All church services banned effective April 3

A third amended Emergency Declaration for COVID-19 issued last night by Governor Lolo Moliga calls for all church denominations to suspend all religious services.

“In the original declaration the governor stopped from dictating rules to the religious sector based on the separation of state and religion constitutional precept,” said the Chairman of the ASG Coronavirus Task Force Iulogologo Joseph Pereira.

But he noted that the escalation of the coronavirus curve in many of the states “has heightened the governor’s worry over the fate of our people.”

Therefore, Governor Lolo has  exercised his authority given the “deadliness of this disease to order aggressive implementation of the social distancing protocol.”

According to the chairman, the governor respects the autonomy of the churches, “but in this case, protecting the lives of our people is the governor’s preeminent concern.”

Under the amended COVID-19 emergency declaration this wording is added to Code Blue, which the territory is in now:

“All church meetings, services and events are suspended until further notice, effective April 3. The threat posed by the pandemic required drastic social distancing measures and churches are encouraged to continue worship services remotely via video conferencing technology.”

Click here for the Third Amended Emergency Declaration…2020-THIRD-AMENDED-DECLARATION-v1-04.01.20