Bishop Gerald O. Glenn, a Virginia Bishop who defied his state’s social distancing recommendations and boasted about his church’s packed pews amid the coronovirus pandemic, died over the weekend of complications from the virus, his church announced on Facebook on Sunday.
Glenn;s wife has also tested positive for the disease, known as COVID-19. The couple’s daughter has since urged the public to “understand the severity and the seriousness” of the virus.
Glenn, 66, was the founder and pastor of New Deliverance Evangelical Church in Chesterfield, located about 20 miles south of Richmond.
On March 22, in the last known in-person sermon he delivered at the church, Glenn boasted about being “Controversial” and “in violation” of state social distancing recommendations.
Video of the service showed dozens of people in the church at the time. Virginia officials were urging social distancing at the time. A day after his sermon, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam issued an order calling for the closure of all non-essential services and the prohibition of gatherings of more than 10 people.
According to the New York Post, the church’s Facebook page, Glenn did announce an indefinite suspension of church service following Northam’s order – and urged congregants to “be mindful” of the heightened risk that large gatherings could pose in spite of the coronovirus.
The church announced April 4th that the Bishop and his wife, Marcietetia Glenn, had both been sickened with COVID-19.
The couple’s daughter, Mar-gerie Crawley, told media outlets at the time that her father had been treated with a ventilator.