HOUSTON, TX (KAUZ) - Texas Pastors can no longer be summoned to court based on what they preach. On Sunday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed the "Sermon Safeguard Bill" into law which prevents state and local governments from issuing subpoenas for religious sermons. According to the new bill, religious leaders would no longer be required to testify regarding their sermons.
Governor Abbott signed the bill into law inside Grace Community Church in The Woodlands, Texas. Protesters could be seen with signs and heard chanting outside the venue. Many were protesting the bill's signing happening inside a church and claiming it blurred the lines between separation of church and state.
"Thank you for being righteous leaders of our community and helping us rule the state of Texas so righteously," said Governor Abbott.
"Our country is split. It's not split between Republicans and Democrats. It's split between those who believe in their savior, Jesus Christ, and those who are lost," said Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick.
"I think anyone who has taken high school civics knows that this problematic," said Protester BP Herrington.
The issue between religious leaders and their sermons goes back to 2014 when five Houston area pastors found their sermons subpoenaed by the city of Houston over the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance. One of those religious leaders was Steve Riggle, a pastor for Grace Community Church where the bill was signed into law. The law goes into effect immediately.