City Council Drops Charges against Pastor Fined $800 for Holding Church Services

Source: John Paluska | Contributor

In Niles, Illinois, Romanian pastor Daniel Chiu of Logos Baptist Ministries, has been fined $800 for holding indoor church services.

According to The Christian Post, the city is claiming that Chiu violated an executive order from governor J.B. Pritzker restricting gatherings amid COVID-19.

Initially, Chiu was also handed four criminal charges for holding the gatherings, but after Christian legal firm Liberty Counsel jumped in, the city dropped the charges.

“It is beyond belief that a pastor would be charged with ‘disorderly conduct’ for peacefully and safely holding a church service,” Liberty Counsel founder and Chairman Mat Staver said according to The Christian Post. “Think about it — a pastor who survived communist Romania is charged with ‘disorderly conduct’ for holding a church service in America — the land of the free,” he continued. “This is shameful. The repression against the church under communism failed, and it will not succeed here in America.”

Liberty Counsel will now file a petition with the Supreme Court to get Illinois Governor’s Executive Order reviewed.

“While Gov. J.B. Pritzker removed ALL restrictions on churches and houses of worship when he was previously called to account to the Supreme Court, the High Court ruled that the governor failed to make it absolutely clear that he would not return to the prior executive order. This month Liberty Counsel will file a petition with the Supreme Court to consider the case for a full review since Gov. Pritzker wants to return to his restrictive orders,” their statement said.

Liberty Counsel is representing another Illinois-based church called Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church. Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church, which will be included in the petition to the Supreme Court, has also run into legal issues surrounding church gatherings.