Religious groups in Missouri express concerns over J&J COVID-19 vaccine

Published: Mar. 7, 2021 at 10:44 PM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Many religious groups, both in Missouri and nationwide, started expressing concerns for the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine soon after it was approved for distribution.

“Were they produced in a ethical manner? It’s a concern for a lot of pro-life folks,” said Tyler McClay with Missouri Catholic Conference.

McClay said the vaccine was developed with a fetal cell line from an abortion in the 1970′s.

“Pfizer and Moderna were not developed or produced using any aborted fetal tissue or even stem cell from an aborted tissue cell line. They were tested using a cell line called HT2K 93 from an aborted cell line,” said McClay.

Last November, bishops in Missouri released a statement saying that a person of the Catholic faith can take the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines in good conscience. McClay said, if given the choice, take the Pfizer and Moderna and vaccines.

”If you don’t have a choice and this is all you’re offered, go ahead and take it,”said McClay.

Sharon Weidelman, a Springfield woman who practices Catholicism, recently received the Pfizer vaccine.

“Pope Benedict along time ago said, ‘you have to weigh what’s the greatest of evil and what’s the lesser of evil,’” said Weidleman.

She said she hopes medical professionals will use other methods in the future.

“What they hope and they pray is that the vaccine in the future won’t be using fetal cell lines of aborted fetus,” said Weidleman.

The Missouri Catholic Conference has resources to help guide parishioners through the vaccination process.

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