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Catholic, some Lutheran churches to defy Minnesota ban on large religious gatherings

St. Paul's Catherdral, St. Paul
MinnPost file photo by Rita Kovtun
St. Paul's Catherdral, St. Paul

In the Pioneer Press, Kristi Belcamino and Dave Orrick write: “Services will resume in Catholic and some Lutheran churches in Minnesota next week, despite Gov. Tim Walz’s announcement Wednesday continuing to prohibit religious gatherings of more than 10 people. The Minnesota Catholic Conference and the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod in Minnesota sent Walz separate letters Wednesday announcing they would resume worship services on Tuesday, May 26.”

In the Star Tribune, John Ewoldt and Rick Nelson report: “Restaurant operators felt blindsided by Gov. Tim Walz’s announcement Wednesday that restaurants could open only for outdoor dining on June 1, with the head of a hospitality trade group calling it a ‘disastrous setback.’ While some restaurant owners are still weighing whether employees would be safe from COVID-19 if they open — and if customers would come — they had been expecting a green light to operate their dining rooms, possibly with tight restrictions.”

MPR’s Brian Bakst says, “Two-year state employee contracts that include upcoming raises will remain in effect under a decision by DFL Gov. Tim Walz’s administration that is sure to rile his political rivals. The Legislature ended its session Sunday without passing a joint bill to ratify the agreements. The DFL-led House signed off, but the Republican-controlled Senate voted to make its approval contingent on withholding a 2.5 percent raise due to take effect in July. The decision left employees in doubt, and could have led to immediate pay cuts if the agreements had been deemed invalid.”

FOX 9 picks up a New York Times story and says, “A COVID-19 data analysis from the New York Times says the Rice County area that includes Northfield and Faribault, Minn. is poised for the next big COVID-19 outbreak. The Northfield-Faribault area was listed as number one in the United States for highest average daily growth rate of cases at 11 percent. The Times’ Upshot says cases are doubling every 6.4 days there. … The Northfield-Faribault area also came in at number 14 nationally in new cases per 100,000 people with a rate of 3.61.”

In the Pioneer Press, Josh Verges writes: “The Minnesota State system still plans to raise tuition by 3 percent this fall as it faces a steep drop in college and university enrollment due to the coronavirus pandemic. Student confirmations have picked up lately but fall enrollment still is 17 percent behind where it was at this point last year. Summer enrollment is flat. Trustees asked last month whether the system should freeze tuition, following the University of Minnesota’s example. Chancellor Devinder Malhotra said he would consider it.”

At WCCO-TV a story says, “Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey spoke at a press conference Wednesday at Ole Olsen Park. This was the first time he’s spoken in-person at a press conference since his State of the City address three weeks ago. During his address, he said the city was providing millions of dollars in emergency funding for small businesses and people in need. ‘The status of COVID-19 and the sheer magnitude of the virus makes it so that money, that emergency assistance, was not enough,’ Frey said. Mayor Frey called on federal partners to step up for small businesses and renters. ‘We are going to need help.’”

This, also from WCCO-TV, “Izzy’s Ice Cream has put their building near Gold Medal Park in Minneapolis up for sale. A spokesperson for the company confirmed that they’re selling the building, but said that they do not plan to sell the business itself. … The building, which was erected in 2012, is up for $2.5 million.”

Also from WCCO-TV: “After 11 years of operation, the Burger Jones in Minneapolis will permanently close its doors. The Burnsville location, however, will live on. On Tuesday, Burger Jones announced ‘with a heavy heart’ that the location near Bde Maka Ska will be closing its doors for good.”

Comments (7)

  1. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 05/21/2020 - 07:01 am.

    I look forward to the Catholic hierarchy’s announcement that they are no longer pretending to be “pro-life,” and have instead concluded that “pro-death,” or at the very least, “pro-infection,” is the new official position of the church. Their Lutheran brethren have apparently adopted a similar position.

    While gathering with one’s fellow believers is certainly encouraged in both Christian theology and practice over millennia, I don’t recall anything in my King James and other Biblical volumes that REQUIRES a large gathering of the faithful in the same location in order for someone to be a Christian – or at least be perceived as one – in either theory or practice.

  2. Submitted by Clayton Haapala on 05/21/2020 - 08:50 am.

    And the Lord sent prophets from the churches in GA, TX, and AR saying, “Verily, it is too soon.” But the people ignored the prophets, and cast them out.

  3. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 05/21/2020 - 09:20 am.

    This just in: Matthew 6:5-6 is to be ignored.

    • Submitted by Jeremy Brezovan on 05/21/2020 - 11:36 am.

      It’s funny that while sitting in a church full of people, one never considers how those words may apply to them. I was raised Catholic, and I know we heard these verses during Gospel readings at Mass, so they should not be unfamiliar to the Conference.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 05/21/2020 - 12:27 pm.

        One could say that a church service meets a universal need for ritual that transcends any spiritual concerns.

        One could also say that those collection plates aren’t going to fill themselves, people.

  4. Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 05/21/2020 - 10:05 am.

    I can go to Target to buy condoms but I can’t go to church. Makes sense. Common sense exceptions are the devil’s playground.

  5. Submitted by Maynard Ferguson on 05/21/2020 - 11:33 pm.

    Love thy neighbor as thyself, . . . and then put thy neighbors at risk of dying.

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