Megachurch Pastor Brian Gibson announced Monday that he is opening the doors of his four churches on Sunday, May 17, and is inviting other churches across the nation to join him as part of "Peaceably Gather" Sunday.
The senior pastor of HIS Church with congregations in Owensboro and Henderson, Kentucky, as well as in Amarillo and Dumas, Texas, has launched PeaceablyGather.com, an online petition where churches and faith leaders can join in affirming that they will also be opening the doors of their places of worship. Legal watchdog group First Liberty Institute has announced that they will provide legal representation to Pastor Gibson and any of his four churches in Texas and Kentucky that are targeted by local governments for practicing their Constitutional rights to gather and worship.
"People in churches, mosques and synagogues have been told that, regardless of any social distancing or protective practices they implement, they cannot gather, with threats of retribution from local governments if they don't keep their doors closed. It's not just ironic, it's a deliberate slap in the face to religious freedom, that a Costco or Walmart can have hundreds of people inside their building at any one time, but places of worship and people of faith can't be trusted to implement the same safety procedures in their own buildings." Gibson said.
"The right to exercise our religious freedoms is the definition of 'essential' and must not be trampled on, and every Sunday that we aren't in church, we lose more freedom. On May 17, people of faith can exercise the appropriate social distancing and sanitary approaches, but most importantly they must exercise the constitutional approach. Because rights not fought for will eventually be lost. "
Watch Pastor Gibson's video about churches exercising their constitutional rights.
Peaceably Gather Sunday and the website derive their name from the First Amendment of the Constitution, which states, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
—The Peaceably Gather Campaign comes as a response to local elected leaders and law enforcement across the country targeting any attempt of places of worship to gather their members.
—Pastor Gibson's recent attempt to offer a drive-thru Easter celebration for children was targeted by local officials and shut down.
—Kelly Schackelford, president, CEO and chief counsel for First Liberty, has committed that their team will provide legal defense for Pastor Gibson and his churches in Kentucky and Texas in response to any action local governments take against HIS Church congregations and leadership.
Churches and their pastors can sign the petition at PeaceablyGather.com.
About First Liberty Institute—First Liberty Institute is the largest legal organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to defending religious liberty for all Americans. They believe that every American of any faith—or no faith at all—has a fundamental right to follow their conscience and live according to their beliefs.
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