UPDATE 5/23/2020 – AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – For further clarification, Mayor Davis said, “I did not know anything about the church holding services on the fairgrounds. I am not aware of any inspection or permit being conducted as needed by the fire marshal.”
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – President Trump is urging state governors to reopen houses of worship. Georgia Governor Brian Kemp never closed places of worship in his state but many churches suspended in-person services.
“Some churches still not having services today because they can’t congregate together,” said Commissioner, District 9, Marion Williams.
However, that’s not the case for Trumpet in Zion Fellowship.
Every year the church holds a revival service series dubbed their annual crusade at the Exchange Club Fairgrounds. The services have been going on since the 80s.
Commissioner Williams said, “I know the pastor. I think he’s a great guy. I think he’s doing a good job doing the Lord’s work. But at the same time, God gives us a mind to think for ourselves and to be reasonable about situations. This is a serious situation.”
“Praise God in the midst of everything. To thank him for all the blessings. To thank him for keeping my family safe,” said Calwana Noble, a church member.
Augusta Mayor Hardie Davis told NewsChannel 6 the city did not authorize the Friday church service. Commissioner Williams has concerns.
“I don’t think we can do much about private business or a church doing something like that. We know what the governor has put out. We all need to social distance. We need to try to do that as much as we possibly can,” said Commissioner Williams.
Seating arrangements under the tent were in coordination with social distancing. Many seats were marked with an X to not sit there. Even some rows are roped off with caution tape. For Commissioner Williams, he’s not taking the return of church services lightly.
He said, “We had somebody in Waynesboro lose their life. Several people I think. The pastor died in that church because of this virus. And people need to look at this thing. It’s very serious.”
Noble added, “I trust in God and if I get, I get it. I know everything happens for a reason and I have faith that I won’t get it.”
Trumpet in Zion Fellowship plans to have services at their tent every night until May 29th.