Slovak bishop who met Pope Francis last week tests positive for COVID

Access to the comments Comments
By Reuters
Slovak bishop who met Pope Francis last week tests positive for COVID
Slovak bishop who met Pope Francis last week tests positive for COVID   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2021   -  

<div> <p><span class="caps">PRAGUE</span> – A Slovak bishop of the Greek-Catholic Church, who met Pope Francis when the pontiff visited the central European country last week, tested positive for <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 and is in self-quarantine, the church said.</p> <p>Pope Francis visited Hungary and Slovakia between Sept. 12-15, which was his first trip since having surgery in July.</p> <p>He presided at a Divine Liturgy, a Byzantine rite used by Eastern Catholic and Orthodox Churches, held outside in Presov in eastern Slovakia on Sept. 14, which the bishop attended.</p> <p>“The Greek-Catholic bishop of Presov, Jan Babjak, tested positive for coronavirus on Sept. 18. He went into self-quarantine immediately. He is vaccinated, and he shows only mild symptoms of the illness,” the church said on Monday.</p> <p>The Bishops Conference of Slovakia has informed the Vatican, a spokesman said. Pope Francis is fully vaccinated.</p> <p>Slovakia, like other countries in Europe, is bracing for a new wave of <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 cases after the pandemic hit hard at the end of 2020 and early in 2021 in the nation of 5.5 million.</p> <p>About half of the adult population is fully vaccinated against <span class="caps">COVID</span>, which is the fifth lowest rate in Europe, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (<span class="caps">ECDC</span>).</p> <p>On Monday, Slovakia registered 880 new cases of <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19, its second highest daily tally since April but still below levels that reached into the thousands on many days at the height of the pandemic.</p> <p/> </div>