Man with mouth guard in South Africa © Chadolfski (shutterstock)
South Africa’s churches have come out in favor of covid vaccination. Even if mmunization is voluntary, it should be seen as a "moral responsibility" for the common good, the church council says.
"Receiving the vaccination should be seen as an act of love toward our neighbor," says the general secretary of the South African Council of Churches (SACC), Bishop Malusi Mpumlwana. To demonstrate their "confidence" in the vaccines, representatives of the Council of Churches, which includes Catholic bishops, wanted to be publicly vaccinated.
At a press conference, church leaders also condemned circulating conspiracy theories about the coronavirus and vaccinations. "Protecting the health of society takes precedence over one’s own ideologies," said Bishop Mpumlwana of the Ethiopian Episcopal Church. It is now necessary to believe science.
South Africa has been hit hardest by the pandemic of any country on the continent. To date, there have been nearly 1.5 million infected people, and the country has recently been over the second Corona wave. Disappointment was caused by a study presented Sunday that said Astrazeneca’s vaccine offered little protection against the South African variant of the virus. Last week, one million vaccine doses from the pharmaceutical company were the first ever to arrive in Johannesburg.