North Alabama churches taking precautions amid coronavirus concerns

There are no cases of the coronavirus in Alabama, but church pastors told us they want to be prepared.

Posted: Mar 11, 2020 6:38 PM

In North Alabama, people are taking precautions to stay healthy as other states continue to report cases of coronavirus.

We talked to several churches, who told us they're making sure their congregation is health-aware and making small changes.

The Athens location of Clements Baptist Church off Highway 72 will keep its doors open for now.

We spoke with the lead pastor on what changes they're making.

The staff at Clements Church say they don't want to alarm anyone but they are being proactive rather than reactive.

They're saying no to shaking hands... But a big yes to bumping elbows.

"Have we heightened it just a tad, well of course we have. But at the same time it's just trying to be wise. We've told our folks instead of the Christian hugs these days... It's the Christian elbow bump," said Pastor Tim Anderson.

Anderson told us they've not only changed the way they want folks to greet each other, but they've also added more hand sanitizer dispensers throughout the church.

Anderson told WAAY 31 he hasn't seen a change in the amount of people who attend his church.

"It's been steady. I think the talk that's out there has probably alarmed some folks and rightfully so. It's something to take serious for sure," he said.

The coronavirus is not yet in Alabama but it has hit almost every neighboring state.

Two pastors in Huntsville told us they learned that churches in other states are even looking at stopping physical tithing and going to digital platforms for sermons.

The Diocese of Birmingham shared instructions on ways to prevent the spread of illnesses.

Which includes changing parts of how communion is offered.

But Anderson told us he has this to say for his church members.

"Pray. Just pray,"

The staff isn't looking at shutting down the church physically and going to everything online, but they are watching the coronavirus to see how it grows and how it can impact their community.

In Washington, D.C., the health department says a priest who tested positive for coronavirus could have spread the disease to as many as 500 people.

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 155915

Reported Deaths: 2674
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22861374
Mobile14468314
Tuscaloosa10148139
Montgomery9875196
Madison915094
Shelby720462
Lee649665
Baldwin647569
Marshall433049
Calhoun418960
Etowah418749
Morgan403635
Houston369232
DeKalb330229
Elmore314852
St. Clair287142
Limestone276530
Walker272293
Talladega261035
Cullman235724
Lauderdale214841
Jackson210015
Autauga202330
Franklin202131
Colbert196731
Russell19233
Blount189325
Dallas186227
Chilton184132
Escambia171929
Coffee171710
Covington169929
Dale165451
Chambers133643
Pike132313
Tallapoosa130587
Clarke130017
Marion106229
Butler100140
Barbour9979
Marengo99222
Winston91313
Geneva8527
Pickens82417
Lawrence82131
Randolph81216
Bibb81114
Hale74930
Clay72912
Cherokee72614
Lowndes70328
Monroe64010
Henry6396
Bullock63717
Washington63412
Crenshaw60230
Perry5836
Wilcox56212
Fayette56113
Conecuh55713
Cleburne5438
Macon52920
Sumter47021
Lamar4665
Choctaw38812
Greene34216
Coosa2023
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 237907

Reported Deaths: 3011
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby34892558
Davidson30302330
Knox1217488
Hamilton11368105
Rutherford11274110
Williamson680255
Sumner5788108
Wilson451455
Putnam425754
Montgomery398851
Out of TN382836
Unassigned38224
Madison369679
Bradley347923
Sullivan339546
Sevier324121
Washington324146
Blount319132
Maury313937
Robertson253741
Hamblen237943
Tipton226022
Dyer209627
Gibson208238
Hardeman182132
Coffee179920
Trousdale17517
Obion167820
Greene161851
Bedford161720
Anderson161114
Fayette160522
Dickson160419
Wayne15697
Loudon156610
McMinn156433
Cumberland156124
Lawrence152618
Jefferson149220
Weakley146725
Carter146532
Monroe139528
Warren138710
Henderson137925
Lauderdale136717
Hardin135219
Macon128625
Franklin124416
Roane12237
Haywood121027
Overton116512
Hawkins114224
White113314
Johnson11177
Carroll110525
McNairy109926
Marshall10859
Rhea106316
Cheatham100011
Bledsoe9994
Lake9753
Cocke96612
Smith96212
Giles92134
Campbell9118
Fentress8778
Lincoln8363
Crockett80320
Henry75610
Hickman75113
Marion7249
Chester71514
DeKalb69017
Decatur64811
Grainger5514
Grundy53511
Union5173
Claiborne5086
Polk48313
Jackson4345
Humphreys4244
Morgan4227
Houston39915
Benton3979
Cannon3962
Unicoi3842
Clay38314
Lewis3602
Scott3514
Sequatchie3294
Stewart3128
Meigs3005
Perry2611
Moore2542
Pickett2527
Van Buren1971
Hancock1133

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