Although some states are still under a lockdown, President Donald Trump said Friday that he has deemed churches and other houses of worship “essential” and called on governors across the country to allow them to reopen this weekend.
“Today I’m identifying houses of worship — churches, synagogues and mosques — as essential places that provide essential services,” Trump said.
President Trump warned governors that they “need to do the right thing and allow these very important essential places of faith to open right now, for this weekend.” And he warned that if governors don’t abide by his request, he will “override” them.
For months the reopening of religious services have been a controversy, and now that many states are starting to reopen, Trump and the White House administration believe it is safe to reopen churches in accordance with the CDC guidelines.
Following Trump’s announcement, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidelines for communities of faith that include taking steps to limit the size of gatherings and considering holding services outdoors or in large, well-ventilated areas.