"God is not done with California," Sean Feucht, a self-described "founder of multiple movements" and a "lover of Jesus Christ," bragged over the weekend. Perhaps to his surprise, neither is COVID-19.
Feucht, further described in this CBS Sacramento report as a pastor associated with Bethel Church in Redding, also boasted about an alleged attendance of more than 12,000 at the latest iteration of his worship-and-music event that's widely billed as an intentional bucking of pandemic era health guidelines. Put another way, this is willful stupidity.
On Sunday, Feucht and company engaged in virus denialism on the California State Capitol grounds. As you surely could have guessed, there was no regard for social distancing. Masks, meanwhile, were largely nonexistent among attendees.
As you can see on Feucht's website, from which events of this type are livestreamed and accompanied by a petition, he is attempting to posit this year's pandemic guidelines as some sort of targeted attack on religion, which would mark an objectively hilarious example of preposterousness were it not also dangerous as all hell.
"Powerful politicians and social media giants have engaged in unchartered abuses of religious liberty, silencing the faithful, banning our voices, and outright attacking our God-given right to declare His goodness," he says on the site, presumably while keeping a straight face.
Health officials, rightfully, have condemned the latest Feucht-led gathering as merely the latest example of people not taking COVID-19 with the level of seriousness it demands.
Of course, this isn't the first incident involving a church figure who's openly toying with public health. Previous examples, including this Virginia pastor who died of COVID-19 after vowing to preach unless he was in jail or the hospital, should make it quite clear why these tactics are not in the best interest of the general public.