On October 14, 2020, Elder David A. Bednar participated in the G20 Interfaith Forum, a gathering of leaders from all over the world and of different faith.
In his remarks, “Understanding Religion As Essential—Reflections on the COVID-19 Crisis and the Place of Religion” Elder Bednar discussed why religion is essential in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and he urged policymakers to consider the implications of their actions on faith communities.
Six quotes from Elder David A. Bednar’s address
- “How secular officials understand religion and religious people deeply influences how they treat religious institutions and believers in a time of crisis. The deeper and more respectful the understanding, the more legitimate and effective public policy responses can be.”
2. ‘The centrality of faith to human dignity is why international law holds that basic religious freedom is “non-derogable” — in other words, it cannot be taken away or forfeited, even in times of emergency. To deny such freedom is to deny something fundamental to a believer’s soul.”
3. “Strong connections among family, deeply held religious beliefs, and a community of faith have long been associated with better mental, emotional, and physical health. These critical connections are at risk when blanket bans are issued against religious gatherings.”
4. “Respecting the dignity of religious people pays important dividends. But these powerful opportunities and benefits are possible only if officials acknowledge that for believers and their faith communities religion is essential to their identity and very being!”
5. “Severing people from their religious communities threatens people’s spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical health.”
6. “Misinformation is a major obstacle in a health crisis. Faith communities can debunk rumors, calm fears, and facilitate accurate information. Many will be fearful of vaccines. Religious leaders can be helpful in the fight against the coronavirus.”
Read Elder Bednar’s full remarks at Church News