US judge rejects churches’ challenge to stay-at-home order

CHICAGO (AP) — A federal judge has rejected a challenge to Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s authority to impose stay-at-home orders on churches during the battle against the coronavirus. U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman on Wednesday denied a request for a temporary restraining order by two churches. Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church in Chicago and Logos Baptist Ministries in Niles wanted to hold worship services while reducing seating, designating entry and exit points, offering hand sanitizer and cleaning facilities. The judge dismissed a comparison between churches and grocery stores. He asserted churches are more comparable to schools or movie theaters or concert halls, where people are also not gathering.