A pastor in South Korea infected at least 46 church members including himself and his wife, after using the same spray that was inserted into the mouths of more than 100 members to spray the salt water solution down the throat.
Video images from the River of Grace Community Church in Gyeonggi Province, south of Seoul, show a church official sticking the nozzle of a spray bottle deep into the mouth of one follower after another, during a prayer gathering attended by some 100 followers on March 1 and March 8. Those infected include the pastor and his wife.
“It’s been confirmed that they put the nozzle of the spray bottle inside the mouth of a follower who was later confirmed as a patient, before they did likewise for other followers as well, without disinfecting the sprayer,” said Lee Hee-young, head of Gyeonggi Province’s coronavirus task force.
“This made it inevitable for the virus to spread,” he said. “They did so out of the false belief that salt water kills the virus.”
The church has since been closed and all the members tested for the novid coronavirus. This revelation has sparked more concern within the South Korean authorities on the role religion plays in the spread of the virus.
The first mass infection case in South Korea was also a religious gathering.
South Korea confirmed 74 new cases on Monday, bringing its total tally to 8,236. This is the second day where reports of new infections are less than 100, but officials are not about to relax their vigilance.
Authorities have advised churches that continue to hold services to contact temperature checks, offer sanitizers, ensure they wear masks properly and keep safe distance between individuals.
Unfortunately these measures still seem insufficient as more clusters of coronavirus infections are being discovered linked to church gatherings.