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Many Orange County schools, churches are shut down as coronavirus cases jump to 17

The Pacifica Christian Orange County boys’ volleyball team hosted Brethren Christian in a nonleague match with no spectators on Friday.
(Pacifica Christian High School)

Orange County now has 17 coronavirus cases, including three believed spread through the community.

Many Orange County schools will be closed beginning Monday, and officials are preparing grab-and-go meals for children in need. Visits to local jails and juvenile facilities also have been suspended.

Orange County public libraries are also closed.

Officials said 160 people have been tested so far in the county.

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Age range of coronavirus cases:

0 Younger than 18
7 18-49
6 50-64
4 65 and older

Religious services have also been impacted.

Two weekend services at Congregation B’nai Tzedek in Fountain Valley also will take a new form for the rest of the month: Facebook livestream. Typically, 50 to 150 people attend the Friday night Shabbat service, said Rabbi David Young. Now, it will be one rabbi and one cantorial soloist.

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“A lot of people who have a lot of health issues might make Shabbat the one time to get out of their house every week,” Young said. “While that’s wonderful and we encourage that in general, in a time when we’re worried about communicable disease and illnesses transferred through the air, we want to maintain the Jewish value of pikuach nefesh saving a life.”

Laguna Beach’s Church by the Sea canceled both of its Sunday services this weekend, opting for a video recorded by the church’s pastors that parishioners and their families can watch at home.

St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach also is taking its worship to Facebook.

“Flattening the curve requires a ‘neighbor first’ mentality, precisely the kind of mentality that we try to cultivate as followers of Christ,” Pastor Mark Davis said in a Friday statement to congregants, referring to how social distancing can keep infections from spiking and overwhelming the healthcare system.

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UC Irvine is canceling its traditional graduation this spring as a precaution against the coronavirus, the first University of California campus to call off the iconic event.

“We are saddened to share that the UCI commencement ceremonies will not take place in the same way as previous years,” Willie Banks Jr., vice chancellor of student affairs, wrote in a message to students Friday.

California had recorded 335 cases of coronavirus as of Sunday, a 14% increase from the day before,

The state also reported six deaths, with the sixth one in San Mateo County, where 32 cases have been recorded.

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Los Angeles County reported 15 new cases Sunday. Five of the people are hospitalized; one of them has an unknown source of exposure to the virus, and three cases are under investigation. The new cases bring the total in L.A. County to 69, 10 of which are believed to be a result of community transmission.


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