The Most Rev. Howard Gregory, Archbishop of the West Indies and Bishop of the Diocese of Jamaica & The Cayman Islands, received his first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine yesterday (March 11) at the Good Samaritan Inn in Kingston. This in keeping with a passionate appeal and commitment which he made a fortnight ago, as he encouraged members of the Diocese to take the vaccine.
Speaking at the Annual Service of the Mothers’ Union on February 28, the Archbishop referred to a recent online meeting hosted by the Archbishop of Canterbury and involving Archbishops from the worldwide Anglican Communion, as well as, representatives of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
“Scientists do the research, they develop the vaccines, but they don’t end pandemics. It is societies that end it; it is people like you and me that end it. So you could have a million vaccines, and if people are not prepared to participate and to play their part, we are not going anywhere,” Archbishop Gregory declared.
He reported that the WHO specialists urged leaders of the Anglican Communion to assist in passing on credible messages to members of the religious community and the wider society. The Archbishop noted that people were being influenced by the abundance of misinformation on social media; and he urged the congregation to correct existing misconceptions, especially those relating to the vaccine.
“Take the vaccine if it comes your way…be positive agents. We have a responsibility as Christians, as people who are informed to correct the misconceptions out there. I am going to be the first in line when the opportunity comes,” Archbishop Gregory asserted.https://www.youtube.com/embed/qFlDgQI7_4g?feature=oembed
Following the vaccination at the Good Samaritan Inn yesterday, he described the experience as “a pleasant one” and commended the staff on its professionalism and for creating a welcoming environment.
“I have felt no after-effects and I look forward to receiving the next shot and to interacting with other persons without the threat of serious illness,” the Archbishop said.
Archbishop Gregory shows the vaccinated area on his arm to Rev. Craig Mears, Director of Youth Ministries and Mrs Jacqueline Mighty, Diocesan Secretary.