American Bishops Refuse COVID Jab Exemptions

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by Kim Tisor  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  August 18, 2021   

California Church leaders are the latest

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TRANSCRIPT

There's a growing list of U.S. Catholic bishops refusing to help the faithful get a religious exemption from the COVID jab. As Church Militant's Kim Tisor explains, the decision to deny parishioners their God-given rights potentially impacts millions. 

In California, Abp. José Gómez announced yesterday the archdiocese of Los Angeles will not give a letter of religious exemption to those who oppose the COVID vaccines. His archdiocese encompasses 4 million Catholics, the largest Catholic community in America. Friday, Bp. Daniel Garcia of Monterey, California issued the same decree. His diocese includes 200,000 Catholics.

Both cite the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's December 2020 note, claiming the vaccine is for the common good.

Earlier this spring Gómez, who is also head of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, launched a PSA to promote the fetal tissue–tainted shots.

Gómez and Garcia join other Catholic leaders who've directed priests not to supply letters of religious exemption. As mandates to get the COVID jab spread, bishops in the Colorado Catholic Conference seem to be some of the few shepherds to get it right. 

In a recent statement, they stressed, "Human rights violations and a loss of respect for each person's God-given dignity often begin with government mandates that fail to respect the freedom of conscience."

Others that have directed priests not to supply letters of religious exemption: Cdl. Timothy Dolan of New York and Bp. Robert McElroy of San Diego. Also, Cdl. Blase Cupich is trying to strongarm the National Catholic Bioethics Center into retracting its support for religious exemptions.

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