Depiction of Priest Protecting Against Coronavirus
Many churches across the country are leaving their doors open for regular Sunday Service - against the CDC's recommendation.

As most of us are self-quarantining and practicing social distancing to get through the coronavirus pandemic, there are some people of faith who believe that the rules simply don’t apply to them. Take, for instance, this churchgoer who recently went viral when she was interviewed by CNN.

“Aren’t you worried you could impact other people if you get infected inside?” the reporter asks the woman. “No,” she responds defiantly. “I’m covered in Jesus’ blood.” She repeats the notion that she’s immune to coronavirus because of her faith a number of times, before driving away.

The crazy thing is, she’s not alone. Although many have closed their doors and gone digital for the time being, many churches are defying health experts and refusing to close, under the same mistaken belief that they’re immune to infection due to their faith. That, or they're willing to risk catching the disease in order to keep congregating and practicing their faith. 

Ground Zero

In fact, churches are one of the places you’re most likely to catch coronavirus. A study in Sacramento showed that nearly one-third of Sacramento County’s coronavirus cases – 100 out of 314 – are linked directly to churches and church groups. 24 of those cases are linked directly to a single church, despite Sacramento’s shelter-in-place order. 

And they aren’t the only ones. Dozens of churches are continuing to hold in-person services, an increasing risk to health that one landlord even changed a church’s locks after the pastor said he intended to continue to hold services.

"God Will Save Us"

Despite clear evidence to the contrary, some churchgoers continue to believe that their faith will protect them. But why? Could it be because some of the nation’s most prominent religious leaders are telling them exactly that?

Evangelist Jonathan Shuttlesworth is among many faith leaders who've made bold proclamations about the virus or dismissed its seriousness. Shuttlesworth recently predicted that America will largely be spared from coronavirus because President Trump “honors Israel.” If God decides to affect America with coronavirus, it will be blue states that have “chosen to give God the middle finger,” he contends. The implication, of course, being that if you believe in the Christian God and vote Republican, you’re likely to be safe.

And Pat Robertson, longtime host of The 700 Club, recently said on-air that “if you have a healthy gut, you don’t have to worry about corona.” That report was delivered with cans of black beans, kimchi, and yogurt displayed on the screen – the apparent frontline warriors in the intestinal battle against coronavirus.

Part of the Solution, or the Problem?

While COVID-19 has been blowing through communities like wildfire, overloading hospitals, straining medical systems, and killing thousands, it seems religious leaders have decided they've got a better approach to the coronavirus threat. Whether openly defying shelter-in-place orders or insisting that the virus is punishment reserved only for people who don't have the "correct" beliefs, faith leaders are taking an aggressive – and many argue misguided – stand against this very dangerous disease. 

The reality, borne out by ample evidence, is that coronavirus doesn’t care about your personal religious beliefs – it is an equal opportunity infecter. Any church that stays open for physical services, encouraging people to go to Sunday service as if life weren’t completely upended right now, is at best irresponsible, and at worst guilty of knowingly putting its congregation in harm's way and helping to spread this deadly pathogen. 

The safest thing to do right now is to stay home. And that means "home home" – no going to visit God's house. 

107 comments

  1. Dave J's Avatar Dave J

    Why do Church goers think they are immune? Stupidity. Gullibility. Dullness. Lack of reasoning skills.

    It all boils down to the same reasons they are still believing in a bronze age book fabricated mostly to keep people and especially women in line and kowtowing to the masters.

    1. Carl Bernard Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Bernard Elfstrom

      If Jesus really existed he also had faith, supposedly more than anyone else, and look what it got him... Death !!!

      1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

        I love your posts, and your wit! 👏👏👏

        🦁❤️

    2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

      Medical science proves that some people are immune to everything. While some people are immune to cancer, some are immune to colds and some are immune to other things. You really need to have some knowledge of what you are talking about before you start flapping lips

      1. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

        the subset of the population immune to a single specific strain of a virus is typicaly at most a few percent. And there is no case ever of any human immune to everything. There is for example no one ever found whose natural system can defeat the approach HIV takes in how it masks itself as our immune system and then destroys it like a Ninja.

        And any microbiologist will tell you that their greatest fear and the end result of evolution on our world will be a bacteria that nothing can stop that will kill all other life. There is no more savage and lethal a battle ground soaked in lost life that that at the unseen scale. No more skilled a killer exist then that which exists to break down and consume other life.

        For example our anti biotics have bought our species a reprieve from TB, a plague that haunted our civilization for thousands of years. for a century now we have been able to beat it back into the darkness with our fire brands. But one day the beast will grow stronger, no longer fear our fire, and lunge at our throats once more, ready to remind us we are not the greatest of killers.

        1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

          Makes no difference. The Constitution still gives them the right to gather. You now have police being ordered to hand out freaking $500. TICKETS for you to be parked in your car with the windows rolled up and listening to a pastor from your church! I am sorry but no matter what you say or claim you cannot violate the US Constitution!

          1. Amber Fry's Avatar Amber Fry

            It also clearly states the government can impose restrictions on time, place and manner of peaceful assembly should it be needed. Within reason they can call for temporary restrictions. I'd call a pandemic a pretty good reason. This isn't a permanent condition and things will eventually loosen again. Until it does I don't think it's unreasonable to restrict even church gatherings as they are not something that is required for health or survival.

            1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

              Nope sorry it says that you cannot make a law that violates the right to religious freedom. If you are going to quote the constitution at least have the intelligence to get it right.

              1. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

                Actually, Daniel, the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution says no such thing. The pertinent section of that amendment says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

                It does not say the government cannot limit the free exercise of religion; only that it cannot "prohibit" that free exercise.

                Words matter, Daniel, and you probably shouldn't attack other people for getting it wrong if you, yourself didn't bother to do your homework.

              2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                Actually it does and the US Supreme Court said as much when they ripped both the Gov of NY and the mayor of NYC for doing exactly what you are saying they can do. The Supreme Court tore both of them a new one and told them that what they were doing DID INDEED violate the 1st Amendment. So maybe you should take your own advice and do your own homework as the SCOTUS is calling you out on this myth of yours.

              3. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

                Actually, Daniel, it is more complicated than that.

                The Supreme Court on May 29, 2020, turned away a request from a church in California to block enforcement of state restrictions on attendance at religious services.

                The vote was 5 to 4, with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. joining the court’s four-member liberal wing to form a majority.

                “Although California’s guidelines place restrictions on places of worship, those restrictions appear consistent with the free exercise clause of the First Amendment,” Chief Justice Roberts wrote in an opinion concurring in the unsigned ruling.

                Please do tell us more about when the SCOTUS "ripped both the Gov of NY and the mayor of NYC." I'm afraid I can't find such a decision.

                https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/30/us/supreme-court-churches-coronavirus.html

      2. Kenneth Emmanuel Stevenson's Avatar Kenneth Emmanuel Stevenson

        These are small cases spread around world. Truth is most people will get sick from most bugs, a small group of people won't. So in a church if that virus hit, one maybe two may not get sick. In the bible when the devil told Jesus to jump anf the angles will catch him, Jesus didn't temp the Lord. These people are ******* stupid, God forbid it kill they kids and parents.But then, they will manufacture some BS about gods will, anything but except responsibility for being stupid

      3. T Kosse`'s Avatar T Kosse`

        Even if what you was true, which I seriously doubt who to say that this person isn't also a carrier of a disease or virus that can be pass onto or spread to other people who are not immune.

    3. Val Jester's Avatar Val Jester

      Why are you even commenting on a church blog?

      1. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

        Because he is entitled to? Because just because we are ordained ministers does not mean we have lost our bloody minds to irrational delusions? Because many of us do not believe in nor adhere to archaic concepts of religion and myths like gods?

        Because that woman and those like here who use their faith to defy reason, are the kind of people that should be locked up in the dirty old scary kinds of asylums that give sane people nightmares so thier madness doesnt put the rest of us at risk

        1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

          Well said Sir 👏👏👏👏

          🦁❤️

      2. Carl Bernard Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Bernard Elfstrom

        This isn't a church blog, but a ULC Minister's blog, and isn't even affiliated with a Christian sect.

  1. Minister Carlos Ricardo Walls's Avatar Minister Carlos Ricardo Walls

    I wonder why people refuse to follow CDC directives.This covid 19 virus is akin to the plague.Wake up people?

  1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

    I totally agree with you Dave J. Religiously indoctrinated people are prone to becoming blind with their faith, and their poor logic follows suit.

    🦁♥️

    1. Lori Mongillo's Avatar Lori Mongillo

      Prone???? They are totally blind and using poor logic. If they want to sacrifice themselves it's their choice, but sadly they spread it to so many outside their chosen flock. It's hard to comprehend how conditioned and unaware they are of anything beyond their faith.

      1. Lori Mongillo's Avatar Lori Mongillo

        Perhaps this is how Christianity come to an end?

        1. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

          We can but hope and pray it does.

        2. Carl Bernard Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Bernard Elfstrom

          Amen, brother Terikson !

      2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

        And the 1st Amendment of the Constitution says they can do this. so exactly child how are you going to say they cant?

        1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

          Actually the first Amendment does not say this.

          Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

          Congress did not make the law in the various states which are locked down. There actually is no law prohibiting the free exercise of your religion. There are executive orders (which are not laws per se but directives) during this emergency which are not directed directly at religions at all. They are for the welfare and protection of everyone. You may exercise your religion in your home through the internet, TV and worship as a family.

          1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

            I don’t think you’ll get Daniel Gray to understand anything. Many have tried and most have given up replying to him. Many now ignore his uneducated comments. Good comment though Rev. Dennis. 👏👏

            🦁❤️

            1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

              I have faith that everyone can learn (I do struggle with this on some days though). Many people choose to turn a blind eye to the truths of the universe which I believe God created. I do try to keep an open mind however for alternative views. Truth is that most religions (including those that claim to have none) have a faith in something, many of which place a singular highest power above all others.

              For this reason I don't give up and while I may have to lay low intermittently to reflect and regain strength in my soul I always return to help. I even learn new things along the way myself as I dislike commenting on things I don't have an understanding of.

          2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

            Actually it does https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment

            Amendment I

            <b>Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof</b>; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

          3. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

            actually it does if you care to read it. And as such if Congress is banned from violating religious freedoms, then what chance does any state or local authority have to do what Congress cant? Take for instance the sheriff in Florida that arrested the pastor after he received a visit from the Gov's office and the federal attorneys the Pastor hired, seems the charges vanished and the pastors record was cleared. In fact Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis amended late Wednesday (april 2nd) his executive order directing Floridians statewide to stay at home, effectively superseding local orders that were already in place with stricter guidelines. At the heart of the issue is whether Floridians should be attending church. DeSantis’ order allows for religious groups and churches to gather and continue as an “essential” service, but the governor said this can be done while maintaining social distancing.

            “I don’t think the government has the authority to close a church,” DeSantis said. “I’m certainly not going to do that.”

            Now tell me, if the Gov of the state says the Sheriff does not have the authority to do what he did and the Gov amends the state rule, just like every other state Gov has had to do....just exactly how are you going to say that this isnt a 1st Amendment violation when some power hungry local authority tries to break the rule?

            1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

              I will have to read about this particular case in Florida, however what I said still stands. The stay at home order is not violating first amendment rules based on it is not a LAW. Second it is not targeting religion itself and is still allowing you the freedom to practice your religion by not interfering with the ability of having services televised, using zoom to conduct services, etc.

              If you want to play the be right game then fine. I'll play with you.

              I have a question for you.

              Why can some "religions" which practice in this country not stone people to death, give them lashes or commit other violent acts of bodily harm as their "religion" requires them to do? If they are arrested for these items are not their first amendment rights being violated?

              1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                read it all you wish, SCOTUS has already ruled on this with another city in florida and shut them down when they tried to ban a religious exercise. Try reading Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520 where the SCOTUS shut down Hialea Florida for trying the exact same thing. You CANT ban churches, deal with it

              2. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

                I like how you keep saying that they are "banning churches" which they are not. Italy is MAJOR LEAGUE religious and even the Pope who heads the Roman Catholic church stated to not attend mass in person during this global pandemic as requested by Italy's government. He did not have to do this as the Vatican is a country unto itself (city state). Yet here you are, an armchair quarterback, commenting, without education, on how you think things should be.

                The example case you gave in front of the supreme court differed as it was NOT during a worldwide pandemic, and it WAS TARGETING a specific religion which the stay at home orders are not doing, therefore your example of this point is invalid. The orders are also not violating the first amendment as they are NOT TARGETING religion, I guarantee SCOTUS would concur with my legal findings from the quarantined safety of their homes they are currently in. Call them and ask them yourself if you dare, or are you afraid of being smacked down? (I do have an education in legal matters so bring more on. My family also helped to found and expand this country from it's origins as well as being signers of the very Constitution you try to corrupt with your skewed views).

                You also conveniently did not answer the question I asked you because you are blinded by wanting to be right and hear yourself spout off alternative "facts" so here is my question again and I have added another example to it.:

                Why can some "religions" which practice in this country not stone people to death, do human sacrifices, give them lashes or commit other violent acts of bodily harm as their "religion" requires them to do? If they are arrested for these items are not their first amendment rights being violated?

                I would also like to comment that the "Christian" churches in America who have people like you who want to spread an infectious disease should note that we have lost several pastors over the last two weeks to the virus. These pastors blindly led their sheep into believing that there was no danger.

                They should also try reading Leviticus 19:16 which states: "Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor’s life. I am the Lord.". In other words they are violating Gods law.

                Additionally, those who violate the stay at home order are violating the ninth amendment by infringing on the inherent rights of other Americans.

                One last thing, this virus doesn't care about any Constitution, religion, nationality or race and is global in nature. Obviously to see what it does maybe you and all those who have a lack of faith so much so that they would endanger themselves and others should be in the ICU of the Covid wing of a hospital and watch someone take their last breaths without their loved ones by their side so they die alone in a cold beeping room. See the suffering that they have and how scared they are with no one to comfort them. How are you protecting their rights?

              3. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                When a cop comes up and arrest a pastor and closes the church and it takes a direct order from the Gov to know it off as happened in Florida, or maybe you would accept what happened in Mississippi where the police shut down a church and the people were outside in their cars with the windows rolled up and they STILL gave each car a $500.00ticket. Now you tell me they are not trying to shut down churches?

              4. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

                I love how you stay in your ignorance bubble from the security of your home.

                Did the police also cite businesses? Did they cite motorists out for a drive for no reason?

                Did police cite people driving to vacation homes instead of remaining in place?

                Did police cite people for fishing?

                Did police cite people for being on closed beaches?

                Did police cite people for having large gatherings for parties?

                The answer is yes to all of those questions. So this rule is not targeting religion. It does not forbid the truly faithful people from celebrating their faith online or in other ways. It is not a law. It is an executive order which is being enforced because people who call themselves holy and "Christian" are endangering themselves, their families and others because of their lack of faith.

                You once again DID NOT ANSWER MY QUESTION ABOUT RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. So here it is again.

                Why can some "religions" which practice in this country not stone people to death, do human sacrifices, give them lashes or commit other violent acts of bodily harm as their "religion" requires them to do? If they are arrested for these items are not their first amendment rights being violated?

                I told you I can play this game as long as you want. Number one, I am educated in many areas (theology, law, cooking, photography, history, our government, war strategy, sibling rivalry, art, logic and many more). Number two, I listen, verify FACTS and CONFIRM them. I also can admit when I am incorrect. On this subject we are discussing, I am not incorrect.

              5. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

                Daniel isn't capable of understanding. He will still, reply under the assumption he is correct. It's sad, but he just cannot see it, bless him.

                🦁♥️

              6. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

                I know that but I can go way longer than he can.

              7. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

                Daniel - you have cited Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520 (1993) as a precedent proving that government cannot restrict "religious freedom." No court would consider that particular case to be pertinent to this question. Lukumi was a case in which the SCOTUS held that an ordinance passed in Hialeah, Florida, forbidding the "unnecessar[y]" killing of "an animal in a public or private ritual or ceremony not for the primary purpose of food consumption", was unconstitutional. This was a case in which an ordinance was passed to prohibit a specific activity of a specific church (unless you think there were many Santeria churches in Hialeah Florida at the time). The activity cited was considered essential to the practice of Santeria. The case does not prohibit reasonable restrictions on religious practices; especially those that are equally applied to all large gatherings. Not even close, Daniel.

              8. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                Sorry but dead on accurate. Even SCOTUS said the same thing in their Little Sisters of the Poor decisions they released today, and it was a 7-2 decision meaning two of the 4 left wingers on the court AGREED with the right wingers on the court and shut this down toot sweet. And the 1st Amendment is specifically mentioned in the decision as to why they could not force a religious office or business to go against their religions teaching. Sorry but even SCOTUS says you dont know what you are talking about

          4. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

            Sorry Lionheart, I dont accept the gobble-de-gook and constant religions bashing of yours as anything to do with anything

            1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

              “Sorry Lionheart” You don’t have to apologize but I’ll accept it. Thank you!

              🦁❤️

              1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                Not apologizing, stating fact and even the US Supreme Court is saying that you dont know what the bloody heck you are talking about

                Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520

                Not as smart as you think you are.

              2. Amber Fry's Avatar Amber Fry

                Considering you are disregarding the parts of the constitution you favor for parts you don't, I'd say you were the one not as smart as you think you are. It's part of the constitution that they can restrict social gatherings for good reason. It's there if you read further down. You can not ignore one amendment for another.

              3. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                considering I hav backed up everything I have said and you have not, care to guess who holds more sway here?

              4. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

                No, Daniel, you have not "backed up everything (you) have said." The 1st Amendment to the US Constitution does not say what you think it says, and it has not been interpreted by the SCOTUS as you think it has. The pertinent section of that amendment says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

                It does not say the government cannot limit the free exercise of religion; only that it cannot "prohibit" that free exercise.

                The courts might weigh in on whether a given restriction is appropriate, but government is NOT prohibited from limiting religious worship.

    2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

      Back attacking religion I see. So tell me lionheart, is this how you get your jollies to come here to a religions site and bash any religion you can?

      1. Tom's Avatar Tom

        Daniel Gray...Respectfully...i find it difficult to believe you actually believe what you post, but i will accept that you do...as i have said before, i believe Lionheart posts well thought-out ideas/opinions, with which i almost always agree...but even if you acceptthe poinst of the First Amendment, it has been repeatedly proven that the public/police power of the government overrides the First Amendment in times of national emergency...there is no violation of the First Amendment in keeping religious buildings closed...and please consider that an individual's faith is questionable if it can only be practiced in a building...Peace...Tom B

        1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

          Since we are running out of room I am starting a new reply to this. First and foremost is that the general orders of the governors are not targeting churches so there is NO VIOLATION of the first amendment based on these orders I have read so far. Your panic generalization of facts is dangerous and causing undo harm to America.

          In fact, if you had bothered to read the one from Mississippi the governor explicitly states that churches are exempt from the stay at home order if they follow CDC and Mississippi State Department of health guidelines. The problem in Mississippi was totally the mayor and city council of Greenville banning church services in their entirety. The mayors actions, much like those of overzealous preachers, are in violation of two things. They are in violation of the orders of the state (MS State Exec order 1466 and 1463) and in violation of the US Constitution. You would think that the Mayor, who is a lawyer, would know better.

          In the case of the Florida Evangelical preacher who was arrested and charged with two misdemeanor counts, he is guilty of violating a very vague Executive order from the wishy washy Governor who is not consistent with any decision he makes and the orders of the State Health Officer who has total authority on the pandemic for the state based on the orders granted by the governor and § 381.00315(6), Fla. Stat. He would have been fine to have his facility open if he had followed guidelines and not had a packed house with over 500 congregants or would have made other arrangements for the safety of not only his congregation but the citizens who they would be amongst while doing grocery shopping and more. This conspiracy theory "pastor" has gotten rich using the name of God. He will be judged one day and I don't believe it will be to his liking.

          By the way, you still keep avoiding answering MY question which is:

          Why can some "religions" which practice in this country not stone people to death, do human sacrifices, give them lashes or commit other violent acts of bodily harm as their "religion" requires them to do? If they are arrested for these items are not their first amendment rights being violated?

          Are you afraid that you are wrong? (hint: you are) If you full on believe that you are correct in the interpretation of law then please answer my question which I have asked numerous times.

          I'm waiting...............

          1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

            Sorry but when the Constitution clearly says you cannot make a law violating the right to a religion, and this has been backed by every court decision in the land and most recently shutting down kentuckys order for same as well as the DOJ backing the churchgoers and Mississippi having to redo their order or face federal prosecution, I would say I am on good stead in my statements whereas you are not so much

            1. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

              OMG, Daniel. The 1st Amendment to the US Constitution says no such thing. The pertinent section of that amendment says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

              It does not say the government cannot limit the free exercise of religion; only that it cannot "prohibit" that free exercise.

        2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

          Respectfully when Lionheart is constantly bashing religions in 99.9% of his posts and then tries to give the impression that I am not correct with the 1st amendment when any person with sens and two eyes can read it saying the same thing I have said it does right here

          https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment Amendment I

          Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

          Then my opinion of Lionheart is valid and based on fact

          1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

            You are not correct on your skewed interpretation of the first amendment in this case. Call SCOTUS and you will see this.

            1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

              Dont have to, they already decided Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520 So why dont you just admit defeat and hush.

              1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

                I like how you added just hush since you know I am correct and you are wrong. I also like how you keep using the same tired old case law which on the surface seems to be valid until you actually read the entire case. I assume by your continued regurgitation of one case that you are not a lawyer, have never been a lawyer, been a court clerk or had any experience other than reading conspiracy theories on the internet.

                The church was specifically targeted in an emergency meeting. SPECIFICALLY. TARGETED. IN. AN. EMERGENCY. MEETING.

                This rendered that particular case in violation of the first amendment.

                This has absolutely no bearing on what is going on right now except in specific cases which is outlined in detail in my other responses to you.

                Education. It's what makes us better people.

                Try it, you might like it.

                God bless you and I will pray for you.

              2. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

                mad because I shut you down in less then two paragraphs? Typical

              3. John Condron's Avatar John Condron

                Daniel. You did no such thing. There is an old adage that applies here. It goes something like this:

                "Arguing with Daniel is like playing Chess with a pigeon. No matter how good your argument, the pigeon will knock all the pieces over, crap on the board, and strut around like it's victorious."

  1. the People's Project 5's Avatar the People's Project 5

    Evangelists... promote hate and lies, now leading a cleansing of the sheep who are unable to think for themselves to their death. Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy.

  1. Paul J. Fumero's Avatar Paul J. Fumero

    This a new level of STUPID, BLINDNESS and IGNORANCE. Basic Natural Laws are being broken here and you'll pay the price. No God, religion, Jesus or whomever or pastor or church is going to save you if you break those laws. Y'all do not have access to that level of light to be able and step out of those laws or the tools to do it. As it stands no Pastor, preacher or church, temple leader has access to that level of light and they are putting their congregations at risk of death if they break those Natural Laws. There are people presently here on Earth with that level of access unrelated to religions or churches but you'll not likely to find them. AND they are most certainly not Evangelicals, TV preachers or MegaChurch Businessmen. Sorry to break it to you all in this unsweetened manner. Do not be fools. Stay home and pray all you like and live to see another day.

    1. Mnstr Timothy Blackwood's Avatar Mnstr Timothy Blackwood

      You said it. Perfect, Concise, and To the Point. I applaud your viewpoint.

  1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

    The reason people are congregating at their churches is not because the have faith but a lack of faith. The faithful are strong enough to reach people without being there. In Christianity the house of worship is God's children (people) not the building itself. If you HAVE to go to a building then that is what you are worshiping, a building.

    If you want to worship God and he has said that he is everywhere that includes your home, shelters, food pantries AND HOSPITALS. Why are you not worshiping him at these places? Gods children are dying of this virus yet instead of volunteering to help those in need at these places you go to a building.

    Think about it.

    1. Christian's Avatar Christian

      God's children never die. God's children are immortal. Meat will die &amp; bones will rot... seek you God's children in the grave, and find them you shall not. Many volunteer to feed the hungry, to care for the sick, to help the healing, and to bury the dead. Remember YOU are your Immortal Soul. Flesh is the clothing your soul is wearing... Put Your Faith in God, while your body lives, LIVE for God ! When your body dies, return to God, and ask , "Ok, What is Next, my Lord? " :-) Love All.

      1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

        Nice.

    2. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

      I had an interesting discussion with someone I know on my comment about the lack of faith which I stated. She said that she knows of people who she sees which in her eyes have a strong faith. She stated that they believe their faith will protect them from this virus. I would love to believe this myself but this discussion brought up questions.

      Do these people have their children or themselves vaccinated against other diseases? She stated they did. Based on fact that this is another virus like the others why do they believe God will protect them against this one and not the others?

      Do these people believe God will only hear them if they are in the church (they are Christian) and not in their homes?

      Do these people believe God only exists in the confines of the church?

      If we were in a war and their church was bombed resulting in total destruction, what would they do? Would God hear them? If he would hear you then from wherever you are then why can he not do that now?

      Is their desire to worship in a church truly for God or for their own satisfaction?

      I hope that maybe someone can answer these questions for me and who knows, I may change my opinion (or may have more questions, always hard to tell)

      God Bless

  1. Mnstr Timothy Blackwood's Avatar Mnstr Timothy Blackwood

    If a person laid down on a railroad track for an approaching train, they would certainly be killed no matter how "strong" their faith or perceived "immunity"was. A person could argue that the train could derail at the last moment, or someone (mortal) would intervene and remove them prior to being struck. The latter is more likely, because that fanatic would be jailed or at best be taken in for some serious psychological review. I could likely be jailed for suggesting such a ridiculous stunt, if the fool actually did it and was killed. That could be attempted murder or manslaughter. I strongly urge NOBODY try this PERIOD. I also suggest NOBODY be foolish enough to congregate in an atmosphere strongly linked to church-like activities. Do this for your own sake, and please, I beg you, do not subject others like innocent children or impressionable adults to either. You could KILL them.

    1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

      sigh...and I am sure you are not saying that any government somehow has the authority to violate the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution and order these churches to be shut, when they still allow abortion clinics to be open and liquor stores to be open. Neither one of them are essential and both are "elective" and yet I dont see anyone saying that the churches should be shut down in violation of the 1st Amendment and not saying these should also be closed.

      1. Rev. Dennis's Avatar Rev. Dennis

        Show me proof that the governors who have the authority to issue the stay at home orders ordered these churches shut in violation of the first amendment during this pandemic. (Other than NYC as I have already addressed this with the Mayor of NYC).

        I need definitive proof and not the typical drivel you have spouted so far so I can address these issues. Be specific.

        God bless

        1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

          Fine, look at Florida. If he had the right to shut down the churches, then why did he backtrack? Same for NY and NJ and Mass and California and Michigan and Colorado and Oregon and Washington State....and Mississippi is about to find out the same thing that the fool in Texas thought he could do and was darn near arrested for it.

          The constitution says you CANNOT muck about with someone going to church and thats final, you want to try then please go ahead and then when you are in prison wearing the new frilly T shirt that bubba got for you on a romantic whim, then you can think back to this and know that you were warned.

          1. John D. Partin's Avatar John D. Partin

            DG, if "you CANNOT muck about with someone going to church", then you wouldn't stop any loved ones or friends (if there are any such people in your life) from walking into a church that is on fire, or being demolished in a earthquake, or flooded, or swept away by a tsunami or being destroyed and made unsafe by any other natural or man-made disaster and, thus, "interfere with their 1st Amendment rights", but would just let those people keep walking into those buildings?!!! You wouldn't be in favor of the government's keeping people out of such unsafe and potentially lethal buildings?!! If the answer to those questions is "yes", then you don't really care about your "friends and loved ones"!! Covid-19 is another natural disaster, the same as fires, earthquakes, tsunamis, and the rest, and so it is just obvious that we should keep people out of churches infected by that virus, the same as we would keep them out of churches that were on fire, demolished in earthquakes, etc. Your claim that the government could and would never violate anyone's 1st Amendment or any other rights is disproved by their violating the Japanese Ameticans 1st Amendment and other rights during W.W.II for the sake of "national security" and putting them into internment camps, by their violating the 1st Amendment and other Constitutional rights of those writers and actors and others who were blacklisted during the hearings under Joseph McCarthy in the Senate in the Un-American Activities Committee, the denial of black people's civil and Constitutional rights throughout our history, the denial of civil and human and Constitutional rights to Native Americans, also throughout our history, and by many other examples!! So, the government can and DOES!!! violate people's 1st Amendment and other rights when it feels that is is "necessary" to do so!! That is just historical fact!! So, if the government can violate our 1st Amendment and other rights to hurt us, they can also "violate our 1st Amendment and other rights" to help us, occasionally, by keeping people out of unsafe and death-inviting situations, such as covid-19 infected church or any other buildings!! The "absolute right of people to enter any churches whatsoever, no matter what is happening in them" DOESN'T EXIST!!!, as I have told you before, and that "right" is nowhere to be found in that 1st Amendment that you are always quoting from and throwing in our faces!! Go on and read it again and you will not find it anywhere the statement "people can go into any churches whatsoever, even when that will make them sick and cause them to infect and kill others and themselves". IT'S NOT THERE!!! Your position is completely illogical, inconsistent, insane, and ridiculous!!!

            1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

              Seems the recent decision from the SCOTUS about how Churches were being shut down in NY state, the same decision where they tore into the Gov and the mayor of NYC and told them they cant do this because it violated the 1st Amendment. Seems they know more about the Constitution then you do even though you use 50 words to say hello.

      2. John D. Partin's Avatar John D. Partin

        Comment has been removed.

  1. David Arthur Lewis's Avatar David Arthur Lewis

    There is something much deeper and darker going on here. Evangelical Christians are not merely denying the reality of science. They are actively, purposefully working to bring about the End Times. They truly believe that they are doing God's work, fulfilling ancient prophesy, and they (and they alone) will fly away with Jesus and escape the devastation that the rest of us sinners deserve. They think global nuclear destruction would be the best thing that could happen, and they will watch like the Superbowl.

  1. Dan Anderson's Avatar Dan Anderson

    Whatever happened to "The Lord helps those who helps themselves"? Let's also remember that it is taught that Christians should follow the laws of the land, right?

    I guess this is a different form of "Christianity", much like ISIS is a different form of Islam.

    Silly human animals. (After all, we are not vegetable or mineral!)

  1. GaryV66's Avatar GaryV66

    WOW!!! Yeah that’s all I have say after reading all the comments...WOW!!! And it’s NOT a compliment!!!

    1. Freddie Bell's Avatar Freddie Bell

      Totally agree

  1. Mark Hannon's Avatar Mark Hannon

    It wasn't that long ago that people felt listening to a radio sermon with prayers was good enough. I remember ministers telling people to put their hands on the TV or radio to be a part of the message. Even when the program was recorded earlier. I think these churches that are continuing to meet in person are just afraid their offerings will suffer. I wouldn't ask people to show up for a face to face service right now. Being obedient didn't help Job and his family out of bad things happening. "That ye maybe the children of your Father which is in Heaven*: for he maketh his sun to shine on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and unjust." Matthew 5:45 *notice in "Heaven" not in church. I'm a Red Letter Christian.

  1. Kent Lacey's Avatar Kent Lacey

    Interesting. This topic has generated many, many responses. Much interest, much heat, not as much light. . My simple thoughts are that there has always been a separation of church and state. Period. In times of great emergencies, like war, tornadoes, insurrection, Plague, all good governments will try to provide leadership, help and direction. . So, when it comes to religion listen to your pastor. When civil authority speaks for the good of society listen to them. There will be very few instances where the two conflict - but if this happens follow you own thinking and please point no fingers at anyone else. Take care of yourself and your family, and speak not harshly of others. Thank you.

  1. Richard Lee Cornell's Avatar Richard Lee Cornell

    Lambs to the slaughter. Let them gather if nothing happens then God is on their side or is it that no one has this new virus yet. If those that get sick from this virus all they need is the Bible and they will get well. If they do not then they did something against God and his punish was a painful death. It work in 1918 flu season. Those who die went to Heaven those on earth suffer in Hells aftermath.

  1. Joseph Walter Kasper's Avatar Joseph Walter Kasper

    So they are tempted to jump from the pinnacle of the temple? No humility there.

    Jesus maintained his integrity and responded by quoting scripture, saying, "Again it is written, 'You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test.'" (Matthew 4:7) quoting Deuteronomy 6:16.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temptation_of_Christ

  1. Vern Dee Wall's Avatar Vern Dee Wall

    I have a nice comment but there is so much hatred here that I prefer not to be associated with this group. I wonder why people come here if they hate church topics so much.

    1. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

      You do get this is a nondenominational church right? That a great many of us do not see archaic traditions and delusions based on mythology to be useful or relevant in this modern age, and that we instead practice various forms of spiritualism or modern versions of things like christianity in which one looks at the bible not as history nor fact but as a collection of fables to help encourage being a better person rather then as divine mandate.

      Its not hate, but more loathing and contempt for those who put their faith before reason and the safety of others.

      God will not defend you from bullet nor blade. your head can be staved in by a common spade, such is the curse of the fragile bodies with which we are made, Nor are you or I safe from plague due to a divine facade. So maybe just maybe grasp that truth and let your delusions based on myths from thousands of years past finally fade.

      1. Mary E Benoit's Avatar Mary E Benoit

        Some cannot see a close relationship between science and religion. Either science OR religion? Jesus didn’t mention anything about unseen disease so it doesn’t really exist if it isn’t in the Bible, right? So go to church on Easter and pray thay you will live until Mothers Day.

      2. Christian's Avatar Christian

        The error I keep reading is listed above: "God will not defend you from bullet." A bullet can not touch YOU. The current body you are using may die, disease may infect meat and kill it. But YOU are immortal. YOU are your soul, your body is simply clothing you wear while visit Earth... Now I do hope you enjoy your fine new suit, or lovely new dress. But your clothing is not YOU. Your meat and bone is not YOU. Your Immortal Soul is YOU.
        Even as your body collapses and dies, no harm can come to you. YOU love our Creator. You love our father and mother of All the Cosmos. Put masks and gloves on the body you are using for today, and remember it is a beautiful Temple of the Living God, made in God's image. But all Temples fall, all bodies die, and all Souls are Eternal. Have FAITH ! Love All.

        1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

          I'm just wondering if you had a particular god in mind with your statement. The biblical one, if it ever existed, says "Let US make man in OUR image" Perhaps, he/she meant arms, legs, body, head, fingers, toes, that type of thing. I've never quite figured out who US and OUR really were in that book, have you? Perhaps there was more than one god back then.

          Anyway, the god in that book says he loves us, which is really nice, but then adds the caveat, but if you don't accept me you can go to hell. That's a really weird thing to say by a deity don't you think? I'm so glad I never said that to my children. I love them unconditionally, but who am I? I am just a mere mortal saying the obvious to my children. I do agree with your last two words though. "Love All" even though the biblical deity doesn't.

          🦁♥️

          1. Robert A Stiff's Avatar Robert A Stiff

            Oh, Lionheart, you just make my day. Thank you for calling out these fanatics and their blind adherence to a fable with such eloquence. They won't listen, much less understand, but you are valiant in your battle. But here's another thought; let them gather in their thousands. Let them hug and join hands in their ecstasy. Then perhaps, in a few weeks, Mother Nature will relieve us of their bleating. Just a thought.

      3. Mnstr Timothy Blackwood's Avatar Mnstr Timothy Blackwood

        Amen. Bless the Beasts and The Children. C'ya.

    2. Mary E Benoit's Avatar Mary E Benoit

      Some express exasperation as anger. Fear that church goers will shop at their store and share the virus. I will stay away from all stores from Easter until the end of the month. God help us all.

  1. Mary E Benoit's Avatar Mary E Benoit

    Go for it, I want to see how it works out. Call me a doubting Thomas but I want to review the results at the end of April. Easter is only once a year, Maybe everyone has been in isolation and none have any signs of the virus. I will be participating on Zoom. Let me know if you get that miracle. Fortunately those gathering are down South and right now I am almost at the Canadian border.

  1. Christian's Avatar Christian

    God Saves us in this life, to come join Heaven in the Next Life... There is no death for the Believer, flesh is only the coat we wear while we visit planet Earth. Knowing this, wear your seatbelt in the car, wear your life vest in a boat, wear your mask when you go out shopping, and continue to honor your God as you believe. Freedom of Religion is SO IMPORTANT - the founding fathers of U.S.A. made FREEDOM the First Amendment. Visitors to America were welcomed by the statue of LIBERTY. USA fought the great civil war to end the Sin of Slavery, President Lincoln gave his Life so America would stay Free. If you stay at home, God is with you. If you go to worship, God is with you. When you pray, God is with you. When you sing, God is with you. While we live, God is with us. While we die, God is with us. When we rise again in Glory, God is with us. No thing can stop the Power of Love ! LIVE FREE.

    1. Mark Hannon's Avatar Mark Hannon

      I sort of get the feeling you worship the United States of America just about as much as you worship God.

    2. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      You have some very interesting thoughts. You speak as though you actually “know for sure” that a god is with us, so I’m just wondering how you know that, or were you just sort of speaking metaphorically? I’m assuming you were because I’m thinking he isn’t there for little children dying in pain with cancer, because if he was he’d cure them, wouldn’t he? And he certainly wasn’t there for an 84 year old woman I read about recently who tripped and fell under a bus as she got off and had her head squashed under its wheels when it pulled away. If he really was there, I’d say he has a very sick way of showing it. Just saying!

      🦁❤️

  1. Christian's Avatar Christian

    Remember the medication for the virus is very cheap, it costs less than $30: Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin, zinc sulfate, vitamins C and D. If you feel an infection, and wish to stay on planet Earth a while longer, take your pills and perhaps God will allow you to continue a little while longer.

    If you Go Home, good. If you stay, Good. All things are made good for those that Love the Lord.

    Freely we are gifted this life, having done nothing to earn it. Freely we Love God and give thanks for when we return it. Blessed be Our Creator, now and forever !

    1. Robert A Stiff's Avatar Robert A Stiff

      Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin are unproven and have caused serious side effects, such as heart and liver damage. You shouldn't listen to self-serving politicians when it comes to your health, or self-serving preachers when it comes to your assumed soul.

    2. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      I genuinely do like some of what you said, however, until someone can demonstrably provide evidence that any god really exists, your statement of "All things are made good for those that Love the Lord" remains a fallacy. I like to think that all things are made good for those that use common sense and logic and might remain on earth a bit longer. Thank you for your comment though.

      🦁♥️

    3. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

      I have no lord, I bow before no unseen entity that is too cowardly to show themselves. Who is portrayed by the holy text of those who worship as a mass murdering dictator who kills any who do not bend knee in blind obedience.

      You seem unaware that this is not a christian centric site, and that to come here spouting your idea of faith as the one right one is exactly what the ULC stands against as a non-denominational organization.

      Be a christian just keep in mind its not seen as the one true faith around here, and spouting such only paints you as a troll and bigot.

    4. Paul J. Fumero's Avatar Paul J. Fumero

      being christian does not mean to be stupid. Brake any natural laws and you will pay the price and this virus is natural.

  1. Joshua LaDeau's Avatar Joshua LaDeau

    I made a whole YouTube video about this! Romans 13 says governments are instituted by God and disobeying the government will lead to judgment. These people are not showing their faith, they're showing their ignorance, hypocrisy, and disobedience, and they are a danger to the health and lives of their communities! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ADYZQv3Yioc&amp;t=7s

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      People have made YouTube videos about Harry Potter which are just as meaningful so I’m not too sure what your point is. Just saying!

      🦁❤️

      1. Ilmenheru Terikson's Avatar Ilmenheru Terikson

        Well if nothing else it highlights the willful ignorance and hypocrisy of the so called faithful that forget their faith is one built on absolute pacifism and subservience and passivity to those in power. Christians are meant to be good little sheep hence all the they are my flock talk.

  1. Rev. Jason LaBarre 's Avatar Rev. Jason LaBarre

    being covered in Jesus' blood means, that you will go to heaven. Not that you have protection from covid-19!

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      Yes and children who don’t accept him will go to Hell. That’s the type of loving father/deity some people actually worship and adore. I’m so glad that my children aren’t taught that religious blackmail. My morals are better than his, I will love my children unconditionally and will always provide for them, and actually show up when needed, whether they love me, and accept me, or not. If he needs some guidance on morality tell him to come and see me.🤪

      🦁❤️

  1. Rev Ned's Avatar Rev Ned

    Maybe...deep down inside...they just are impatient to actually meet God.

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      Yes, good point. 🤣

      And as a double whammy, wouldn’t it be a blow if there really is a god on the other side (if there is another side) and it happens to be Krishna, or Vishnu, or some other god waiting to greet them with open arms. If it’s a Hindu deity like Lakshmi, or Shiva, the number of open arms could be plentiful so be prepared for a shock.....especially if the deity is Ganesha🤪

      🦁❤️

  1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

    Playing Chess with a pigeon?So far nothing you have said is based on fact. I have repeatedly told you that you cant shut down a church as it violates the 1st Amendment, and I have given you at least two US Supreme Court decisions that back me up on this as well as US District Court decisions that say the same thing, and yet you still strut around and act like you have won something all the while still stating that you are correct and you can close churches even though at least 6 different courts have said you are wrong. But hey, nobody said you were intelligent.

  1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

    Sorry but I have backed up everything I said and even gave you numerous court cases from US District Courts to the SCOTUS to back me up. So please tell me and others exactly who gave you the authority to say they are wrong?

  1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

    Actually it isnt. but you keep thinking that

  1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

    Sorry I did. But it seems johnny that you are just mad because you cant prove me wrong

  1. Paul J. Fumero's Avatar Paul J. Fumero

    This church can no more make you immune to the COVID-19 than Bozo The Clown can heal you. That is the place where delusion meets reality and they do live in a delusional state. Some claim the blood an the name as if to dare God to protect them. Some real stupid pastors have paid for this delusion with their lives. But then they claim God's will. Some more delusion. The real issue is that because of the virus, their money stream has been interrupted and they can't stand for that.

  1. Vern Dee Wall's Avatar Vern Dee Wall

    This happened to appear in my email at the same time: The New Media Has Become like the Old Media—And That Means the Usual Bias In social media—as in the established old media—editors, curators, and managers work to promote their own self-described “mainstream” views while excluding as “extreme” the views of everyone else. Article by Ryan McMaken at https://mises.org/wire/new-media-has-become-old-media-and-means-usual-bias

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