Judge blocks Kansas coronavirus order limiting religious gatherings
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly. Photo: Mark Reinstein/Corbis via Getty Images
A federal judge issued an order Saturday blocking a Kansas measure that limited attendance at in-person religious worship gatherings to 10 people or fewer during the coronavirus pandemic.
Why it matters: Many churches have moved to online services, but some are pushing back against orders preventing them from holding in-person gatherings. The Alliance Defending Freedom group, which represented two Baptist churches in the case, has filed several lawsuits challenging such orders in the U.S.
- A notable suit the group brought was in Greenville, Mississippi, where the mayor reversed a ban last Wednesday on drive-in churches after the Department of Justice filed a Statement of Interest supporting the Temple Baptist Church's case.
Zoom in: U.S. District Judge John Broomes' temporary Kansas order will remain in effect until May 2 and a hearing is scheduled for Thursday.
What they're saying: Per AP, Gov. Laura Kelly (D) said in a statement of her executive order, "This is not about religion. This is about a public health crisis."
The big picture: The DOJ announced earlier this month it would take action against local authorities that have cracked down on religious services as part of restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Go deeper: God and COVID-19