CNA Staff, Aug 25, 2020 / 01:52 am
Evidence suggests that church services following public health guidelines do not present a greater risk of spreading the novel coronavirus than other similar activities, doctors said last week.
Washing hands, social distancing, and mask requirements have helped prevent the spread of COVID-19, even in cases when contagious, pre-symptomatic parishioners took part in church events, three members of the Thomistic Institute Working Group on Infectious Disease Protocols for Sacraments & Pastoral Care concluded.
Doctors Thomas McGovern, Deacon Timothy Flanigan, and Paul Cieslak authored an article for Real Clear Science on Mass attendance and COVID-19 Aug. 19.
"For Catholic churches following [the] guidelines, no outbreaks of COVID-19 have been linked to church attendance, even though we have examples ... of asymptomatic, unknowingly infected individuals attending mass and other parish functions," they wrote. "Their attendance could have led to an outbreak if appropriate precautions were not followed, yet in each case, we found no evidence of viral transmission."