What role is religion playing in the spread of COVID-19?
According to officials in Sacramento County, California, roughly a third of all coronavirus cases are tied to a religious organization — a church holding services even when social distancing guidelines are in effect.
Speaking Wednesday morning, Beilenson said more than 100 of the county’s 314 cases of coronavirus infections are connected to church groups.
That includes 24 infections spread among one church whose congregants have continued to hold in-person fellowship meetings during the growing pandemic. Beilenson declined to name the church.
Oh, name the church. Please name it. People need to know which place to avoid.
It’s not just California. France has seen the same problem. Their epidemic actually stemmed from one evangelical group in particular, according to their health minister Olivier Véran:
“The tipping point was the evangelical gathering in Mulhouse,” Véran told France’s Journal du Dimanche newspaper. “The epidemic spread across the country from the gathering.”
When the five-day prayer meeting at the evangelical church — known as Christian Open Door — began Feb. 17, France only had 12 confirmed cases of covid-19, with none of those in Alsace, the region where Mulhouse is located.
A Strasbourg-based nurse who was in the audience was identified as the source of an outbreak among fellow nurses in local hospitals, infecting approximately 250 people, according to [head of the Regional Health Agency Christophe] Lannelongue.
While responsible people (including religious ones) take great care, at great personal inconvenience, to avoid or keep our distance from each other, far too many churchgoers wrongly believe that the rules don’t apply to them — or that their faith grants them automatic immunity from the virus. Their negligence is hurting all of us.
It’s not just one megalomaniacal megachurch pastor. You don’t get numbers like these without hundreds of pastors refusing to listen to experts. If government mandates aren’t convincing these churches to close, then other Christians need to be more forceful in their rhetoric. If you attend or know someone who goes to these churches, cut them off. Walk away. Publicly denounce what they’re doing. Keep doing it.
How many people have to suffer or die until these pastors realize they’re leading death cults?
(Image via Shutterstock)
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