Michigan Catholic school lawsuit argues mask-wearing violates religious liberty by covering ‘God’s image and likeness’ – even as Indian delta variant runs rampant


A Catholic school in Michigan is suing the state, arguing that a previous mask mandate violated religious freedom by covering up the ‘image and likeness of God’.

Resurrection School in Lansing filed its anti-mask lawsuit in October after Michigan required students and teachers to wear masks. The mandate has since been lifted, but the school’s pastor, Rev. Steve Mattison, said they were taking it to appeals court to prevent the state from reinstating the rule.

On Wednesday, a federal appeals judge heard the resurgence school’s argument as a masked mandate.

The schools argued, ‘Every human being has dignity and is made in the image and likeness of God. ‘Unfortunately, a mask protects our humanity.’

The Rev. Steve Mattison, pastor of the Church of the Resurrection in Michigan, says masks interfere with students’ instruction. The appeal by the Catholic school of the church to block the state mask mandate was heard on Wednesday

The school in Lansing (pictured) says that masks block the image of God by obscuring the face, and says they interfere with religious instruction

The school in Lansing (pictured) says that masks block the image of God by obscuring the face, and says they interfere with religious instruction

Mattison said the revival school had no reports of coronavirus transmission at the school despite students in kindergarten through fifth grade (pictured) never wearing masks in the previous school year

Mattison said the revival school had no reports of coronavirus transmission at the school despite students in kindergarten through fifth grade (pictured) never wearing masks in the previous school year

The Resurrection School also claimed that masks make people antisocial and interfere with Catholic instruction and practices, such as the act of apologizing, which it says requires face-to-face forgiveness.

“As Catholicism teaches, we are relational beings,” the suit reads. ‘And our existence as relational beings points to the Holy Trinity. A mask is disruptive to this essential element of the Catholic faith, and it is disruptive to the education of young children for these and other reasons.’

Additionally, two parents from the school who joined the suit argue that their children have difficulty breathing while wearing masks.

Rev. Steve Mattson, pastor of the Church of the Resurrection, argued that masks inhibit social interaction and impede learning.

“Teaching is a relationship between individuals, and we know that non-verbal conversation is very powerful,” he told WILX on Tuesday.

Delta version now accounts for 83% of all new infections

Delta version now accounts for 83% of all new infections

The appeal comes as new coronavirus infections continue to rise across the country, mainly driven by the highly contagious Indian delta variant

The appeal comes as new coronavirus infections continue to rise across the country, mainly driven by the highly contagious Indian delta variant

Deaths remain relatively flat, with a seven-day rolling average of 397 and 249 recorded on Wednesday

Deaths remain relatively flat, with a seven-day rolling average of 397 and 249 recorded on Wednesday

According to the station report, he said that there have been no reports of coronavirus transmission in the school despite fifth grade students in kindergarten never wearing masks during the previous school year.

The school first sued in October, after Michigan required students and teachers to wear masks, and in December denied the school a motion of a preliminary injunction to enforce the state’s mask mandate for private school students. was given. The Washington Post reported that it began an appeals process two days later.

Michigan ended most of its COVID restrictions in June, and Ingham County Health Officer Linda Weil argued in response to the suit on Monday that there are no plans to bring them back.

Mattson, however, said he was skeptical.

The school initially sued in October, when Michigan's mask mandate was in effect, but was denied a preliminary injunction to eliminate them in the state.

The school initially sued in October, when Michigan’s mask mandate was in effect, but was denied a preliminary injunction to eliminate them in the state.

“We know it can be restored anytime and we want to be able to come to the fore,” he told WILX.

The appeal came as the coronavirus positivity rate has dropped in recent weeks to a minimum in June, and the wearing of masks is making a comeback, especially in California.

More than half of Californians are being urged to wear masks indoors – regardless of vaccination status – as the Indian ‘delta’ Covid variant continues to wreak havoc across the US.

As The Los Angeles Times reports, at least 17 counties in the Golden State – home to 56 percent of residents – are asking people to wear face coverings in places like grocery stores and movie theaters.

Just one of those counties, Los Angeles County, requires the wearing of masks in these public settings.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot warned Tuesday that she may do the same as infections continue to rise in the city.

Every single state - except Iowa - and the District of Columbia is reporting an increase in COVID-19 cases this week

Every single state – except Iowa – and the District of Columbia is reporting an increase in COVID-19 cases this week

It comes as the US on Tuesday reported 42,706 new cases with a seven-day rolling average of 37,056, a 244 per cent increase from the 10,771 average recorded three weeks ago.

According to a DailyMail.com analysis of Johns Hopkins data, every state except Iowa has seen an increase or stagnation in infections over the past week.

Additionally, 298 COVID-19 deaths were recorded on Tuesday with a seven-day rolling average of 274.

The death rate, which is a backward indicator, has not risen dramatically, but has increased marginally by 6.6 per cent from the average of 257 recorded three weeks ago.

Health officials say this is because people are now protected from vaccines, although states with fewer vaccines – such as Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee – are beginning to fill up hospitals.

California has seen an average increase of 5,063 per day in cases, a 160% increase from 1,946 two weeks ago, prompting several counties to ask that masks are required.

California has seen an average increase of 5,063 per day in cases, a 160% increase from 1,946 two weeks ago, prompting several counties to ask that masks are required.

Over the same time period, COVID-19 hospitalizations rose from 1,506 to 2,447, according to state data, a jump of 62%, the highest point since at least March.

Over the same time period, COVID-19 hospitalizations rose from 1,506 to 2,447, according to state data, a jump of 62%, the highest point since at least March.

The rise has been blamed on the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant, which now makes up 83.2 percent of all new infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Health officials say almost all new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are among non-vaccinated individuals.

Gregory Poland, an internist and head of the Vaccine Research Group at Mayo Clinic, told CBS Minnesota, ‘Don’t be deceived that: “I’ve got this far and I’m fine.”

‘It’s a very different kind. It will find you. Everyone who is not immunized will get this virus.

In light of rising cases, the US Department of Homeland Security announced that land borders with Canada and Mexico will remain closed to non-essential travel until at least August 21.

Last week, Los Angeles County became the first in the country to require all residents to wear masks, regardless of whether or not they were fully immunized.

The county is reporting about 13.5 cases per 100,000 and the test positivity rate has increased from 0.4 percent on June 15 to 4.8 percent as of Tuesday.

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