Diocese of Brooklyn's lawsuit against New York's COVID restrictions denied by judge

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Saturday, October 17, 2020
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It's the story that has upended life around the world, but the impact has been the greatest here, in the New York area.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- A New York City diocese has lost their case against the state's new COVID restrictions.

Diocese of Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio announced Friday the court decision that ruled in favor of New York state's COVID restrictions and enforcement.

This after the diocese sued, asking a federal judge for a temporary restraining order to stop Governor Cuomo's executive order which limits religious gatherings to just ten people in the red zone and 25 in the orange zones.

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"The Diocese of Brooklyn is extremely disappointed by today's ruling, as we believe we presented a strong case in support of our right to worship," DiMario said. "It is a shame our parishioners in the red zones cannot return to Mass when the judge acknowledged we have done everything right."

The diocese says that they have worked extremely hard to implement strict COVID safety rules above and beyond state requirements, and have continued to voluntarily limit capacity in all buildings to 25% occupancy.

"We think we follow the rules," DiMarzio said. "We see no contagion happening in our churches, and we believe that this blanket prohibition against using our churches and diminishing the number to so view, it doesn't make any sense."

Despite the ruling, the diocese says that they will abide by the restrictions and all churches in the red zone areas will remain closed until further notice.

They say they will continue to advocate for places of worship to be deemed as essential.

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The sense of doom grew, especially after March 1, when the first confirmed case arrived in Manhattan. Soon, there was a hotspot in New Rochelle, and small curfews and containment zones across the area offered a hint of a frightening future we still thought we could avoid.

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