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Poland: Astrazeneca — not for true Catholics?

According to a statement from the Polish Bishops Conference, the COVID-19 vaccines produced by AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson raise “serious concerns” from an ethical point of view. Last Wednesday, the chairman of the bioethics committee of the Conference of Bishops of Poland, Jozef Wrobel, said that Catholics should not agree to be vaccinated with those vaccines in the production of which embryonic cells were used. The local press mercilessly criticizes the bishop.

The Pope has a different opinion

The position of the bishops does not correspond in any way to the position of the head of the Holy See, — writes Tygodnik Powszechny:

“If for various reasons 'ethically perfect' vaccines are not available, the Congregation said, “then it is morally acceptable” to be vaccinated with those developed using cell lines of aborted embryos. According to the representatives of the Congregation, its approval is due to the fact that the vaccinators have nothing to do with abortion, and therefore the moral obligation to avoid abortion, in this case, does not apply. Therefore, the bishops might well be expected to express an opinion that does not contradict what the Vatican says.”

Vaccination as a manifestation of love for one's neighbor

According to the publication Polityka, the only one who is immoral in this case is the bishop himself:

“Vaccines made or tested using embryonic cell lines do not contribute in any way to the increase in the number of abortions! Cell lines are the distant descendants of cells originally extracted from aborted material. And that's all. The use of cell lines today undoubtedly saves human lives. In addition, it is immoral to point out which vaccines are better and which are worse, this is the prerogative of the European Medicines Agency. The vaccination of one of the approved vaccines against coronavirus is an expression of concern for one's neighbor. And it is also evidence of caring for unborn children because the coronavirus can be dangerous for pregnant women.”

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