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Bishop Donald J. Kettler of the diocese of St. Cloud, MinnesotaCentral Minnesota TEC / YouTube

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SAINT CLOUD, Minnesota, May 21, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) – In a May 19 letter to priests within the diocese of St. Cloud, Minnesota, Bishop Donald J. Kettler wrote to “strongly encourage that only vaccinated individuals – including priests – distribute Holy Communion.”

In addition to advising a restriction of the administration of Holy Communion to vaccinated priests and laymen, the bishop has promulgated a rule whereby separate queues must be clearly established for those receiving Holy Communion on the tongue and those who wish to take the Eucharist with their fingers, “in the interests of safety.”

Kettler explained that this practice is to be observed following complaints from “individuals who have health and safety concerns about receiving Communion in the hand from Communion ministers who also distribute Communion on the tongue.”

On the contrary, a vast number of medical doctors have petitioned bishops around the world to heed their advice that “one can’t treat giving Holy Communion in the hand as a method much safer than receiving Holy Communion by mouth.” Bans imposed on receiving Communion in the traditional manner in Germany and Austria were met with scientific opposition from a combined 48 medical professionals, 27 writing to the German bishops’ conference and 21 to the Austrian bishops.

In fact, a group of Polish doctors not only defended the safety of receiving Our Lord in the Eucharist on the tongue, even amidst contagion, but raised more epidemiological concerns regarding communicating with one’s hands and standing, warning that “(e)ven if we splash disinfectant on our hands before entering church, we have to remember that during Mass they touch things or places we haven’t disinfected: pews, clothing, glasses, hair and even money (the home of many germs) folded in the [offering basket].”

“From the epidemiological point of view, we must warn that the standing position also encourages the spread of infection as it makes the priest and communicant more vulnerable to mutual infection,” the doctors added.

Kettler’s letter, obtained by LifeSiteNews, includes similarly restrictive instructions for the resumption of diocesan programs, like camps and retreats. “(A)ll staff, volunteers and participants attending these programs” are required by the bishop “to be fully vaccinated as a condition of participation,” the letter reads. According to Kettler, “(a) person is considered ‘fully vaccinated’ two weeks after receiving their final required dose of COVID-19 vaccine.”

Kettler has said that proof of vaccination will be required in order to attend the extra-liturgical events and that those who are not eligible to receive a COVID vaccine, “and those who choose not to be vaccinated, cannot attend these optional programs of our diocese until further notice.”

Kettler will, however, allow “fully vaccinated” participants to interact “without face coverings or physical-distancing.” 

Kettler has full trust in the “(s)cientists and health authorities” who have “assured us that the current COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.” So convinced is the bishop of the efficacy of the currently available, experimental vaccines that he claimed “(v)accinations are the best approach for making continued progress against the virus and keeping people as safe as possible from its effects.”

Contrary to Kettler’s assertions, the abortion-tainted vaccines available in the U.S. may not provide any substantial level of protection against the spread of COVID-19, and in fact the vaccines potentially bring their own unique problems. Many hundreds of thousands of individuals have reported dangerous adverse events following the jab, including deafness, blindness, and life-threatening blood clots.

Thousands of deaths, too, have been recorded on the U.S. Centers for Disease control and Prevention-run reporting system for vaccine injuries, known as VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System). The latest data from VAERS – recorded between December 14, 2020 and May 7, 2021 – displays a total of 192,954 adverse events, including 4,057 reports of death following a COVID jab.

Notwithstanding the myriad problems arising from experimental vaccines, Kettler made clear that he agrees with Pope Francis that not only is it morally permissible to receive one of the abortion-tainted vaccines, but that he believes it is a moral imperative to take the jab as “part of our Gospel duty to protect life and care for our neighbors.”

The Minnesota prelate stated his agreement “with what the Holy Father said earlier this year,” namely, “I think everyone must take the vaccine; it’s the ethical option because you are playing with your health, life, but also you are playing with the lives of others.”

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Powerful nations of the world, including China, the UK, and Canada are discussing plans to require so-called 'vaccine passports' as a condition for travel, and possibly to restrict entry to shopping and entertainment venues.

Israel has already put in place a system to discriminate against those who choose not to take the COVID vaccine, and, in the United States, Joe Biden has signed a new executive order which could pave the way for the implementation of a 'vaccine passport' system. [See more below.]

This kind of medical dictatorship must be resisted, and therefore, we must act quickly before these authoritarian notions take root and spread!

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition to SAY NO to government 'vaccine passports.' Tell your legislators to respect your freedom not to vaccinate without fear of repercussion.

People should not have to live in fear of government retribution for refusing a vaccine which is being rushed to market by Big Pharma and their fellow-travelers in NGOs, like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

It would be intolerable and immoral for the government to coerce someone, and their family, to take a COVID vaccine against their will just so they can do their weekly grocery shopping, go to a high school soccer game, travel on public transport, or visit their relatives who live in a different part of the country, or overseas.

Medical freedom must be respected in principle and also in practice.

So, it is now time that our policy-makers listen to all voices involved in this vital conversation, and start to represent those who will not tolerate being punished, restricted, or tracked for refusing an experimental vaccine.

Simply put, legislatures must begin to act as legislatures again.

Questions must be asked. Hearings and investigations must be held. And, the legislatures of each state and country must return to the business of representing the people who voted for them, assuming their rightful place as the originator of legislation.

We will no longer accept the dictates of executive branches without question. And, neither can we accept the dictates of some doctors who seem detached from reality and from science.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition which asks national political leaders (as well as state and provincial legislators in the U.S. and Canada) to pledge to respect the rights of those who refuse a COVID vaccine, and NOT introduce 'vaccine passports,' or any other system which would discriminate on the basis of taking the COVID vaccine.


'Biden executive order directs government to evaluate ‘feasibility’ of vaccine passports' -

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'Canada’s health minister: Gov’t ‘working on the idea of vaccine passports’' -

'European Commission president plans to introduce vaccine passports' -

'Israel’s ‘Green Passport’ vaccination program has created a ‘medical Apartheid,’ distraught citizens say' -

'LA schools to track every kid using Microsoft’s ‘Daily Pass’ COVID app' -

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LifeSiteNews reached out to the Diocese of Saint Cloud, asking how its guidelines on vaccination square with the CDF’s 2020 directive, approved by Pope Francis, which states that vaccination must always remain a voluntary choice, since coercion would be “ethically unacceptable.” 

We also asked for clarification on how the diocese intended to confirm the vaccination status of priests and volunteers and if they would respect an individual’s decision to keep their medical records private. Additionally, LifeSite asked whether or not the diocese were aware that, under federal law 21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3, experimental vaccines must only be taken voluntarily and without coercion.

After leaving two messages, and with no return call, LifeSiteNews sent its query via email, which also elicited no response before the time of publication.

Contact information for the Diocese of Saint Cloud

Chancery Office – Most Rev. Donald J. Kettler, Bishop,

Colleen Haider, Administrative Assistant to Bishop Kettler

Phone: (320) 251-2340; Fax: (320) 251-0470

Email: [email protected]

P.O. Box 1248

St. Cloud, MN 56302-1248

Communications Office – Joe Towalski, Director

Phone: (320) 251-3022

Email: [email protected]

LifeSiteNews has produced an extensive COVID-19 vaccines resources page. View it here.