A Roman Catholic Church in Texas has canceled its Mass Services just days after reopening after a priest died and several members of his order tested positive for the corona virus.
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On May 2, Holy Ghost Catholic Church in Houston reopened its doors, as stay-at-home orders were being relaxed in the Lone Star State.
However, on May 14, the parish canceled all services after Father Donnell Kirchner died. Five members of the congregation tested positive for COVID-19, church officials said Monday.
“If you have attended Masses in person at Holy Ghost Church since the reopening on May 2nd, you are strongly encouraged to monitor your health for any symptoms and be tested for COVID-19, as a precautionary measure,” the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston said in a statement.
According to the church, it was possible Kirchner, 79, contracted COVID-19 and that “one or more of the community might have been exposed.” The priest’s cause of death is unknown, though he was diagnosed with pneumonia before he died at home May 13.
Texas has had over 49,900 cases and at least 1,369 deaths due to the coronavirus as the state continues to reopen.