There has been a trend going on in the United States of pastors refusing to shut down their churches during this pandemic.
This past weekend, CNN host Victor Blackwell confronted one of those pastors and urged him to answer the question: “how is this pro-life?”
Pastor Anthony “Tony” Spell appeared on CNN’s New Day Weekend on Sunday after being charged by Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards for refusing to shut down his church.
Sunday’s service at Spell’s Life Tabernacle Church was attended by roughly 1,800 people, according to HuffPost, and hundreds of more followers gathered at the church when Spell’s interview with Blackwell ended.
“We believe the science of this,” he told the CNN host. “However, we do have a command from God and there are no governing bodies that can tell us we cannot gather and worship freely.”
Blackwell then questioned Spell if he believed in the science that shows people who gather in larger groups are likelier to be infected with the virus.
“Yes, we believe the science,” Spell said, adding that many people who are infected “don’t even know they have it,” and frequently recover. “People have been locked up in their homes for 22 days now. … And the hope is the last stronghold in these people’s lives.”
That prompted Blackwell to ask:
“If you believe the science — and I assume you are pro-life, is that correct?”
Spell affirmed that he is pro-life.
“How is this a pro-life stance to put people in jeopardy of contracting a disease, getting a virus that has no treatment, no cure, often has no symptoms and has killed more than [8,500 people in the U.S.] in five weeks?” Blackwell asked the evangelical pastor.
Spell answered that “people’s hope is in the house of God.”
“If they do contract the virus, if they have fears of the virus, the church is more essential now than ever,” he added. “There is a physician in Jesus Christ.”
He also added “we were supposed to be at a million-and-a-half body bags. We’re at 8,400. So the narrative is false.”
Take a look at the interview in the video clip below: