Religious exemption might help get rid of ALP/LNP jab mandate
By Maani Truu, ABC
Posted Sat 25 Sep 2021
Since the recent round of stay-at-home orders were introduced in Sydney and Melbourne, religious messages and motifs have been popping up at loosely defined “anti lockdown” protests across Australia.
As one widely photographed sign at a Sydney demonstration in July declared: “The blood of Christ is my vaccine.”
No major religion in Australia has expressly told its followers to forgo vaccination against COVID-19. In fact, many faith leaders have played a key role in combating vaccine misinformation in their communities.
But as the above sign — and others like it — indicate, that doesn’t mean people aren’t being guided by their beliefs when deciding to refuse the jab.
It’s this grey area that Dr Renae Barker, an expert in law and religion at the University of Western Australia, said will make it difficult for the legal system to rule on whether policies that bar unvaccinated people from participating in certain activities — as already in place in Victoria, NSW and some industries — warrant a religious exemption provision.
And the question is already playing out internationally, particularly in the United States, where thousands of people have already sought exemptions from vaccine mandates on religious grounds.
“Do I think we need to have a conversation about [religious] exemptions? Possibly,” Dr Barker said, “I don’t think that conversation will go very far. I think politicians will very quickly say health, in this case, trumps freedom of religion.”
Australia’s history of religious exemptions
Looking back through Australia’s recent history, there’s only been one religion that has successfully lobbied for a vaccine exemption. That is the Christian Scientists, a small sect of Christianity who believes in prayerful healing to manage their health.
According to the 2016 Census, just 974 Australians reported they were Christian Scientist, out of 12 million people identifying as Christian more broadly.
In 1998, the church was granted an exemption to the Federal Government’s new “no jab, no pay” laws that meant children had to be vaccinated to receive childcare and family benefits. They were the only religion to receive such an exemption — which required parents and carers to provide a letter from a church leader — sparking unfounded fears the decision would cause a flood of new converts eager to bypass the laws.
But when it comes to COVID-19, the Christian Scientists are taking a different approach.
“As far as our practice of trusting our problems to God prayerfully, that hasn’t really altered,” said Edwina Aubin, a Christian Scientist practitioner from Brisbane. “We’re not ‘anti-vax’ as such, and neither are we ‘pro-vax’ … if it’s what’s required, then that’s what we’ll do.”
Ms Aubin explains that while the majority of the church’s members feel they don’t require traditional medicine, instead relying on prayer and the support of practitioners in the church, there’s nothing stopping them from seeking it out — whether it’s a legal requirement or not.
But even so, she said the question of whether to get the COVID-19 jab “probably has challenged many Christian Scientists”. In making the decision, she pointed to another core tenet of their beliefs: “Do to another what you want done to yourself.”
“I certainly know those who have chosen to be vaccinated have done so because they feel it’s the more loving thing to do to allay the fears of those around them,” she said.
“We’re conscious that we don’t want to make another fearful because of our stance, and if there’s no fear in our thought to go ahead and be vaccinated then that’s a more loving step to take.”
It’s this approach that led the government to scrap religious exemptions to immunisation completely in 2015, declaring the policy no longer necessary.
But COVID-19 has brought with it fresh debate around religious and conscientious objection to vaccination, particularly as states move towards a system of different rules for the unvaccinated.
Dr Barker said just because a religion doesn’t formally ban or mandate something doesn’t mean all adherents will comply: “Each individual does often have an individual interpretation of their requirements.”
But this is an area where Australian courts have “really struggled” to make a legal distinction, she said. “And it’s a very important distinction”.
Dr Barker said there’s been a handful of cases where Australian courts have been asked to determine whether a person really did something on the basis of their religion, which is protected under anti-discrimination legislation.
To highlight the distinction she provides this example: If someone chooses to be vegan because they believe it is good for their health and their workplace refuses to provide vegan options at a lunch event, it is not discrimination. But, if someone abstains from eating animal products because it is part of their religion and the workplace fails to accommodate this, it is.
This becomes more complicated when someone’s religious belief does not align with the commonly held practices of their organisation.
“The courts struggled with this idea that even different groups within the one larger religion might have different views and I suspect the courts will struggle even more with the idea that individuals within a religion will have a different view,” Dr Barker said.
“Religious practice and religious belief are very nuanced, and it’s very diverse, and even if we don’t think people are getting their religion ‘right’ they sincerely believe they are.
“And it’s a very challenging thing to do for a secular lawmaker, be that a legislature or a court, to say to that person ‘we think you’ve interpreted your religion wrong’.”
This means that, in the absence of religious leaders telling their followers they shouldn’t be vaccinated, any push for religious exemptions would depend on the individual being able to demonstrate why they believe their decision is tied to their religious beliefs.
Posted on November 18, 2021, in Christian, churhes, covid lockdown, Covid passport, Covid-19 and tagged Christian Scientist, Religious exemption. Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.
Dear Cairns News,
Would You be so kind as to call them yourself to find out their difficulties in communicating via certain bully Media.
They and others like them would thank You for encouraging Families to Rally for Freedom wherever they live ….rather than criticise RDA & Co. without having all the facts.
Trusting You can keep on trying to unite us to Rally for Freedom and Justice, we thank You in anticipation.
Concerned Families International Network.
The Christ-like Way!
Friends of humanely ethical, moral science and legislations in all matters re Church and State Governments’ Population Policy.
The primary Biblical exemption to the experimental vaccine is that each has foetal tissue in the vaccine and is this forbidden to any Christian based on the laws of God. Also it is in direct breach of the Nuremburg Convention and codes. The known side effects are very dangerous and they have long tern effects especially on Children.
Christian Churches of God
Tel. +61 2 6226 6481 Fax +61 2 6226 6480
Mob. +61 407 267 630
Skype +61 2 6100 3621
PO Box 369 Woden ACT 2606
It is correct that Christian Scientism is a sect.
They don’t believe in sin.
Not sure how the God of the Bible feels about that. I’m pretty sure Jesus didn’t die for the fun of it. He died because of it.
People are prayed for according to the book of Christian Science and the teachings of Mary Baker, the religion’s founder.
It is astounding that they were given exemptions for the ‘no jab, no play’ without anyone else knowing.
I might have expected the Mormons or Scientologists to have had some influence, but the ‘Christian’ Scientists?
Then there is the Catholic Church who has well known that some routine vaccines (like the MMR) have the aborted baby cell lines in them.
Strangely even that wasn’t enough for them to stand up at the time.
Under the guise of the coming One World Religion, this line of thinking could get interesting.
Anyone with any religion (and there are many) should now be able to claim an exemption.
It only seems fair.
As far as these latest ‘covid’ jabs, it was claimed that the AstraZeneca Vero monkey cell line was grown on an aborted baby cell line, which then gets scrapped off for the vaccine.
On that basis they said there were no aborted baby cells (transferred) to the vaccine.
It depends how you look at it.
Wake up. The secret societies are the only exemptions from the vaxx (lucifer’s religions known by many names).
“The Church of Illumination further affirms that immunizations are a form of blood and body pollution, which defiles the purity of the body”…
This body was consigned exclusively to me, the living soul, spirit, what ever you choose to call me. Notwithstanding the opinions of others, it cannot be reassigned without MY, intended, consent.
That is a principal enshrined in Cruden v Neale, and I do not choose to do so.
check out brian shaw’s beazley-kennedy court doc on his site and see that ALL things government and judicial have been illegal because of the abandonment of crown from the oaths and the fact that freemasonry is unacceptable as anoath in these fields, yet ALL members of the high levels are sworn to freemasonry. THAT is our EXEMPTION! AND the fact it is against the WILL of GOD.
Trust the ABC……….??? TO BEAT ABOUT THE BUSH….. and push their agenda ….
The 3 traitors: ALP/LNP/Greens will try all the tricks in the book …. to fool the voters …. before an ELECTION!
iF THEY GET IN AGAIN – THE TEAM FROM HELL —-in Government & Opposition
I don’t think it’s a matter of “religious exemption”. Why bring the “religious” notion into it? It only allows the “New Order” loonies to claim that “religion” (other than their own) is an impediment to their envisaged “Brave New World”.
Why not just say that the evidence says that the “stab” is very likely to be injurious to my (or my dependant’s) health and I refuse to take the risk? My risk, my choice!
There are many “sports” that come with a high risk of injury and I can choose not to participate in them why can’t I choose not to participate in a “medical” experiment with an enormous risk of injury or death?
Have you seen the Pfizer whistleblower that talked to Project Veritas? She confirmed the use of fetal tissue.
Christian Scientist sitting on the fence. She wouldn’t want to slip on a paling if you get my drift. The hair was too short.
The Novus Ordo Catholic Church is subverted – as is every other social institution, but the traditional resistance within the Catholic Church is strong and it is growing. Acting Pope (no. 2) Francis ‘ call me Jorge’ Bergoglio has mandated the vaxx.
But the traditional Catholic bishops do not follow Acting Pope No. 2 on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, environmental ‘sins’, Earth mother worship or whatever. The traditional Catholic bishops and priests have come out against the vaxx. period. Not forced vaccination, but this S1 spike protein (prion) biotech injection and the entire Communist sistema around it.
Archbishop Vigano : Agenda 2030 – The Gates of Hell
There are traditional Catholic communities in Q that follow the traditional Latin Mass and there are traditionally minded clergy.
Some or all of the vaccines contain cells from aborted foetuses.
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Hello, Why can’t people expose the use of human fetal tissue in these covid vaccines?? See work of Jon Rappoport. Once you know human fetal tissue is used in the trialling of the vaccines, and that these cells cannot be completely filtered out of the vaccine, then to inject oneself with this stuff becomes very distasteful. Moreover, how the fetal tissue is obtained is horrific. Regards.
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I thought religious exemptions had already been overridden years ago in Australia?
thank you, those dear people are believing and knowing that Creation is designed to protect us in our lives. Great and I am doing it my way as well, for I am making my Immune system stronger and this is the opportunity for many more of Us;….Please think about this, it might be also a great benefit to know Now that we are created in the image of our dear Creator….best immune system .
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