NTA Position Statement (25-02-25)
We know that some members of our churches and the wider community have concerns and anxieties about the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine, and we do not underestimate these. We respect that the decision whether to take the vaccine or not is a personal choice. We hope that the following brief position statement will clarify the New Testament Assembly’s stance on the current national vaccination roll out and encourage our members to study the available facts about the vaccines to make their own informed decision. Not everything about the Covid-19 vaccine is known and as with all vaccines there may be risks. However, from the current reliable scientific data and advice, here is what we know.
• The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is safe and effective.
• The vaccine offers the best way to control the pandemic, reduce pressure on the NHS and help to save lives.
• The vaccine is one part of our defence – we still need to continue to pray and observe the NHS ‘hands, face, space’ protocols.
The risk to public health is very serious, as evidenced by the millions of infections worldwide and the tens of thousands of deaths in the United Kingdom alone. Among those affected are the disproportionately high number of black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities, who are vulnerable and have suffered a higher impact of the disease. There are many reasons why BAME groups have been more affected, among which are social inequality and racial discrimination.
In some cases, the most important effect of vaccination may not be the protection it offers to the person who receives the vaccination, who may be of relatively robust health and unlikely to be seriously affected by the disease; rather, the more important effect may be the protection it offers to those who are much more likely to be seriously stricken by the disease if they were to contract it through exposure to those infected. Receiving the COVID-19 vaccine could therefore be seen as an act of loving our neighbour for the common good as the scripture commands.
Faith demands action and without action, faith is dead. God has given us a gift in the minds and technologies that have made modern scientific breakthroughs possible. Christian believers are involved in the research, development, and regulatory approval of modern medicines. They have put their faith to work through their minds and hands, in developing treatments and vaccines for COVID. Through them, God has given us a way out of the pandemic. Because we have faith in God, we also can be part of the solution.
In view of the gravity of the pandemic and having prayerfully considered the above information, reviewed sufficient data and sought out reliable and the trusted advice, we commend the vaccine to our members with the following position statement.
The New Testament Assembly England support the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine programme, and we urge our congregations to seek out the facts about the vaccine from trusted sources. Our hope and prayer is that this will lower anxieties and lead our people to a confident, informed and peaceful decision.
National Presiding Bishop D A Powell - Bishop Executive Council
Rev Beverley Russell-Burke - NTA General Secretary
Mrs Tamara King-Makinwa - NTA Trustee Board chair