An Italian priest who shunned COVID-19 vaccines because of the false belief that they contained “aborted embryos,” has died at the age of 51 after battling the coronavirus for several weeks.
Don Paolo Romeo turned down pleas for vaccinations from friends and colleagues who tried to talk to him, according to L’Unione Sarda newspapers.
Romeo, who was a parish priest at the Convent of Santo Stefano in Genoa, has clung to the conspiracy theory espoused by followers of French Catholic Archbishop Marcel François Marie Joseph Lefebvre: that a COVID-19 vaccine was made. created using cells from aborted embryos.
(This claim is false and has been debunked even by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, as noted in a statement released in January that “neither Pfizer nor Moderna use cell lines derived from abortion during vaccine development or production.”) The fetal cell line, which is a nuclear clone. copies of cells taken from elective abortions that were performed decades ago, are used in vaccine testing, and are commonly used to test widely used drugs such as ibuprofen and aspirin .
But even the Vatican has stress that the COVID-19 vaccine is “ethically acceptable” and “can be used in good conscience” during a pandemic.
However, Romeo refused to sway, and he continued to celebrate Mass despite the spreading coronavirus infection. He was diagnosed with the virus in January and was hospitalized near his church after his health deteriorated rapidly, according to local reports.
Monastery of Santo Stefano honor him on social media after his death, writing on Monday that he “went to heaven”.
“May God reward him for all the good he has done here on Earth and may he forgive his shortcomings if any.”
The priest’s death comes as Italy’s Catholic military chaplain publicly opposes a former Vatican ambassador’s “conspiracy theory” about COVID-19 and calls against vaccine mandates. Archbishop Santo Marcianò, in a letter to the country’s armed forces on Monday, urge them to ignore the taunts of the “former apostolic nuncio” encouraging them not to vaccinate.
Although he didn’t name it Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò In the letter, the former Vatican ambassador to the United States is widely considered the subject. Viganò made international headlines in 2018 after calling for Pope Francis to step down for sexual abuse in the church, but he recently revealed the pandemic is believed to be the conspiracy of a “main oligarchic”. globalism” to enslave humanity. Recently, he spoke to protesters in Rome and asked them to defy vaccine regulations.
That didn’t work out too well for other members of the Catholic Church who fell ill. Cardinal Raymund Burke, who has made a conspiracy theory about a COVID-19 vaccine and called the coronavirus the “Wuhan virus,” was placed on a ventilator after falling ill with the virus last year. He survived but admitted during a mass in December that he had not yet fully recovered.