Louisiana Governor: ‘Grossly Irresponsible’ for Church Leaders to Still Hold Services

Louisiana Governor: ‘Grossly Irresponsible’ for Church Leaders to Still Hold Services

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards criticized a prominent pastor in his home state for saying he would defy the governor’s order prohibiting large gatherings.

Bel Edwards, appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, told Jake Tapper it would be “grossly irresponsible” for Tony Spell, of Life Tabernacle Church in Baton Rouge, to continue to hold services.

“There is not a setting more conducive to the virus like church services when people are sitting in close proximity to each other for an hour or two at a time,” Bel Edwards said. “Obviously [Spell] is violating the order. He has been served a summons on that. I would hope that he would stop. And law enforcement has this very much in their sights and I support the actions they’re taking.”

Spell said he believes the coronavirus is “politically motivated.”

“I’m appealing to Pastor Spell to do the right thing and thus far he has not,” Bel Edwards continued. “It’s very disappointing. But the vast majority of pastors out there are doing the right thing.”

Watch the video above, via CNN.

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt is a writer and editor from New Hampshire whose work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Progressive, Slate and Areo Magazine, among other places. He holds a BA in Political Science and History from Boston University.