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Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill prohibiting state agencies and officials from ordering the closure of churches and other places of worship.
The governor of the Lone Star State announced the move in a tweet on Tuesday, pledging that the freedoms of the First Amendment would be protected for Americans in the state by prohibiting the government from issuing orders that “shut down places of worship in the state or cause the closure of places of worship. “
“I just signed a law banning government agencies or officials from issuing an order to shut down places of worship,” Abbott said in the tweet.
“The right to religious freedom under the First Amendment must never be violated,” he continued.
TEXAS GOV. ABBOTT CALLS ON PUBLIC DONATIONS FOR THE BORDER WALL
State Rep. Scott Sanford – a Republican from the Dallas area – submitted the invoice, HB 1239, which states that “an authority or official may not issue an order that causes or results in the closure of places of worship in the state or in any geographic area of the state.”
“Churches provide essential spiritual, mental, and physical support in times of crisis,” Sanford said about the statementthat passed the Texas House in April. “Closing churches has not only removed these critical ministries and ministries, it has also violated their religious freedom, which is guaranteed by our laws and our constitution.”
About a year ago, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Abbott issued an ordinance to shut down Texas, including places of worship, because it was deemed not essential.
As a result of the order, the governor was sued by religious leaders and encouraged to reopen places of worship across the state and categorize them as essential. Abbott later reversed the order.
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Meanwhile, Abbott announced on Tuesday’s “Ruthless” podcast that Texas would complete construction of the wall along the southern border and accept public donations to fund construction.
“I’ll also provide a link you can click and go to. For anyone in the United States, anyone around the world who wants to help Texas build a border wall, there will be a place to go they can contribute. ” to Texas to build the border wall, “Abbott said.
“You’re going to a fund in the state of Texas – not a private entity, not an individual,” he added. “You will be received by the State of Texas in the governor’s office, great transparency, everyone will know every penny in and every penny. But the only purpose of this money will be to build the border wall.”
Fox News’ Thomas Barrabi contributed to this report.