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'God is always with us': Church minister speaks out on 13 coronavirus deaths at Scottish care home

by Tola Mbakwe

A church minister has said her community is desperately shocked and saddened after many families have lost loved ones in recent days due to coronavirus.

A total of 13 people at the Burlington Court care home in the east end of Glasgow have died in the past seven days.

None of the patients were tested for Covid-19 as they were not admitted to hospital but their families have been informed of a possible association with the virus.

All of the residents who died had underlying health conditions. Two staff members at the home are in separate hospitals being treated for coronavirus after testing positive.

Rev Muriel Pearson, of Cranhill Parish Church, will conduct the funeral for one of the residents on Monday. She told Premier Christian News it's a stressful time for many locals. 

"We have folk who have members of the family living in Burlington Court, and we have many people in the community who work there. There's a great deal of a concern and the feeling of helplessness because there's nothing that anyone can do at the moment."

Rev Pearson has led worship at the care home once a month since it opened in 2014. She said he heart goes out not only to those who have lost loved ones, but also to the workers. 

"These folks are caring for the most vulnerable people at the most vulnerable time, and the preparation and the equipment and most of all the testing that would allow them to do that in the best way possible just hasn't arrived yet.

"They're also dealing with folk who don't understand why things have changed, or why their relatives can't come and visit.  They are under enormous pressure."

The home is liaising with public health officials and the Care Inspectorate.

A Care Inspectorate spokesman said: "We have been notified of the circumstances and we are in contact with the care service and the local health and social care partnership during this difficult time.

"All of Scotland's social care sector is working under very difficult circumstances to care for people during the pandemic and the Care Inspectorate is doing all it can to support them."

Rev Pearson has asked Christians to pray for all those impacted by the recent deaths. She said she will be reminding locals in the coming days that God's presence is still with them. 

"When I lead worship in the care home, we always begin the same way. I say 'God is with us', and the people gathered say 'God is always with us'."

Listen to the interview here: 

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