Amid the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine in some communities, World Council of Churches acting general secretary Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca encouraged religious leaders to build trust, combat misinformation and contribute to decisions accepted in their own contexts.
“Religious leaders of all faiths play a critical role in sustaining public trust in health authorities and services, as well as in the approved vaccines themselves,” said Sauca.
Expressing concerns that unsubstantiated rumours and conspiracy myths may undermine people’s confidence and threaten effective public responses to the pandemic, he urged faith leaders to help their communities and societies to contribute to decisions that are morally substantiated and accepted in their own contexts.
“As a Christian fellowship, it is our duty and moral obligation to publicly challenge rumours and myths and help people access the facts,” he said. “While moral and ethical concerns also loom over vaccine access and distribution practices, we must take up responsibility and advocate for what is right from a medical, ethical and human rights perspective.”
Sauca himself has received COVID-19 vaccine as part of the rollout in Switzerland.