Today, a Ventura County state judge issued a temporary restraining order to Pastor Rob McCoy of Godspeak Calvary Chapel Church, Thousand Oaks, California, prohibiting the church from meeting under Governor Newsom's unconstitutional COVID-19 no singing and no worship orders. Liberty Counsel does not represent the church but is working with the pastor and his legal counsel.
The state court order also names Does 1 – 1000, meaning the injunction includes every person who attends the church or who will attend the church. Anyone who dares visit the church to worship could be held in contempt of court.
However, Gov. Newsom's orders allow the church to feed, shelter and provide social services, but the same people in the same building cannot worship. In order words, nonreligious services are acceptable but religious services are banned. People can receive food, but not take Communion. People can be housed overnight, but cannot hold a short worship service, Bible study or meet for prayer. People can receive counseling to find work but cannot be counseled on finding eternal life.
This case is the first in the country where church members and all future attendees are now considered defendants subject to contempt of court for entering a church to worship.
An evidentiary hearing is now set for the end of the month.
Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, "The same governor who encourages mass protests, bans all worship. The same governor who says the church can meet for secular services, bans the church from having religious worship. If people cannot see this obvious unconstitutional violation, they are blind. This unconstitutional hostility against religious worship must end. Enough is enough!"
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