Archdiocese of Toronto requires regular testing for unvaccinated clergy, employees

Joe Bukuras   By Joe Bukuras for CNA

Cardinal Thomas Collins / Daniel Abel/cc 2.0

Boston, Mass., Sep 27, 2021 / 16:23 pm (CNA).

Clergy in the Archdiocese of Toronto who have not received a COVID-19 vaccination must show proof of a recent negative coronavirus test to their pastor “prior to or immediately upon entering parish offices, or presiding at religious services,” according to new rules that Thomas Cardinal Collins outlined last week.

“Beginning on October 8, 2021, we will require that all clergy (bishops, priests, deacons) be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or provide regular proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test result in order to perform their duties,” the Archdiocese of Toronto’s COVID-19 Vaccine Policy says.

The same requirement applies to volunteers, lectors, choir members, ushers, and “individuals performing similar functions” as well as employees at parishes, the chancery, and “satellite offices.” The policy accepts a “rapid test” administered at a local pharmacy. However, the unvaccinated clergy, staff, or volunteer member “is responsible for the cost (about $40/test),” the policy states.

No proof of vaccination or recent negative test will be required to attend Mass or other religious services, the policy states.

The policy was circulated on Sept. 24. In a letter accompanying the new rules, Cardinal Collins urged “those that have not been fully vaccinated to do so as soon as possible.”

The cardinal said that requirements from the provincial government as well as organizational policies in many institutions will significantly impede the ability of unvaccinated clergy to serve the faithful.

“This will restrict your ministry in schools, hospitals, long-term care homes and other settings requiring full vaccination,” he wrote. “We know that these visits and your ongoing pastoral care in these settings are important aspects of your ministry.”

Cardinal Collins noted that many clergy are living in a community, including some who “may be elderly or with more significant health challenges.” He also said that staff or volunteers in rectory or office may also be at greater risk depending on their circumstances.

“In short, we have a responsibility to ensure a safe environment for staff and volunteers. Vaccination remains the best defence against infection for oneself or others,” Cardinal Collins wrote. “Should you choose not to be vaccinated, regular weekly rapid tests (as outlined in the policy) will be required.”

The new policy states that those who violate the rules “may be subject to discipline (which includes being placed on an unpaid leave of absence), up to and including termination of employment for just cause.”


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6 Comments

  1. Is Cardinal Collins going to fire his priests, then, who do not comply with this coercion? I pray there is a revolt. The Catholic Church teaches that such medical interventions must be voluntary. It is ironic that the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, of which Cardinal Collins is obviously a member, has apologized to our Indigenous people and now pledged 30 million dollars to them for injustices committed against them in residential schools, but at the same time he implements a coercive Covid 19 vaccine mandate for his priests, staff, and volunteers. The fact that these vaccines have safety issues makes this coercion even more ominous. Has he not read anything on this?

    Does Cardinal Collins know of the anxiety and suffering of those caused by his coercive mandate and who are being told to put an interim approved vaccine in to their healthy bodies? For many it goes against their conscience.

    Cardinal Collin’s response is one of panic. It is a caving into the State (Pontius Pilate)…which is contrary to the Gospel. It is the gospel of fear!

    Please, Cardinal Collins and others, see scholarly information on Covid 19 here:

    https://www.canadiancovidcarealliance.org

    https://healthprofessionalsunited.ca/open-letter-one/

    https://doctorsandscientistsdeclaration.org/

    • Cardinal Collins seems to care more about the China Flu that ( perhaps) kills the body – but he won’t ( even try to ) stop the child-corrupting curriculum that teaches sodomy as a sacrament in Ontario Catholic Schools. Trading the innocence of little Catholic school children in return for Lucifer’s gold is like Caiphas saying ; “Better that the children be perverted for the sake of government funding”. Cowardice and deliberate cooperation with child corruption is the antithesis of the mission of Christian Education.

      Christ gave a very strong warning about the “millstone” regarding the corruption of innocent little ones.

      Didn’t Cardinal Collins promise that he
      would protect the children ???

      Better a child go to a Public School and learn paganism as paganism – than go to a “Catholic” School and learn buggery as a sacrament.

      “Silence in the face of evil is evil”.

      – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  2. It has been both odd and disturbing to see highly placed Catholic clergy kneel at the altar of secularism, where this disease is concerned. It has been intrusive enough here in the US but both Canada and Australia has taken their mitigation measures to draconian levels. One could easily call them suppressive of religion. We already know about the anti-catholic sentiment in Australia thanks to the official government rail-roading of Cardinal Pell. They also now have “camps” for the forceable detention of those who test covid positive, as well as tracking devices placed on phones which use face recognition technology to “check up” on people who test positive, to ensure they remain locked at home. Failure to match the required metrics result in the arrival of police at your home. Canada now has been taking to arresting and jailing Protestant Ministers who have the temerity to hold services, now two years into the pandemic.If suppression of religion was their primary aim, this could not be more damaging to the church. Are they really this afraid of a virus which has hardly any death rate? Are people falling over dead in the streets? I have often thought of Canadians as an anemic version of Americans, sans the weapons and spine to use them.Their current mode of operation in these former Brit possessions does not change my opinion, and gives a sadly clear picture of people willing to sacrifice their civil rights for hardly any sane reason. How long is a nation suppose to pander to irrational fear, and compromise quality of life and religious freedom, for a virus which will in all likelihood NEVER be eradicated totally? When does a govt official with gumption voice that reality out loud and allow people to get on with living?? The larger question is WHY are church officials continuing to cooperate with this obvious repression? Using the excuse of “concern for the health of others” is not sufficient.Not at this point, two years out. Not given the low death rate and not given how long we have lived under virtual martial law as applied by leftists.It would be nice to see some leadership shown in the church, some officials with the sheer strength of will to say what is necessary to save what is left of the church. I understand the Bishop of Quebec cancelled Christmas Mass last week. That is disgusting, and a disgrace. How long will this go on? Five years, ten? Will it still be ok to cancel church then? Evidently our US covid death rate over TWO years has been about 800,000. That is 400,000 per year. While in contrast, according to the CDC, our annual CANCER death rate is 600,000. Many of those deaths are also preventable. Why are we not hysterical about that? Its time to tell the media to stop the hysterical reporting of active covid cases, the vast majority of which do not end in death. Its time for Catholic clergy to go back to celebrating Mass as we did before, with servers, and singing. For that we need some cardinals and Bishops with a spine and a devotion to God, as opposed to the state.

  3. Sadly I only saw this now…how terrible to watch the highest prelates in our Church fall on their sword…the sword of the apostles …that is the defense of Christ’s Church and His children…and the men ordained to serve the Church…

    How shocking that the Cardinal is enforcing such an anti christian method…..reminds me of the Protestant Reformation when almost every Bishop bar a few bowed to the murderous evil man.
    King Henry…and thousands of my people were killed,raped by the english soldiers,lands repossesed….
    I wonder were these bishops are now..

    The Cardinal obviously does not pay attention to true and honest medical science…..and thats dangerous.

    Covid 19 was man made in a bioweapon wuha lab…it was designed to mame and kill..
    We know this.
    Who i wonder was its first target? The following were, are :
    The western armies…
    The Church
    The western govts
    and then just regular people..
    Who according to the CCP have to be controlled or just killed if they are elderly or disabled.

    Is there plan working ..

    Who is assisting them? All the above.

    The Cardinal should spend some time listening to honest drs and scientists like the mnra inventor Dr Malone and many others
    ..

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