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Like most of the planet, I've been taking in gobs of information about Covid-19 and vaccinations. The latest news I read was that even the horribly abortion tainted Johnson and Johnson vaccine is permissible to take as long as there are no alternatives and that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are somehow examples of the means justifying the ends because of their remoteness.

So that first paragraph notwithstanding (I mean completely discounting abortion from this answer which has short circuited what I think is a more important and more imperative thing for the average Catholic to deal with), do we as Catholics need to "Trust Dr. Fauci"? Like the President implores us to? Or should we trust our consciences.

Our parish priest said that if we choose to not get the vaccine we should protect society in other ways, but can that mean telling our neighbors to chill out, take off their masks and stop worrying so much about Covid-19; trusting God, if not the odds over the science? Or does it mean that we still need to believe everything else that the authorities tell us about Covid-19 and more-or-less become hermits just so we can avoid taking a vaccine?

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    I'd want to know what theological or scientific reasons you'd have for thinking trusting God wouldn't include employing masks and appropriate physical distancing during a dangerous pandemic. – curiousdannii Mar 18 at 2:46
  • Could you link to some substantial reference in regard to "abortion tainted" please ? Thank you. – Nigel J Mar 18 at 3:43
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    @curious ha, well that would open a can of worms, maybe a whole diet of worms. But I'll summarize it that I think trusting God means being willing to take risks necessary to maintain healthy relationships both with God and neighbors, not obsessing over health and hygiene. – Peter Turner Mar 18 at 14:49
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    Peter, you know more about the Catholic church than I do, but you seem to be asking (in part) whether there is a requirement to believe what the government tells you - to which the answer is of course "no". But everybody should seek out, understand, and believe the truth. It's not OK to believe conspiracy theories just because we aren't required to believe the government. – DJClayworth Mar 18 at 15:52
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    @AnthonyBurg yeah, if I were going to edit the title, I would use "not reliable" instead of disreputable. I mean it's not reliable if you follow it close enough you find it to be abysmally inconsistent. "Mask up for 100 days", "Flatten the Curve" , "If every American would social distance for 8 weeks we'd beat it" that kind of stuff. I think there's a very good argument to be made with respect to Covid-19 to just give up and I can't see why that's not a valid path forward for health policy. – Peter Turner Mar 18 at 18:52
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Are Catholics obliged to follow scientific evidence that they find disreputable with respect to the Covid-19 pandemic?

The answer seems to be in the negative. But based on the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) guidelines, but the faithful are also bound by government rules and guidelines. The vaccines are a separate matter. Why? The CDF guidelines have a provision for Catholics to not accept the vaccines on personal moral grounds. But, Pope Francis in order to explain that the new vaccines are morally licit and will serve the common good.

Since the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) admits that the coronavirus is air born, it would reasonably prudent to take the normal safety measures health officials are mandating: wearing masks and staying 6 ft apart from others and avoid large crowds.

At least Pope Francis is in favour of following governmental health guidelines!

Pope Francis criticized groups protesting coronavirus restrictions and praised medical workers in an op-ed published Thursday in The New York Times.

“With some exceptions, governments have made great efforts to put the well-being of their people first, acting decisively to protect health and to save lives,” the pontiff wrote Thursday. “Yet some groups protested, refusing to keep their distance, marching against travel restrictions -- as if measures that governments must impose for the good of their people constitute some kind of political assault on autonomy or personal freedom! Looking to the common good is much more than the sum of what is good for individuals. It means having a regard for all citizens and seeking to respond effectively to the needs of the least fortunate.

Francis, 83, born Jorge Mario Bergoglio in Argentina, wrote that his own personal health crisis helped him to understand how science can be used to help people recover. The pope said he was 21 in 1957 when he had part of his lung removed, The Hill reported. - Pope Francis criticizes groups protesting COVID-19 restrictions

Maybe not obliged, but Catholics must make an informed decision on this matter. That much is clear.

To say the least, it is complicated!

Catholics should strive to take the vaccine the least morally offensive possible, if possible.

The Vatican’s Note on the morality of using some anti-Covid-19 vaccines states the following:

The question of the use of vaccines, in general, is often at the center of controversy in the forum of public opinion.

Here, our objective is only to consider the moral aspects of the use of the vaccines against Covid-19 that have been developed from cell lines derived from tissues obtained from two fetuses that were not spontaneously aborted.

  1. As the Instruction Dignitas Personae states, in cases where cells from aborted fetuses are employed to create cell lines for use in scientific research, “there exist differing degrees of responsibility” of cooperation in evil. For example,“in organizations where cell lines of illicit origin are being utilized, the responsibility of those who make the decision to use them is not the same as that of those who have no voice in such a decision”.

  2. In this sense, when ethically irreproachable Covid-19 vaccines are not available (e.g. in countries where vaccines without ethical problems are not made available to physicians and patients, or where their distribution is more difficult due to special storage and transport conditions, or when various types of vaccines are distributed in the same country but health authorities do not allow citizens to choose the vaccine with which to be inoculated) it is morally acceptable to receive Covid-19 vaccines that have used cell lines from aborted fetuses in their research and production process.

  3. The fundamental reason for considering the use of these vaccines morally licit is that the kind of cooperation in evil (passive material cooperation) in the procured abortion from which these cell lines originate is, on the part of those making use of the resulting vaccines, remote. The moral duty to avoid such passive material cooperation is not obligatory if there is a grave danger, such as the otherwise uncontainable spread of a serious pathological agent - in this case, the pandemic spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19. 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. It should be emphasized, however, that the morally licit use of these types of vaccines, in the particular conditions that make it so, does not in itself constitute a legitimation, even indirect, of the practice of abortion, and necessarily assumes the opposition to this practice by those who make use of these vaccines.

  4. In fact, the licit use of such vaccines does not and should not in any way imply that there is a moral endorsement of the use of cell lines proceeding from aborted fetuses. Both pharmaceutical companies and governmental health agencies are therefore encouraged to produce, approve, distribute and offer ethically acceptable vaccines that do not create problems of conscience for either health care providers or the people to be vaccinated.

  5. At the same time, practical reason makes evident that vaccination is not, as a rule, a moral obligation and that, therefore, it must be voluntary. In any case, from the ethical point of view, the morality of vaccination depends not only on the duty to protect one's own health, but also on the duty to pursue the common good. In the absence of other means to stop or even prevent the epidemic, the common good may recommend vaccination, especially to protect the weakest and most exposed. Those who, however, for reasons of conscience, refuse vaccines produced with cell lines from aborted fetuses, must do their utmost to avoid, by other prophylactic means and appropriate behavior, becoming vehicles for the transmission of the infectious agent. In particular, they must avoid any risk to the health of those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons, and who are the most vulnerable.

  6. Finally, there is also a moral imperative for the pharmaceutical industry, governments and international organizations to ensure that vaccines, which are effective and safe from a medical point of view, as well as ethically acceptable, are also accessible to the poorest countries in a manner that is not costly for them. The lack of access to vaccines, otherwise, would become another sign of discrimination and injustice that condemns poor countries to continue living in health, economic and social poverty. - (17 Dec 2020)

On March 2, 2021 Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Doctrine, and Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City in Kansas, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Pro-Life Activities, issued a statement on the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine recently approved for use in the United States.

The approval of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine for use in the United States again raises questions about the moral permissibility of using vaccines developed, tested, and/or produced with the help of abortion-derived cell lines.

Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines raised concerns because an abortion-derived cell line was used for testing them, but not in their production. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, however, was developed, tested and is produced with abortion-derived cell lines raising additional moral concerns. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has judged that ‘when ethically irreproachable Covid-19 vaccines are not available … it is morally acceptable to receive Covid-19 vaccines that have used cell lines from aborted fetuses in their research and production process.’ However, if one can choose among equally safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, the vaccine with the least connection to abortion-derived cell lines should be chosen. Therefore, if one has the ability to choose a vaccine, Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccines should be chosen over Johnson & Johnson’s.

While we should continue to insist that pharmaceutical companies stop using abortion-derived cell lines, given the world-wide suffering that this pandemic is causing, we affirm again that being vaccinated can be an act of charity that serves the common good. - U.S. Bishop Chairmen for Doctrine and for Pro-Life Address the Use of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 Vaccine

There still remains a fair bit of confusion on the data and scientific evidence in regards to vaccines at the present. In order to follow scientific evidence that they find disreputable with respect to the Covid-19 pandemic, we as Catholics have the right to understand what the scientific evidence truly is.

Johnson & Johnson vaccine is not morally compromised and even the Vatican knows it

By tainting the COVID-19 vaccine with its taboo morality, the bishops are not respecting life, they are instead exploiting a grave situation to inject their anti-abortion politics.

Though the Archdiocese of Philadelphia did not make any additional comments about the bishops’ pronouncement, they did share the statement with educators in all Catholic schools in the five-county Philadelphia region, spokesperson Kenneth A. Gavin told The Inquirer’s Marie McCullough in an email.

The truth is, all currently approved vaccines for COVID-19 used cell lines derived from aborted fetuses in their testing phases. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, some antiabortion activists claim, is morally compromised because it also used these cells in its production. The pharmaceutical company has stated unequivocally that there are no fetal cells in its vaccine.

All vaccine companies must give the scientific evidence of research and how the vaccines are actually made, in order that as Catholics, we can follow what the scientific community is claiming.

The Church has not pronounced on the mRNA vaccines as of yet, so Catholics must ultimately make the best informed decision possible, including talking it over with your local bishop.

The following articles may be of interest here:

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  • Boy do I ever not want to have this be about abortion tainted vaccines. I may be factually wrong in the first paragraph, but I still don't want to discuss that. I'm talking about the kind of skepticism that doesn't even consider the mRNA vaccines as real vaccines since they're gene changing catalysts that turn you into a vaccine. – Peter Turner Mar 18 at 16:53
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    @peterturner in that case I suggest looking at the science that says that the vaccines "do not affect or interact with our DNA [i.e. our genes] in any way." cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/different-vaccines/… – Matt Gutting Mar 18 at 17:55
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    @MattGutting it's more than that, it's also skepticism on the necessity of having vaccines vs treatments in the first place. it's skepticism that 6-feet of separation isn't some number gleaned from guesses about seating arrangements on airplanes, it's skepticism that a veteran infection control nurse but staunch liberal like my mother would tell me that masks are useless in March of 2020, but continue wearing them even after she got a shot to prevent the disease. It's just that kind of skepticism, not that particular one – Peter Turner Mar 18 at 19:01
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    I'd say you're still obligated to refer to a consensus of medical experts to resolve your skepticism. – Matt Gutting Mar 18 at 19:24
  • @MattGutting The problem is different medical experts are giving different advice. – One God the Father Mar 18 at 23:40
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Are Catholics obliged to follow scientific evidence that they find disreputable with respect to the Covid-19 pandemic?

The answer is NO, based on the CDF Guidelines, but citizens are also bound by Government rules and guidelines, and that is another battle for people to hurdle with. Why? The CDF Guidelines has a provision for Catholics to not accept the vaccines. But, Pope Francis in order to explain that the new vaccines is morally licit and will serve the common good, had shown it together with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI by accepting the jab.

  1. At the same time, practical reason makes evident that vaccination is not, as a rule, a moral obligation and that, therefore, it must be voluntary. In any case, from the ethical point of view, the morality of vaccination depends not only on the duty to protect one's own health, but also on the duty to pursue the common good. In the absence of other means to stop or even prevent the epidemic, the common good may recommend vaccination, especially to protect the weakest and most exposed. Those who, however, for reasons of conscience, refuse vaccines produced with cell lines from aborted fetuses, must do their utmost to avoid, by other prophylactic means and appropriate behavior, becoming vehicles for the transmission of the infectious agent. In particular, they must avoid any risk to the health of those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons, and who are the most vulnerable. -Note on the morality of using some anti-Covid-19 vaccines

We can see from the CDF Guidelines ordered by Pope Francis for publication is not mandatory, however, there is a higher wisdom why the Church united to Pope Francis was inspired by the Holy Spirit to accept the new vaccines as morally licit and serves the common good. One good example is Pope Francis visit to Iraq to serve the common good of our Muslim brothers. If Pope Francis had opposed the vaccines, then, his visit to Iraq is not possible. We have to see the bigger picture in light of scriptures like Romans13:1 and Ephesians6:12-17 and add to that the biblical prophecy on Thessalonians and Revelation 13:16-18. How will the prophecy unfold and how to interpret it belongs to the wisdom of the Church united to the Pope only.

We know, that Jesus promised the Apostles united to the Peter the guidance of the Holy Spirit the Spirit of Truth in matters of teaching the faithful on "faith & morals", and the new vaccines falls under morals.

The Promise of the Holy Spirit

…12I still have much to tell you, but you cannot yet bear to hear it. 13However, when the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak what He hears, and He will declare to you what is to come - (John16:12-13)

But for those faithful who will not accept the vaccines, they still have responsibility to prevent the transmission of the disease by taking prophylactic measures, but since the government can impose protocols on their citizenry, it's now between government and their people.

This article from WherePeterIs further clarifies the CDF Guidelines on people who are not willing to accept the new vaccines. Also, it is related to other disreputable arguments on the issues of not wearing the mask, not following strictly social distancing and other measures that fall under "disreputable" science.

This document, much like the one from the USCCB, is clear in its reasoning. It is worth noting that the document does respect individual consciences, saying, “Those who, however, for reasons of conscience, refuse vaccines produced with cell lines from aborted fetuses, must do their utmost to avoid, by other prophylactic means and appropriate behavior, becoming vehicles for the transmission of the infectious agent. In particular, they must avoid any risk to the health of those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons, and who are the most vulnerable.” - Catholicism and the COVID-19 Vaccine

In closing, the acceptance of the new vaccines is not mandatory, but as a faithful Catholic we are bound to put our trust & obedience to the Living Church Magisterium for our guidance. With regards to other "disreputable" science like wearing face mask, social distancing,etc. it will now be a battle of obedience vs. disobedience.

My personal take or discernment on this is, God in creating mankind was instructed to obey God's commandments written in their hearts or written in their DNA, but ofcourse fallen mankind failed to practice the virtue of obedience because we want to do it "My Way and not God's Way". And so, if we cannot practice obedience by God's Way, the devils will force mankind to practice obedience by their "Evil Ways" like all the "disreputable" science behind Covid-19 protocols.

What is the bottomline of all this chaos? Is it a prelude to a Great Reset or the unfolding of the Thessalonian and Revelation chapter 13 prophecy? The answer for me is YES!

In the near future, are we going to see the literal interpretation of Genesis3:15? When it says, "serpent offspring" it would mean that Satan had infected not only the soul or heart of the people but Satan had also changed or altered the "mRNA/DNA code". How? The messenger RNA, like Satan an angel or messenger will instruct the DNA to worship the Beast like what Cain did in his times. Cain doesn't know how to worship God because his DNA was altered to worship the Beast and so God is the one who put the mark of the beast on Cain. But, in the near future mankind whose soul are infected by Satan malice will find themselves accepting the mRNA instruction. Will it contain an instruction to plainly creates protein spike like a crown, or it will crown Satan as it also might contain an instruction to worship the beast?

The Astra Zeneca volunteer, had shown why vaccinated people will worship the beast, because it has no memory of God, the written instruction on man's DNA to worship God in the form of protein can be erase. Can it also be replace or gene edited to form a new encoded instruction?

"They've Killed God; I Can't Feel God; My Soul Is Dead" AstraZeneca Halts COVID-19 Vaccine Trials after Second Volunteer "Develops Neurological problems"

Will the instruction to worship the beast has connection to mRNA/DNA vaccines? This is a good question to explore.

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    You're saying mRNA treatments will be used to cause people to worship the Beast, AND that we ought to take mRNA treatments because of vague statements from the CDF? – One God the Father Mar 18 at 23:11
  • Im not saying it directly, but if the science as OP stated can be "disreputable", then the Government and Medical experts claimed that it will not be use for altering the genes is also "disreputable". But for me personally, I will follow CDF and Pope Francis to take the new vaccines for the common good of the people, as all faithful Christian are called to be charitable in making prudential judgment, not thinking of evil from the government side, but also aware that government can be corrupted or make a bad decision. – jong ricafort Mar 18 at 23:23

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