OH pastors plead with DeWine: Open up the state

Thursday, April 30, 2020
 | 
Chad Groening (OneNewsNow.com)

church pewsOhio pastors are asking Governor Mike DeWine to reconsider restrictions that remain in place in The Buckeye State, including one pastor who says his congregation is planning to meet again.

In an open letter sent to the governor's office, 100 clergy members suggested that extending the stay-at-home orders past the May 1 expiration are not in the state's best interests.

While a few restrictions will be lifted May 4, many won't end until May 12, and the pastors pointed out that health officials are predicting fewer deaths from the coronavirus pandemic, and Ohioans are ready to get out of their homes and back to work.

One of the pastors is John Bouquet of Bethel Baptist Church, located in Savannah. He tells OneNewsNow he disagrees with the governor’s view of the virus but adds that pastors are not rebelling against him.

DeWine

“I'm joining that team," he says, "in saying, Mr. Governor, we thank you for what you've done for us to this point but now we're to the point where we can lead ourselves, and some of these restrictions need reconsideration.”

The governor has been making these shut-down decisions without asking for public input and without the approval of state legislators, the pastor adds. 

The pastors who signed the letter come from the north central area of Ohio, which are rural counties known as the “Bible Belt” of the state.

Bouquet tells OneNewsNow that his congregation plans to hold a limited, in-house service this Sunday.

“It's time to go back to worship. It's time to go back to work,” he insists. "And it's time to open up the state of Ohio. That's what we're saying."

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