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Catholic church in Houston closes again after 3 priests test positive for COVID-19

The church says one of the individuals who tested positive has been active in celebrating public Masses at Holy Ghost since the church reopened on May 2.
Credit: Holy Ghost Houston

HOUSTON, Texas — A Catholic church in the Houston area is closed again after three priests tested positive for COVID-19.

According to Holy Ghost Catholic Church, they recently learned three members of the Redemptorists community living and working at Holy Ghost Parish have tested positive for the coronavirus.

"While the individuals themselves are asymptomatic, they, and the other members of the community, are in quarantine in the residence isolated from the others," the church said in a statement on their website. "All members of the household have been tested and are awaiting results."

The church said there is a possibility the late Fr. Donnell Kirchner contracted the virus before he died on May 13 at his Houston home, and, as a result, one or more members of the church community may have been exposed to COVID-19.  

The church says one of the individuals who tested positive has been active in celebrating public Masses at Holy Ghost since the church reopened on May 2.

"If anyone has attended Masses in person at Holy Ghost Church since the reopening, we strongly encourage you to monitor your health for any symptoms and be tested for COVID-19, as a precautionary measure," the church said. "There are a number of free COVID-19 testing sites in our community. For a list of testing sites, please call the City of Houston Health Department at 832-393-4220 or visit www.houstonemergency.org/covid19-testing. "

The church says they have informed the City of Houston Health Department about the situation. They say officials will provide them with a specific contact person to respond to additional questions that may arise.  

"All Masses at Holy Ghost Church are canceled until further notice," the church said. "We will update you on our website as more information becomes available. We ask you to please keep everyone in your prayers impacted by this illness."