Almost a year ago, I wrote this post warning that there would be an increasing amount of information in the months ahead that the COVID-19 vaccines were a failure.
Since then, we have learned that the mRNA COVID jabs actually increase the likelihood of hospitalization and death.
Just this week, Pfizer admitted publicly that it they had NO EVIDENCE the vaccine would stop transmission of the virus. Pfizer execs and public officials of course never said this in 2021, and they went on to support vaccine mandates and vaccines passports throughout the world when, again, there was no evidence the vaccine would stop transmission.
So, what are we, as faithful Latter-day Saints, to make of this? The Church, after all, encouraged members to get vaccinated in August 2021. And now it appears the vaccines are a bust, at least for many, many people. (The vaccines probably are still worthwhile for the elderly and people with co-morbidities).
I want to be clear: I have more faith in modern-day prophets than ever before, and my testimony has not been affected negatively by this situation. Let me reiterate the reasons why:
- I am responsible for my own health, and I don’t rely on Church leaders to tell me what I should and should not do regarding health. I am responsible for my earthly temple, my body, and I do my own research and come to my own conclusions. I don’t believe the Word of Wisdom is primarily about health — it is primarily about faith. It just so happens that not smoking and not drinking are definitely healthy. There have been some studies lately saying that tea and coffee are actually healthy, but I don’t drink them anyway because I made a promise not to. When the vaccine came out, and the Church announced support of the vaccine, I prayed about it and did not get a strong feeling either way. I did my own research and used some common sense and determined that it was not a good idea for me, a healthy man in my late-50s, to take this experimental vaccine. I have not been seriously ill from COVID or anything else for many years, so I think my decision was a good one. (Anecdote: I know hundreds of people who weren’t vaccinated, and a handful of them were seriously injured by COVID, and I know hundreds of people who did take the jab, and most of them were not seriously injured by the vaccine, but I do know personally a dozen or so people who suffered immediate, lasting side effects from the vaccine. Almost all of the unvaccinated people I know who were seriously injured by COVID were at high risk (ie, elderly, obese or suffering from diabetes or other risk factors). Just sharing my personal experience).
- We will all have our faith tested in various ways during our Earthly journey. I believe the Church’s recommendation on the vaccine is a test of faith for some people. So, if you are a progressive Church member, you are tested on some social issues. If you are a libertarian Church member, you are tested on the Church’s opposition to legalizing drugs. If you are a conservative Church member, you are tested on the Church’s support of immigration. This is another test. You can pass the test, in my opinion, by still supporting the Brethren even though they urged members to take a vaccine that is failing. The Church is not any less true because of this one issue.
- Is it possible that more lives were saved than lost among older members and at-risk members because of the vaccine? Yes, I think it is possible, although we will never know for sure. For what it is worth, I believe most of the General Authorities were vaccinated, and we have not seen a huge amount of vaccine-related injuries among GAs.
- The mission of the Church is to spread the Gospel. The Church could not afford to be known as the “anti-vax church.” The Church’s activities in countries like Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Austria and Germany may have been at risk if the Church had not urged members to take the vax. it is simply naive and ignorant to believe that the Church did not act on masks and the jab for political reasons. If you don’t accept that, you are going to have to wrap your head around the fact that we just had two General Conferences this year where nobody on the stands was masked, and yet COVID is still around.
- I take the words of Joseph Smith very seriously when he said: “I teach them the correct principles, and they govern themselves.” I do not expect to be commanded in all things, and in fact my Church experience has been that I am commanded in nothing. The Church emphasizes voluntary action, not force. That is a very, very good thing.
- I want to emphasize that the history of the Church shows that people are constantly tested in surprising ways. Who would have guessed that many of the early leaders of the Church would have left in 1837 because of money issues related to the Kirtland Safety Society? We will all be tested, and usually the test comes when we least expect it. The test today is: can you continue to support the Brethren, do your calling, go the temple, pay tithing and otherwise keep your covenants even though you may disagree with the prophets regarding the vaccines?
Here is my answer: I know that the Book of Mormon was translated by Joseph Smith, I know that Jesus Christ leads this Church and I know that Russell M. Nelson is a prophet of God. I know that keeping my covenants and performing my Church duties brings joy for me and my family.