Grace Community Church to be Evicted from Land It Uses as Parking Lot; Lawyers Say It is Retaliation for Holding In-Person Services Amid Coronavirus Pademic

John MacArthur speaks at Grace Community Church, a megachurch in Sun Valley, California, on Sunday, August 9, 2020. | Grace Community Church

Los Angeles County has notified Grace Community Church, led by Pastor John MacArthur, that it will soon be evicted from a parcel of land it uses as a parking lot — a move lawyers say is retaliation for the church’s decision to hold indoor worship services amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a letter dated Aug. 28, the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works informed the Sun Valley-based church that on Oct. 1, it is being evicted from a large portion of the parking lot of the church that has been in place continuously since 1975.

The county warns that if Grace Community Church fails to vacate the premise as required, “the District may enter the premises and remove Grace’s personal property in accordance with the Agreement and applicable law, and Grace will be responsible for any resultant expenses incurred by the District.”

Jenna Ellis, special counsel to Thomas More Society, said the move is clearly in retaliation for the church’s decision to fight Los Angeles County’s ban on indoor church worship services.

“Los Angeles County is retaliating against Grace Community Church for simply exercising their constitutionally protected right to hold church and challenging an unreasonable, unlawful health order,” Ellis said.

“In America, we have a judicial system to ensure that the executive branch does not abuse its power, and Grace Community Church has every right to be heard without fear of reprisal. The Democrats’ message to Americans is clear—if you don’t bow to every whim of tyranny, the government will come after you. The Church has peacefully held this lease for 45 years and the only reason the County is attempting eviction is because John MacArthur stood up to their unconstitutional power grab. This is harassment, abusive, and unconscionable.”

Over the last few weeks, county officials have repeatedly attempted to get a court order to shutter the church, which has been holding in-person worship services since last month in violation of orders from Gov. Gavin Newsom, who has mandated that churches in some counties refrain from indoor services amid the pandemic.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leah MarieAnn Klett