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Tampa megachurch pastor cancels Sunday services, says he fears for congregation’s safety

The embattled Tampa megachurch pastor who was arrested Monday , March 30 after leading packed church services the day before — despite social distancing orders from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office — says he is canceling services set for Sunday, April 5.

Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne has posted several videos on Youtube and Facebook since being released on a $500 bond for charges of unlawful assembly and violating public health emergency rules of isolation and quarantine. Howard-Browne pleaded not guilty and, in his videos, maintains he did nothing wrong.

The embattled pastor also said he has received death threats and that the sign outside of his church has become a shooting target.

“People have basically literally lost their ever-loving minds,” Browne said in a Facebook video.

After his arrest Monday for violating Hillsborough County’s “Safer at Home” order, the pastor declined requests from FOX 13 for an interview and instead went on Facebook to draw a line in the sand, claiming he’s fighting for something much bigger than himself.

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