Why Are Christians Less Likely To Get Vaccinated Against COVID-19?

I recently read a fascinating research paper published in May 2022 in the Journal of Religion and Health by Professors Trepanowski and Drążkowski of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poland. The authors compared the COVID-19 vaccination rates of 90 countries covering 86% of the world’s population with the proportionate representation of four dominant religions (Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism) plus nonbelief, adjusting for several other cultural factors. Their results showed that only Christianity’s proportionate size was negatively correlated with vaccination rates, and they conclude that:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/views/2023/why-are-christians-less-likely-get-vaccinated-against-covid-19

I will suggest that it is also a ‘bad’ feature of religion. Distrust of science has always been a part of organized religion. Although the above article did not delve into part of the issue, they can not be separated. Not all features of religion are beneficial to humans or to the world in general. It is sad when we have so many within religion today that seem to be more interested in the ‘bad’ features!

Such statements from the article “Basic questions such as whether the injections would actually immunize people from COVID or whether an injected person could transmit the virus, were only answered by an appeal to authority and not to unambiguous results of rigorous scientific research.” , only continue to divide truth from fiction. When faced with the obvious epidemic and needing to protect, quick action is need based upon available data. Waiting for rigorous research means ‘waiting’ and not doing something, even if not all measures are successful. Again, organized religion with its main emphasis on ‘fear and blaming’ focused on the wrong issue. That is another ‘feature’ of organized religion! Far too many with in the religious community spread distrust of possible saving measures rather than promoting the health of others! It spoke with a forked tongue.

Research has shown that the death rate was higher among religious vs non-religious. The papers are numerous, so I will let each do their own Google search.


I would suggest that Christians nations are more attuned to what’s going on in the world due to public communications when it comes to the “masses”. Europeans as well as North Americans are quite well aware of what’s going on in the world; and it was obvious from the beginning that this epidemic became part of a political battle; and an opportunity for big pharma to make a LOT of money. When in doubt, follow the money.


I laugh at the comparisons made in this screed between unvaccinated Christians and Jesus Christ, His disciples, Daniel, the three Hebrew boys, Kierkegaard, Ellen White, and Martin Luther.

We have public health laws. It is not an act of Christian principle and courage to pee on the sidewalk. The state is not persecuting you by giving you a speeding ticket or by punishing you for dumping your garbage in the street. True Christians recognize the authority of the state to act in pursuit of the common good. Romans 13:1-7. Accordingly, they have taken the vaccine.

In contrast, antivax Christians have acted in a rebellious and lawless manner. They have been suckers for disinformation and loony conspiracy theories. No astute reader of Scripture should be surprised. Many who call themselves Christians will pledge their allegiance to the counterfeit trinity in the closing days of Earth’s history. Indeed, many have already done so.


Spent about 30 minutes trying to find any verifiable info on christian nations being more attuned to world events…not successful. However…a truckload of christianity finding a ‘big Pharma’ in bible prophecy and seeing them as the endgame evil! So ‘blaming Pharma and politics’ for christians not getting vaccinated or being ‘more aware’ well…not buying!


I can understand why a Southern Baptist, who might attend a WWE wrestling event on Saturday night, church with special guest Tucker Carlson on Sunday morning, and then a Donald Trump rally on Sunday evening would not be smart enough to get vaccinated. But a Seventh-day Adventist? We have the largest Protestant education and healthcare systems in the entire world. It is weird and mystifying that there would be such an oddity as an antivax Seventh-day Adventist.


Should have spent 31 minutes. Which countries have the longest history of “freedom of information”. Interestingly, Sweden beats them all for having adopted freedom of information laws in the 1700’s, beating everybody by centuries, and as I recall, had the most common sense about covid vaxing.

…and Phil, your world is too small.

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Thank you for being the first to post a reply to this essay. Let me note a few things. The research paper did not talk about organized religion, in the sense of denominations or leadership. In fact, my recollection is that most denominations issued official pronouncements in favor of vaccination. The paper is talking about “Christians” without regard to a specific organization. The same would be true about the other religions or nonbelievers as well. I think Rodney Stark and many others would disagree that “Distrust of science has always been a part of organized religion.” Finally, I have not seen any credible studies showing that non-religious people died at a lower rate from Covid than religious people. (I have not seen any showing such a relationship of those dying with Covid either.) For example, I would imagine it is tricky to figure out just who is religious and who is not after death. I would be happy to take a look at studies you believe show this rigorously.

I mistakenly asked this question on another forum, "If Jesus was alive today, would He have taken the vaccine? Yes or No, and why?

It was interesting to see how the responses panned out (some are still arguing over it). Most responses fell into two broad categories; Jesus would not get the Vax because it was against personal freedom of choice, and He would take the Vax for the benefit of society. There was every shade of response in between. The irony was in who was proposing each broad response. Those who say he would not take the Vax were mostly of the “Law is prime” school, those who say he would take the Vax are mostly from the “Law is dead” school. In effect these two groups were arguing for a contrary position.


A balanced report on the pandemic.

I don’t think anything can be made of the paper. Were the nations studied as a whole and designated Christian? Were the Christians ferreted out of the other members of each nation? Without some sort of indication on methodology, I don’t think anything can be made of it.

As far as Christians and science, some of our great scientists were Christians. So, the system does not mitigate against science. Some even assert that Christian belief fosters science as it postulates an orderly universe.

The ham handed way the government handled the epidemic, the refusal to be transparent, and the vast judgmental attitude of the media toward any who disagreed with its beliefs, though they were on shaky foundations caused lots of missteps.

Too bad.

An interesting paper on the responsibility of religion in a pandemic crisis.

One need to look at history of how religion came to distrust science when there was a conflict in beliefs. Not unknown. The SDA church and other conservative churches have a long standing issue of religious belief or science. All of this is neither here nor there for me. My beef is the lack of personal responsibility that religiosity quite often promotes. It’s because of ‘sin’, it’s the devils doing, it’s the church teachings, etc etc. I have always believed the brain was meant to be used, all the time, not to confirm a belief but to constantly learn and explore. Religious beliefs determine a persons beliefs to vaccination is true, but it should not applauded in any way.

I don’t see the paper as saying that in any manner.

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Just as it is reasonable to doubt the claims of organized religion due to its checkered past, and given that any study of the history will uncover a litany of failed scientific experiments, false assumptions and premature hypothesis which eventually have proven to be wrong, it seems a healthy dose of skepticism in the face of scientific assertions, and “we know what’s best” braggadocio, is also warranted.

Big Science is as a much a human endeavor as is Big Religion, Big Pharma, Big Tech, Big Media, Big Government, etc., and as such each is fallible, subject to erroneous thinking, fallacious conclusions, and confirmation biases.

Further, it should surprise no one that some of the most popular motifs in literature are the wayward priest, pill pushers, the crooked politician and the evil, mad scientist.



questioming the wet lab source of COVID, questioning the wisdom of firing police officers firemen Navy seals armed forces personnel who refused the vaccine.questioning the absolute efficacy of the vaccine even for toddlers, wondering why side effects of the vaccine never were diiscussed and mentioning natural immunity efficacy for COVID–I agree Tucker was a bad bad talk show host

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and railing against getting a covid booster every 3-6 months and laughing about–he was a public health menace

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Let me add the sitution in Europe in concern of the German speking countries : As a heritage of XIX. Century and the Pietist tradition the opposition to “Schulmedizin” was an issue - and vaccination was “Schulmedizin” like making use of digitaloids for the heart. And the victory over smallpox was won - by here making the vaccination compulsory. - Adventist were “conscientious objectors” - -

This attitude vanished about 1970 ( !) Not the tendency to play “objectorship” - and so now a new idea swept our churches - and some paradet with the opjecting crowd , thereby also presenting “the Great Controversy” and displaying doomsady scearios - -

See, when"Grossdeutscher Rundfunk" in the wartime sent the warning for the approach of “Flying Fortresses” we all obeyed and hurried into the bombshelters for safety (?) in expecting their “carpet bombing” - -

Lepers in “Bible Times” wre separated by the “state” authorities - the priests - -

When our litlttle chruch got afire on Sabbath morning the professional municipila firefighters cleared the aedifice by their authority - and entitled to apply force ! - and then the whole lot . And I helped them also to get away the noisy onesand the all to curious ones and the “i kow better - ones” of our believers - - -

As soon as you call 122 - 133 - 144 (Firefighters - police - ambualnce ) you simply have given up a number of “rights” and decisions - -

Liberty ?

Liberty ?

There is one word missing in the title of this article: “American”, as in AMERICAN Christians, which make an interesting subset of the whole body. This anti-vax trend related to Covid is a new thing. Sure, there have always been folks who, for lack of a better understanding of science, have been suspicious of vaccines. But these were a minority. What turned this into some sort of movement was the christian/conservative/misinformation movement of the Trump era. People who did not want to be vaccinated against Covid got vaccinated against polio, which was eradicated worldwide thanks to vaccines. It sued to be that we left medical issues to the medical community. I miss those days.


This is a great topic! At least in the United States, I think there are a lot of reasons why Christians resisted the vaccine more than other religions did. The article mentions that they controlled for variances in social structure. But I do believe Muslim and Buddhist countries in general have much stronger government control over their citizens. in general Christian nations, have a less governmental control. I think that’s one of the reasons why Christians didn’t get vaccinated as much in the United States. We were not used to our government obligating us on penalty of losing our education, our job, our ability to participate in social events, etc., based on a vaccine that was developed extremely quickly , especially when all the data supported the fact that for most people under 50 the illness did not pose a significant threat.

There is natural resistance in the United States to the government, forcing you to do something. I also think the rollout was handled very poorly here. And it became much too politicized. People could no longer assess whether they should get the vaccine independent of their political views. Conservatives viewed getting the vaccine as giving into government overreach. And liberals viewed not getting the vaccine as siding with “ignorant, backwards, thinking, anti-science” conservatives.

And a lot of the mis trust I put on the government. In my state, California, the governor closed all churches and houses of worship with the stroke of a pen. That automatically turned many Christians against any kind of imposition related to Covid including the vaccine. If the government had worked to get more buying I think they would’ve had better results.


A brief side note to this topic: I’m automatically skeptical when I see the definite article ‘the’ placed before the word science. Referring to ‘the science’ makes it sound like science is a thing. Well, science is not a thing. Science is not an entity. Science is not an obelisk at the crest of a hill that we are only allowed to approach after paying proper respect.

Science is a method for discovering the truth about the natural world. The scientific method welcomes findings that are contrary to the original hypothesis. So when I see so-called scientists from government seeking to censor anyone who disagrees with them about COVID “vaccines” (they’re not vaccines, you know) then it’s clear that some else is going on.

I’m 72 years old, unvaccinated, unafraid.





So now Uganda has made homosexuality not just a sin but a crime against the state:

And with the tacit support of TW and Adventism.

Oh, and it looks like the fearless leader in North Korea has exercised his god-given right by ordering his subjects to “man up” and annihilate those godless Americans:


So what’s a mother to do? C’est la vie, the state has spoken, so all you lawless LGBTQ+’s and “true Christians” everywhere (whatever that means) best get in line as the common good must prevail according to Paul, another “gospel” writer who only ever met Jesus in his dreams.

BTW, Here’s an article about the “science” behind the vaccines, or whatever you want to call them, and how their documented side effects have been downplayed or not mentioned at all: