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Military Archbishop says Catholic troops should not be required to take vaccine

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About 20 percent of troops are Catholic.

Archbishop for the Military Services Timothy P. Broglio issued a statement on Tuesday stating that no one should be forced to accept a COVID vaccine if they feel it is against their conscience. 

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
10/13/2021 (2 weeks ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Broglio, military, Archbishop vaccine, troops, COVID

LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - The Catholic Church has generally advised all Catholics to be vaccinated. Pope Francis has also ordered the staff at the Vatican to be vaccinated. However, not all Catholics agree with such mandates, including the Archbishop for the Military Services, Timothy P. Broglio. 

Broglio is the Archbishop responsible for Catholics in the U.S. military. About 20 percent of the military is made of Roman Catholics. 

In an opinion he issued on Tuesday, Broglio said, "Accordingly, no one should be forced to receive a COVID-19 Vaccine if it would violate the sanctity of his or her conscience." 

The statement follows concern that the vaccines were developed using stem cell lines taken from children murdered in the womb. Abortion is a great moral evil, and anything derived from it is intrinsically evil as a result. Catholics can not, and should not be compelled to accept anything which violates their sincerely held religious beliefs. 

Despite this, the Church is generally encouraging vaccinations, arguing that the lines used to prepare the vaccines are either so far removed from abortions, or that the consequences of COVID infection are so great, that it is not inherently sinful to accept the vaccine. 

In fact, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has ruled that betting vaccinated "does not constitute formal cooperation with abortion." 

Still, this is a matter of individual conscience. 

The vast majority of U.S. military troops are vaccinated. Vaccinations are given to soldiers as soon as they enter the military, partly because of the risk of biological warfare. However, the military may issue some vaccinations on a voluntary basis. Presently, the military claims that 96/7 percent of the 1.4 million active duty soldiers, sailors, air personnel, and guardians, are vaccinated with at least one dose. 

For now, it seems most troops have agreed to receive the vaccination. It is important for those who believe abortion is an intrinsic evil that they should have the choice, and their archbishop supports them.   

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