Churches combat COVID misinformation

Church leaders that attended a discussion on COVID-19 and the AztraZeneca vaccine have been encouraged to take the right messages back to their churches.

This is to combat misinformation and misconception on these issues.

The discussion was attended by church leaders in Port Moresby, representatives from the PNG Council of Churches (PNGCoC), the World Health Organisation (WHO), UNICEF and the Ministry of Health.

General Secretary of the PNGCoC, Reverend Roger Joseph, said the focus of the meeting was for church leaders to listen to technical messages about COVID-19 and the vaccine and to iron out any misconceptions that they may have.

Reverend Joseph said: “We are trying to sensitise leaders of churches so they can be able to take right messages to the people. I think the positive approach that should be taken by churches now is to just pick out the misconceptions and misinterpretations made by people regarding the vaccine and address this theologically.”

He added that after the gathering, the churches will work together with WHO, UNICEF and the Ministry of Health to address issues raised by the people through theological messages.

Sir John Cardinal Ribat, who represented the Catholic church at the discussion, encouraged Catholics to take the vaccine.

“For the Catholic church, if it is about saving lives, we have the responsibility to communicate that to the people. Rome has said the vaccine is good for all and it will save lives so we must do it,” said Cardinal Ribat.

Melissa Wokasup