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TYLER, Texas, August 3, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas, has reiterated his opposition to vaccines created using cell lines from aborted babies in the face of UK bishops claiming that Catholics have a “duty to be vaccinated,” even if the making of the vaccine is morally problematic.
“I renew my call that we reject any vaccine that is developed using aborted children,” Strickland tweeted Aug. 1.
“Even if it originated decades ago it still means a child’s life was ended before it was born & then their body was used as spare parts. We will never end abortion if we do not END THIS EVIL!”
I renew my call that we reject any vaccine that is developed using aborted children. Even if it originated decades ago it still means a child’s life was ended before it was born & then their body was used as spare parts. We will never end abortion if we do not END THIS EVIL!
— Bishop J. Strickland (@Bishopoftyler) August 1, 2020
Strickland posted his latest comments on vaccines Saturday after the Catholic Bishops Conference of England & Wales (CBCEW) stated last week that Catholics have a “prima facie duty to be vaccinated.” The CBCEW document first noted a 2005 Vatican statement focused on the moral question of vaccines that have been prepared from cells derived from aborted human fetuses before stating their support for the idea expressed in a 2017 Pontifical Academy for Life statement that “all clinically recommended vaccinations can be used with a clear conscience.”
In April, Strickland released a pastoral letter asking faithful Catholics to join him in helping to bring to a “halt” any development of a coronavirus vaccine derived from aborted babies.
“Tragically, people are not aware of or have chosen to turn a blind eye to the advances in medical science which allow vaccines to be developed with the wholesale use of aborted children’s bodies,” he wrote April 23.
Strickland stressed that just because “the crime of abortion is considered legal in our nation does not mean it is morally permissible to use the dead bodies of these children to cure a global pandemic. Emphatically, this practice is evil.”
“As your Shepherd,” the bishop wrote, “I urge you to join me, NOW, in passionately but prayerfully speaking out against this practice. As I said in the beginning of this letter, I will help you navigate this storm as best as I can.”
Many of the leading coronavirus vaccine candidates in both the UK and the United States are being developed using fetal cell lines that were originally derived from the tissues of aborted babies in the 1970s and 80s.
In an open letter published in May, Catholic clergy and laity led by former papal nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò and Cardinals Gerhard Ludwig Mueller, Joseph Zen, and Janis Pujats said that “for Catholics it is morally unacceptable to develop or use vaccines derived from material from aborted fetuses.”