The pastor of Palermo Bible Family Church in Butte County, California, says he’s not sorry for hosting an in-person church service that exposed 180 people to coronavirus due to an infected parishioner, according to The Sacramento Bee.
“May I just say to all of our church, you don’t need to defend us. When Jesus went before Pilate, he didn’t defend himself. So I don’t feel the need,” Pastor Michael Jacobsen said during a recent sermon.
“I don’t feel the like the decision we made was irresponsible,” he added.
Jacobson said he is self-quarantining in light of the news.
It’s still not known how many tested positive out of the 180 exposed.
“We are continuing an extensive contract tracing investigation,” Lisa Almaguer, a spokeswoman for the county’s health department, told the Bee.
During his sermon, Jacobsen defended the coronavirus-positive congregant.
“They didn’t do it intentionally,” he said, referring to the congregant. “It was never in my heart to put our church in harm’s way.”