Appeals panel follows judge’s ruling in COVID-19 church restrictions suit

PASADENA (CNS) - Two days after a Riverside judge rejected a church's bid for an emergency pre-Christmas ruling overturning Gov. Gavin Newsom's COVID-19 guidelines on indoor worship, a federal appeals panel issued a similar ruling. Pasadena-based Harvest Rock Church and Harvest International Ministry are challenging Newsom's stay-at-home restrictions, alleging violations of the First Amendment. On Monday, U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal turned down the ministry's request to block state restrictions on indoor worship. The next day, the church sought an emergency injunction with the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals against the governor's guidelines. On Wednesday, in a 2-1 decision, the Pasadena appellate panel turned down the request. The case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court,
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