Pastor defies state order, says 1000 attended his church on Sunday.

A pastor at a Louisiana church defied the state order to limit social gatherings by holding a service Sunday that he claims had 1,000 people attend.

Pastor Tony Spell said, his Life Tabernacle Church in Baton Rouge drew about 1,000 people to its services, in part by busing people in from across five parishes. He said he would continue to hold services, including one Tuesday night.

"If they close every door in this city, then I will close my doors," Spell told CNN on Tuesday. "But you can't say the retailers are essential but the church is not. That is a persecution of the faith."

Fellow Christians have started a petition to have Spell stop his gatherings.

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