A county-issued sanitary order specifically restricted singing during religious services because of the high risk of the virus spreading through air droplets.
Now at least three confirmed cases have been linked to the event, a Mendocino County press release announced Monday. The other two cases come from Lake County, with one person being treated in hospital, according to a statement.
The Northern California church confirmed that its pastor was diagnosed with the social media virus after personally participating in the service, the county said.
Anyone who has visited recently the Assembly of God church in Redwood Valley or has been in contact with someone who has been invited to contact the county and tested for coronavirus.
Free tests are provided on Tuesday at a local school for those who may have been exposed.
Second Californian church linked to coronavirus cases during Mother’s Day
That person may have exhibited up to 180 people who were present for service in the Church of the Biblical Family in Palermo.
Those who attended the service were informed of the positive case and told to self-quarantine, according to the statement from the health department.
“We faced some challenges,” said Michael Jacobsen, pastor of the Church Family Church in Palermo, in an online sermon, addressing coronavirus exposure following the service of Mother’s Day.
Jacobsen appointed two members who tested positive for the virus, saying that one participated in the service but showed no symptoms.
“They didn’t do it intentionally,” said Jacobsen. “They didn’t intentionally come to church. It was never my heart that endangered our church. It was never my desire.”
Jacobsen said he did not justify or defend his decision to keep the services and added that the reactions were both positive and negative.
Butte County Public Health said the religious organization that ran the service cost health officials many hours and created a “financial burden” as they work to meet the needs of the pandemic.
“Moving too quickly through the reopening process can cause a serious setback and may require returning to more restrictive measures,” says his statement. “We are all begging to follow state order and our reopening plan to help combat the potential spread of Covid-19.”
CNN’s Stella Chan, Dakin Andone and Artemis Moshtaghian contributed to this report.
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