Skip to main content

Report: 30 people infected with COVID-19 at Minnesota funeral

Becker County Public Health confirms that outbreaks have been traced to funerals.
  • Author:
  • Updated:
St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Lake Park. 

St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Lake Park. 

Forum News Service reports that a funeral for a 78-year-old man in northwest Minnesota led to significant transmission of the novel coronavirus, with 30 people who attended the service contracting COVID-19. 

According to the report, which public health officials cannot confirm due to data privacy laws, the funeral happened at a Catholic church in Lake Park, a small town located in Becker County. 

"We do have church gatherings, including funerals, among those places where we have traced recent outbreaks," said Kristin Bausman, public health supervisor for Becker County Public Health. 

"We are not able to name them as that would identify the individuals involved – and those who are ill and their close contacts know who they are – but it’s important to remember that any gathering of people not of the same household where people are not wearing masks or social distancing is a potential source for spread of the virus." 

The report said five people who attended the mid-July funeral were hospitalized with COVID-19. 

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recommends that places of worship, funeral homes, and gathering spaces for funerals limit attendance to 50% normal capacity for indoor settings, with a maximum of 250 people indoors and outdoors

According to the MDH, Becker County has been home to 149 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and one death in the five months that the coronavirus has been known to exist in Minnesota. 

"We are seeing an increased level of community transmission in the state related to social gatherings and this, in turn, poses increased risks to our long-term care facilities, schools and workplaces," said Bausman. 

"Please wear your mask, stay six feet from the next person, cover your coughs and sneezes, wash your hands and stay home if you are ill."

Lake Park is located about 10 miles west of Detroit Lakes.

Outbreaks of COVID-19 have been traced to numerous gatherings since Minnesota's stay-at-home order expired, including recent outbreaks traced to basketball and football practices and camps in Lewiston, Minnesota. 

Next Up

south st paul mayor twitter 2

'Just took this': MN mayor tweeting others' pics says it's for 'entertainment'

The mayor told Bring Me The News his goal on Twitter is to spread joy.

covid, vaccine

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, January 19

More than 44,000 new cases reported from the holiday weekend.

rise bagel co

Bagel shop closes amid vax-or-test mandate, posts: 'All are welcome here'

Other Twin Cities restaurants have also temporarily closed this week.

Rick Spielman

Spielman: 'It was constantly like a moving target all the time'

Spielman said drafting and rostering players who fit the scheme was difficult with all of the offensive coordinators Mike Zimmer had.

police lights

Suspect fled police, found hiding in old camper in scrap yard

Police say they were trying to pull him over for driving without any lights.


Omicron fading in Minnesota? Wastewater detection provides hope

Wastewater samples can help predict a rise or fall in COVID-19 cases.

covid vaccine card

COVID: Minneapolis, St. Paul vaccine-or-test rule for dining now in effect

Proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test are required.

freight train railroad tracks

Man crawls to safety before train hits his stuck wheelchair

The incident happened Tuesday on Highway 169.

US Bank Stadium

Sizing up Vikings coaching candidates we know about so far

A closer look at some of the head coaching candidates interviewed by the Vikings

St. Paul police

St. Paul: Man called police to report he killed his wife

Police are also investigating a separate fatal shooting in the Frogtown neighborhood.

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves survive Knicks' second-half barrage to get back to .500

Karl-Anthony Towns' lay-in helped Minnesota get a win in The Garden.


teacher, coronavirus, covid-19, school, classroom

75 of 87 Minnesota counties have rising COVID-19 infection rates

Only 5 counties are in the threshold for 100% distance learning for all students.

coronavirus, covid-19

County infection rates rise almost everywhere in latest COVID report

74 of 87 Minnesota counties saw infection rates increase in the latest report, which is delayed.

PPE, coronavirus, covid-19

Here is the June 4 COVID-19 report for Minnesota

The death toll since March 21 has surpassed 1,100.


Minnesota wedding now linked to 75 COVID-19 cases

More than a quarter of the attendees have been infected, according to state health officials.


COVID-19 outbreak traced to sporting events in southern MN

The outbreak has been traced back to events that took place in late July.

school, school bus, covid

COVID-19 outbreak identified at east-central MN high school

The school says they have been unable to "connect the dots" and trace the cases.