(Christian Post) New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo threatened to shut down churches and synagogues in New York City if they don’t “agree to follow the rules” regarding social distancing and mask use as part of the state’s response to COVID-19.
At a press conference on Monday, Cuomo spoke about his plans to close schools designated as being in New York City “hot spots” and issued a warning to churches and synagogues in those same areas.
“We know religious institutions have been a problem,” he argued, pointing to a screen showing pictures of Christian and Jewish gatherings. “You don’t see masks. And you see clear violations of social distancing.”
“If you do not agree to follow the rules, then we will close the institutions down. I am prepared to do that,” Cuomo said.
The Twitter account for Satmar Headquarters, a Hasidic Jewish community based in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, explained that one of the pictures shown on the screen was not from recent weeks, as Cuomo had insinuated, but was more than a decade old. “This Picture is from the 2006 Funeral of the previous Satmar Grand Rebbe, 14 years ago!”
Joseph Esposito, a parishioner of St. Athanasius Church, Bensonhurst, also raised concerns that Cuomo was unfairly targeting houses of worship.
“It’s ridiculous. It absolutely makes no sense,” Esposito told The Tablet. “We go out of our way to make sure it is safe. The churches have been doing the right thing. We are being punished for our hard work. And why this is being done by ZIP code makes no sense. What if you live in one neighborhood and go to church in another?”
Cuomo listed his requirements for churches, adding: “If we’re going to keep religious institutions open, it can only be with two conditions. One, the community must agree, whether it’s the Jewish community, whether we’re talking about black churches, whether we’re talking about Roman Catholic churches, the religious community has to agree to the rules and they have to agree that they are going to follow the rules. And they have to agree that they are going to be a full partner in the enforcement of the rules.”
“If you do not agree to enforce the rules, then we’ll close the institutions down,” he warned. Cuomo said that the second condition for keeping religious institutions open required strict enforcement of social distancing rules and capacity limits: “If the rule is no more than 50% of the people in a black church, I want someone at the door when 50% enter the church, a person there who says to the pastor, you agree to follow the rules. That’s 50%. That’s it or we close it down.”
To continue reading, click here
Editor’s note. This article was written by Ryan Foley and published at the Christian Post. Title changed by Protestia.
A CALL TO ACTION
Enjoy our content? GREAT! Unfortunately, ad revenue for truth-telling websites has been severely hampered by consorship and de-platforming. This ministry isn't free to run, and finding people willing to support polemical theology is like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
So we have some great ways for you to EASILY support our work that will take less than 3 minutes of your time to do.
First, check our our page explaining this all at detail at https://supportpolemics.com
But in short, you can support us on Patreon and get exclusive rewards like the FULL non-truncated episodes of the bi-weely Polemics Report podcast ONLY available on your Patreon app. It's super easy to use. Get exclusive updates from JD. Get all that and support our work for only $5.95 a month. You'll also get a PAID subscription to 'The Insurgency' "banned news blasts" once a day for 50 news links to banned content you can't find in social media. For other patron tiers, you can join us live via zoom to interact with JD during the Bulldgomatic Bible study, get free theology books in the mail, and more.
Or, if you don't want to use Patreon and don't want the rewards, subscribe to 'The Insurgency' "banned news blasts" for free (three days a week) or $7 dollars a month (notice that's a dollar more than getting it through Patreon) or $70 dollars a year. Instead of you scouring the news, let our Gideon Knox News team do the news-hunting FOR YOU and it will save you time finding real news.
And finally, you can give a one time financial gift through Giving Fuel . It's also super-easy to set up and takes only minutes.
Because JD gets banned in Facebook a lot, you can also find him on Twitter here And if you're into politics, check out Montana Daily Gazette. If you just want his sermons, check out his SermonAudio feed