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Vatican: Getting vaccinated is "an act of love"

Getting vaccinated is "an act of love," Pope Francis said in his latest urgent appeal, after more than a year of insisting COVID-19 vaccines be equitably available worldwide for everyone to get inoculated.

Because there has been "overwhelming consensus within the Catholic magisterium" for years on the permissibility of using such vaccines in the absence of alternatives, "to counsel people that it is legitimate to refuse the vaccines on religious grounds--and, in fact, to facilitate it--is to actively assist people in mal-forming their consciences," said M. Therese Lysaught, a corresponding member of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Mon Oct 25th, 2021 at 12:34:38 PM EST
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US Conservative Bishops send different messages to their flock ...

Vaccine mandates open door for bishops to discern an appropriate action | CNS |

Questions surrounding the three vaccines administered in the U.S. -- Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson -- from some within the church revolve around whether already widely used cell lines developed decades ago from tissue of aborted fetuses are used in manufacturing or testing processes.

The NCBC has had the template letter on it's website since July 2, when it posted a statement explaining that it "does not endorse mandated COVID-19 immunization with any of the three vaccines" that have received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (The Pfizer vaccine has now received final FDA approval, as of Aug. 23.)

The bioethics center cited guidance from the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which in December explained that individuals must decide to be vaccinated or not based on personal conscience and discernment. [far-fetched interpretation of Vatican teaching - Oui]

The Vatican's doctrinal office said at the time that when alternative vaccines are not available, it is morally acceptable to receive COVID-19 vaccines developed or tested using cell lines originating 50 years ago from aborted fetuses.

"It must therefore be considered that in such a case all vaccinations recognized as clinically safe and effective can be used in good conscience with the certain knowledge that the use of such vaccines does not constitute formal cooperation with the abortion from which the cells used in production of the vaccines derive," the statement said.

Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk wrote in an email to CNS that the NCBC's July 2 stance remains unchanged even though vaccine mandates are being implemented in at least two dioceses and several bishops have directed priests not to sign letters from parishioners seeking an exemption from vaccination.

He said the template does not require a priest's signature to "'certify' or 'authenticate'" its contents. "Priests, in fact, cannot "certify the state of another's conscience," and really do not need to be asked to do so," he explained.

Since the NCBC posted its statement, dioceses have come down on both sides of the religious exemption question.

The Catholic bishops of Colorado, South Dakota and Wisconsin have issued statements supporting the conscience rights of individuals to seek a religious exemption from being vaccinated.

The Colorado Catholic Conference followed the NCBC's lead and has included a template letter for vaccine exemption on its website that can be downloaded.

The state's four bishops affirmed in early August that "the use of some COVID-19 vaccines is morally acceptable under certain circumstances," but also said they objected to mandating that Coloradans get vaccinated against the coronavirus.

In South Dakota, Bishop Donald E. DeGrood of Sioux Falls and Bishop Peter M. Muhich of Rapid City, said in an Aug. 10 statement that people have a right to follow their conscience regarding the vaccines. "We must not be forced to act contrary to our conscience, i.e., to be compelled to do something we believe to be wrong," they said.

Cardinal Raymond Burke has been appointed as Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Mon Oct 25th, 2021 at 12:35:59 PM EST
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