Arkansas church to be told to halt large services amid virus

Fort Smith, Arkansas September 24, 2019 - The U.S. Marshals Museum in Fort smith Arkansas choose the 130th Anniversary of the U.S. Marshals to dedicate it’s brand new Hall of Honor and the museum building itself. This is the first part of the museum to be finished so far, the museum is still under construction and hopes to open to the public by the end of next year. Speakers at todays dedication included Doug Babb, Sam T. Sicard, Robert A. Young III, Ltd. Governor Tim Griffin, Governor Asa Hutchinson and U.S. Marshals Director Donald Washington. Photo by: Shane T. McCoy / US Marshals

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette) — An Arkansas church that insisted it would continue meeting despite restrictions implemented by officials due to the coronavirus will be ordered by officials to suspend large group gatherings. Gov. Asa Hutchinson tells the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that Awaken Church in Jonesboro would be notified ahead of its Sunday services and a directive would be issued. Hutchinson says previous attempts to convince the church’s pastor, Chad Gonzales, to halt his large services were unsuccessful. In an email, Gonzales tells the newspaper he would comply with the order, but believed he was complying with public-health guidelines in order to continue holding services.