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Justin Welby: vaccination is “part of the commandment to love our neighbour”

The Archbishop of Canterbury received the first dose of the vaccine due to his work as a volunteer chaplain at a hospital in London. The Anglican Salisbury cathedral is one of the venues used for the vaccination.

AUTOR 5/Evangelical_Focus LONDON 20 DE ENERO DE 2021 16:54 h
The Salisbury cathedal is one of the vaccination venues. / [link]Jack Pease Photography[/link], Pxhere CC0.

Thousands of people have already received a dose of one of the coronavirus vaccines that have been approved in Europe.

The first European country to administer the vaccines was the United Kingdom, starting with the elderly, health workers, and volunteers who work in the health sector.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, belongs to that group, due to his work as a volunteer chaplain at St Thomas hospital in London, that he started at the beginning of the pandemic.

Welby received his first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine last weekend. He shared this on his twitter profile, along with a statement encouraging “everyone to get the Covid-19 vaccine when they are invited”.

He also recalled that “staff across the NHS, and health workers across the world, are under immense pressure on the front lines of this pandemic. They deserve not just our admiration but our support”.

“Getting the vaccine when we have the opportunity is something we can all do to help relieve the burden on them”, the Archbishop of Canterbury added.

According to Welby, “the rapid deveolpment of the vaccine is an answer to prayer and it is central to the recovery from this terrible pandemic. Jesus Christ calls us to love our neighbour as ourselves. Getting the vaccine is part of that commandment: we can show our love for each other by keeping each other safe from this terrible disease”.

“To everyone in this country and across the world, I want to say please, accept the invitation to get the jab when it comes, and encourage everyone around you to do the same”, he concluded.


Salisbury cathedral, a vaccination venue

The Anglican Salisbury cathedral is one of the venues that the Sarum South Primary Care Network Covid-19 vaccination service is using to administer the vaccine, “because of its vast amount of space, that allows good patient flow and room for social distancing”, a local medicar doctor expplained.

Their aim was to vaccinate 1,000 people aged over 80 in a week. “It is a bonus to be in such a iconic, wonderful place. It’s great to be getting the vaccine out there, knowing that this is hopefully the start of some sort of normality again”.


More than half of Church of England's parishes closed

Although England is under a strict lockdown that will last until mid-February, Prime Minister Boris Johnson informed at the beginning of January that places places of worship in England could remain open, following all the safety measures.

However, the Church of England has confirmed that more than half of its 14,000 parishes have closed for communal Sunday worship.

British news website Premier reported that local councils and public health bodies wrote letters to church leaders across England, encouraging them to have their services online.




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