Among these pilgrims in attendance at the pope's General Audience was a person with Covid-19.
It was Wednesday, Oct. 21. Just a week before, Pope Francis had told pilgrims that he would unfortunately not greet them personally in an effort to stem coronavirus contagions. Instead, he greeted them from the top of the steps at the end of his catechesis.
Oct. 14, 2020
I would like to do what I usually do: go down close to you to greet you. However, with the new norms, it's better to maintain distances. To the sick, I warmly greet them from here. Keep a prudent distance, as should be done, because when I come down there, everyone gets close and forms crowds.
It's unknown if additional pilgrims were infected. The Vatican is attempting to trace those who were present so they can take prudent measures.
In the meantime, the Holy See will begin holding General Audiences without the presence of pilgrims.
Starting Nov. 4, the audiences will be streamed from the Library of the Apostolic Palace.
The Vatican has also confirmed that on Nov. 5, the pope will celebrate a Mass for cardinals who have died this year, but that only a small number of faithful will be allowed to attend.