The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to consider a request for injunctive relief presented to it by the Calvary Chapel in Orrington over concerns that Gov. Janet Mills will reinstate pandemic-related restrictions related to the spread of the highly contagious delta variant.

Justice Stephen Breyer denied Calvary Chapel’s application on Monday, according to documents posted on the Supreme Court’s website. The church’s petition was presented to the court by attorney Mathew Staver, chairman of the Liberty Counsel of Orlando, Florida.

Staver said the church sought to block the state from enforcing or reinstating any restrictions that it believes would violate its religious liberty rights under the Constitution. The state lifted restrictions on mass gatherings in May, but Staver said the church fears those restrictions could return as the delta variant spreads throughout the nation and Maine.

In its court filing, the church asked the Supreme Court to prohibit Mills from enforcing or reinstating what it described as “unconstitutional restrictions” on the church’s religious freedoms.

The state responded to Calvary Chapel’s request by noting that the governor’s civil emergency already expired, making the lawsuit unnecessary.

“For more than two months, there have been no restrictions whatsoever on the size of gatherings, and the state of emergency expired at the end of June. Given that, we are disappointed that Calvary Chapel continues to waste public and judicial resources by attempting to litigate an issue that is now moot,” Marc Malon, spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office told The Associated Press last week.

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