The head of Shincheonji Church of Jesus, Lee Man-hee this week held a press conference to apologize for the spread of the coronavirus that has been traced to his controversial sect. It was a remarkable moment for a man who claimed to be second coming of Jesus Christ. In Iran, where the virus is exploding, the Muslim leaders are neither apologetic nor deterred in refusing to curtail religious demonstrations, including the licking of religious sites and icons by Muslims. Muslims interviewed insist that their faith protected them, which further expands the growing body of God-fearing, virus-inviting patients for health experts.
Despite saying that he is divine, Lee says that they could not control the virus which has sickened 4,335 confirmed cases from his sect. He promised to take 144,000 people to heaven but presumably this was not the path.
In the meantime, health officials are shocked not only by the refusal of Muslim leaders to curtail demonstrations and gatherings, but pictures of the continued practice of Muslims to lick items and structures at Islamic shrines.
In another video, people encourage and applaud a child who licked Islamic objects. It is not surprising that Iran has the second highest rate of the virus outside of China.