91 missionaries test positive for COVID-19 at Provo MTC
Few who tested positive showed symptoms or said they felt sick, according to a statement.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reported Thursday that 91 of its 588 missionaries currently undergoing training at the Provo Mission Training Center tested positive for the coronavirus this week.
All missionaries are required to be vaccinated upon arrival at the church’s flagship MTC and will be provided with tests according to the centre’s COVID-19 protocols, according to a press release from Church Spokesman Sam Penrod.
The 91 cases were discovered after several missionaries initially tested positive earlier this week, prompting the center to test all 588 missionaries for COVID-19.
The positive cases reported Thursday account for about 15% of the missionaries currently at the Provo MTC. Penrod noticed few who tested positive, showed symptoms, or said they felt sick.
The Provo MTC, which resumed personal training in June, “continues to operate at reduced capacity,” said the press release, which stated that “there are sufficient facilities to isolate negative people and quarantine positive ones.” put”.
Although all incoming missionaries must be vaccinated, the Church did not immediately return a request for comment Thursday on whether missionaries need a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
In the statement, Penrod said that additional COVID-19 protocols are now in place for the MTC’s cafeteria and gym and that masks must be worn during all classes, meetings and indoor devotions. Newly arriving missionaries must also have a negative COVID-19 test on Wednesdays when they report.
Missionaries will not travel on their assigned missions unless they test negative for COVID-19 or have completed all of the required quarantine periods, noted Penrod.
The Church announced in May that the Provo MTC would accept approximately 150 to 250 new missionaries each week, while facilities in Ghana and New Zealand would each accept approximately 50 missionaries.
The 10 MTCs of the Church, located from England to Mexico, suspended classroom teaching in the spring of 2020 due to the pandemic. The prospective missionaries, who began at 18 years of age for young men and 19 for young women, switched to online home learning experiences.
Prior to the coronavirus, Provo’s 35-acre MTC, where Latter-day Saints typically undergo intensive language study and basic gospel training before volunteering, was filled with 3,700 missionaries waiting to learn and learn more than 50 languages present belief in the world. It was expanded in 2017.