Washington National Cathedral Donates 5,000 Masks Discovered In Crypt

A stonemason at the Washington National Cathedral has discovered boxes containing more than 5,000 respirator masks in the cathedral’s crypt that are going to be donated to local hospitals, the Washington Post reported Wednesday.

Thirteen boxes holding 3,000 masks and nine boxes holding 2,000 masks purchased about a decade ago during a previous health scare will be donated Wednesday to Georgetown University Hospital and Children’s National, a spokesman told the Washington Post. Hospitals across the country are experiencing extreme shortages of medical equipment like masks and ventilators amid the coronavirus spread.

The masks were purchased for clergy so they could provide pastoral care in the event of a health-related crisis. The 5,000 masks will be donated while a few will be kept for the cathedral.

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 22: The Very Rev. Dean Randy Hollerith holds Sunday Mass as it is live-webcast to its parishioners due to the Coronavirus at an empty Washington National Cathedral on March 22, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

The cathedral first confirmed with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that the mask manufacturer was still safe for use. 

“In these difficult and trying times, the cathedral community is doing everything we can to help protect the most vulnerable among us from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic,” said Randolph Marshall Hollerith, dean of the cathedral, in a statement, the Washington Post reported.

The cathedral, along with all Episcopal churches in Washington, are closed until May 16. (RELATED: Churches Suspend Worship Services In DC, Maryland And Virginia Over Coronavirus)

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