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Catholic seminaries requiring vaccines, with exemptions, for fall semester

Joe Bukuras   By Joe Bukuras for CNA

St. John's Seminary, Boston / Archdiocese of Boston

Washington D.C., Aug 11, 2021 / 12:03 pm (CNA).

Catholic seminaries in the northeast are requiring COVID-19 vaccination for their seminarians before the coming semester begins.

Mt. Saint Mary’s University in Emmitsburg, Maryland is one of the colleges requiring students and seminarians to be vaccinated before coming to campus in August 2021.

Students were given at least a few months to apply for a religious or medical exemption to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate, but the deadline was July 30, Donna Klinger, director of public relations and communications for the university, told CNA in a phone call

Students still seeking an exemption will not be allowed to physically return to campus, Klinger told CNA, but they will have the opportunity to work with the university administration to attempt online learning. Not all university classes are offered online.

At St. John’s Seminary in Boston, vice rector Fr. Thomas Macdonald said seminarians are “expected” to be vaccinated.

The job of a priest requires being close to the people, Macdonald noted, telling CNA that a priest needs access to places that house vulnerable people such as nursing homes. St. John’s is allowing seminarians to opt out of vaccination, but in such cases the seminarian must explain his reasoning for doing so.

Most of the seminarians are already vaccinated, according to the vice rector.

Macdonald told CNA that requesting religious exemptions to the vaccine also raises “theological questions,” as the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has already clarified that the use of COVID-19 vaccines with connections to cell lines derived from abortions is not immoral.

According to the same December 2020 doctrinal note of the congregation, the Vatican also stated that “vaccination is not, as a rule, a moral obligation” and “therefore, it must be voluntary.” The note went on to recognize conscientious refusal of vaccines, explaining that those who refuse COVID-19 vaccines with connections to cell lines derived from abortions, “for reasons of conscience,” must take appropriate precautions to avoid transmitting the virus.

Seton Hall University is requiring its students and seminarians to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as well. These students may still opt-out “while COVID-19 vaccines are authorized on an emergency-use basis.”

Although the three vaccines authorized for use in the United States have only an emergency use authorization of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the administration reportedly might issue full approval of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine within weeks.

“We do recognize the legitimate concerns of individuals in the Seton Hall community around COVID-19, and there are exemptions for religious beliefs, pre-existing health conditions or personal reasons while COVID-19 vaccines are authorized on an emergency-use basis,” said the university’s director of media relations, Laurie Pine, to CNA in an email statement.

An emergency use authorization allows the FDA to expedite its approval of a medical product during public health emergencies.

In its July 2 statement on vaccine mandates, the National Catholic Bioethics Center cautioned against mandates, especially when the COVID vaccines have yet to be fully approved by the FDA. The center said “it would be a radical departure from past practice to impose a mandate involving an unapproved vaccine available only under an Emergency Use Authorization.”

It is unclear whether Seton Hall will no longer allow exemptions after COVID-19 vaccines are fully approved


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11 Comments

  1. “The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has already clarified that the use of COVID-19 vaccines with connections to cell lines derived from abortions is not immoral.”

    What they’ve clarified is that the gates of hell have gotten so close to the Church founded by Christ that the CDF needs a remedial course in Catholicism.

  2. It’s sad when Church leaders don’t read their own documents requiring the jabs to be voluntary. Sad when they have no problem overruling the basic human right to medical privacy and bodily integrity. Oh yeah, and I think the Nuremburg Code says something about coercing medical experimentation. Ho hum, just more pathetic weakness from those one would hope to have the brains to see through pandemic propaganda. I suppose after the lawsuits and maybe if CNN did a hitpiece then they’d pay out a whole bunch of money that’s not theirs, apologize and retire to their country cottages while the bruised and battered body of Christ is beaten some more.

  3. The Catholic hierarchy and their institutions are now appendages of the global anti-Christ cabal. Seminarians who are compliant with these criminal mandates of the anti-Christ regime will suffer death and illness as the natural judgment of their mindless (counterfeit) “obedience.”

  4. A lot of wimpy thinking in our leadership.

    I guess those aborted fetuses used either in testing or directly in cell development are modern day versions of the “sacrificial lamb.”

  5. With spectacular willed ignorance, the actual issue of the “vaccines” has been entirely sidestepped, again! Tenuous aborted fetal tissue use way back near the lab beginning, has nothing to do with the synthetically engineered “therapy” at the other end of the development labor. The deception has been rooted all along in the strategic media mis-attribution of the word vaccine to the artificially induced gene activity, which has gone widely inspected, unpondered. In a supreme act of cognitive laziness, many have decided against reason, against science without knowing it, by just assuming that a vaccine effect is caused by the mRNA injection. It isn’t! Nor do the manufacturers even remotely make such claim! It is clear, from multiple sources: they don’t cause immunity, they don’t protect against infection, they don’t prevent transmissability. No protection is given except reduced symptoms (from overabundant antigens), which has nothing beneficial to shed to one’s neighbor. The jab is only about you and your reduced suffering IF you get the infection. One person’s reduced suffering does not prevent infection for another person! Hello?! With a monstrous possibility of unstudied long term side effects completely unexamined by the makers, these are not vaccines at all, they are reduced symptom “insurance”, for one jabbee, not a herd.

    But it is so easy to take a needle, when the needle has its meaning pre-assigned. Who wants to be comfortably numb?! People wake up! Read! Research! Think!

  6. Fed by and affirming white nationalist conspiracy theories, fake news and propaganda rather than follow what science has shown and what the Vatican authorities have said, CNA, CWR here and most rightist conservative Catholic news outlets take the vaccination issue as a front of the cultural warfare rather than a health issue. Dangerously death dealing!

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