(Mercury News) The 400-member church congregation hadn’t gathered face-to-face in five months.
Conceding to California restrictions that closed churches early in the COVID19-pandemic and later severely limited attendance indoors, churchgoers have been gathering on Zoom and FaceTime because, as they said, “God is everywhere.”
But when Gov. Gavin Newsom imposed another ban on religious services — no singing allowed indoors — Victory Outreach San Jose had had enough.
“To say you can’t sing, that’s the time-out,” said Victory Outreach Pastor Joe Woolwine. “For us, it’s not singing, it’s worship.”
On Sunday, in an act of both protest and togetherness, several hundred members of Victory Outreach and other Christian congregations gathered at San Jose City Hall plaza and — with the house jazz band playing on the steps — sang out.
Wearing masks and spreading out six feet apart, a lively group swayed, clapped and sang “in the name of Jesus, enemy defeated, we will shout it out.”
In late May, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a claim by a church in Chula Vista that the restrictions on religious gatherings were unconstitutional. On July 16, churches in Fort Bragg, Ukiah and Oroville filed a federal lawsuit claiming their First Amendment rights were also violated and made the case that while Gov. Gavin Newsom has protected protesters’ freedom of speech, he hadn’t given the same protection to church members.
In the midst of Sunday’s singing service at City Hall — replete with a 10-member choir and thundering testimonials — Vince Strangis made a similar..
To continue reading, click here
Editors Note. This article was written by JULIA PRODIS SULEK and published at Mercury News. Title changed by Pulpit & Pen
A CALL TO ACTION
Bringing you discernment news and commentary from a biblical, polemical perspective means it is tough out there on social media. We’re constantly getting kneecapped and constrained by tech companies who find our fidelity to the scripture and pursuit of truth to be intolerable, resulting in our reach being severely throttled.
For this reason, we ask you please consider supporting us a few different ways. The first, by liking and following our new Facebook page, our home where we share new posts and interact with our members. The second, by following and retweeting our Twitter page. The third, by signing up for our newsletter below.
And last, through direct support. You can catch our free weekly episodes of the Polemics Report by subscribing at BTWN. If you like what you hear and desire to to hear more, you can get the VIP full-length version for only $5.95 per month on Patreon. Also, you get other freebies for additional monthly pledges.
Subscribe to us on Patreon here and support our ministry.
Stay informed. Subscribe Today.
When you subscribe, please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts to ensure that your newsletter doesn’t go into your spam folder.
Enter your email address below…