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Pope calls coronavirus vaccines an ethical obligation

ROME - Pope Francis said he would be vaccinated against the coronavirus next week, calling this a life-saving ethical obligation and a refusal to make him suicidal, according to statements made on an Italian television news program.

Pope calls coronavirus vaccines an ethical obligation

He also said that the assault on the United States Capitol shocked him and he should be condemned.

In an interview with TG5 newscast that is expected to air Sunday night, Francis asked everyone to get vaccinated. Fabio Luca Marchese Ragona, the TG5 Vatican reporter who conducted the interview, provided a transcript of the Pope's vaccination statements, which were not immediately confirmed by the Vatican.

"It is an ethical choice, because you are playing with health, with life, but you are also playing with the lives of others," Francis told the station. “I signed up. One must do it. "

According to the transcript, the Pope added: "I don't understand why some say, 'No, vaccines are dangerous.' If doctors present it as something that can go well, that has no special dangers, why not take it? There is a suicidal denial that I cannot explain ”.

Francis has at times been criticized for not wearing a mask during the pandemic, and some have expressed concern that world leaders and others attending papal hearings may be putting him or themselves in danger.

The Vatican has insisted that social distancing tests and measures are employed to maintain safety, although some prelates, including cardinals, have tested positive for the virus within days of interacting with Francis.

The virus has forced Francis, who is animated by travel, to stay home for much of the past year, and the Vatican has had to cancel or severely limit even his most important celebrations. By presiding over ceremonies before a vast and empty St. Peter's Square, the Pope has underlined not only how the virus has changed people's daily lives, but also the life of the church.

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