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Local church reopens for service with safety precautions

Some churches are opening their doors back up to the public. Action News Now Mackenzie Drigo went to a service at Pleasant Valley Baptist Church in Chico and shares how the church is taking precautions.

Posted: May 25, 2020 10:20 AM

CHICO, Calif. - Some governors have deemed liquor stores and abortion clinics as essential but have left out churches and other houses of worship.

Some churches are opening their doors to the public after President Donald Trump named churches as an essential service.
Pleasant Valley Baptist Church opened its doors to the public.

Before the service members walk through the front doors, members got their temperature taken, were given hand sanitizer, and a mask.

"More people are telling me, pastor, I need to be in church then, don't open the doors," said pastor Ruhl of Pleasant Valley Baptist Church.

While President Trump announced churches can reopen Memorial Day weekend saying it is an 'essential service.' The ultimate decision lies with the governors. Gov. Gavin Newsom said he is not ready to open up in-church service just yet.

"Hearing our president saying churches are essential, we believe that all along," Ruhl said. "Yeah were caught in that quantum of pleasing man and pleasing government and then pleasing God when our president came out and said that we realized that our church doors need to be open so we are opening our church doors. We feel that church is essential, we always talk about opening restaurants, gyms, and clubs. But nobody mentions the spiritual part."

Along with taking temperatures and giving out masks - the church had every other row blocked off to maintain social distancing.

It was optional for guests to wear a mask that they were given or not.

"I don't wear them because you know, I don't feel like I need it, but yeah it’s definitely there the option is still there for you,” said Ronneberg.

The church was offering drive-in service during the stay-at-home-order. Julia Ronneberg was one of the members that attended those services.

"Its amazing to be back in church and to see everybody and since the church is now open people are willing to come in instead of sitting in their car," Ronneberg said.

"We’re all going to react to this differently, so number one be kind, kindness goes a long way, number two be respectful I may not agree or I may agree, that doesn't have to be earned it needs to be given, and number three don't judge somebody I don't know their background or how much they've been through or their health so I'm not going to judge," Ruhl said.

Pleasant Valley Baptist Church will continue featuring online service for those that want to stay home.

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It was slightly hotter today around northern California with far more sun than cloud cover. We'll have another mostly sunny and hot day on Thursday, but changes will arrive before the week is complete.
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