Los Angeles County and the state of California have agreed to pay $800,000 in attorney’s fees to Grace Community Church after the congregation prevailed in multiple courts over the issue of COVID-19 restrictions.
This case might inspire other churches across the world to faithfully defy restrictions that government, at times, illegally impose.
IN 2020, John MacArthur and Grace Community Church defied restrictions prohibiting indoor services.
The defiance led to a series of legal actions by both the county and the state, with the intention to force the congregation into compliance.
Many churches may now have the muscle not to bow to government tyranny in the name of Covid-19 restrictions.
The county threatened the church with thousands of dollars in fine, with Pastor MacArthur facing potential arrest at a point. But Grace Community argued that it had a constitutional right to worship indoors.
In the end, though, Grace Community Church prevailed in court, in part because the U.S. Supreme Court issued a major ruling in November siding with churches in other jurisdictions.
The county and the state each will pay $400,000 as part of the “prevailing party” attorney’s fees.
Pastor MacArthur said all the money will go to the Thomas More Society, which represented the church.
The Thomas More Society described it as a “big religious liberty win” for the church.
Charles LiMandri, special counsel for the Thomas More Society said that pastor MacArthur and Grace Community Church refused to bow to government tyranny and they finally obtained the excellent result they deserved.
LiMandri continued: ”Thanks to their courage and perseverance, justice prevailed, and the First Amendment was vindicated. No longer can the County of Los Angeles and the State of California treat people of faith like second-class citizens. This result is a victory for all Americans who cherish religious liberty”.
Pastor MacArthur said they are very grateful for the Lord’s protection and providence throughout this past year. “Our commitment to the Word of God and his church has never wavered,” he added.
Furthermore, he faithfully opined that they have simply continued to stand firm, as always have and always will.
He said they put their trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the head of the church.
“Over the past year, our congregation has seen his hand of blessing in ways like never before, and the Lord’s promise has been realized: ‘I will build my church and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.'”