Pastors prepare message to remove vaccine hesitancy ahead of Easter Sunday

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Some Chicago pastors prepared an Easter Sunday message that will be aimed at a different group of unbelievers -- Latinx and Black communities who do not feel safe taking the COVID-19 vaccine.

Black pastors came together Thursday to remove vaccine hesitancy in their communities through a series of short testimonial videos that will be shared in their respective churches on Easter Sunday.

"Most of us now are drawing more people because now we are on virtually than we used to so, the power of this reach is going to be enormous this weekend," said Pastor Leslie Sanders, Hope Presbyterian Church.

These pastors together reach 500 churches and potentially one million people.

After education sessions with Evolent Health, many overcame their own skepticism and shared video messages about the safety of the vaccine.

"I found out that our community was only six percent vaccinated and so I thought it would be my duty and my responsibility to get the word out," said Dr. Andrew Gibson, overseer United Covenant Churches of Chicago.

The pastors are not just preaching about the importance of getting vaccinated. Several are going one step further and holding clinics. One of three that will be held in conjunction with the city on April 10 will take place at Mount Vernon Baptist Church in East Garfield Park.

"This clinic is for the entire community, for anybody 16 and older, that has underlying condition, but all the way up, we are opening up," said Rev. Johnny Miller, Mount Vernon Baptist Church.

Those interested will be able to register online for the 500 available doses.

"It's critical that we save lives in our own community, in our own families, and that we save our churches," said Simon Gordon, Presiding Bishop, Midwest Full Gospel Baptist Church.

Pastors encourage people to practice what they will preach on Sunday.
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