“The Constitution is not a suicide pact.” Federal Judge closes the church door

Churches are not exempt from obeying strict lockdown measures during The Pandemic.

The ongoing obstinacy of certain religious institutions to flaunt and disregard common sense behavior during The Pandemic is confounding.

No amount of spirituality will protect a citizen, regardless of his/her religious preference from the ravages of Covid-19. These religious institutions which think they are immune need to get serious and Deal with It realistically.

Excerpted from San Francisco Chronicle 12.22.2020

“The Constitution,” U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal  of Riverside said, quoting past Supreme Court opinions, “is not a suicide pact.”

Church Definance I 12.22.2020.jpg

San Jose’s Calvary Chapel Pastor Mike McClure (right) with attorney Robert Tyler earlier this year outside of Santa Clara Superior Court in San Jose — McClure is in contempt of court for holidng indoor religious services. On Tuesday county health officials asked the judge Tuesday to issue another contempt order and impose more fines.

The federal judge ruled Gov. Gavin Newsom’s shutdown of indoor worship services in most of California is a valid measure to protect public health and protects religious freedom by allowing outdoor services, unlike the New York restrictions struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

 Bernal, ordered to review Newsom’s current restrictions under the Supreme Court’s standards, said Monday the governor’s measures — now including a ban on indoor religious services in all counties except Mariposa, Sierra and Alpine — are justified and non-discriminatory.

Harvest Rock Church of Pasadena and Harvest International Ministry, affiliated with 162 California churches, argued that Newsom’s orders violated the constitutional standards set by the high court in its Nov. 25 ruling on the New York case.

After President Trump’s appointment of Amy Coney Barrett to succeed the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the Supreme Court rejected the reasoning of its May 30 decision allowing an earlier version of Newsom’s limits on indoor worship services and barred New York state from restricting religious activities more tightly than secular businesses. A panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals cited that ruling Dec. 15 when it ordered Nevada’s governor to remove a 50-person limit on indoor religious services.

SF Archbishop 11.28.2020

San Francisco Archbishop Salvador Cordileone – one of the leading religious figures encouraging disregard of Covid-19 protection measures.

The churches in Bernal’s court said they would appeal his decision to the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco.