A North Carolina musician has been prohibited from playing with the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra this fall because she cannot in good conscience take a COVID-19 vaccine that has links to aborted babies.
The Greensboro News & Record reports Martha Dippold, a clarinetist with the orchestra for about five years, said she was told that she will not be allowed to participate in the orchestra’s 50th anniversary concert in October unless she gets vaccinated.
Dippold said she does not plan to get the vaccine for several reasons: one, because she is pro-life and objects to the use of cell lines created from aborted babies in the development of the vaccines, and two, because she already had COVID-19 and has natural immunity, according to the report.
Opinions about the ethics of the new COVID-19 vaccines vary even among many Christians and pro-life advocates. None of the vaccines from Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Moderna or Pfizer contain cells from aborted babies, but they all have links to abortion, some more-so than others.
The orchestra recently told all performers that they must be vaccinated if they want to play; however, it promised to consider medical and religious exemptions.
Dippold requested an exemption, noting that “the COVID vaccines have associations with aborted fetal tissues. I am opposed to this. I could not in good conscience receive a shot under any circumstance,” the report states.
She said the orchestra refused her request because cells from aborted babies were not used in the actual vaccines.
“It was very disappointing, … [but] I don’t have any grudges,” she said.
Orchestra executive director Liz Scanlon said their desire is to provide “a safe, inclusive and supportive experience for all, including musicians, staff and concertgoers.”
The vaccine issue has divided many, including pro-lifers and Christians.
The Vatican recently issued a statement declaring that it is morally acceptable for Catholics to take vaccines even if they use cell lines create from aborted babies because of the vaccines’ life-saving impact. Others, however, have argued that any connection to the killing of unborn babies in abortions – no matter how remote – is immoral.
The companies Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca used cell lines created from the cells of babies who were aborted decades ago in the development and testing of their vaccines. These cell lines are clones of the aborted babies’ cells.
The connections between abortion and the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are much more limited, with cell lines created from aborted babies used only in testing the products.
The Charlotte Lozier Institute has a list of the vaccines with information about whether cell lines created from aborted babies were used in testing and/or production. Find it here.
ACTION ALERT: Contact the symphony to respectfully request that it respect Dippold’s pro-life beliefs and allow her to play.