Anti-VAX Sydney priests a headache

SkyNews Australia

Priests refusing to get vaccinated are causing headaches for the hierarchy in Sydney, with parishioners soon to return to church.

Archbishop of Sydney, Anthony Fisher, has reportedly had complaints from churchgoers over priests who plan to return to delivering sermons without getting vaccinated.

Sydney’s vicar-general, Father Gerry Gleeson, says a “handful” of priests have refused to get the vaccination, despite Fisher’s constant “exhortations” to do so.

Gleeson says while most priests are already vaccinated, how to respond to parishioners of those who aren’t vaccinated is of concern.

He says while the church respects the individual freedoms around vaccination it is faced with a dilemma.

As the church is not a corporation, it does not have the power to fire or move priests who want to continue hosting Mass while they refuse to get vaccinated.

In Australia, there have been no religious organisations expressly tell their followers to avoid COVID-19 vaccination.

On the contrary, many church leaders have reportedly been instrumental in “combating vaccine misinformation in their communities”.

Places of worship opened again for the first time yesterday, but only to the fully vaccinated.

Church-goers must obey the one person per 4sqm limits on capacity. In addition, places of worship are permitted to have up to 10 fully vaccinated singers performing at services.

When the state reaches 80 per cent double-dose vaccination, places of worship will be reopened to those who are not fully vaccinated. The one person per 4sqm rule will continue to apply, however.


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