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One church, many contacts

  • Updated
St. Andrew's Church deals with coronavirus

The Rt. Rev. Steve Wood stands inside St. Andrew's Church in Mount Pleasant. File/Staff

Here's how one conference led to thousands of exposures to coronavirus at St. Andrew's Church and beyond:

Thursday, March 5 to 7: Anglican Diocese of the Carolinas holds conference at All Saints Pawleys Island. Clergy and lay delegates from across South Carolina and North Carolina, plus a few from Kentucky and Tennessee, attend. About 150 people.

On the first night, clergy and spouses have dinner at an event venue in Pawleys Island. 50-60 people.

Sunday, March 8: Clergy return to St. Andrew’s, which holds its six Sunday services, including holy communion, in its historic church building and at Mount Pleasant Academy. St. Andrew's has more than 2,000 members.

Tuesday, March 10:

• Associate Rector Randy Forrester teaches a class at the church’s Ridley Institute. 80-90 people.

• Forrester later feels sick, self-quarantines.

• St. Andrew's Rector Steve Wood, who is the diocese’s bishop, and Associate Rector Anthony Kowbeidu are at visitation for longtime member Robert Donaldson at J. Henry Stuhr’s funeral home in Mount Pleasant.

Wednesday, March 11:

• Wood and Kowbeidu preside over Donaldson’s funeral at St. Andrew’s.

• Forrester worsens, seeks care through MUSC telemedicine portal. Is told he probably has a cold.

Thursday, March 12: Wood feels sick, talks with doctor and self-quarantines.

Sunday, March 15: Church holds its six services.

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• Kowbeidu passes out briefly while presiding over worship at the church. About 200 people at all services.

• Wood and Forrester remain self-quarantined. Kowbeidu self-quarantines.

Tuesday March 16: Church suspends services per Gov. McMaster’s order of no gatherings of more than 100 people.

• Spouse of a lay delegate to the Pawleys Island meeting tests positive for coronavirus.

Thursday, March 19:

• Kowbeidu tests positive for coronavirus.

• Wood admitted to East Cooper Medical Center.

Friday, March 20:

• Wood is placed on a ventilator in the ICU, tests positive.

• Church notifies members.

• Forrester returns to MUSC telemedicine, is authorized for test, receives one.

Sunday, March 22: Church holds services online.

Tuesday, March 24: Forrester get his test result. He, too, has the virus.

Contact Jennifer Hawes at 843-937-5563. Follow her on Twitter @jenberryhawes.

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