Over the past year, one of the most visible proponents of COVID misinformation has been Bishop Athanasius Schneider, a Kazakhstani auxiliary bishop and a fan favorite at anti-abortion website LifeSite News. In May of 2020, he called other bishops “fake shepherds” if they closed their churches during the pandemic since they were prohibiting Catholics from “faithful access to the sacraments.”
He hasn’t gotten any better over time. In a piece posted at LifeSite News, drawing from an interview Schneider gave them last October, the bishop claimed that a potential vaccine (which wasn’t available at the time) that derived from the cell lines of aborted fetuses (which the vaccines were not) would signal the beginning of the Apocalypse.
“I have the suspicion that partly this COVID situation was created not only to implement a new dictatorship and control of the population, but in some way to legalize abortion globally — the killing of unborn babies — so that the entire planet will be collaborating in the process of killing babies through the vaccine which will use parts of aborted babies. The vaccine will be imposed and obligatory — so that you cannot work, travel, go to school without it, obliging the entire population to receive the vaccine, but the only vaccine will be that made with cells from aborted babies. Perhaps they will not accept other vaccines, and they will lie, saying that these are not effective, that the only effective vaccine will be from aborted babies. I am not affirming now that this will happen, but it is my suspicion: it appears to me realistic that this could come. This is for me the last step of Satanism: that Satan and the world government — ultimately the masonic world government — will oblige all, even the Church, to accept abortion in this way. And therefore we must resist very strongly against this, if it comes. We must even accept to be martyrs.”
Bishop Schneider did hope that his scenario of a forced global vaccine using aborted baby cells in its manufacture would not come to pass. He said, “But I hope that this will not come at a global level. When this does come, then we will enter into the time of the Apocalypse. In a time of Apocalypse, of which we already now have some signs, we must invoke evermore the angels, Saint Michael Archangel, and the message of Our Lady of Fatima that is becoming ever more timely and necessary.”
That right there is a gigantic Catholic word salad infused with batshittery.
The vaccines weren’t made from fetuses or anything close to it. There was no apocalypse. The world is indeed suffering, but it’s because of anti-vaxxers like Schneider, not the scientists or rational people getting their shots. And modern Catholics are not martyrs.
Schneider is leading people to their deaths by scaring them out of getting their shots. If that happens, Schneider would be the culprit, not the people making the vaccines. Catholics like these don’t need protection from Pfizer. They need protection from their own leaders.
Keep in mind, though, that the Catholic Church as a whole has supported the vaccines. Pope Francis urged people to get their shots. He’s not the problem here. It’s the underlings spreading lies and acting like impending doom is the only possible option.
(Thanks to Val for the link)