My husband and I decided we wanted to vaccinate our children. However we just found out that some vaccines contain human diploid cells from aborted fetuses. We want our children to be fully protected but we are 100% against abortion. What is the best way to handle these vaccines?
In 2005 the Pontifical Academy for Life responded to a similar question:
To summarize, it must be confirmed that:
*] there is a grave responsibility to use alternative vaccines and to make a conscientious objection with regard to those which have moral problems;
*] as regards the vaccines without an alternative, the need to contest so that others may be prepared must be reaffirmed, as should be the lawfulness of using the former in the meantime insomuch as is necessary in order to avoid a serious risk not only for one’s own children but also, and perhaps more specifically, for the health conditions of the population as a whole - especially for pregnant women;
*] the lawfulness of the use of these vaccines should not be misinterpreted as a declaration of the lawfulness of their production, marketing and use, but is to be understood as being a passive material cooperation and, in its mildest and remotest sense, also active, morally justified as an extrema ratio due to the necessity to provide for the good of one’s children and of the people who come in contact with the children (pregnant women);
*] such cooperation occurs in a context of moral coercion of the conscience of parents, who are forced to choose to act against their conscience or otherwise, to put the health of their children and of the population as a whole at risk. This is an unjust alternative choice, which must be eliminated as soon as possible.[/list]
If an alternative version of the vaccine exists that was not derived from aborted fetuses we have a grave moral obligation to use the alternative.
If no alternative exists, we may licitly use the vaccine to protect our, our children’s, and society’s health and life. However, we should also be active in voicing our moral objects and work to the best of our ability for change in these horrific practices.
There is **no ** level of licit cooperation for those who take part in the production, research and marketing of vaccines derived from aborted human fetuses.