Before we begin, I’d like to add a word of caution to the wise. This topic has been used by many as a form of attack, segregation, and gossip among many groups of people, including those in the church. Please be mindful of where your thoughts may wonder and how you treat others who’s opinion may differ from your own. For more on this topic, see The Great Divide.
I have been asked my opinion on vaccinations more than ever this past month. Maybe it’s because of my profession as a Physician Assistant in Pediatrics, maybe it’s because I have 2 young children, or maybe it’s because I am a follower of Christ. I’d like to think it’s a combination of all of these. I am very pro-vaccination, just as I am very pro-life, but this did spur me on to investigate why I have come to the conclusion to vaccinate and try to understand why others do not. My reasons are my own. God gives us wisdom when we seek Him, more than any other creature in all of His mass of creation, to use to make the best choices while we are apart from Him. We are given minds with the ability to learn and the curiosity to discover and the free will to make our own choices. My hope is that everyone takes the time to be informed, and with prayer and meditation of the Word, continually strive to make wise decisions with the time we have been given on Earth.
As I mentioned, I choose to vaccinate my children. Being a Physician Assistant and working in Pediatrics for the great majority of my career, I see a lot of illness. I see a lot of children with weakened immune systems from a multitude of reasons. I have also seen an increase of parents choosing to no longer vaccinate their children. Even some that vaccinated their older kids are choosing to opt out for their younger kids. It is a startling trend. In PA school, Med school and nursing school, healthcare providers are all shown the effects of what viruses and bacteria can do when given the chance to invade a susceptible living source. The range is from a runny nose to death, with a lot in between. Our current generation, thankfully, has not come face to face with the effects of what previous generations have witnessed or experienced firsthand. Being paralyzed because they were coughed on by the wrong person (polio); once being able to hear, but now living a life filled with silence (measles); having a younger sibling not able to catch their breath from whooping cough. The list goes on and on. What’s wrong here? It’s easy. We don’t live in fear.
Just as we take our religious freedom for granted which leads to us not fighting for our beliefs and having our country lose its foundational truths, we take for granted how healthy our babies and elderly have been with the advancements in science and medicine. If we came face to face with the ugliness and mortality of tetanus, meningitis, diphtheria, rubella, measles, etc, on a regular basis like before, lines would be out the door of every doctor’s office to get the cure. The cure for these terrible diseases is VACCINES!
Let’s tackle some myths and other issues of why I think people choose to leave their children vulnerable and unvaccinated.
Myth/Issue #1: Vaccines are linked to Autism.
Please Stop with this argument already…
I’m just going to get this one out of the way fast because I am so tired of hearing about it. Vaccines do NOT cause autism. There are SO many resources out there that discuss this. It was one falsified, disproven, and retracted article that has caused a huge ruckus. If you think it’s true, there is no point in reading any further.
Myth/Issue #2: My decision to not vaccinate my child only affects my child.
A close friend of mine has a son with leukemia. This leads to 2 things. A weakened immune system that is highly susceptible to catching any illness at a much easier rate than a non-leukemia person, and also an inability to get vaccinated (since the immune system is what creates antibodies against the illnesses that vaccines introduce to allow the body to normally build a defense against). Choosing to not vaccinate healthy kids with active and strong immune systems puts this population of less fortunate fighters at a heightened risk. What’s more frustrating is that the healthy children may not even show signs of the illness that they expose the leukemia and other weakened-response populations to. Choosing not to vaccinate affects so many more people than just the one child that skips the shots. Other “at risk” populations include babies, pregnant women, and the elderly.
Issue #3: I don’t like chemicals entering my body.
Some of you may not like the idea of putting chemicals in your body. I get that, but do you realize that by using sunscreen, chemicals are absorbed through your skin but the outcome is protection against skin cancer? Have you read what’s in toothpaste? How is this different from being immunized?
Issue #4: God will protect me from all suffering.
Hmm, the Bible says otherwise…
Some of you may have a thought process of something like this: I don’t need to vaccinate because God will protect me from harm.
Jesus said in John 16:33 (CSB) “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”
You WILL have suffering. We all know this and have been through some form of trials or another. God gives us the strength and resources which lead to steadfastness and courage. He gives us hope for greater things to come (Romans 8:18).
Do you also not wear a seatbelt? A helmet? Protective gear for sports or work environments? How is using medicine different?
Issue #5: I heard that fetuses are used to make vaccines.
This is the most legit reason I could find for choosing not to vaccinate. Rumors have circulated that some vaccines contain fetal body parts taken from aborted babies. In my research, I could find no truth to this statement. In my research, I did find out that there is a link between vaccines and abortion. Because of this research, I do feel much more informed as a healthcare provider, a mother and Christian. I encourage you to read this as well.
I have chosen to combine bits and pieces from 2 articles, mostly keeping them word for word. I do encourage you to read the full articles if you have the availability or desire. My sources are from the following websites: The History of Vaccines and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
“Varicella, rubella, hepatitis A, and a version of the shingles vaccine are all made by growing the viruses in fetal embryo fibroblast cell. The fetal embryo fibroblast cells used to grow vaccine viruses were first obtained from elective termination of two pregnancies in the early 1960s. These pregnancies were known to be infected with rubella, which at the time was known as Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS). CRS pregnancies are at risk for miscarriages, stillbirth, deafness, heart disease, encephalitis, mental retardation, cataracts, and pneumonia.
Following one such abortion, the fetus was sent to a doctor devoted to rubella research. Testing the kidney of the fetus, Dr. Plotkin found and isolated the rubella virus. Separately, Leonard Hayflick developed a cell strain called WI-38 using lung cells from an aborted fetus. Hayflick found that many viruses, including rubella, grew well in the WI-38, and he showed that it proved to be free of contaminants and safe to use for human vaccines (contaminants were found in cell cultures from monkeys and chicken egg which was the normal media used before this discovery). These same embryonic cells obtained from the early 1960s have continued to grow in the laboratory and are used to make vaccines today. No further sources of fetal cells are needed to make these vaccines.
The official position according to the National Catholic Bioethics Center is that individuals should, when possible, use vaccines not developed with the use of these human cell strains. However, in the case where the only vaccine available against a particular disease was developed using this approach, the NCBC notes:
“One is morally free to use the vaccine regardless of its historical association with abortion. The reason is that the risk to public health, if one chooses not to vaccinate, outweighs the legitimate concern about the origins of the vaccine. This is especially important for parents, who have a moral obligation to protect the life and health of their children and those around them.”
In summary, a few of the routine vaccines do, in fact, use the assistance of fibroblast cells from an aborted fetus to grow the viruses. The cells used are descendants of the original cells that were first experimented on in the ‘60s. There are NO actual fetal parts used in vaccines themselves. If there were, I (and hopefully millions of others) would have a serious problem with that and scientists would do their job to find a better way to protect us.
With this knowledge, I can see how some may jump to the conclusion that if a parent chooses to vaccinate their children, they must be pro-abortion. Let’s talk about this a little further.
I am one who firmly believes that what man intends for evil, God can turn around and use for good (Genesis 50:15-20). I believe this is exactly one of those cases. I can think of nothing on this side of heaven that is drenched in more evil than that of murdering innocent unborn children. It sickens me to my core every time it is brought to mind.
Is there anything else I am doing that could be seen as contradictory to my faith in Jesus Christ?
Mmm, coffee. There’s nothing quite like sipping on a smooth, rich, hot cup of coffee to start your morning off right.
Did you know that another name for coffee is “The Wine of Islam?” Do a quick search on the origins of coffee and you will find that it is believed to have started in Ethiopia and was primarily consumed in the Islamic world. It became common practice to drink coffee to help stay awake throughout night time prayers, especially during Ramadan.
“It [coffee] became associated with Muhammad’s birthday. Indeed, various legends ascribed coffee’s origins to Muhammad, who, through the archangel Gabriel, brought it to man to replace the wine which Islam forbade.” – Wikipedia
Does that mean that anyone who chooses to drink coffee is therefore a worshiper of Muhammad?
Raise your hand if you love to shop at Target? Or drink Pumpkin Spice Lattes from Starbucks? I do, I do! I also pay for things with my American Express from time to time. Guess what: All of these businesses directly fund Planned Parenthood. See full list here.
My conclusion is this. If you are going to be so extreme as to not vaccinate your children and put others at risk of deadly diseases as well, how can you justify drinking coffee or participating in civilization as we know it? The spiral of extremism Never Stops! So many common day things on Earth can be linked back to some form or another of sinful action that took place in our history. Satan is alive and well, just as he was in the Garden of Eden. Sin entered this world and we are doomed to face those effects until Jesus Christ’s return. Thankfully He chose to shed His blood on the cross so that all mankind who chooses to allow Christ to be their Savior can be set free from the bondage of sin. Abortion is sin. But those who choose abortion can still repent and have a place in Heaven. I have been saved through faith in God and I do not see protecting my children from deadly diseases as sin.
Final thoughts: Vaccinating your child does not make you pro-choice. Drinking coffee does not make you a muslim.
Do your research, do what’s best for your family, & Keep Shining,
~ Lindsey Alaine
For more details on the diseases that vaccines protect against, see my post All About Vaccines.
For Free Printables to attach to your child’s stroller or carrier that tells others to keep their hands off your kids, CLICK HERE.
Visit this site to join me in prayer to fight against abortions.