David French: The Spiritual Problem at the Heart of Christian Vaccine Refusal

Jim's picture

if there is one thing that readers should take away from this newsletter, it’s that Evangelical vaccine hesitancy is both an information problem and a spiritual problem

Yes, you can and should flood the zone with more and better information about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine, but we also need to flood the zone with better and more effective spiritual teaching about loving our neighbors and—critically—about trust, faith, and courage. 

First, about trust—unless you are in the impossibly tiny minority of people who fully understand the science of the vaccine, we’re all trusting somebody. The question is whom we are trusting and why. 

In conversations about the vaccine, I’ve heard a number of people declare, “I’m just less trusting than you.” In reality, these people still trust. They just trust claims and assertions elsewhere—either from a favorite internet voice, a local pastor, or a Bible study full of close friends who have shared counter-cultural health tips and advice for years. 

dcbii's picture


It's no wonder I read French less and less these days.  So any skepticism about the vaccine is a spiritual problem?!?!  Guess that's one "internet voice" (to use his term) from which I should ignore the "claims and assertions."  His advice may be even more relevant than he knew in this case.

Dave Barnhart