101 Ohio Clergy Criticize President Biden for Vaccine Mandates, Abortion in Open Letter

“We think it is immoral for persons to be forced to take unproven COVID-19 experimental vaccinations…that may alter their own DNA.” - C.Leaders

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Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

What I want to know is where are the hundreds of pastors banding together to sign open letters affirming the facts about the COVID vaccines? The facts:

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

dgszweda's picture

Aaron Blumer wrote:

What I want to know is where are the hundreds of pastors banding together to sign open letters affirming the facts about the COVID vaccines? The facts:

And we wonder why our church is driven by misinformation.  When the clergy has no idea what they are saying and are just stating non-facts, what hope do we have with the congregants.

Mark_Smith's picture

On various conservative blogs and even my church's facebook, I see military vets complaining about vaccine mandates. As I recall, about day 3 of Boot Camp they lined us all up and gave us about 10 vaccines... I don't recall anyone being asked if they wanted the vaccine, and I don't remember anyone complaining. So "mandates" in the millitary are nothing new.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

I guess I'm old-fashioned enough to think that pastors should neither be promoting Covid vaccines nor decrying them.  Covid vaccination hasn't (like pretty much every other political topic) been mentioned from the pulpit of our church, and IMHO, it needs to stay that way.  In fact, the entire topic of Covid hasn't been dealt with at all from the platform EXCEPT where we had to form and put into place policies based on local government rule changes regarding things like masks, distancing, etc., and to let people know that no matter how each of us come down on the topic, we should be avoiding divisiveness in the body.

Pastors' primary expertise is in something other than politics and medicine, and they should stay in their lane.  I don't know how many out there are just dying for their pastors to tell them what to do and how to behave with respect to Covid, but I certainly don't know any.  I have my own opinions regarding what to do about Covid, and 101 clergy in another state are certainly not going to change my mind, or even figure into my calculations.  Of course, that applies to all the non-expert media opinions and political talking-heads as well.

Dave Barnhart

dgszweda's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:

So "mandates" in the millitary are nothing new.

In fact, mandates in the military date all the way back to 1777 under George Washington.  Not only did the founding fathers support it, but the military all the way to the founding of the country have had vaccine mandates.  Smallpox killed more continental soldiers in 1776 than the British army.

78.5% of the adult population in the US has received at least one vaccine dose.  No one has been shown to have died conclusively from the vaccine in the US.  The vaccine has been fully approved and deemed safe by the FDA with no safety shortcuts.

The military requires something like 15 vaccines to be administered to military. 

Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

I guess I'm old-fashioned enough to think that pastors should neither be promoting Covid vaccines nor decrying them.  Covid vaccination hasn't (like pretty much every other political topic) been mentioned from the pulpit of our church, and IMHO, it needs to stay that way. 

I get the desire to avoid politicized pulpit work. Here's the thing, though. How do we decide what's "political" in that sense vs. what's just controversial but important? One key difference is how one derives their thinking on it and how they communicate it. If you're quoting Tucker Carlson, you're definitely politicizing. If you're quoting Francis Schaeffer, probably not. I'm oversimplifying for brevity.

To me, it's too important an issue to leave believers without biblical guidance. So it needs to be talked about from pulpits. But it has to be done very patiently and gently because people are not coming to these questions with their "open minded and curious, and hungry for teaching" hats on.

So if I had the opportunity, I wouldn't preach a sermon on "Nine Reasons Every Christian Should Get the COVID Vaccine." What I'd do is preach a message (or more likely a SS lesson) on "How to Think Biblically About the Vaccination Issue" and include a handout with some key facts that answer some of the most common myths out there. So the teaching would emphasize principles and process over conclusion.

And this approach isn't just practicality speaking. God's always very interested in how we journey ("walk") not just where we arrive, and that's been sorely neglected.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

josh p's picture

I'm another one that doesn't think the vaccine should be mentioned from the pulpit one way or the other. Let's stick with the spirituality of the church. Machen is always fitting here although some wil disagree. 
 

"There are certain things which you cannot expect from such a true Christian church. In the first place, you cannot expect from it any cooperation with non-Christian religion or with a non-Christian program of ethical culture. . . .

In the second place, you cannot expect from a true Christian church any official pronouncements upon the political or social questions of the day, and you cannot expect cooperation with the state in anything involving the use of force. Important are the functions of the police, and members of the church, either individually or in such special associations as they may choose to form, should aid the police in every lawful way in the exercise of those functions. But the function of the church in its corporate capacity is of an entirely different kind. Its weapons against evil are spiritual, not carnal; and by becoming a political lobby, through the advocacy of political measures whether good or bad, the church is turning aside from its proper mission. . . .

The responsibility of the church in the new age is the same as its responsibility in every age. It is to testify that this world is lost in sin; that the span of human life — nay, all the length of human history — is an infinitesimal island in the awful depths of eternity; that there a mysterious, holy, living God, Creator of all, Upholder of all, infinitely beyond all; that He has revealed Himself to us in His Word and offered us communion with Himself through Jesus Christ the Lord; that there is no other salvation, for individuals or for nations, save this, but that this salvation is full and free, and that whosoever possesses it has for himself and for all others to whom he may be the instrument of bringing it a treasure compared with which all the kingdoms of the earth — nay, all the wonders of the starry heavens — are as the dust of the street."

J. GRESHAM MACHEN, “The Responsibility of the Church in the New Age,” in Selected Shorter Writings, pp. 375-76)

Joeb's picture

Mark you do bring up a good point.  I think they had problems with the Anthrax Vax they were forcing the soldiers to take before going to war in Iraq.  When I was a Agent I got a Vax for Hepatitis A & B they were offering Law Enforcement.  I later heard their was a class action lawsuit going on over that Vax.  So there is history of problems so that can't be denied.  Now I have had no problems I know of regarding the Hepatitis A & B Vax and no one forced me to take it.  I totally volunteered.