Thou Shalt Not Spread Coronavirus

Florida pastor who refused calls to suspend services amid the coronavirus outbreak was arrested

News broke recently that Tampa Bay pastor Rodney Howard-Browne was arrested for refusing to abide by social distancing orders.

The Daily Beast reports:

Chronister’s office warned Howard-Browne that his busy services violated a county order against gatherings of more than 10 people. Deputies for Chronister, a Republican, set up an electronic sign outside the church on Sunday urging parishioners to stay six feet apart from each other, the Tampa Bay Times reported.  

But Howard-Browne went ahead with two services, even offering to bus people to the church.

At services on March 15, Howard-Browne encouraged his parishioners to shake hands to show they weren’t afraid of contracting the coronavirus and vowed his church “will never close.”

Read it here:

Rodney Howard-Browne, Megachurch Pastor Who Flouted Virus Rules, Arrested | The Daily Beast

Howard-Browne’s refusal to follow the law and willingly endanger the lives of his congregation reminded me of a blistering New York Times opinion piece by Katherine Stewart. It now lives under the headline “The Religious Right’s Hostility to Science Is Crippling Our Coronavirus Response.” But when it first caught my eye, it boasted a far more provocative headline:

The Road to Coronavirus Hell Was Paved by Evangelicals | The New York Times

Read what she says. You’ll see she’s right.


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