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Michigan diocese mourns as nine nuns die from coronavirus

The Diocese of Lansing offered its condolences and prayerful support after the coronavirus hit a religious retirement home this month and nine nuns died.

Bishop Earl Boyea of Lansing issued a statement Jan. 28 expressing sorrow over the deaths and emphasizing the valuable role the nuns have played in the community.

“With great regret, I was informed today of the death of nine of our Adrian Dominican Sisters due to COVID-19. May they rest in peace. It is all the more bittersweet to learn of this sad news upon the Feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas, usually a day of great festivity for the Dominican order,” said Boyea.

“I would like to assure Sister Patricia Siemen, Prioress, and all the Adrian Dominican community of my sympathy, prayers and support in the days and weeks to come. Saint Dominic, pray for them.”

The women lived at the campus of the Adrian Dominican Sisters, which is located about 75 miles away from Detroit. More than 200 retired nuns live in Adrian.

According to Fox 2 Detroit, the convent has been struck with 46 positive cases of COVID-19. So far, 25 nuns have recovered but there are still 12 nuns with active symptoms.

The nine nuns who died in January were between the ages of 79 and 97.

According to Fox 2 Detroit, Prioress Siemen said a majority of the victims had underlying health problems that were made worse by the virus. She said, while the convent has strictly followed quarantine and pandemic protocol, the virus still reached the community.

“It slips in. That’s the heartache of this virus,” Siemen said.

Read more at Catholic News Agency

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