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April 29, 2021

Priests also work to build trust in COVID-19 vaccine

Photo courtesy the Diocese of Kingstown, St Vincent & the Grenadines

By Kaelanne Jordan

Catholic News has asked clergy from the Antilles Episcopal Conference (AEC) to share their experience and words of encouragement on taking the COVID-19 vaccine.

Today, we hear from Fr Collin Jackson, a Trinidad-born priest now serving in the Kingstown (St Vincent and the Grenadines) diocese.

Fr Collin shared that he received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine February 21. He did so, he asserted, on his own “free will” after having done quite a bit of research.

“I felt comfortable that the risk was well worth it,” he told Catholic News via WhatsApp.

Fr Collin said he has not visited him homeland since his ordination to the priesthood August 6, 2020, due to the ongoing pandemic.

“Part of my decision was to be able to come home,” he said.

In terms of side effects, Fr Collin said he did experience some slight muscle pain and chills one night.

“Since then, there has been nothing more,” he said.

Fr Collin is scheduled to take his second dose of the COVID-19 shot May 3.

For persons hesitant on receiving their vaccination, Fr Collin observed sometimes we allow the “hype” of a situation to take over our capacity to think and make rational decisions.

“I want to invite you with this pandemic to step back for a moment and think of your brother, your sister, your mom, your dad, your grandparents…think about the importance of bringing this pandemic to an end. It will only happen when we have come together and develop immunity.”

The fastest way to achieve this, Fr Collin stated, is to have a large section of the population vaccinated. He encouraged all to do their research “and get the vaccine”.