Religious News Service has spoken to Bishop Thomas Brown about his recent letter mandating clergy in the Diocese of Maine receive the Covid-19 vaccine. See our previous coverage here or, on Facebook, here.
The mandate will apply to roughly 240 clergy and more than a dozen staff members in the diocese, although Brown told Religion News Service that all diocesan staff members are already vaccinated.
Brown said that if a clergy member refused the mandate, the response would depend on the person’s role, but he would consider asking the person to step down.
“We want to say to everybody in Maine that we trust public health leaders who say to us that the vaccine is the best tool we have to curb this pandemic,” Brown told RNS. “And if we could somehow do our part, assure them that our clergy leaders are going to do what we can to keep them safe, it becomes a message of liberation.”