DC’s first confirmed COVID-19 patient recovering at home

After being the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the District, Father Tim Cole with Christ Church Georgetown is now out of the hospital after being tested and cleared.

“He spent three whole weeks in the hospital. That was a long ride for him and a long ride for all of us,” said Chad Thorley, Senior Warden of Christ Church Georgetown. “And the recovery has been slow, but he’s definitely on the upswing now, and he’s resting comfortably at home.”

Thorley said Father Tim was discharged from the hospital late Thursday.

“He had some serious issues with his lungs themselves, and that will take some time to repair itself. So now that he’s home, it’s basically just rest and taking it easy, doing some work from the house, but not anything like he would usually be doing if he hadn’t had this happen,” Thorley said.

More Coronavirus News

Other Christ Church clergy and staff members have been tending to the spiritual health of parishioners, working to maintain a sense of community during a time of unseen physical danger.

“We’re lucky at Christ Church to have a really great team of folks in addition to Father Tim himself, including the Assistant to the Rector Crystal Hardin, and our organist, Tom Smith, they’ve really run with that piece of things as far as the spiritual health of the congregation,” Thorley said.

Clergy and staffers are keeping a blog, “Grace Under Quarantine, and also just getting parishioners to reach out to fellow parishioners and checking on them and seeing how they’re doing, and so we try to maintain that connectivity in those ways,” Thorley said.

The blog includes various reflections of the quarantine experience, from children writing about what kindness looks like during this time, to morning prayers, and highlights of humorous messages from the church choir’s thread.

When asked whether he’s heard from anyone who may be itching to get back to church, “I would count myself as one of those people, and I know I’m not alone,” Thorley said.

“That’s an important part of my week and it is for many, many others that attend church there, so yeah, people are itching to get back, but they’re certainly respectful of the rules — both the ones the health department set out and also the Episcopal Diocese of Washington.”

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up