Thousand Oaks Councilman and Pastor Resigns, Saying He'll Defy Coronavirus Order

Jacquie Cadorette
April 05, 2020 - 3:16 pm

Rob McCoy, Thousand Oaks city councilman and pastor, has resigned, saying he plans on defying stay-at-home orders in an effort to make Communion available to his congregation. 

McCoy, who is a pastor at Godspeak Calvary Chapel, submitted a resignation letter Saturday night which noted his plans to violate orders deeming churches nonessential. 

"As an elected official I am in conflict and thus must tender my resignation from the council," he said in a letter obtained by the Los Angeles Times. "I have no desire to put our community at risk and will not... However this is portrayed, please know I am obligated to do this." 

McCoy proceeded to explain that while the church can seat 400 people, he planned to let 10 people in at a time, making sure they keep a 6-foot distance from one another. This would allow them to take Communion on Sunday afternoon. Their morning service would be livestream only.

The church's website outlined specific rules to keep social distancing in tact like banning physical greetings and wearing masks and gloves if they're available. They asked that anyone who was sick or in contact with anyone who was sick stay home. 

"Godspeak sees this as an essential part of The Church, and we want to make this available to you," the website reads.

Thousand Oaks Police Chief James Fryhoff assured that officers would be around to make sure people were abiding by social distancing measures at the event. "We're seeking willful compliance," Fryhoff said. 

Meanwhile, Thousand Oaks Mayor Al Adam sent his wellwishes to McCoy. "I appreciate his contributions and wish him and his family well. While these circumstances are unfortunate, the remaining members of the Council and I are very much focused on moving forward," Adam said in a statement. 

The Los Angeles Times reports that McCoy's seat on city council will likely remain open until the November election.