Covid-19 Vaccines and Catholic Conscience

Below is a summary of this past Monday’s presentation of Dr. John Brehany on the COVID-19 vaccines hosted by The Regina Academies.  Dr. Brehany is the Director of Institutional Relations at the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC). 

A special thanks to Dr. Denise Wilcox, Ph.D., O.D. for providing this report.  You can view the seminar below.  Links are provided to additional resources mentioned in Dr. Brehany’s presentation.

from Dr. Denise Wilcox

The presentation by  the National Catholic Bioethics Center was provided to us by Dr. John Brehany a bioethicist. 

Here are the important facts
  1. In the 1950s a scientist from the Wister Institute in Philadelphia used cells from an elective abortion to develop a cell line. It was called WI-38. Since then scientists have created other cell lines MRC-5, HEK-292 (human embryonic kidney) and PERC6
  2. These cell lines are used in biomedical research to develop vaccines and monoclonal antibodies.
  3. The principle of Legitimate Cooperation determines whether one can be involved in morally evil actions.
    • A) you must avoid being closely involved in an immoral action
    • B) you must avoid formal cooperation
    • C) if one avoids A and B for a good reason it may be permissible to be involved with someone’s actions
  4. In 2008 the Church set out a document Dignitas Personal that clearly recognized that creating these cell lines was wrong
  5. In 2005 In Moral Reflections the church said that any degree of cooperation was remote and in the face of grave danger to health using the vaccine is permissible. But people should demand and use alternatives when possible
  6. COVID vaccines have 50 to 60 trials now. 13 are close to being finished.
Go to the Charlotte Lozier Institute website for a detailed analysis. They studied 38 vaccines. 
There are 3 types of vaccines
  1. some use no aborted cells
  2. some have a limited use in the first stage
  3. some are used in manufacturing , design or testing
AstraZeneca used embryonic cells in producing manufacturing and supply. Moderna and Phizer used the cells in some of the testing. The vaccine was designed on a computer. No cells were used in manufacturing.
If you can only get the Astra Zenca vaccine do so under protest. Pregnant and nursing mothers cannot take the vaccine. Heath care workers and essential workers may be required to take the vaccine.
Lastly look at the Children of God for Life website.    It lists all vaccines and how they are derived.

Below are additional resouces provided by Mark Bradford, Executive Director of the Regina Academies.  

Both the NCBC and the Charlotte Lozier Institute are trusted resources for analysis on prolife issues and threats to human life and dignity. 

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