For Immediate Release
Brown: “Safe should not be the equivalent of mandatory”
WASHINGTON, D.C. (25 August 2021) – American Life League president Judie Brown issued the following statement regarding the FDA’s approval of the Pfizer vaccine and the ongoing efforts of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) push to refuse religious exemptions for the COVID-19 vaccine.
“Safe should not be the equivalent of mandatory. While the FDA recently approved the Pfizer vaccine, there are multiple reasons why Catholics can and ought to have a moral objection to certain vaccines, particularly those using human embryonic cells in their testing and/or their development.
“The state Catholic conferences of Colorado, Wisconsin and South Dakota have wisely and courageously chosen to permit both religious and personal exemptions for the COVID-19 vaccine. While not as strong, the New York Bishops Conference and others such as Bishop James Wall of Gallup, New Mexico and Bishop Thomas Daly of Spokane, Washington have both opposed any mandated vaccination program – a schematic that would directly violate one’s right to refuse medical treatment.
“Ideologically driven directives from the USCCB run right over top of our rights of conscience. Families may have multiple reasons not to take a vaccine, whether that is a moral objection in the way vaccines are presently developed, ethical concerns about the American public being used as a guinea pig during a pandemic, or medical concerns about taking untested vaccines while pregnant or having some secondary underlying condition.
“Especially in the case of experimental vaccines, each individual should weigh their own risks and benefits and make the decision they feel is best for themselves and their families. The Colorado Catholic Bishops –Archbishop Samuel Aquila of Denver, Bishop Stephen Burg of Pueblo, Bishop James Golka of Colorado Springs, and Bishop Jorge Rodriguez of Denver have set an example to follow by recognizing religiously-held exemptions of Colorado families.
“Respecting the right of human persons requires a better respect for their integrity as human persons. That means offering the best information available and allowing parents to make clear decisions. For this reason, American Life League continues to reinforce the right of parents to decline medical treatment consistent with the guidelines issued by the Colorado Catholic Conference, and strongly encourages every pro-life American to foster the development of ethical and moral vaccines that do not hinge upon the destruction of an innocent human being’s life.”
CNS: Colorado Catholic Bishops Offer Exemption Letter From COVID Vaccine
COLORADO CATHOLIC CONFERENCE: Template For Religious Exemption From COVID Vaccines
SOUTH DAKOTA CATHOLIC CONFERENCE: Statement of the Bishop Regarding COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements
WISCONSIN CATHOLIC BISHOPS: Statement of the Catholic Bishops of Wisconsin on COVID-19 Vaccination and the Protection of Conscience
ALL: Regarding the Use of Vaccines Developed Using Cells from Aborted Human Persons
American Life League is the nation’s oldest grassroots, Catholic, pro-life organization. Its president, Judie Brown, has led the organization since its 1979 beginning. She has served three terms on the Pontifical Academy for Life—appointed twice by Pope John Paul II and again by Pope Benedict XVI.