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Local Catholic priest dies after COVID-19 hospitalization

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Posted at 5:07 PM, Jan 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-09 19:11:06-05

OGDEN, Utah — A priest who served in several Catholic parishes across Utah for more than 13 years has died after contracting COVID-19.

Father Reynato (also known as "Rene") T. Rodillas, 58, tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday. At one point, he was taken to the emergency room and later released to recover and quarantine at home with oxygen.

His "sudden death" most likely happened on Friday, the Diocese of Salt Lake City said in an announcement, although the exact date of death was not yet determined by the medical examiner.

Originally from the Philippines, Rodillas had served in Utah since 2007.

From 2007-2011, he spent various amounts of time as a parochial vicar at: Saints Peter and Paul Parish in West Valley City, Saint George Parish in St. George, and Saint Therese of the Child Jesus Parish in Midvale.

He was appointed to be the administrator of Saint Olaf Parish in Bountiful in 2011, where he stayed until 2018. He then formally became a pastor and was incardinated into the Diocese of Salt Lake City.

He was the pastor at Saint James the Just in Ogden from August of 2019 until his death.

"Kindly remember Father Rene Rodillas and his family, friends, and parishioners in your prayers," Vicar General Reverend Monsignor Colin F. Bircumshaw wrote in Rodillas' obituary, which can be read in full here.