Op/Ed

Letter to the editor: City churchgoer comments on COVID-19 outbreak

“Ignorance, inconsiderate, sickening, tragedy . . . they got what they deserved.” These are the responses to a COVID outbreak at a church in Vergennes. As a member and regular attendee, I would agree that it is a tragedy, an unfortunate series of events. Some may feel that it could have been prevented while others see it as the ebb and flow of life.
We followed the CDC guidelines (masked, six-feet distance, limited capacity), and yet it still spread through the church. How did it first come through the door? Did it come through the food shelf, the blood drive, or the church services? This is a question to which we will never know the answer, but it does not change the fact that it happened.
Thankfully, when I tested positive for COVID, it was a mild case. My prayers go out for those who have suffered more severely; but if I could do it all over again, I would make the same choices.
Growing up on a farm, I drank out of a hose, I ate dirt, I got sick … yet whenever I had a virus and wanted medicine, the answer was always the same: “It’s a virus; you gotta let it run its course.” COVID was no different, and it ran its course.
I will still wear my mask, but not because I think it helps or am worried about getting it again. I will wear my mask because it makes the person standing next to me in the grocery line or at the post office feel a little bit safer. You may not think church is essential; but for me it is. So I will wear my mask, and I will go back to church.
I go to church and worship God because of my faith and my constitutional right. Why not worship online if it is safer? Because for me it is not worship. For me, worship is fellowship with others. For me, worship is singing and playing piano. For me, worship is joining together with others of a like mind and studying God’s Word.
For those who are elderly, immune compromised, vulnerable, or worried; worshipping at home may be the best option for you. Do what you feel is best and makes you safe. But to the critics, please stop telling me that I am ignorant, inconsiderate, or make you uncomfortable. Stop telling me that God is not going to save me because He already did, and there is nothing that can change that. Lastly, I did not get what I deserved because I know a God who loves me; and we all deserve a whole lot worse.
Jennie Dobson
Addison

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