Galveston – The Galveston County Health District (GCHD) is investigating an outbreak at a church camp that has resulted in over 120 youths and adults testing positive for COVID-19.
GCHD said, so far, only 20 Galveston County residents who attended the Clear Creek Community Church camp tested positive for COVID-19.
Health officials said the camp took place in June, outside of Galveston County at a campground rented exclusively by a local church. More than 450 adults and youth in grades six-12 from the area attended the camp, officials said.
The health district was notified of the first positive COVID-19 case tied to the camp on June 27, and since, 20 Galveston County youth and adults have tested positive.
The health district said it’s working closely with the church’s leadership to investigate the outbreak, trace potential contacts and offer guidance and resources. Officials said the youth group did not leave the campground during their stay, but they did have contact with counselors from their church. No other campers were on site.
The church reported to the health district more than 125 youth and adults who were on the trip told the church they tested positive for COVID-19 after returning home. The church believes hundreds more could have been exposed at the camp and when sick campers returned home.
“This is a reminder that COVID-19 is still here and we have to take precautions,” said Dr. Philip Keiser, Galveston County Local Health Authority. “If you’re old enough to get vaccinated and haven’t, now is the time. These vaccines are safe and offer the best protection against COVID-19 to you, your family and your community.”
Anyone who attended the church camp who begins to feel sick or is a close contact of someone who is COVID-19 positive should get tested and quarantine at home while waiting for test results. Those who are not vaccinated, including children younger than 12 years old, should continue to wear a face mask and social distance in public settings.
The church released the following statement:
“From the beginning of the pandemic, we have sought to love our neighbors by practicing strict safety protocols. We are surprised and saddened by this turn of events. Our hearts break for those infected with the virus. Please pray for a speedy and complete recovery for all of those affected. In the wake of this outbreak, our pastors and leaders are cooperating with the Galveston County Health District, making decisions in the best interest of our community, and caring for those who are sick.”
The church also said service at CCCC campuses will be canceled for Sunday, July 4 and Wednesday, July 7.