What is Hội thánh truyền giáo Phục hưng and why are they currently on the news ?

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On May 28th, the Ho Chi Minh City Center for Disease Control (HCDC) recorded 10 new cases of the Covid-19 virus. Out of these 10 cases, 3 patients are active members of “Hội thánh truyền giáo Phục hưng” - a Protestant Church and community in Gò Vấp district. They are not the first members of Hội thánh truyền giáo Phục hưng to have tested positive, as 27 other members of the same Church were confirmed to have the virus just the day before. As of date, there has been 136 Covid-19 cases directly related to Hội thánh truyền giáo Phục hưng with several new outbreak hubs spanning at least 16 districts with possible connection to the Church.

Ban chỉ đạo Phòng chống dịch Covid-19 (Committee for the Prevention of Covid-19) cited the official population of the Church to be at 28, however, the real number of regular participants could be much higher according to Mr.Nguyễn Trí Dũng - president of the HCDC. “Usually only one person in the family sign up for membership but their whole family would usually accompany them when they participate in masses” Mr.Dũng commented.

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Hội thánh truyền giáo Phục hưng has been accused of not properly following the regulations and rules from the government in accordance with the Covid-19 pandemic, with members of the Church attending masses in close knitted space without any masks. According to the address by Vice Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City, Mr. Dương Anh Đức, the first patients of the current cluster infection in Go Vap did not actively seek out help and reported their symptoms to the government but decided to remain inside their home. It was not until much later, as he stated, that several other Church members went for a check up on their health that the City was able to pinpoint a new outbreak hub in the City.

Ho Chi Minh City has carried out a total of 50,000 testing for all potential F1 and F2 patients related to the Church. Notably, 5 Church members who have tested positive also recorded a new mutation of the coronavirus which has previously been discovered in India. This mutation is recorded to be much more dangerous, with the ability to spread more quickly with stronger effects on its victims.

Image Credit: Viet Times

What can we do as teenagers ?

The sudden discovery of a new outbreak hub is directly linked to the carelessness in preventing the pandemic from members of the Church. This incident once again highlights the importance of following social distancing regulations set out by the Government.

As teenagers, measures such as wearing masks in public spaces, maintaining at least a 2 meter distance, washing our hands properly, and educating ourselves and people surrounding us on the development of the pandemic are our best ways to help.

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