandri said he was disappointed in the court’s failure to factor in the reduced number of COVID-19 cases and consider the attorneys’ argument on the separation of powers. MacArthur has opened the sanctuary for worship on Sundays since the end of July in defiance of state and county restrictions on indoor gatherings.

Dig deeper: Read Steve West’s report in Liberties on California churches fined for defying indoor worship bans.

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Onize Ohikere

Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.

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    Posted: Fri, 09/11/2020 02:04 pm

    I'm proud of Rev. MacArthur and those who are attending worship services. It is easy to withdraw and be fearful, but the US needs those who are willing to stand up for all being able to worship together: indoors or outdoors. Virtual worship is fine for a few weeks, but now we need each other and the Gathering of the Saints in song and prayer!

    Mary Cupery

  • Nanamiro
    Posted: Fri, 09/11/2020 05:23 pm

    Amen! Fear should not be controling our churches. We seem to be past the point of prudence and entered into fear, either of the disease and/or what the world will think of us. 

  • Nanamiro
    Posted: Fri, 09/11/2020 05:19 pm

    The CDC says: "Masks are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice." I generally avoid these things at church or cover my cough or sneeze. So why would the California government require this at church? I thought they were "following the science"?

    The CDC says people should wear masks "when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain." So why must churches do both? Airlines don't have to...

    And why would governments be encouraging increased ventilation in work environments in order to reduce the spread of Covid, yet being outside in 100% ventilated air is not good enough to perhaps lighten up on the other restrictions?

    Politicians should not be making health decisions for a free people. They are clearly making things up as they go.

  • not silent
    Posted: Mon, 09/14/2020 08:20 pm

    Respectfully, your quote and the explanation that follows seems to suggest that people only need masks if they are coughing or sneezing.  I don't know if that was your intent; but, as someone in the health field, I think it's important to have accurate info.  I'm looking at the CDC website right now, and it says: "CDC recommends all people 2 years and older wear a mask in public settings and when around people who don't live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.

    "COVID 19 can be spread by people who do not have symptoms and do not know they are infected.  That's why it's important for everyone to wear masks in public settings and practice social distancing (staying at least 6 feet away from other people)."

    Science is VERY important to me-as is TRUTH. The CDC is recommending that everyone who is physically able and old enough should wear a mask AND use social distancing.  This IS a change from some of the position early in the year, but it's based on updated information from several studies. That is how science and medicine works-it adapts when new information is found. 

    I can believe that SOME politicians are "making things up as they go"; but, apparently, they aren't the only ones who are cherry picking and distorting data to make political points.  Also, respectfully, politicians have been making health decisions for our nation for longer than I've been alive. Some have been wise and others not so much. It seems to work best when they actually listen to the experts they have put in place.  Based on what I've seen with COVID, the general public does not seem able to act even in its own self interest or to protect itself-much less in a way that helps protect others. 

    Moreover, if politicians shouldn't make health decisions for a free people, why would it matter if a politician is pro life or not?  (Surely we all agree that we will need laws and judges appointed by politicians if we really want to stop abortion.)