The Diocese of Gaylord issued a press release entitled, “Questions of Morality Relating to the COVID-19 Vaccines” on its website this week regarding the experimental vaccination for the Wuhan Coronavirus (Sars-CoV-2, COVID-19, Coronavirus).  It can be accessed here.

The short document doesn’t really say much; it seems to point toward recommending against the newest COVID-19 vaccine made by Johnson&Johnson, but leaves an out for those who might want to get it:

“It is recognized that those seeking vaccination may not have an option between the various COVID-19 vaccines that have been developed, and in those circumstances, it is morally acceptable to receive whichever COVID-19 vaccine is available to you.”

The press release then offers some website links for further information on the vaccines.  Prominently missing from the list of websites is the recommendation from the Catholic Medical Association (https://www.cathmed.org/vaccines-and-conscience-protection/).  Unfortunately, the hierarchy in the United States has failed to work with this excellent organization on health-related matters, especially with regard to the Coronavirus.  Instead, the bishops of the United States too often, in our opinion, referred to governmental agencies.  Could the fact that over 40% of the budget of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops comes from the federal government be a major reason (net assets at the end of 2019: $205,927,608)?

Here are a few additional points to consider.  We believe every Catholic should keep these in mind:

  • What is missing from this press release, and from documents coming from various Church organizations, is the fact that that ALL of the available COVID-19 vaccines have used aborted baby cells in some phase of their development or production.  An attempt is made to distinguish between the “research, development, and production” versus “confirmatory testing” of vaccines.  Many of the Church documents point to this as a way to legitimize vaccination if aborted baby cells were only used for “confirmatory testing”.  However, we strongly believe that the confirmatory testing portion of vaccine development is part of the research, development, and production of the vaccine.  Without confirmatory testing, no vaccine is considered appropriately researched, developed, or ready for production.  In essence, this is a false separation of the vaccine development process.

 

  • Another aspect in the discussion of these vaccines is the concept of remote cooperation with evil.  People who receive the vaccine are remotely cooperating with evil as they are allowing themselves to use a product that was immorally developed.  However, sometimes people have no choice in the matter.  An example would be paying taxes and some of your tax money going to fund anti-Catholic causes.  The Church would not state that we should no longer pay taxes.  Instead, the Church teaches that we must pay these taxes and work to eliminate tax money going to inappropriate causes.   Are people who receive the vaccines guilty of cooperating with the abortion industry/scientific community when receiving vaccines that have used aborted baby cells in their development?  The document from the Michigan Conference of Bishops reflects the widespread teaching of the Church regarding this issue, as people receiving the vaccines did not directly get people to have an abortion:  “The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has indicated that it is morally permissible to be vaccinated if there are no alternatives and there are serious health risks.”  The important concepts here are “no alternatives” and “serious health risks”.  It is very arguable that there are NO serious health risks with NOT taking the COVID-19 vaccines.  The overall survival rate of COVID-19 infection, according to the CDC, is 99.97%!  With this high of a survival rate, what is the push for vaccination in the first place?  The document from the Michigan Conference of Bishops incorrectly states that “Such serious health risks are present due to the present pandemic.”  They are wrong – an over 99.9% overall survival rate (with or without treatment) does not equal a serious health risk.  We are also seeing health risks with getting the vaccine.  As of this writing, over 1,000 deaths have been associated with receiving the vaccine.  Whether or not this is directly related to the vaccine remains to be noted.  However, this statistic from the Vaccine Event Reporting System clearly should raise alarm bells about the safety of vaccination.  Do we have a moral obligation to NOT receive the vaccine due to potential “serious health risks” after receiving it?

 

  • What about coercing someone to take a medication?  The Catholic Medical Association Statement addresses this in the most excellent way:  “There is no justifiable moral obligation to accept vaccination.  If a vaccine has been developed, tested, or produced with technology that an individual deems morally unacceptable, such as the use of abortion-derived fetal cell lines, vaccine refusal is morally acceptable. An individual’s decision to be vaccinated will also depend upon their personal assessment of the medical risks, a choice that should be respected. ”  This point seems to be missed by many bishops.

 

  • What about our rights as American citizens?  Once again, we reference the Catholic Medical Association:  “It is fundamental that the right of individual conscience be preserved. Coerced vaccination would irreparably harm Constitutional rights and the patient-physician relationship. Conscience is an individual belief influenced by many factors such as faith, culture, family, and reason. Each individual makes a conscientious decision in any given situation. Respect for conscience rights is always of primary importance.”

If you want to read the brief yet excellently written March 3, 2021

JOINT STATEMENT: VACCINES AND CONSCIENCE PROTECTION by the Catholic Medical Association, you may access it at:

JOINT STATEMENT: VACCINES AND CONSCIENCE PROTECTION