NYCF Thanks President Trump For Supporting Church Re-Openings

Rochester, NY—Earlier today, President Donald Trump called upon state governors to re-open places of worship on Memorial Day weekend. Describing churches and other houses of worship as “essential,” the President said, “‘In America, we need more prayer, not less.’” 

Rev. Jason J. McGuire, Executive Director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms (NYCF), made the following remarks: “New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms joins President Donald Trump in calling upon states to prioritize the safe re-opening of houses of worship for in-person services. The President’s reminder of the centrality of prayer and worship in the United States is a welcome one. The vast majority of American churches have cooperated with their state governments by temporarily suspending in-person services during the COVID-19 pandemic; however, this temporary suspension cannot become our new normal. While government has broad latitude to address emergencies, it must not limit the free exercise of religion unless doing so is the least restrictive means of furthering a compelling state interest. Furthermore, government must not place burdens upon religious activity that it does not place upon commercial activity or recreational activity.”

Rev. McGuire continued, “If a church is located in a COVID-19 hot spot, it may not be advisable for that church to re-open for in-person services at this time. In many places, however, it is now safe for churches to begin holding in-person services again. If government considers it safe to open liquor stores, big box stores, and beaches at a given location, why should it not be considered safe to re-open churches as well? President Trump trusts America’s churches to practice social distancing and observe other health-related guidelines, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo should trust us, too. Thank you, Mr. President.”