The Case of Two Governors: Is Religion an Essential Activity?

April 09, 2020
Source: Priory Orlando
De Santis family welcomed their third child Mamie on March 30, 2020

Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis' executive order makes explicit that “essential activities” includes “religious services conducted in churches..." 

Essential Activities

Last week, Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis released executive order #2020-91 regarding Essential Services and Activities During COVID-19 Emergency. The order describes the “Safer At Home” policy, which obliges senior citizens and individuals with certain medical conditions to remain at home; all other Florida residents shall do the same except when conducting essential activities. The order makes explicit that “essential activities” includes “religious services conducted in churches, synagogues and houses of worship.” And religious services are listed as the first of the "essential activities". 

Contrast this with the actions of Governor Laura Kelly of Kansas, who enacted a similar executive order with exceptions for supplies and medical treatment but not for religious services. Commerce and places of business and performing abortions are deemed by the state to be essential, but apparently publicly imploring Providence for deliverance is not.

Both governors claim to be Catholic, but not both act as Catholics. Governor DeSantis recognizes the importance of both the temporal and spiritual needs of his constituents. The focus of Governor Kelly, on the other hand, emphasizes the physical and emotional aspects of the coronavirus pandemic, with no mention of the spiritual.

In Florida, the chapels of the SSPX have been able to continue to offer Mass and hear confessions provided everyone keeps social distance and there are no more than 10 people in the same location. In Kansas, meanwhile, St. Mary’s will not be able to offer Holy Week ceremonies to the faithful. In Florida, the religious dimension has been publicly and formally recognized by the state’s highest authority as essential. May God bless such a governor!

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The States Governed by Democrats Are Not Prepared

On a related note, two other states - California and New York - report that they were woefully unprepared for the pandemic. California had dismantled its mobile hospital system and its ventilator and respirator stockpiles. Both states failed to train enough of their personnel for an epidemic or to replenish their depleted emergency preparedness supplies and funds. And in both states, any number of progressive and leftist programs are championed, like support for LGBT rights and spending a significant amount of the state budget caring for illegal immigrants, who reliably vote more leftist than do native-born citizens. The example of these two states illustrates how those who govern using a materialist and deterministic model neglect their responsibility to prioritize the most important needs of their citizens, excluding not just spiritual concerns, but even adequately caring for the material well-being of their constituents.

These are the wages of man-centered materialist philosophies, whose focus on attaining and maintaining power at any cost leave vulnerable those who depend on them to govern wisely, and whose sterile and impotent policies negate the robustness of spirit needed to face times of great trial.

It is with gratitude that we can look to the Catholic Church and the Traditional Faith, whose wisdom and compassion provide the means to best weather severe trials. For example, as early as 1846 Pope Pius IX wrote in his encyclical Qui pluribus that communism and its handmaid socialism are “absolutely contrary to the natural law itself, and if once adopted would utterly destroy the rights, property and possessions of all men, and even society itself.”

Communism has spread its errors in all directions!

The True Virus: Communism

In his sermon on Palm Sunday of April 4th, Fr. Marc Vernoy commented on the virus of Communism which deeply infects our society and the minds of our elected officials. It is just as Our Lady warned us in her Fatima apparitions of 1917...

Archbishop Lefebvre wrote the consecration of the Society of Saint Pius X to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in 1984 and we have these words.


Communism has spread its errors in all directions, that the Church herself is infected by them.

In this consecration, he also spoke about the spiritual realm, which the mystery of Fatima also reminds us of. The virus of communism has spread its errors all around the world, but today we have a virus, which is not simply a Chinese virus. We go farther than our President Donald Trump in saying that it is a communist virus coming from a communist country.


This is the message of Fatima: that Communism will spread its errors, its sickness, its death, a spiritual death. Everybody thought that communism was over in 1989 when the wall in Berlin fell, but it fell to the wrong side, the West side, and now the West is totally infected.


The West was already infected, and even the Church was infected by this virus of Marxism and Communism, which is a curse, a terrible curse of blindness and hardness of heart. It is the disease of the intelligence and will. It is the real conspiracy against spiritual life and ultimately against God the Father Himself.


Communists and Marxists hate the truth. There is no truth. Truth is what I make it (Hegel) is the basis of Marxism. This is the very root of Communism, of this terrible virus.


Then you have the denial of the Father, of God the Father. Now this absence of paternal authority is everywhere. This is communism. The communists do not want the Father because they do not want any identity, they do not want any border, they do not want any limit, they do want any definition, they hate the truth, they hate this reality, and we know they are working for this terrible moral depravation too. Resentment and bitterness invade and rule this world.


Marxists hate the truth. This evil, satanic spirit entered not only in the western world, the Christian world, but the Church itself. Even in America we have been infected by these ideas. Even in America they want to rule us with this socialism, which in truth is communism.


Have no doubt, we are full of hope. We do not have this attitude of resentment, an attitude that is not Catholic, that destroys hearts and souls and the ability to love.

We constantly receive lights for hope. The executive order from Governor DeSantis is a very interesting light. The first essential activity listed in the State of Florida is religious and spiritual life. While you have the light, believe in the light that you may be the children of light.


Communism hates the light, as much as it hates the truth. But we are the children of light.


Let us pray to our Lady of Fatima to protect us from any kind of virus, and especially to take all means to eradicate the virus of Marxism.