Some churches to follow NOLA vaccine mandate even though not required
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Starting Monday, certain businesses and venues in New Orleans will require proof of vaccination or a negative covid test to enter.
As some business owners prepare to enforce the Mayor’s new vaccine mandate, there are some indoor establishments not included in the fine print such as grocery stores, gas stations, and places of worship.
“You can walk in a church which has a much higher density rate than something that we do,” said Debra Schumacher, owner of Slim Goodies Diner.
However, some church leaders are choosing to follow suit even though they don’t have to such as Household of Faith Church in Jefferson Parish.
The day before the mandate went into effect, leaders set up tables outside Sunday service asking churchgoers to provide a vaccine card or a negative covid test.
“I have two locations in Orleans and Jefferson parish so we just put it across the board,” said Pastor Antoine Barriere.
“We want public safety. I don’t like taking my shoes off at the airport, but because of public safety, it’s a requirement.”
Barriere says he made the decision with the health of his congregation in mind, and says even if he has to turn someone away, his conscience will remain clean.
“We have Facebook, YouTube. We have all the social media platforms so they can still connect and see the service and receive and be fed spiritually,” said Barriere.
“So no, that doesn’t bother me.”
Barriere says similar to the New Orleans restaurants that took the initiative before it was mandatory, it’s about following the science and protecting the community.
“Some people want to make it a religious thing, some people want to make it a political thing, I think we just need to make it about people. That’s what Jesus was concerned about, making sacrifices for other people.”
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