February 1, 2022
A Statement on the Vaccination Mandate Protest Convoy
Over the past number of days, we have seen people from across our country exercise their right to gather and protest what they believe to be unjust laws. We fully support that right and encourage people to speak up when they believe something is unjust.
However, we also stand with many across the Christian Church and other faith traditions in unequivocally denouncing the symbols, words, and actions of white nationalism being expressed in Ottawa and across the country during these rallies. There is no place in our faith traditions to promote anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, or racism.
Our faith demands that we call out injustice. However, our response can never be a further display of intolerance and hate at the expense of others. We cannot support groups that have an underlying ideology of racism and white supremacy. As Paul wrote to the Corinthian Church: “Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 2:4-5)
To those who feel compelled to protest vaccination mandates, we support your right to do so. But please let your protest be about healthcare mandates. Do not give power or a platform to those who promote division and intolerance masquerading as ‘freedom.’
We are calling on each member of MNO Synod and Diocese of Rupert’s Land congregations to remember that in all things we follow God who calls us to love everyone across all expressions of race, religion, gender, and ability.
Yours in Christ’s Service,
Rev. Jason Zinko (he/him)
Manitoba Northwestern Ontario Synod Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
The Right Reverend Geoffrey Woodcroft Bishop
Diocese of Rupert’s Land
Anglican Church of Canada