Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 04-09-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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2 WOONSOCKET APRIL 9-15, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE | NORTH SMITHFIELD BLACKSTONE WOONSOCKET EDITION WOONSOCKET – A local group is hoping their plans to offer drive-thru pickup of prayer cards and other reli- gious items on Good Friday will bring a sense of holiness to an Easter season that's been upended by the coronavirus. The Committee to Save Saint Charles Borromeo Church plans to host a drive-thru event this Friday, April 10, outside the Daniels Street church where visitors can pick up rosaries, prayer cards and other religious items. Volunteers from the committee will pass out items between 4:30 and 6:30 p.m., according to Chairman Albert Beauparlant. The committee, which is not formally associated with the Diocese of Providence but has been fighting to reopen the historic church, had initially planned a Saint Patrick's Day celebration in March that was canceled due to the corona- virus. As part of the celebra- tion, they planned to pass out nails from a large cross made by the committee, something Beauparlant said they plan to do during the Good Friday event. "We're asking for people to take these rosaries and pray for the people of Woonsocket," he said. The event comes a week after Gov. Gina Raimondo and state health officials directed churches not to pass out palms this past Sunday, even by indi- vidual pick-up. Though Bishop Thomas Tobin urged parishes to comply with the order, the directive raised questions among some priests who asked why their plans were consid- ered different from pickup at restaurants or stores. Asked whether they con- sidered calling off the event after the governor's directive, Beauparlant said the commit- tee plans to continue and will take measures to prevent the spread of the virus. In addition to sanitizing the items, he said, volunteers will wear gloves and maintain distance while passing out objects. "People cannot go to church on Good Friday. It's going to give them something to remem- ber at probably the worst time in American history," he said. Beauparlant noted that Saint Charles Borromeo, the patron saint of the 150-year-old church, is known for his role in responding to a pandemic, having ministered to the city of Milan during the plague of 1575. St. Charles group planning Good Friday drive-thru By LAUREN CLEM Valley Breeze Staff Writer Thundermist opens respiratory clinic to treat COVID-19 patients WOONSOCKET – Thundermist Health Center has opened a new respiratory clinic to test and treat COVID-19 patients. President/CEO Jeanne LaChance and Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Bourassa said during a press conference Tuesday the clinic would be used to treat patients with COVID-19 symptoms and is also administering tests. The clinic is set up in a tent in the parking lot of the agency's Clinton Street location. "We're expecting over the next three weeks as it escalates in Rhode Island, this is going to be busier," said Bourassa. Due to restrictions on doctor's office visits, patients with COVID-19 symptoms have had limited options for in-person care if they're not sick enough to visit a hospital, said Bourassa. All of the medical providers working in the clinic are staff members who volun- teered for the assignment. Visits to the clinic are by appointment only. Those who are not already Thundermist patients can call the agency's Convenient Care clinic to speak with a medi- cal provider and potentially set up a visit. The agency has also put out a call to community members for homemade cloth masks for patients in order to conserve surgical and respirator masks for staff. Anyone interested in donating masks can contact Luke Veitch by emailing lukev@thundermis- Is your will or trust over 5 years old? Call for a review JOSEPH J. 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