Republican Whip Rod Montoya responds to Governor’s order to ban churches and places of worship

Farmington, NM- With just over 8-hours to go before Easter Sunday, the Governor’s office sent out an emergency executive order adding churches and places of worship to her list of banned mass gatherings. The email was sent out to the media by the Governor’s spokesperson at 4:47pm. It is unknown when this order went out to the many churches and places of worship in New Mexico.

Churches across New Mexico state have opted to broadcast their services online instead of holding in person services to help stem the spread of Coronavirus.  This despite the fact they were exempted from the Governor’s social distancing orders.  The Governor’s order today eliminating the faith exemption now means that churches across our state will be violating her order by broadcasting Easter services because it often requires more than 5 people to broadcast a service. 

“It is simply impossible for churches to produce an online service without having more than five people in a room.” said House Republican Whip Rod Montoya (R-Farmington).  “Governor, despite what you think, these services are essential! To make this decision the day before Easter is egregious.  I am advising churches across our state to continue to produce and offer online services going forward; this order today cannot and will not stand.”