Religion at the root of measles outbreak

Religion at the root of measles outbreak

HEALTH authorities in Canada are battling an outbreak of measles spread from a “Bible-belt” region of the country where parents refuse to allow their children to be vaccinated.

Two students from the Mount Cheam Christian School in Chilliwack contracted the disease and were sent home – but not before exposing others. More than 100 students are suspected of having the disease.


School officials shut the school a week early for March break.

Speaking for members of the 1,200 string Reformed Congregation of North America, the Rev Adriaan Geuze said:

Members of our congregation do not believe vaccinations are safe. They are worried about administering vaccines to our children and vaccination does not automatically mean you are immune to the disease.

He went further with his lunacy in this report:

We leave it in (God’s) hands. If it is in his will that somehow we get a contagious disease, like in this case the measles, there are other ways, of course, to avoid this. If (we get sick), he can also heal us from it.

Asked if he actively advises his congregants not to vaccinate their children, Geuze responded:

Of course I openly express my own point of view according to the Bible, absolutely. But it’s not that we force them. It’s through their own conscience that they have to act. They expect that from me, that in a clear way I lay it all before them.

A vaccination rate of 95 per cent is necessary for community immunity to measles to work. In the East Fraser region, vaccination rates are about 60 to 70 per cent.

Note: The poster used to illustrate this report was created after an outbreak of measles at Kenneth Copeland’s Texas megachurch last summer which has a reputation for preaching against the use of vaccines.

Hat tip: BarrieJohn

43 responses to “Religion at the root of measles outbreak”

  1. sailor1031 says:

    I know these cretins can interpret their book to mean anything they want but, just out of curiosity, where TF does it say thay must not vaccinate their children? As Shakyamuni once asked “where do you find that in scripture?”……just askin’

  2. AgentCormac says:

    Threatening the health of their own kids through ignorance, stupidity and listening to the pronouncements of idiots like Adriaan Geuze is bad enough, but for parents to knowingly and wilfully endanger the lives of other children by declining vaccination should make them prosecutable under the law.

  3. Broga says:

    And so very smug and self righteous with their cretinous comments.

  4. Angela_K says:

    Christians being selfish again, don’t they realise that if their brats get the disease it can quickly spread, just like religion.

    The UK is now the TB capital of Europe:

  5. why do i have to share this planet with morons? says:

    There is One Good Book. It is indeed a Very Good Book. It is a Very Important Book. There is another, a nearly quite as good book. And there are other good books too. The first was written by the saviour of humanity, Christopher Hitchens, the second by Richard Dawkins, the others written by people like Harris, Spinoza and many others. The Good Book, God Is Not Great, must be put in hotel rooms around the globe to replace all the Bibles and other rubbish propaganda and hate manuals which should then be pulped and recycled into toilet paper, which is the most useful and appropriate destiny for such excremental publications.

  6. ian says:

    @Sailor1031: Here be Dragons:- verses 14-16

    If it’s in de bubble can it be rong?

    Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: 15And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. 16Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much

  7. Broga says:

    @why do i have to share this planet with morons? Well said. Right on target.

  8. Paul Cook says:


    the rise of TB has been happening in the UK for some time. I believe I read that the Islamic-cities of Leeds & Bradford were identified.

    Without being racist [Yorkshire isn’t a race – it’s a way of life] it is clearly the uneducated that get it and spread it.

    I recall reading there were two possible answers for this [as the majority of British people do take some sort of care for their health as it is all totally free paid for by taxpayer]:
    1. The people with TB are coming from, for example Pakistan and Afghanistan –with the disease and are spreading it, (Islamic countries with no concern or care for any one’s well being except after they are dead); and
    2. the habit of these dirty bastards coughing up their phlegm all the damn time and then spitting it all over the place.

    I wonder if the part of London is the Islamic Borough of Tower Hamlets

  9. Peterat says:

    The other issue, apart from the “not getting my kid immmunized is my choice and doesn’t affect you” nonsense, is the extra burden on medical resources – kids and adults being admitted to hospitals with complications from the disease that prayer didn’t cure.
    We had the same issue with H1N1 flu vaccines and the number of people admitted to hospitals, the complete closure of parts of those hospitals due to the outbreak, surgery cancellations, patients being turned away for over 1 month.
    I don’t give a damn about your stupid religous beliefs but when they literally infect everyone else, then I give a damn!

  10. barriejohn says:

    Vaccinations cause autism. We shouldn’t meddle in things that we don’t understand. (Does that mean that we shouldn’t give our children cough syrup? Most don’t have any proven medical benefits anyway!)

  11. barriejohn says:

    I knew many Christians who believed that God used sickness to discipline them and their families, and, even more bizarrely, would inflict suffering upon their children to “get at them” more effectively (all becasue he loved them so much, naturally). This is the sort of god that they think controls the world, so is it any wonder that they think that he would be mightily offended at two people of the same gender loving one another and caring for one another, or that he would wipe out thousands of innocents in a fit of pique? They worship a monster!

  12. barriejohn says:

    More on sickness and “discipline” (if you can bear it):

    Two final comments: 1) Never neglect to get medical attention for a medical illness because it may be related to sin. Always talk to your doctor. Even if the illness is related to sin, God can still allow you to be effectively treated by a health professional. 2) We all know people who engage in sinful lifestyles and appear to be happy. At the very least, it is clear that God is not disciplining them. The Bible explains: “If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all (Hebrews 12:8 NLT).”

    How comforting.

  13. Broga says:

    @barriejohn: I thought I would have a browse through some of the subjects on the link you provided. Most entertaining and loaded with the conviction that they are right and everyone else in wrong. (I’m amazed the way you find these gems of inanity.) Anyway, I particularly enjoyed their opinion of the RC Church:

    “The Catholic Church’s doctrines are a combination of truth and error so intertwined that Catholics seem unable to tell one from the other. This is to Satan’s credit: Satan, having been unable to destroy the church by persecution, succeeded in taking over the church!”

    This seems to say that Frankie and co are agents of the devil. The phrase “to Satan’s credit” is interesting. They seem to admire him for being able to “take over” the RC Church.

    What is striking thoughout this load of drivel is the way everything is seen like the actions of a human. Satan has to outwit the RC Church by deceit. Despite being a god, with presumably god like powers, he can’t just take it over.

    There is very little hope for people who take this nonsense seriously. Their brains are addled beyond recovery. Lots of laughs in there if approached in the right frame of mind. A large whisky helps.

  14. barriejohn says:

    Broga: You have to do mental somersaults to make sense of any of it. It’s difficult to believe that otherwise intelligent people can take it seriously.

  15. Ex Patriot says:

    More stupidity in the name of religion.It is past the point of surprising me just how stupid these beeble thumpers actually are. I( hope the rational prople kids have their shots so they don’t get infected by the idiots kids, I feel sorry for them to have such stupid parents

  16. charlie says:

    The utter stupidity of these buy-bull clowns is beyond belief. One needs to have serious mental health issues to actually buy into this horse shit the “preachers” push on their flocks.
    I do have compassion for the children of these buy-bull believing clowns though. The children have zero choice in this issue, and of course we know what the buy-bull tells them to do with unruly children, take them outside the city gates and stone them to death. How does that saying of Jeebus go? Suffer the little children? Yeah, something like that. I suppose these buy-bull pushers enjoy seeing the children suffer.

  17. PeanutGallery says:

    Ironic that people who would normally oppose abortion would be so willing to put the lives of their children at risk when simple and effective prevention is readily available.

  18. Trevor Blake says:

    “We leave it in (God’s) hands. If it is in his will that somehow we get a contagious disease, like in this case the measles, there are other ways, of course, to avoid this. If (we get sick), he can also heal us from it.”

    Ah, that explains all the times that God regrew the limbs of amputees. Because God can both cause someone to lose a limb and to grow a new one.

  19. Rob Rose says:

    the responsibility of government is to society as a whole. They must pass laws that disallow children from going to school if they are not immunized.

  20. jeff says:

    This article is unbelievably stupid. Some Christians have decided that vaccinations are against their beliefs so conservatives are destroying our future? Good point… Last time I checked it a more liberal stance that vaccines were dangerous to put in your bodies. I myself am good friends with a few people, who can only be described as hippies, that have not been vaccinated. Do Robert F.Kennedy Jr. and Naturale Mama sound conservative to anyone?? By the authors logic, those dirty liberals are destroying our future!
    Only a stupid or manipulative person would try to pin the anti-vaccine movement on conservatives.

  21. AgentCormac says:

    @ jeff

    You haven’t even bothered to read the article at all before ranting, have you? If you had you would have discovered that the word ‘conservative’ is mentioned absolutely nowhere, except in the poster visual. And if you had bothered to take the time to read the article you would have further discovered a disclaimer at the bottom which makes clear the context of that poster.

    But then I guess as a typical conservative yourself, knowledge and enlightenment will always come a distant second to rhetoric and mindless, knee-jerk reactions.

  22. John C says:

    These idiots are exactly why we should vacinate our own kids,then at least when kids start dying from preventable diseases,it wont be ours,and when the authorities start questioning why, the cause will be obvious,and maybe religiosity will eventualy be recognised as the mental illness that it is.

  23. Tom80 says:

    Didn’t we have a similar problem in the UK a while back? Parents refused to have their children vaccinated with the MMR (Measles, Mumps Rubella) vaccine due to flawed research from a Doctor who linked the Vaccine with autism? I think some parents still refuse the Vaccine due to their fear of the Child becoming Autistic. Passing Laws to prevent Children from going to school if they are not vaccinated would be a step too far.

  24. Vanity Unfair says:

    Sailor 1031:
    Obviously, there’s no mention of vaccination in the Bible. However, look at Matthew 18:6, Mark 9:42 and Luke 17:2, then Matthew 7:9-11 and Luke 11:11-13.
    After that you’ll have to account for 2,000 years of change but I think the lesson is still relevant and it does not support Rev. Geutze.

  25. Canada Dave says:

    @ why do i have to share this planet with morons?

    “The Good Book, God Is Not Great, must be put in hotel rooms around the globe”

    Good luck with that.
    There is a better chance of Hitler’s Mien Kampf ending up in hotel rooms.
    You are certainly correct though. Hitch himself warned of people who have but a single book in their lives….in particular the koran or bible.

  26. ZombieHunter says:

    It’s not just Christians that are the problem a lot of conspiracy nuts are against vaccination too cos they think vaccinations are used to sterilise the population and even to spread the disease further, there really are a lof of stupid people in the world.

  27. Kona_the_cat says:

    The reaction to the vaccination seems related to the church attempts to stop lightning rods from being put on tops of buildings. (See for a book on this topic written in 1898 )

    I was reading in A Drunkard’s Walk by Leonard Mlodinov that in the middle ages and earlier, the rulers did not ask who died, because they thought they were transgressing on God’s power. So, property could be tallied, and I think births, but not deaths.

    A terrific writer is Atul Guwande and in his book Complications he discusses going to India to observe a vaccination plan to eradicate polio. At one point he discusses how a woman was asked by the lead physician in the area whether she had vaccinated her baby, and the woman said no. He then asked her if she understood the consequences and she said yes. He then thanked her and said goodbye, but his assistant berated her quite loudly. The lead physician told him, “Stop doing that! Come away!” and the assistant said, “Well, I’m just trying to convince her to vaccinate her child.” The head physician then asked, “Well, has your yelling convinced her? Is she more likely to do it now?”

    Chris Mooney has discussed research which shows that the best approach to increasing vaccinations is probably for the physicians to say something like, “Well, most parents vaccinate their children because they believe — and the research shows — it’s helpful in preventing serious diseases.” (They say something like that.) However, trying to scare people into vaccinating drives down the motivation to vaccinate, and so does pointing out the terrible effects of the diseases. Certainly seems counter-intuitive to me.

  28. Kona_the_cat says:

    I surely agree! Saw that a while ago and was thinking similarly to you.

    Don’t go into an ancient book for what is happening now — look to science and research.

    great post!

  29. Walex says:

    It is very unfair that the parents got to get the vaccine but gambling on the lives of their children. Let the children get the vaccine and let them decide to repent after they get old enough to make that decision. If God is the way you say He/She/It is then don’t impose your views on the helpless ones and get them get the vaccine and then they can ask for forgiveness later in their own lives.

  30. Angela_K says:

    @Canada Dave. “Hitch himself warned of people who have but a single book in their lives….in particular the koran or bible.”

    Yes, and a lot of those people are illiterate so have to rely on the interpretation of others; and we know what happens then.

  31. barriejohn says:

    Angela: It’s not only the illiterate, either. Many of the more intelligent Catholics now question the Pope’s pronouncements, but in sects like the Exclusive Brethren the leader seems to be able to make quite arbitrary demands based upon the most obscure of Bible verses, and the faithful kow tow unquestioningly. It’s obviously a psychological thing – they feel “safe” when they are doing what they are told, and panic when required to make a decision for themselves. Maybe it’s a reversion to childhood again.

    This is interesting:

  32. barriejohn says:

    The Exclusive Brethren seem to be setting up a community near Coventry, aided and abetted by naive and gullible councillors:

    A handful of commenters can obviously see what is going on here, but the majority of the population obviously have no idea.

  33. Broga says:

    ‘John C: A brilliant insight from Muslimworld. I’m still laughing. And these are the people who have to pay five times a day. It doesn’t seem to be doing them much good.

  34. AgentCormac says:


    You forgot to include ‘condoms spread AIDS’ on your list of falsehoods. It has to be one of the most cynical and despicable ways that the rcc has lied to its (mainly uneducated African) followers.

  35. jay says:

    While these make the news, I was recently reading CDC statistics that indicate that NUMERICALLY fundies who won’t vaccinate are far fewer than new agers who do the same. Alabama has about a 0.5% exemption rate while ‘liberal ‘ areas of Oregon, Washington and California are in the 5-6% category. There are ‘progressive ‘ pockets of California where the exemption rate reportedly approaches 75%!

    I can dig up some details later.

  36. Carl Kolotylo says:

    If you are a braindead devout religious fanatical wingnut you should do the morally right thing and not have children. Kids should be your number one priority, however these morons will always place their beliefs before the well being of their family.

  37. Dram says:

    the issue being now that the nutters have allowed the Measles and others to mix with the vaccinated crowd those WITH the vaccination will soon make this or the next strain immune to it.

    Thanks guys we are soon to have Vaccine Resistant Measles, as well as many other sicknesses.

    At least the plague that keeps popping up in my area is because the bodies of long lost past are thawing out and falling down river.

  38. Audra says:

    I understand wanting a choice, for whatever reason, as to your children being vaccinated or not. However, I think the schools have a right and a duty to NOT LET non-vaccinated children in the schools. Let those children be home-schooled or go to cyber-school; don’t let them into a school where they will infect other children if they DO get a disease.

  39. “I openly express my own point of view according to the Bible, absolutely. But it’s not that we force them. It’s through their own conscience that they have to act.”

    That has to be the most pusillanimous disingenuity ever. “Not my fault they go do stupid things, I’m just flapping my gums here …”