My dear friends,

Following on from the thoughts of my Jan 28 letter to you, we did at last receive directions from the HSA site - that were posted some time on Sunday the 31st Jan. The HSA directions were that Bodden Town clinic would indeed administer the vaccine 2nd dose on the following day Monday. (Happily I was able to share this experience of not knowing in good time with HSA leadership persons yesterday in a Zoom meeting that the Ministers’ Association had with them, and they accepted the implications.) I am therefore able to say that Win and I are now fully vaccinated at this point of time. We did both of us have minor symptoms yesterday but by now they have passed satisfactorily.

There is considerable fear expressed by many about these vaccinations, particularly about some hidden motive to harm people in one way or another, or indeed about whether the researchers know sufficiently what the long-term effects might be. While such considerations should not be lightly dismissed, because both evil and ignorance in the world are real and not purely imaginary, I do believe that an inversion of the late President Ronald Reagan’s “Trust and Verify” mantra - i.e. Verify and Trust - is in order here. We should, as calmly as we can, find out everything we can about what the vaccine does, how it works and why it is believed to be a net good for us and for the community around us. Having done that up to whatever level our minds can accommodate then the issue may be whether we have the courage and faith actually to step up to receiving it. 

in my view the more troubling issue is about the acknowledged connection of many vaccines, whether it is in their testing or their actual composition, with foetal material from procured abortions, albeit ones done years ago. We believe that humans are created In Imago Dei - in the image of God. The predominant media narrative about the so-termed “right to do what I want with my own body” is horribly and tragically flawed to come to mean a supposed right to tear up and dispose of a body that actually is not “mine”. Indeed our whole secularised human rights culture has in general come to refer to my own individual supposed rights while the rights of weaker or less assertive parties in any relationship are not considered. This is the sign of a dying civilisation, in our case one whose death is inevitable if its Christian covenantal roots are finally and irreversibly severed. 

So any connection of a vaccine with foetal material is troubling, and as Christians it is our duty to advocate at all opportunities that this sort of connection - which there is very good reason to think can very viably be superseded - be finally broken. 

This duty is especially incumbent upon those of us who have reasoned that in spite of this connection our duty is, for the sake of others as well as for ourselves, to receive the vaccination.

The Collect for this coming Sunday, the Sunday called Sexagesima (the Second Sunday Before Lent), will be

O Lord God, who seest that we put not our trust in any thing that we do: Mercifully grant that by thy power we may be defended against all adversity; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

As so often, the Collect very well fits and complements the issues of the day. We cannot presume that we have got everything right, no matter how much reasoning power we put into it. This is not of course to say that we should not apply such reasoning power that we have. We should: for the capacity to reason is a mark of our being created as humans in the Image of God, and it is a great and wonderful gift. Nevertheless, we come to admit that such capacity to reason that we have is very imperfect, and we cannot put our trust in that alone or in anything that we do however reasonable we may think it to be. But we have a recourse in Him who is not constrained by our own limitations, and by receiving His intervening power we may most certainly be “defended against all adversity”, and particularly what comes against us through the over-reliance upon our own powers apart from God.

For directions about the services this Sunday the 7th Feb, please see the website


We look forward to being addressed by Mr. Peter.

Let us look up to the magnificence of Him who has given us so much, as we approach the Season of Lent.

In His holy Name,

Bishop Nicholas