A pair of priests give the unvaccinated faithful unwelcome news

A recent Pew poll showed a significant drop over the last 14 years in the number of Americans who identify as Christians. I have no reason other than instinct to believe that part of this decline is due to the way the various Christian denominations meekly abided by government mandates telling them to close their doors to the faithful. Just in the past two days, an American priest and the Archbishop of Canterbury have both said that faith demands vaccinations. No wonder Christians, looking for succor in troubling times, are done with organized religion.

UPI sums up the Pew poll findings: In 2007, 78% considered themselves Christian, while only 63% do so now. As the number of Christians has fallen, over the same period the number of atheists, agnostics, and “nothing in particulars” rose from 16% to 29%. Protestants saw the greatest loss in believers (from 52% down to 40%), while Catholics went from 24% to 21%. Daily prayer has declined too, from 58% to 45%. Those who consider religion very important in their lives fell from 56% to 41%.

There’s no doubt that this decline is a general sign of the times in which we live: Popular culture denigrates faith, leftists actively seek to undermine faith, and busy lives and endlessly available entertainment make religious observance seem like an inconvenience rather than a central part of life. However, I can’t help but believe that a significant part of the decline must have occurred in the last 21 months (something the survey, which looks at a 14-year period, didn’t track).

The reason I believe this is because, at a time when people were in acute distress, lonely and frightened, too many religious organizations (and I include Jewish temples in this indictment) meekly accepted government dictates and closed their doors to their parishioners. One must wonder how many people turned to drink and drugs for succor. I know from a friend who is familiar with organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous that churches are the most frequent venue for these life-saving meetings—and churches closed their doors to those in need.

Image: Man in church. Piqsels.

This almost effortless abandonment of the church’s obligation to minister to people’s souls was thrown into high relief in America, when a Catholic priest urged banning the unvaccinated from church, and, in England, when the Archbishop of Canterbury likened vaccinations to a religious obligation. (And yes, I know neither is a representative of the swiftly declining Protestant faith in America but I think the overall point is the same.)

Father Edward Beck, a 62-year-old priest without a parish who shows up on CNN, announced that the unvaccinated should not be welcome in any churches:

‘There’s no supply chain shortage of love and compassion. I think what we are trying to say to people is that ‘‘you have a social responsibility if you do gather.’’ You know Christian churches, many are gathering this evening, and some are still not requiring vaccination, which I disagree with,’ he said.


When asked by host Jim Sciutto if he was concerned by fewer parishioners going to Mass amid a resurgence in COVID infections, Beck insisted that even those who had medical reasons not to get the vaccine should still not come to church.

I mention Beck’s age because he’s moving into a demographic that sees him at greater risk from COVID than younger people are. (And as a reminder, the average mortality rate from COVID is less than 1%.) Tucker Carlson frequently points out that our panic-stricken government class consists of cowardly elderly people destroying young people because of a virus that attacks the elderly. That cowardice may exist in the church too.

Meanwhile, in England, Justin Welby, the 65-year-old Archbishop of Canterbury, had the same message:

The Most Reverend Justin Welby, the top bishop in the Church of England, said that getting vaccinated is a “moral issue” which should supersede personal desires or rights.

“It’s not about me and my rights to choose, it’s about how I love my neighbour. Vaccination reduces my chances — doesn’t eliminate — but it reduces my chances of getting ill and reducing my chances of getting ill, reduces my chances of infecting others,” Welby told ITV news on Tuesday evening.

“It’s very simple, so I would say yes, to love one another as Jesus said, get vaccinated, get boosted,” he added.

Perhaps if his first name were Marcus, he’d have the wisdom to know that the vaccinated are just as contagious as the unvaccinated.

In the Middle Ages, priests ventured into the homes of those stricken with the deadly bubonic plague to give them their sacraments. In the 21st century, some priests won’t come near you, nor even allow you in the church, unless you show them a piece of paper proving that you’ve had a shot that does not prevent you from getting or giving COVID. They are bad advertisements for the spiritual benefits of a commitment to religion.

To comment, you can find the MeWe post for this article here.

If you experience technical problems, please write to helpdesk@americanthinker.com