Federal Judge Doubts Kansas Gov.’s Order Limiting Religious Gatherings, Blocks It for 2 Churches

TOPEKA, Kan. — A federal judge has indicated that Kansas Governor Laura Kelly’s order limiting in-person attendance at religious services or activities to 10 people is likely unconstitutional, blocking its enforcement against two churches.

Kelly’s order, which was issued in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, was prevented from being enforced against a church in Dodge City in western Kansas and one in Junction City in northeast Kansas by U.S. District Judge John Broomes. The judge’s temporary block occurred on Saturday after the churches filed a federal lawsuit to prevent the enforcement of the governor’s order.

Judge Broomes’ decision will remain in effect until May 2 with a hearing set for Thursday, at which time Broomes will decide if he should issue a longer-term or broader injunction.


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