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US megachurch pastor quarantined after coronavirus exposure

by Heather Preston
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Life.Church YouTube

Senior Pastor of multi-site Life.Church and a fellow pastor have been quarantined for two weeks after being exposed to the coronavirus at a conference in Germany.

Craig Groeschel and Bobby Gruenewald are spending fourteen days in isolation after the pair came into contact with the virus at a Willow Creek leadership event in southwest Germany at the end of February.

The conference, which was attended by over 7,000 delegates, was cut short after a speaker was found to have COVID-19, according to organisers.

Groeschel and Gruenewald, creator of the YouVersion Bible app, were only made aware of the Willow Creek case once they had boarded a plane back to the United States.


Groeschel broke the news to his 90,000 strong congregation across 34 sites via a video link on Wednesday.

"To make a really long story short, Pastor Bobby and I were in Germany for a conference I was speaking at a little while ago, on our flight back we found out that one of the pastors at the conference had tested positive for coronavirus," he said.

"So we told the flight attendant and once we landed we met with the health authorities and decided to self-isolate for the full 14 days."

In high spirits, Groeschel informed church members that both himself and Gruenewald were "feeling great" and expected to be cleared of suspected infection within a couple of days.

"We will not be at church, don't worry! We are going to stay completely away. We are trying to do this with an abundance of caution to make sure that everyone is safe," he added.

"The good news is I have a lot of time to pray! Pastor Bobby will probably invent another app!"

The three-day Willow Creek Leadership Summit 2020, scheduled from the 27-29th February, was ended a day early.

A statement released by organisers at the time insisted the closure was a "preventative measure" and that delegates were not at risk, as the unnamed speaker was not present at the summit.

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