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Oct 21, 2021

Evangelical Churches Write To Prime Minister About Vaccine Mandate for Reopening

The National Evangelical Association of Belize has written to Prime Minister John Briceno objecting to the vaccine mandate imposed on churches. The letter dated October 15 states that NEAB was surprised to learn about the stipulation being placed on churches when it was, quote, “not discussed or agreed upon,” in a meeting NEAB says it had with PM Briceno on October sixth. NEAB wrote saying it would not have supported such a move if the conversation had come up during that meeting.  The letter says those discussion focused on churches resuming at fifty percent capacity, mask wearing, social distancing, and sanitizing. According to the letter, the vaccine mandate imposed goes against the very core calling of the church. They are requesting a meeting with PM Briceno at the earliest possible time. When we caught up with Minster of Health and Wellness Michel Chebat in Belmopan on Monday, we asked him about the rationale behind this mandate, and if it has gotten any push back. 


Michel Chebat

Michel Chebat, Minister of Health and Wellness

“So that the new S.I requires that only vaccination persons attend churches, and it is at a fifty percent seating capacity. I have not been asked to review it or look at it. I cannot say if other Members of the Cabinet or the Prime Minister has been approached. But I am sure if that is the case, it is going to be raised at the Cabinet meeting. The responsibility really starts with each one of us. We all must take responsibility for our actions, and we must get vaccinated, because we know what the consequences could be, if we don’t. Here we have a situation where the churches are reopening, and the pastors, for better or for worst, are in charge of the churches. So, they are the legal authority over their church, over their building. And so, they must be the one held responsible to ensure compliance to the public health measures.”

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