Pastor Says It’s In ‘Persecution Of The Faith’ For Him To Be Asked To Close Church Doors During C…Jean Kelley March 26, 2020 100 Comments
This is clearly a difficult situation for everybody and I can imagine for you wanting to minister to your flock and bring comfort to them and deliver the message to them, this creates a real problem because a lot of these people rely on this every week and maybe sometimes more than once a week to come and get the message and get the comfort that you provide. That is accurate, Dr. Phil. We feel that we are as essential part of our community as the retail stores, as the Mall of Louisiana, that remains open to this moment. So it is in persecution of the faith for us to be asked to close our doors whenever more people are being contacted in those Targets and Walmarts than are in my service. And for them to say those are essential to the community operating, I say that the church is as and more important that we assemble together, we reach out, we minister to people, we feed people. We’re the last stable institution in this community today. I guarantee you that. Well Pastor Tony, let me tell you straight up, I very much am a Christian. I’ve had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ since I was 13 years old. I take this very seriously. So I have a great respect for what you’re trying to do but also I’ve read everything that you were kind enough to share with us about your thinking and I know that you also have a healthy respect for the science involved here and I know that you don’t want to put anybody at risk at the same time. You say that the stores are open, so you’re holding your doors open, and two wrongs don’t make a right. And what I’m concerned about is the science of this that I’ve looked very hard at, and trust me, I’m not an immunologist, I’m not an infectious disease expert and I don’t pretend to be, but I have had the privilege of talking to the world’s leading experts on this and the fact of the matter is this is not a typical virus. This is much more infectious than influenza, it’s much more deadly than influenza. And particularly for those that are elderly with underlying respiratory disorders, like COPD or asthma, something of that nature. If they get that, particularly in a part of the country where there are not a lot to respirators or ventilators or resources to help them, this could be very, very deadly. And I’m curious how you feel about that in putting these people in such juxtaposition to one another? My answer to that is even if the stores were to close, we want to have the ability to exercise our first amendment rights, which are your rights as well, but these are our freedoms that we hold dear that congress can pass now laws prohibiting or forbidding us to gather and assemble. That is a conviction of ours and even if the stores were to close, we don’t force anybody to come to our services. I’ll tell you this, with the instability in my community today, I’ve ministered to two teenage girls, African American girls who have attempted suicide this week because their parents have lost their jobs, their schools are closed, they don’t get their meals during the day. And these are a troublesome time for them. We’re ministering to them. We’re not a part of the problem.