Patriarch Filaret, a Ukrainian Orthodox church leader, caused controversy when he claimed same-sex marriage was a reason for the coronavirus pandemic. But in a twist of irony, he's now been diagnosed with the virus.
Patriarch Filaret caused huge controversy with his claims on COVID-19.
via: Getty ImagesHe blamed one rather specific cause for the virus.
Back in March, he was asked what he thought had caused the pandemic.
via: Getty ImagesHe claimed it was a result of "divine punishment."
He spoke on Ukrainian national TV network Channel 4.
via: Getty ImagesAnd described the epidemic as "God's punishment for the sins of men, the sinfulness of humanity."
And when pushed as to what he meant...
via: Getty ImagesFilaret continued, "First of all, I mean same-sex marriage."
Oh, and in case you were wondering...
via: GettyThe World Health Organisation has officially denounced any link between homosexuality and coronavirus, calling the link "stigmatization and discrimination."
In December 2019, we first caught wind of the name COVID-19.
via: GettyThe virus, which originated in China, was quick to spread across the globe, bringing most countries to a total standstill.
The speed of infection was terrifying.
via: GettyAs it stands, there are over twenty million cases of the virus worldwide.
But the deaths are even more alarming.
via: GettyThe sheer amount of COVID-19 deaths is staggering.
This number is truly devastating...
via: GettyAnd we can't even begin to imagine what the families of those lost to this horrendous virus must be currently going through.
So, of course, it is of the utmost importance that we abide by the lockdown rules in place...
via: GettyIn order to avoid a second spike and, inevitably, even more deaths.
And, even more importantly...
via: GettyA vaccine needs to be found, and fast.
For the last couple of months, scientists have been working tirelessly to find a cure for the deadly virus...
via: GettyBut, so far, their efforts have been to no avail.
According to the World Health Organisation, more than 100 vaccines are currently being developed...
via: GettyWith at least 4 in their Phase III trials.
But, sadly, many experts believe that we may never have an official "cure" for the virus.
via: GettyDespite the high number of drugs being tested, none have yet proven to hold the capability to save lives.
Of course, healthcare workers are continuing to work harder than ever to save lives...
via: Getty ImagesAnd that’s not just here in America… it’s happening all around the world where infection rates continue to climb.
But, throughout the pandemic, there have been some incredible stories.
via: Getty ImagesAnd the trajectory of Patriarch Filaret is one of them.
Filaret's claims about the virus are extremely damaging to the LGBTQ community.
via: Getty ImagesNot least because of his huge amount of influence over Ukrainian public opinion.
However, now,in a bizarre twist of fate, Filaret has now contracted the disease.
via: Getty ImagesAfter claiming gay marriage was the cause of COVID-19, he's the latest high profile name to receive a positive diagnosis.
The 91-year-old has been hospitalized.
via: Getty ImagesNews of his condition was shared on Facebook.
"We inform that during planned testing, His Holiness Patriarch Filaret of Kyiv and All Rus-Ukraine tested positive for Covid 19. Now His Holiness Bishop is undergoing treatment at a hospital."
via: Getty ImagesIt is not yet known how the religious leader is coping with his recent diagnosis. For a slightly more heartwarming COVID story, scroll on...