Home U.S DC pastor's permit approved for 15,000-person National Mall service

DC pastor's permit approved for 15,000-person National Mall service


A pastor who has hosted thousands of maskless worshipers at outdoor events in California and Tennessee during the pandemic has had a permit approved to host a massive service for 15,000 people in Washington D.C.

Evangelical leader Sean Feucht plans to welcome thousands of worshipers to the National Mall for a two-day prayer service starting October 25, marking the grand finale of his ‘Let Us Worship’ tour across America.  

The National Park Service has approved the event and said it encourages – but will not enforce – masks or social distancing, despite the state banning gatherings of more than 50 people.  

Feucht’s other events have played host to thousands – including Vice President Mike Pence – who held hands, sang, carried out baptisms and didn’t social distance. 

Health experts warned the latest mass gathering could become a COVID-19 superspreader event and cost many lives.

The mall is a stone’s throw from the White House where the recent Rose Garden superspreader event threatened to derail the seat of government, with President Trump, the First Lady and multiple members of the Trump administration all contracting the virus.  

A pastor who has hosted thousands of maskless worshipers at outdoor events in California and Tennessee during the pandemic has had a permit approved to host a massive service for 15,000 people in Washington D.C. A September event in Sacramento

A pastor who has hosted thousands of maskless worshipers at outdoor events in California and Tennessee during the pandemic has had a permit approved to host a massive service for 15,000 people in Washington D.C. A September event in Sacramento

Evangelical leader Sean Feucht hosted 12,000 on the Capitol steps in Sacramento last month, sharing footage on social media with barely a mask in sight in the crowd (above)

Evangelical leader Sean Feucht hosted 12,000 on the Capitol steps in Sacramento last month, sharing footage on social media with barely a mask in sight in the crowd (above)

Around 15,000 people are expected to descend on the mall on Saturday for the huge weekend-long worship event, with the permit issued Tuesday revealing almost 7,000 attendees have already officially registered. 

Worshipers are promised many close-contact aspects including a tent with 20 pastors baptising people and communion, according to the permit seen by the Daily Beast. 

The permit states the event for ‘religious freedom, prayer, and worship’ will run from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and will feature speakers, portable restrooms, three generators, a stage, and a press riser.

Water, prepackaged communion cups and food trucks will also feature. 

Gatherings of more than 50 people are banned under the state’s reopening plan.’

However, some events such as worship events can get around the rules by applying for waivers. 

The permit application for the weekend’s event included a brief ‘COVID-19 Mitigation Plan’ describing a number of coronaviurs safety protocols, reported the Daily Beast.

Feucht at an event in Redding California. He plans to welcome thousands of worshipers to the National Mall for a two-day prayer service starting October 25, marking the grand finale of his 'Let Us Worship' tour across America

Feucht at an event in Redding California. He plans to welcome thousands of worshipers to the National Mall for a two-day prayer service starting October 25, marking the grand finale of his ‘Let Us Worship’ tour across America

‘We will have a sign placed at the table where we will give away bibles. All crew will have temperatures taken, masks and gloves provided. Backstage Hi-Touch Areas will be sanitized frequently,’ the permit reads. 

‘Sanitation stations provided by restrooms for audience.’ 

However the NPS has approved the application for the ‘demonstration or special event’ without mention of any guidelines to mitigate COVID-19 exposure and the service said it will not enforce any COVID precautions. 

An NPS spokesman told The Daily Beast that ‘as with all permit applications, we are discussing the COVID-19 mitigation plan with the event organizers, but that plan is not a requirement or condition of the permit.’ 

‘While the National Park Service strongly encourages social distancing, the use of masks, and other measures to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, we will not require nor enforce their use,’ the spokesperson added.   

The National Mall, which is 1,200 yards from the White House, is regulated by the National Park Service making it responsible for granting the permit rather than city officials.  

The National Park Service has approved the event and said it encourages - but will not enforce - masks or social distancing, despite the state banning gatherings of more than 50 people. Pictured the National Mall and US Capitol

 The National Park Service has approved the event and said it encourages – but will not enforce – masks or social distancing, despite the state banning gatherings of more than 50 people. Pictured the National Mall and US Capitol

Concerns are rising among health experts and local residents after the event was approved as previous services held by Feucht have shown a disregard for coronavirus safety measures.

The pastor and musician has held numerous events up and down the country in recent months bringing together thousands of maskless people.  

Footage of a recent event in Nashville event shows thousands packed in a courthouse hosting baptisms and holding hands. 

At the Washington Prayer March event at the Lincoln Memorial in September Mike Pence made an appearance joining around 75,000 maskless worshipers. 

The same month, the Christian hosted 12,000 on the Capitol steps in Sacramento, sharing footage on social media with barely a mask in sight in the crowd.  

Just last weekend, he held two events in Kansas City and in Pittsburgh.  

Feucht's other events have played host to thousands who held hands, sang, carried out baptisms and didn't social distance. Pictured September's Sacramento event

Feucht’s other events have played host to thousands who held hands, sang, carried out baptisms and didn’t social distance. Pictured September’s Sacramento event

Health experts warned the latest mass gathering could become a COVID-19 superspreader event and cost many lives

Health experts warned the latest mass gathering could become a COVID-19 superspreader event and cost many lives

At the Washington Prayer March event at the Lincoln Memorial in September Mike Pence made an appearance joining around 75,000 maskless worshipers. Pence pictured with Feucht

At the Washington Prayer March event at the Lincoln Memorial in September Mike Pence made an appearance joining around 75,000 maskless worshipers. Pence pictured with Feucht 

Several medical experts have slammed both the event organizers and park officials for allowing the event to go ahead.  

Dr. William Haseltine, former Harvard Medical School professor and president of think tank ACCESS Health International, described the decision as ‘reckless’ and ‘putting people in danger.’

‘Unfortunately, even our leaders are not following public health recommendations, so it’s not impossible to see how this permit was granted,’ he told the Daily Beast. 

‘But let’s be clear, there is no way to host an event like this without putting people in danger.’

‘It’s disgraceful,’ Lawrence Gostin, a professor of global health law at Georgetown University told The Daily Beast. 

‘It violates D.C.’s COVID-19 plan and it’s almost certainly going to lead to a superspreader event – and cause many new cases, hospitalization, and even death. It violates virtually every principle to mitigate this pandemic.’ 

Local residents also voiced outrage with one DC resident Allison Lane branding the event ‘insane’ and ‘truly selfish behavior from people who claim to be devoted to the word of God.’   

A total of 624 people have died and 16,445 have tested positive for coronavirus in Washington, D.C.  

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Dyson Black Friday 2020 deals: Cordless vacuum cleaners, supersonic hairdryer

Dyson Black Friday 2020 deals are available right now, with money off top Dyson products such as their iconic vacuum cleaners as well...

Amazon says it will investigate claims Alexa gives racist answers to questions about Jews

Alexa, are you an anti-Semite? Amazon says it will investigate claims...

Freeman to discover in March whether he has been found guilty of ordering banned testosterone

Former British Cycling and Team Sky medic Dr Richard Freeman set...

Trump says he’s heading to Georgia to campaign for GOP senators

President Trump said Thursday he will visit Georgia to campaign for incumbent GOP Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, likely this weekend ahead...

Recent Comments