Church closed for cleaning after churchgoer tests positive for Coronavirus
A church in South Devon has been temporarily closed for cleaning after someone who was at a service on 1 March tested positive for COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
There were about 50 people present at the Holy Communion Service at St Mary the Virgin church in Churston Ferrers, near Brixham.
People who were there, including the vicar, have been informed and asked to contact Public Health England for advice, including whether they should self-isolate for two weeks.
The church is being deep-cleaned following guidance from Public Health England will re-open afterwards.
The Diocese of Exeter is following the national Church of England guidance on Coronavirus.
Together with the local clergy it is offering full support to all those involved from St Mary’s.
The Reverend Professor Gina Radford is the Team Vicar in South Brent and was Deputy Chief Medical Officer for England until 2019.
She has been advising the Church of England on its Coronavirus Guidance and said “We as a church are here to support people both spiritually and practically, to listen to concerns if they are worried and to affirm and confirm the official health guidance.”
A spokesperson for the Diocese said: “In the face of the spread of the Coronavirus, the health and well-being of everyone connected to our churches and schools is a priority.
“It is important that our churches continue to be places of community, fellowship, pastoral support and practical help.
“That means that, as far as possible, churches need to maintain their core activities, both public services and practical support, such as running foodbanks.”
The Coronavirus situation is being kept under continual review by the Church of England nationally, and all those with responsibility for church worship and activities in the Diocese of Exeter are being asked to regularly check the official guidance.
Anyone who feels unwell and has a cough, high temperature or shortness of breath should phone NHS111.