‘Grave’ coronavirus situation in South Korean city Daegu as mayor pleads to church cult.
* Outbreak largely traced to a religious cult in Daegu, the nation’s fourth-largest city.
The mayor of South Korea’s fourth-biggest city Daegu urged people who may be infected with the new coronavirus to “not hide” as the country reported two additional deaths and 123 more cases.
Nearly two-thirds of the new patients were connected to a religious cult.
Established in 1984, the controversial Shincheonji Church of Jesus has 200,000 followers across the country, including some 13,000 in Daegu. According to Pastor Shin Hyun-uk, an anti-cult campaigner, it has some 20,000 followers in about 30 other territories including Japan, China, Hong Kong and countries in Southeast Asia.
“They are in general seen as a dangerous, vile cult that has been growing fast by abusing the belief in the last judgment,” he said, referring to some denominations’ belief in the second coming of Christ.
Shincheonji claims its founder, Lee Man-hee, 88 has donned the mantle of Jesus Christ and will take 144,000 people with him to heaven on the day of judgment.
The national toll of 556 cases is now the second-highest outside mainland China, apart from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan, after the number of the infections soared in recent days.
The two deaths, reported Sunday, take South Korea’s toll to four.
Hundreds of members of the church have now been infected, starting with a 61-year-old woman super spreader who developed a fever on February 10 but attended at least four church services in Daegu before being diagnosed.
“Hiding is not the answer. If you hide, it could hurt your health, your family’s health, and will not help in the early cessation of the situation,” Mayor Kwon said.
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Read Seven Covid-19 PREDICTIONS by Robren
Robren Prediction #2. Many religious followers will be infected, die, and spread regionally because they believe that their god will protect them only from Covid-19 (came true)