U.S. / Health

Churches amid the pandemic: Some outbreaks, many challenges

Posted On: Jul 12, 2020   |   Posted By: My Sanantonio

NEW YORK - Crowded bars and house parties have been identified as culprits in spreading the coronavirus. Meat packing plants, prisons and nursing homes are known hot spots. Then there's the complicated case of America's churches.
The vast majority of these churches have cooperated with health authorities and successfully protected their congregations. Yet from the earliest phases of the pandemic, and continuing to this day, some worship services and other religious activities have been identified as sources of local outbreaks.
They are by no means at the top of the list of problematic activities across the U.S., but they have posed challenges for government leaders and public health officials whose guidelines and orders are sometimes challenged as encroachments on religious liberty.
“If we wanted to have zero risks, the safest thing would be to never open our doors,” said prominent Dallas megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress. “The question is how can you balance risk with the very real need to worship.”
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