You may remember several months ago when Reformation Charlotte reported that NIH Director, Francis Collins, teamed up with Russell Moore, former head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, to promote the widespread use of vaccines. Turns out, Russell Moore wasn’t his only Southern Baptist Ally. Recently, Ed Stetzer, former leader of LifeWay, the Southern Baptist Convention’s publishing arm, interviewed Collins and asked him a few (surprisingly) pointed questions about the CDC’s credibility when they’re pushing woke, LGBTQ language like “pregnant persons” or “birthing persons” instead of “mothers.”
Francis Collins professes to be a conservative Christian and has been heavily promoted by the ERLC, the Southern Baptist Convention, and various other Evangelical leaders as such, and has been used as a tool to promote the use of vaccines in the Evangelical Church because of his profession of faith.
Below is a transcript (swiped from Protestia) of the interview.
ED STETZER: A lot of people are suspicious of a lot of the apparatus that you oversee…Some of that comes from…the changing guidance on masks…but also, too, it’s the question of...I tell people, “Believe the CDC,” and then I see people from the CDC go on and change language about “mothers” to “pregnant persons,” and things of that sort. So…it’s becoming increasingly hard for me in the last few months, as one who wants to be your champion, when the apparatus that is under NIH and all the health stuff, seems to have been caught up in some of the currents of the day.
So why should I, as an evangelical Christian who believes that mothers have children, and yet that’s different language now coming from different parts of areas you oversee, then say, but what they’re saying about the virus, which I believe. Remember, I’m on your team. But I’m having to answer these questions to people in my churches. So how would you answer that as a fellow evangelical, that I trust?
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FRANCIS COLLINS: Well, I would say, first of all, it’s probably not a surprise to any of us that all human institutions have flaws, and that certainly applies to government institutions and to churches, as well. They’re created by human beings. We have this incredible wisdom that is poured into rusty vessels, and it doesn’t always come out quite the way you would like. And so, be a little bit accepting of the fact that institutions are always going to have these flaws, but then try to look past that.
And again, let’s come back to this issue about what is the truth. And if there’s something I’m really worried about, more than even COVID-19, it’s this sense that we’ve become unmoored from an appreciation that truth is what really matters, that we will be guided by that. And if we start to step away from that, even if we don’t like the message, well, where will we be?
And this is not just the secular world that’s all about alternative facts, it’s the church, too. If we’ve lost that, if the truth is what we need to set us free, well the alternative is not a place that is going to have a future. So yeah, okay, go ahead and be frustrated about institutions that don’t say things quite the way you want, I hear ya. But ask, what’s the truth here? And where are you most likely to find it? And I would say you’re going to find a lot more truth in the CDC website than on Facebook.
Stetzer–to his credit despite the fact that he’s completely undiscerning and well-known for pushing liberal causes–at least tries to press him a little further on the issue. Nonetheless, Collins continues to refuse to denounce the CDC’s language.