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(CC) When you disagree with the pastor

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1 hour ago, SKL said:

Honestly, I don't think a pastor wearing a mask is going to guarantee anyone's safety.  Statistically it may make a small difference.  I think that other parishioners are more likely to impact the risk factor vs. the pastor.  Frankly, if I lived in a place with many cases, and I was at serious risk should I be exposed, I'd stay home regardless of what the church / pastor did.

I think that if the pastor is masked there are two benefits.  One is that he's less likely to spread the virus himself, either when preaching (assuming OP's situation with a tiny church where people sit close the pulpit), or when greeting people at the end of the service. The other is that people model their behavior after their pastor, so it's possible that just by wearing a mask ,the pastor could increase the number of mask wearing masks in the congregation, and there might even be carry over to other settings.

1 hour ago, SKL said:

I actually think it's a little irresponsible to imply that at-risk people are gonna be perfectly safe as long as other people wear masks.

Do you feel like people on this thread have said that?  I know I've been one of the voices on the "pastor should wear a mask when it's the law" team, and I've been clear that even though our whole diocese is wearing masks that won't get my family back in church.  So, clearly I don't believe masks are a 100% solution.  But I've got elderly relatives who might decide that the masks cut the risk to the point where they're comfortable, and return to church.  

I do the same kind of thinking about other things.  For example, I don't let my kids ride in carpools where there aren't enough seatbelts.  I know that seatbelts don't cut the risk to zero, but they cut it to the point where I feel like the benefits (during noncovid times) of getting to soccer outweigh the risk.  I don't believe that seatbelts don't matter because seatbelts only cut the risk of death by 45%, so I don't understand the logic that masks don't matter because they only cut the risk of death by 80%

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On 6/14/2020 at 5:34 PM, Arctic Mama said:

So this is kind of irrelevant too.  Are we not supposed to meet with the possibility of communicable disease ever again then? Or never without masks? There is always a risk of spread, no vaccine on the horizon, etc.

There are more important things in life than a virus, and death comes to us all. How long do we continue this behavior and mitigating our meeting and habits and who gets to decide that for the church? Is it three months more? A year? Until a vaccine that may or may not ever come and may not have total efficacy arrives?

 

When is it ‘safe’ and who gets to choose? I have no illusions that we are somehow at zero risk of it showing up here, especially when there is spread in this area (it’s just very very low and the fatality rates are even lower).  There is so much finger shaking and pontificating on the public safety on this thread, but precious little discussion of where the line is that makes sense to resume normal civic life with this risk in the background.  As a church we decided where it was for us, as a hospital my child’s facility decided that for themselves and their patients, as a homeschool group my kid’s extension program decided their lines too.  There are always lines, this is not something reasonable to require for life here on out in any communal singing or tight quarters indoors situation.

For us and our area, we crossed the line for safety and have resumed life, most of us.  Some have made a different assessment and are staying home still.  That’s okay too.

I just do not think the disease turned out to be the incredibly deadly disease we thought it might be at the beginning. And when I take my children swimming or get in the car and drive or anything else, I am taking risk. I think the line has been crossed to acceptable risk for the general public. People who are at especially high risk can quarantine if they want. However, this needs to be better defined. I am hearing "high risk" conditions in young people are really not that high risk. It is elderly or at least much older people with high risk conditions that is an issue. And even then, the death rate is not a certainty.  If my child were on chemotherapy or had HIV, I would quarantine. There are probably a few things that are that high risk. But for asthma, autoimmune disorders, etc, not so much. Like I said before, no point in being dead while still breathing, live life while you have it and be dead when your time comes.

edited to add: I think the media has done a lot of fear mongering. I think the riots are showing us how not contagious and not deadly this thing is. 

Edited by Janeway
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6 minutes ago, Janeway said:

I just do not think the disease turned out to be the incredibly deadly disease we thought it might be at the beginning. And when I take my children swimming or get in the car and drive or anything else, I am taking risk. I think the line has been crossed to acceptable risk for the general public. People who are at especially high risk can quarantine if they want. However, this needs to be better defined. I am hearing "high risk" conditions in young people are really not that high risk. It is elderly or at least much older people with high risk conditions that is an issue. And even then, the death rate is not a certainty.  If my child were on chemotherapy or had HIV, I would quarantine. There are probably a few things that are that high risk. But for asthma, autoimmune disorders, etc, not so much. Like I said before, no point in being dead while still breathing, live life while you have it and be dead when your time comes.

edited to add: I think the media has done a lot of fear mongering. I think the riots are showing us how not contagious and not deadly this thing is. 

UM, it will take weeks to see the spread via the riots? We can't see that yet. 

And at least in my area, there are way more people hospitalized under age 65 than over, so although it may not be as deadly for younger ages, it certainly is very serious. My area is starting to run out of room in the hospitals again. 

I mean, how on earth can people say that something that in a matter of months has killed more Americans than died in World War I is not dangerous and contagious?

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43 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

UM, it will take weeks to see the spread via the riots? We can't see that yet. 

And at least in my area, there are way more people hospitalized under age 65 than over, so although it may not be as deadly for younger ages, it certainly is very serious. My area is starting to run out of room in the hospitals again. 

I mean, how on earth can people say that something that in a matter of months has killed more Americans than died in World War I is not dangerous and contagious?

The US population has more than tripled since WW1. Every year, almost 3 million people die from a variety of causes (when you do not include those who died to abortion). The number of people from the US who died in WW1 was less than a quarter of a million. 250,000 people sounds like a lot, especially when you think of it as a city being wiped out.  Legal immigrants come to this country every year at the rate of over 1,000,000. Babies are born at a rate of almost 4 million. And then there are the rest of the people who come here, not legally.  So you have to put it in to the context of the huge and vast population.  Even if that many people died in the US, it would still be less than 0.1%. Frankly, if our overall death rate were that low in the US, we would be in huge trouble. (it would mean people are living more than a 1000 years if the death rate were that low)

 

edited to add: I looked up each of these statistics online before I posted them and only posted the ones I found on .gov sites and such.

Edited by Janeway
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41 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

UM, it will take weeks to see the spread via the riots? We can't see that yet. 

And at least in my area, there are way more people hospitalized under age 65 than over, so although it may not be as deadly for younger ages, it certainly is very serious. My area is starting to run out of room in the hospitals again. 

I mean, how on earth can people say that something that in a matter of months has killed more Americans than died in World War I is not dangerous and contagious?

Also, it has been over 2 weeks since the start of the riots. Look at this article... https://www.foxnews.com/us/minnesota-protesters-few-coronavirus-positives

 

 

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2 hours ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Good.  Of course you know this, but I don't believe that they are using proper application of Scripture at all.  The principles of love behind "the letter of the law" teach us to "Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;" (Philippians 2:3).  I get so annoyed by Christians who in arrogance talk about how they "are not living in fear" but "know where they are going to spend eternity".  I know where I am going to spend eternity too but I don't think that God wants me to take along everyone I can for the ride.  And I'm not fearful.  I'm prepared and am taking very simple precautions.  If God wants to take me home despite those precautions then He will.  But in the meantime I'm going to do what I can to live out my faith in these circumstances that He's put me in.  I believe that this includes finding contentment in the midst of a pandemic because He doesn't call us to only be happy and content when things are going along to the norms that we set for ourselves.  I believe that it also includes reaching out to people in different ways because we are not limiting to showing our love only in those ways that give us warm fuzzies.  I can put myself on a soapbox for this (or a pulpit 😉  ) but my point is not to preach but to encourage others as well as myself to take advantage of how I can grow in my faith in the midst of this crisis. 

Right now I'm working on preparing for the small Bible camp where I am director.  I don't know if God will open the door for us to have it this year - we will abide by our state guidelines for reopening.  The county we have camp is in phase 2 and must be in phase 3 for us to have camp.  But I don't feel like our preparation will be in vain.  If we can't have it this year we will next year.  (Reminds me of how Paul prepared for missionary journeys some of which got postponed by God for a time or rerouted.)  And if we are allowed to go ahead with camp then we will still follow "best practices" of hygiene, group separation, staying outside as much as possible, medical checks, masks etc. because it's not just about getting to do camp, it's about doing it safely while we're at it. 

Thank you for this Jean.

I have been thinking a lot about what my faith means to me especially in the context of the pandemic and the protests. Essentially what "living out my faith" means to me. I have a very complex relationship with christianity itself. It goes back to how my family became christians and it was in the shadow of colonization by christian missionaries. One of the guiding verses of my life is also the verse from Esther 4: 14 "Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this".  Only He knows why he moved me countries and put me here at this place and time and though I do not know what is in front of me, I need to have faith the size of a mustard seed which is not easy always. Faith to me also does not mean testing Him, but abiding in Him even if I do not understand everything, but not doing it blindly. So I try to find contentment and joy in the circumstances I find myself in always. Not easy but try.

I hope you get to have your Bible Camp. I don't think preparation is in vain at all. I always hold true something my pastor told me as a young child when I am uncertain about the future. "I do not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future and I trust Him who died for me". I try my best to acknowledge Him in all my ways as the Proverbs say and trust that He will direct my path above all  through the noise that surrounds us. I am sure you do too as do the rest of us in this thread.

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4 minutes ago, Janeway said:

Also, it has been over 2 weeks since the start of the riots.

Well yes, but the way this virus spreads is that 2 weeks would be when the people who contracted the virus during the protests might be starting to show symptoms, some of them will have enough virus to seek treatment, and get tested, and some of those who seek treatment will have gotten their test results back.  But that group of protestors, rioters, guardsmen and first responders who contacted the virus, got sick enough to seek treatment, got tested when they sought treatment, and got positive results back is going to be small.  Three or four weeks after the last protest would probably be when we'd have results that reflect all the protesters, rioters, guardsmen, or first responders who might themselves show up as positive results.  Three or four weeks after that date is when we'll see the results from the people they pass the virus on to.  That latter group, will of course, be larger since we know that the most common way the virus spreads is within households. 

4 minutes ago, Janeway said:

That article is comparing apples and oranges.  Comparing the spread of the virus in a random group of protesters who felt well enough to be out in the community for random testing, with the population of people who have been tested, many of whom are people being seen in the ER or hospital for suspicious symptoms, is pretty meaningless.  

I have to agree with this quote from your link:

Kris Ehresmann, state Department of Health director of infectious disease, said there were not enough results to draw firm conclusions about the impact of the mass gatherings on Minnesota’s coronavirus outbreak, according to the paper.

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6 minutes ago, Dreamergal said:

Thank you for this Jean.

I have been thinking a lot about what my faith means to me especially in the context of the pandemic and the protests. Essentially what "living out my faith" means to me. I have a very complex relationship with christianity itself. It goes back to how my family became christians and it was in the shadow of colonization by christian missionaries. One of the guiding verses of my life is also the verse from Esther 4: 14 "Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this".  Only He knows why he moved me countries and put me here at this place and time and though I do not know what is in front of me, I need to have faith the size of a mustard seed which is not easy always. Faith to me also does not mean testing Him, but abiding in Him even if I do not understand everything, but not doing it blindly. So I try to find contentment and joy in the circumstances I find myself in always. Not easy but try.

I hope you get to have your Bible Camp. I don't think preparation is in vain at all. I always hold true something my pastor told me as a young child when I am uncertain about the future. "I do not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future and I trust Him who died for me". I try my best to acknowledge Him in all my ways as the Proverbs say and trust that He will direct my path above all  through the noise that surrounds us. I am sure you do too as do the rest of us in this thread.

That was beautifully said.

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1 hour ago, Janeway said:

I just do not think the disease turned out to be the incredibly deadly disease we thought it might be at the beginning. And when I take my children swimming or get in the car and drive or anything else, I am taking risk. I think the line has been crossed to acceptable risk for the general public. People who are at especially high risk can quarantine if they want. However, this needs to be better defined. I am hearing "high risk" conditions in young people are really not that high risk. It is elderly or at least much older people with high risk conditions that is an issue. And even then, the death rate is not a certainty.  If my child were on chemotherapy or had HIV, I would quarantine. There are probably a few things that are that high risk. But for asthma, autoimmune disorders, etc, not so much. Like I said before, no point in being dead while still breathing, live life while you have it and be dead when your time comes.

edited to add: I think the media has done a lot of fear mongering. I think the riots are showing us how not contagious and not deadly this thing is. 

Actually, hardly anyone thought that COVID was an "incredibly deadly disease." In fact, the mortality rate is trending about where it was predicted around February or so. 

How do you know who is and who is not actually high risk? Have you studied the mortality rates for COVID? 

And the protests might not show what you think they show. The demographics of the protestors not match up with the demographics of those most at risk. 

80% of the ICU beds in our state are filled right now. 

Are you aware of the long term complications from COVID? It's always been about more than just the mortality rate. 

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13 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

Actually, hardly anyone thought that COVID was an "incredibly deadly disease." In fact, the mortality rate is trending about where it was predicted around February or so. 

How do you know who is and who is not actually high risk? Have you studied the mortality rates for COVID? 

And the protests might not show what you think they show. The demographics of the protestors not match up with the demographics of those most at risk. 

80% of the ICU beds in our state are filled right now. 

Are you aware of the long term complications from COVID? It's always been about more than just the mortality rate. 

For the first month of lock down, I sat around and cried when I had to go in public and studied, constantly and obsessively searching for every study and every single thing I could find on Covid. I am not sure when I changed my mind and stopped feeling so scared. But there came a point in digging through the endless studies that I decided I am not scared enough to not go out or not continue to live life. I have grown to feel most people will get this in the end. I do not think a vaccination will come to fruition before then. I think it is better to have it now than during flu season. I plan to be tested for antibodies around September/October and if we have none, potentially face another lock down. But I could not really show you the hundreds of studies I have looked at. I have mostly relied on things that came out of WHO, CDC, .gov sites, or universities. And this is just my conclusion. And I could be completely wrong. I don't know the answers. This whole thing is such an unknown, we all need to make our own decisions. I might die tomorrow, and it might be Covid. But I might stay locked down only to die of cancer next year, or in a car accident tonight. I don't know. But I know when my mom died, suddenly and unexpectedly, over and over I thought about how cautious she always was, how she was always dieting and always worried and always frugal. And then she died before she ever got to do some of the many things she wanted to do. She also died while dieting, which really sucks. I mean, no last meal of chocolate. This has affected me. I know I will die some day, and I don't want my final days to be living in fear, closed up in my house (and certainly not on an awful diet).

Also, Covid has not been around long enough for us to know the long term consequences. We also don't know the long term consequences of the shut down either. Flip a coin and pick your poison. 

 

edited to add: I highly recommend the book "Freakonomics." It is about how people perceive danger vs where the danger really is. I can tell you, I do not know a single Actuary right now that wears a face mask or stays home. 

Edited by Janeway
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That’s a great book, I agree.  Persuasion and Influence are also awesome in understand some of the perception of risk, manipulation, and emotional appeals.  My favorite genre of nonfiction 🤩

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45 minutes ago, Janeway said:

The US population has more than tripled since WW1. Every year, almost 3 million people die from a variety of causes (when you do not include those who died to abortion). The number of people from the US who died in WW1 was less than a quarter of a million. 250,000 people sounds like a lot, especially when you think of it as a city being wiped out.  Legal immigrants come to this country every year at the rate of over 1,000,000. Babies are born at a rate of almost 4 million. And then there are the rest of the people who come here, not legally.  So you have to put it in to the context of the huge and vast population.  Even if that many people died in the US, it would still be less than 0.1%. Frankly, if our overall death rate were that low in the US, we would be in huge trouble. (it would mean people are living more than a 1000 years if the death rate were that low)

 

edited to add: I looked up each of these statistics online before I posted them and only posted the ones I found on .gov sites and such.

You seem to be saying that hey, doesn't matter if 100,000 people die on average a decade before they should have, because we have plenty of other people to replace them with?? And maybe it is good, since we don't want too many people?

I'm sorry, but if my DH dies, I'm not going to be okay with it because hey, we got a new batch of immigrants. 

It honestly sounds like society feels that since masks are not super comfy, might as well let people's loved ones die. After all, we have new people coming to replace them. that's not...comforting. 

Besides, many of us fear the hospitalization, not death. I would be unlikely to die, but it would sure be a huge problem for my family if I were in the hospital for weeks on end. My poor 3 yr old would be miserable not understanding, and not able to visit me. I'm sure there are people in that congregation for whom a lengthy hospital stay, followed by rehab, etc would be nearly devestating. To have the pastor violate the law and increase that risk because he just doesn't like masks hardly seems Christian. I mean, how on earth is that "caring for the least of these"? Because they are not nice to wear? We are all asked to sacrifice, to carry our cross. Following the law and wearing a mask for an hour or so isn't much of a cross, really, in the scheme of things. I'm sure he asks harder sacrifices of his congregation. 

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2 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

You seem to be saying that hey, doesn't matter if 100,000 people die on average a decade before they should have, because we have plenty of other people to replace them with?? And maybe it is good, since we don't want too many people?

I'm sorry, but if my DH dies, I'm not going to be okay with it because hey, we got a new batch of immigrants. 

It honestly sounds like society feels that since masks are not super comfy, might as well let people's loved ones die. After all, we have new people coming to replace them. that's not...comforting. 

Besides, many of us fear the hospitalization, not death. I would be unlikely to die, but it would sure be a huge problem for my family if I were in the hospital for weeks on end. My poor 3 yr old would be miserable not understanding, and not able to visit me. I'm sure there are people in that congregation for whom a lengthy hospital stay, followed by rehab, etc would be nearly devestating. To have the pastor violate the law and increase that risk because he just doesn't like masks hardly seems Christian. I mean, how on earth is that "caring for the least of these"? Because they are not nice to wear? We are all asked to sacrifice, to carry our cross. Following the law and wearing a mask for an hour or so isn't much of a cross, really, in the scheme of things. I'm sure he asks harder sacrifices of his congregation. 

Ironically, I'm hearing this message primarily from people I wouldn't have previously thought of as particularly pro-immigrant.  I'm pretty pro-immigrant.  I intentionally choose to raise my kids in a diverse community where many of our friends and neighbors are immigrants.  I also advocate for more humane policies around immigration, and a path to citizenship for people who originally arrived undocumented.  I think that it's great that our county is getting so many new residents, and yet even I don't want to replace my gfil or my son with immigrants.  

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1 minute ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

Ironically, I'm hearing this message primarily from people I wouldn't have previously thought of as particularly pro-immigrant.  I'm pretty pro-immigrant.  I intentionally choose to raise my kids in a diverse community where many of our friends and neighbors are immigrants.  I also advocate for more humane policies around immigration, and a path to citizenship for people who originally arrived undocumented.  I think that it's great that our county is getting so many new residents, and yet even I don't want to replace my gfil or my son with immigrants.  

Yeah. And that our population is higher....that doesn't make me not want MY dh, not some other random person. And if I end up in the hospital for weeks, knowing there are a whole lot more people in our population won't really help make me feel better, nor are those people likely to show up and change my 3 yr old's diaper, keep track of DS 7's meds and supplements, etc. 

Edited by Ktgrok
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And people keep comparing it to dying in a car crash. We've already had over 111,000 people die in really, about 3 months, from COVID 19. 

There were only 36,000 traffic fatalities in ALL  twelve months of 2020.  

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42 minutes ago, Janeway said:

edited to add: I highly recommend the book "Freakonomics." It is about how people perceive danger vs where the danger really is. I can tell you, I do not know a single Actuary right now that wears a face mask or stays home. 

I won't go into my opinon on Freakonomics (it's not all bad, but sometimes when they're wrong, they're very, very wrong), but I will say the actuary I know wears masks and stays home, and a brief search of Twitter shows me there are plenty more doing the same (including one that seems to have done a whole lot of mask sewing and donation). I would guess it's more a function of where you live and, unfortunately, political perspective. If the actuaries you know share you political opinions, that's likely the number one reason they aren't wearing face masks or staying home. Nothing to do with the science.

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1 hour ago, Janeway said:

For the first month of lock down, I sat around and cried when I had to go in public and studied, constantly and obsessively searching for every study and every single thing I could find on Covid. I am not sure when I changed my mind and stopped feeling so scared. But there came a point in digging through the endless studies that I decided I am not scared enough to not go out or not continue to live life. I have grown to feel most people will get this in the end. I do not think a vaccination will come to fruition before then. I think it is better to have it now than during flu season. I plan to be tested for antibodies around September/October and if we have none, potentially face another lock down. But I could not really show you the hundreds of studies I have looked at. I have mostly relied on things that came out of WHO, CDC, .gov sites, or universities. And this is just my conclusion. And I could be completely wrong. I don't know the answers. This whole thing is such an unknown, we all need to make our own decisions. I might die tomorrow, and it might be Covid. But I might stay locked down only to die of cancer next year, or in a car accident tonight. I don't know. But I know when my mom died, suddenly and unexpectedly, over and over I thought about how cautious she always was, how she was always dieting and always worried and always frugal. And then she died before she ever got to do some of the many things she wanted to do. She also died while dieting, which really sucks. I mean, no last meal of chocolate. This has affected me. I know I will die some day, and I don't want my final days to be living in fear, closed up in my house (and certainly not on an awful diet).

Also, Covid has not been around long enough for us to know the long term consequences. We also don't know the long term consequences of the shut down either. Flip a coin and pick your poison. 

 

edited to add: I highly recommend the book "Freakonomics." It is about how people perceive danger vs where the danger really is. I can tell you, I do not know a single Actuary right now that wears a face mask or stays home. 

Well, I didn't sit around and cry for the first month of the shutdown. I've always take things seriously but I've never been terrified of going out. We didn't stop "living life." 

I've never read the book but I understand very well that most people do not perceive risk correctly. I don't know why I would care what an actuary does. Actuaries look at risk over time. COVID hasn't existed long enough to establish any patterns. The medical professionals I know wear masks when they go outside and do their best to social distance. 

Perhaps you assume that taking precautions is as extreme as what you went through in the first month when you cried all of the time. That's never been what it was for me or most people. I'd suggest that you experienced is burnout. 

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41 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

And people keep comparing it to dying in a car crash. We've already had over 111,000 people die in really, about 3 months, from COVID 19. 

There were only 36,000 traffic fatalities in ALL  twelve months of 2020.  

And to all of the people who say that cars are dangerous but we still drive - we wear seatbelts and put our young children in car seats. We observe speed limits. Our cars have airbags. We do reasonable things to minimize our risk when we drive in a car. 

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44 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

And people keep comparing it to dying in a car crash. We've already had over 111,000 people die in really, about 3 months, from COVID 19. 

There were only 36,000 traffic fatalities in ALL  twelve months of 2020.  

Probably the one way that it is like car crashes is that while you may not die, you could be left with life altering health issues.

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3 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

And to all of the people who say that cars are dangerous but we still drive - we wear seatbelts and put our young children in car seats. We observe speed limits. Our cars have airbags. We do reasonable things to minimize our risk when we drive in a car. 

Yes. Unless you go by what the Freakonomics people said, when they declared car seats not helpful for kids over 2 😒. One of those examples of sometimes they're very wrong (and dangerously so).

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11 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

You seem to be saying that hey, doesn't matter if 100,000 people die on average a decade before they should have, because we have plenty of other people to replace them with?? And maybe it is good, since we don't want too many people?

I'm sorry, but if my DH dies, I'm not going to be okay with it because hey, we got a new batch of immigrants. 

It honestly sounds like society feels that since masks are not super comfy, might as well let people's loved ones die. After all, we have new people coming to replace them. that's not...comforting. 

Besides, many of us fear the hospitalization, not death. I would be unlikely to die, but it would sure be a huge problem for my family if I were in the hospital for weeks on end. My poor 3 yr old would be miserable not understanding, and not able to visit me. I'm sure there are people in that congregation for whom a lengthy hospital stay, followed by rehab, etc would be nearly devestating. To have the pastor violate the law and increase that risk because he just doesn't like masks hardly seems Christian. I mean, how on earth is that "caring for the least of these"? Because they are not nice to wear? We are all asked to sacrifice, to carry our cross. Following the law and wearing a mask for an hour or so isn't much of a cross, really, in the scheme of things. I'm sure he asks harder sacrifices of his congregation. 

First, people need to stop saying stuff like this - implying "you apparently don't care if people die."  Nobody feels that way and you know it.  So what is the point of saying that?  Honestly I want to know, because it seems to me like an attempt stifle people with different opinions/observations.

Second, I think the comments here are really about whether people want to go to church if the pastor is masked.  It doesn't necessarily mean they want to go to church the old way right now (though some may).  For many it means we will just stay home through this masking phase.  There is loss in that on both sides, so maybe churches could explore other ways to try to meet in the middle.  Humans being the inventors that we are, I think we'll see new ideas in this regard week after week.

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10 minutes ago, SKL said:

First, people need to stop saying stuff like this - implying "you apparently don't care if people die."  Nobody feels that way and you know it.  So what is the point of saying that?  Honestly I want to know, because it seems to me like an attempt stifle people with different opinions/observations.

Second, I think the comments here are really about whether people want to go to church if the pastor is masked.  It doesn't necessarily mean they want to go to church the old way right now (though some may).  For many it means we will just stay home through this masking phase.  There is loss in that on both sides, so maybe churches could explore other ways to try to meet in the middle.  Humans being the inventors that we are, I think we'll see new ideas in this regard week after week.

Because when I brought up the huge loss of life, I was told that well, our population is bigger now. The only reason I see for that to matter, is to be saying that we can afford to lose more people. That it isn't in fact a huge loss of life for 100,000 people to die. 

If someone says, in response to my concern for a hundred thousand people dying, "well, we have more babies and immigrants, and we don't want overpopulation" that sure sounds like they are saying it is okay for those people to die, we have plenty of extra people. 

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On 6/14/2020 at 1:32 PM, Ordinary Shoes said:

It's not a silly reason to find a new church. People who refuse to take precautions are doing so for a number of reasons, all of which are objectionable to me. They are rejecting science. They are probably politically motivated. They likely implicitly believe that they are safe because they pray and God will protect them. These are all problematic as far as I'm concerned. Do we drive in a car without our seatbelts assuming God will protect us? No. I actually think that's almost heretical because it's testing God. We have faith and we pray but we also receive medical treatment, wear seatbelts, and get vaccines. Obviously, I'm evaluating this based on my own tradition which might have a different perspective on this. 

It's never just about the mask with most people who refuse to wear them. 

This pretty much sums up what I was thinking after reading the post—the pastor is doing it to fly in the face of “the government overreach” or “for liberty” or some other thing. It has been disappointing to see how some faith leaders have responded to this. My pastor/church leadership was very wise about it/followed the law, and I know most churches are that way. Maybe he isn’t trustworthy in more than the mask issue. You have just seen this side of him due to covid. 

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I’m so tired of people implying that any alternative to “everyone gets it eventually” is pie-in-the-sky fantasy. TB is just as contagious and we don’t regularly vaccinate for it.  We monitor, and when there’s an outbreak public health officials track and trace, contagious people isolate and quarantine, and the outbreak dies out.  We could have gotten there with CoVid with a little cooperative effort and political will. Instead we got political posturing and hyper-masculinist pseudo-Christianity bellowing that simple public health measures show weakness and fear. 

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I haven't read all of the responses.

This is not a silly reason to leave the church.  Your pastor is sinning in his rebellion against civil authority --  and only because he doesn't want to wear a mask.  He isn't resisting for righteous reasons (as Corrie Ten Boom and her family did when hiding Jews from the Nazis, for instance).  

Sins like this are forgivable, of course, if one turns from them.  It may be that he hasn't thought this through and he needs someone to gently point out his error.  Pastors are spiritual first responders who often don't receive much support from others, and he has likely been carrying heavy burdens for the people of your congregation.  He may be weary and upset.   

That said, if your church's leaders (deacons, elders, etc.) are obedient to Christ, they won't allow your him to continue in his sin for very long.  They will exercise the church discipline mentioned upthread -- Jesus provided the guidelines in Matthew 18 -- and ultimately remove him if he isn't willing to turn around.  Unrepentant sin poses grave danger to your pastor's soul and is harmful to the Body and to those who might come to Christ but are disillusioned by this sort of behavior.

I might watch for a change for a short time, but I would leave if it continues.  The virus isn't the greatest danger in this situation.

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5 minutes ago, Danae said:

I’m so tired of people implying that any alternative to “everyone gets it eventually” is pie-in-the-sky fantasy. TB is just as contagious and we don’t regularly vaccinate for it.  We monitor, and when there’s an outbreak public health officials track and trace, contagious people isolate and quarantine, and the outbreak dies out.  We could have gotten there with CoVid with a little cooperative effort and political will. Instead we got political posturing and hyper-masculinist pseudo-Christianity bellowing that simple public health measures show weakness and fear. 

Yes!

In addition, even if everyone gets it, buying time by slowing things down helps.  It might mean that someone gets another year or two with their family before they die.  It might mean that we have time to rebuild our PPE supplies, so that people can visit their loved ones in the hospital.  It might be that we keep the load in our hospitals down to the point that we can continue to do elective procedures.  It might mean that we identify treatments that work, and mortality and morbidity rates decline.  Those things matter.  

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4 minutes ago, CuriousMomof3 said:

Yes!

In addition, even if everyone gets it, buying time by slowing things down helps.  It might mean that someone gets another year or two with their family before they die.  It might mean that we have time to rebuild our PPE supplies, so that people can visit their loved ones in the hospital.  It might be that we keep the load in our hospitals down to the point that we can continue to do elective procedures.  It might mean that we identify treatments that work, and mortality and morbidity rates decline.  Those things matter.  

Truth. Just today the BBC had an article about a new treatment that will save one  in 8 lives on a ventilator and one in 25 lives on oxygen. And that had we known this in the beginning thousands of lives would have been saved. Had those people been able to avoid the illness a few extra months, they would likely be alive, to spend years more with their families. And people who get it this month will die who would have lived if they caught it later, when we have more treatments, most likely. 

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1 hour ago, Ktgrok said:

Because when I brought up the huge loss of life, I was told that well, our population is bigger now. The only reason I see for that to matter, is to be saying that we can afford to lose more people. That it isn't in fact a huge loss of life for 100,000 people to die. 

If someone says, in response to my concern for a hundred thousand people dying, "well, we have more babies and immigrants, and we don't want overpopulation" that sure sounds like they are saying it is okay for those people to die, we have plenty of extra people. 

Well I suggest you dig a little deeper for intent.

She was saying it isn't logical to compare death statistics today with 75 years ago.  She wasn't saying the lives don't matter (or didn't 75 years ago for that matter).

The fact is that a lot of people die every year.  That doesn't make any life less valuable, it's simply a fact.  There is also the fact that we have no reliable actual numbers for the death toll from Covid19.  We do know that some people die from it, yes, and we should try to keep that to a minimum, but that does not require the entire world population to live in a bubble indefinitely, because the fact is that this virus has a relatively low death rate for the general population, compared to other pandemics.  Every day we hear more news that makes the virus seem less scary.  It doesn't spread like people thought, and it doesn't kill like some people thought.

Putting Covid19-positive individuals in nursing homes was a great way to show how much our state/local leaders care about those most at risk.  That damage is done and that caused roughly half of the Covid19 deaths in some states.  So it should not be surprising that people are skeptical about "health recommendations" coming from the same people.

The numbers are skewed every which way, and the "science" changes every day.  Makes it hard to have an intelligent conversation about this.  But that doesn't mean salting every discussion with "you obviously don't care who dies" is gonna improve the quality.

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27 minutes ago, SKL said:

There is also the fact that we have no reliable actual numbers for the death toll from Covid19.  We do know that some people die from it, yes,

We do have statistics on extra deaths.  

27 minutes ago, SKL said:

and we should try to keep that to a minimum, but that does not require the entire world population to live in a bubble indefinitely,

If we're going to discuss rhetorical devices that are unfair, can we discuss the fact that asking someone to wear a mask a few hours a week while directly interacting with the public in their job, during the time while the virus is still spreading in the community, is in no way "requiring the entire world population to live in a bubble indefinitely"?  

27 minutes ago, SKL said:

Putting Covid19-positive individuals in nursing homes was a great way to show how much our state/local leaders care about those most at risk.  That damage is done and that caused roughly half of the Covid19 deaths in some states. 

In many states the total covid deaths in nursing homes are roughly half of the total covid deaths.  Are you arguing that all of the nursing home deaths in some states were caused by returning covid patients from hospitals to nursing homes too quickly?  Do you have a link to support that?  

That doesn't fit with my experiences, which I admit is anecdotal and not scientific.  We had a family member die in a nursing home.  In that case, the virus came in via community spread.  An employee was exposed to the virus outside of the nursing home, and brought the virus to work by mistake.  Another family member was removed from her assisted living and now lives with her grandson.  Covid later spread in that facility, and caused several deaths, including residents in the nursing wing. In that case, the virus also came in via community spread.  So, my data sample of two nursing homes indicates that at least some nursing home deaths were linked to community spread and not to residents returning from hospitals too early.  

 

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54 minutes ago, Danae said:

I’m so tired of people implying that any alternative to “everyone gets it eventually” is pie-in-the-sky fantasy. TB is just as contagious and we don’t regularly vaccinate for it.  We monitor, and when there’s an outbreak public health officials track and trace, contagious people isolate and quarantine, and the outbreak dies out.  We could have gotten there with CoVid with a little cooperative effort and political will. Instead we got political posturing and hyper-masculinist pseudo-Christianity bellowing that simple public health measures show weakness and fear. 

Yes, exactly. 

I've been saying for the last several months that the reaction to COVID has revealed many unpleasant truths about American Christianity. It's pretty ugly, IMHO. The Rusty Reno articles and tweets were despicable. For those not in the know, he drunkposted (or drunk-tweeted?) a series of tweets where he alleged that wearing masks was "cowardly" and un-manly. It was incredibly bizarre and I think it's pretty obvious that he was drunk because the last tweet was just one word like "So" or something like that. 

I saw someone on FB refer to masks as "face diapers." It's the same mentality. 

Again and again and again people tried to explain that wearing masks is actually about protecting other people and again and again and again people like Reno claimed it was cowardly. They could not even seem to comprehend that someone could do something to protect another person. It's sick. 

Basically, these people (men mostly) bellowing about how wearing a mask is "cowardly" aren't going to do much to protect you and me and our kids from anything. Rusty Reno wants to go to Mass - who cares about your grandma or your kid. 

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There are dozens and dozens of Christian churches not requiring masks that in no way represent any of that sentiment in Christianity, I feel like that has to be said.  Heck; the sermon my pastor preached on Sunday was specifically in Romans 13, on respecting the governing authorities. And the entire guidance from the beginning of meeting back up was that on not judging one another for what level of precaution one felt they should take, and honoring one another in love in respecting the boundaries and guidelines the other preferred.  
 

This thread disgusts me, but probably not for the reasons most of you are patting yourselves on the back for. Plenty of Christians in this country are managing to love their neighbor and not wear a mask without some sort of selfish, haughty motivation or political statements at hand.  We are believers first, and foremost, after all.

I expect this to fall on deaf ears, but am compelled to say it anyway.  You’re not more righteous and loving for wearing a mask than your neighbor is for NOT wearing one, because this is not a sin issue and the heart motivation behind either action is where the judgment rests.  It’s not completely cut and dry, even if the pastor in the initial example may well have been sinning, himself.

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58 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

Yes, exactly. 

I've been saying for the last several months that the reaction to COVID has revealed many unpleasant truths about American Christianity. It's pretty ugly, IMHO. The Rusty Reno articles and tweets were despicable. For those not in the know, he drunkposted (or drunk-tweeted?) a series of tweets where he alleged that wearing masks was "cowardly" and un-manly. It was incredibly bizarre and I think it's pretty obvious that he was drunk because the last tweet was just one word like "So" or something like that. 

I saw someone on FB refer to masks as "face diapers." It's the same mentality. 

Again and again and again people tried to explain that wearing masks is actually about protecting other people and again and again and again people like Reno claimed it was cowardly. They could not even seem to comprehend that someone could do something to protect another person. It's sick. 

Basically, these people (men mostly) bellowing about how wearing a mask is "cowardly" aren't going to do much to protect you and me and our kids from anything. Rusty Reno wants to go to Mass - who cares about your grandma or your kid. 

Well, his attitude is wrong, but it isn't representative of many Christians.  He's just a loud voice.  It's frustrating because people like him give non-Christians cause to turn away from the Gospel.

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56 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

This thread disgusts me, but probably not for the reasons most of you are patting yourselves on the back for. Plenty of Christians in this country are managing to love their neighbor and not wear a mask without some sort of selfish, haughty motivation or political statements at hand.  We are believers first, and foremost, after all.

I expect this to fall on deaf ears, but am compelled to say it anyway.  You’re not more righteous and loving for wearing a mask than your neighbor is for NOT wearing one, because this is not a sin issue and the heart motivation behind either action is where the judgment rests.  It’s not completely cut and dry, even if the pastor in the initial example may well have been sinning, himself.

I’m not patting myself on the back, nor do I think I am more righteous or loving than others. I don’t think something has to be an issue of biblical sin for it to be the wrong thing to do. I think many people, especially certain groups of Christians, have been led to see wearing a mask as an ideological issue, and they stand against it on those grounds. I honestly think they truly feel “righteous” in their decision not to wear a mask. I don’t understand it, but I think they choose it because they honestly think it’s right and masks don’t make a difference, and that for some reason or another wearing a mask has taken on a negative meaning for them. None of this changes that’s it’s still raising the risk and undoubtedly going to cause harm to others for people to refuse to mask, especially in church. So as a policy, I think it goes against basic tenets of Christianity. 

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1 hour ago, Arctic Mama said:

There are dozens and dozens of Christian churches not requiring masks that in no way represent any of that sentiment in Christianity, I feel like that has to be said.  Heck; the sermon my pastor preached on Sunday was specifically in Romans 13, on respecting the governing authorities. And the entire guidance from the beginning of meeting back up was that on not judging one another for what level of precaution one felt they should take, and honoring one another in love in respecting the boundaries and guidelines the other preferred.  
 

This thread disgusts me, but probably not for the reasons most of you are patting yourselves on the back for. Plenty of Christians in this country are managing to love their neighbor and not wear a mask without some sort of selfish, haughty motivation or political statements at hand.  We are believers first, and foremost, after all.

I expect this to fall on deaf ears, but am compelled to say it anyway.  You’re not more righteous and loving for wearing a mask than your neighbor is for NOT wearing one, because this is not a sin issue and the heart motivation behind either action is where the judgment rests.  It’s not completely cut and dry, even if the pastor in the initial example may well have been sinning, himself.


Yeah well, I also felt compelled to say what I said. The power trip masquerading as Christianity in some parts of this country is a problem. And other Christians not calling it out because we don’t want to speak ill of fellow believers Is a failure of our witness.

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Oregon just had a church case pop up... https://www.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/2020/06/99-new-coronavirus-cases-reported-in-union-county.html

The previous known case count in that county was 22.

99 new cases out of the less than 400 samples taken, still processing the rest...

I am not sharing this to fear monger, just as a data point that asymptomatic spread combined with a highly contagious virus can quickly spawn an outbreak in an area previously thought to be very low risk. Short of regular testing of a good number of people we may not know what is actually going on in our communities.

Edited by prairiewindmomma
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2 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

Truth. Just today the BBC had an article about a new treatment that will save one  in 8 lives on a ventilator and one in 25 lives on oxygen. And that had we known this in the beginning thousands of lives would have been saved. Had those people been able to avoid the illness a few extra months, they would likely be alive, to spend years more with their families. And people who get it this month will die who would have lived if they caught it later, when we have more treatments, most likely. 

Katie, are you referring to dexamethasone? The steroid has been around forever. The initial reports in the US back in Feb and March were that steroids like and including dexamethasone were causing harm. It’s been much like the ace 2 inhibitor stuff. We are getting very mixed data. I am hesitant to call dexamethadone a wonder drug here. I know our local hospitals didn’t have tremendous success with it with the initial outbreak.

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The initial question was, “What do I do?” For us, we will not be rejoining our congregation when services resume. Masks will not be required and knowing our fellow congregants many refuse to wear them. We aren’t changing churches (which is our only option, as our attendance is based on geographical assignment). It is a hard position to be in.

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I'm sorry but the "not all Christians" thing is kind of tired. 

Certainly "not all Christians" is true. No one has ever made allegations about "all Christians." 

Segue, we always hear "not all Christians" but people are comfortable alleging that all of different group do such and such. I've certainly been told many times that "all Muslims" support terrorism, etc. 

I'll say it again, American Christianity has a sickness. Yes, "not all Christians" but my response is "too many Christians." It's not just COVID although COVID brought much of it to light. Systemic racism and misogyny, homophobia, etc. Why do you so many young people leave? And please don't come back with "my church is full of young people." Overall, systemically ALL Christian churches in this country are hemorrhaging young people. 

Not wearing masks when it is required by law is a symptom of the problem. It demonstrates a hostility towards the law and towards science. It's 'circle the wagons' and cut off everyone who is outside. It's almost a provocation. It's the kind of "us versus them" mentality that drives people away and who cares because "them" were the wrong kind of people anyway. 

Who here is patting herself on the back? 

And again - why so much hostility towards something that is SO easy to do? Would a healthy group object to something that is cheap and easy? We all know that none of this is really about masking. It's always about something else except for people with a legitimate health reason. 

I'll repeat what I wrote way upthread. We have something that is super easy and cheap to do that doctors say may reduce the risk for someone else. Why not do it? For the record, I don't think everyone wearing a mask is doing it out of love. I suspect most people wearing masks believe it protects them which might be true. Many are doing it to comply with the law. 

But when discussing the behavior of a Christian minister, I think it's a logical question why someone who is supposed to preach the Gospel, who probably tells other people what is right and wrong, is not willing to do something so cheap and easy to do that might help someone else. 

When masking is so easy to do and might help someone else I have to wonder if someone who refuses to wear a mask is a "believer, first and foremost." No one is being asked to willingly march into the arena and face the lions. It might help someone else and is easy to do. If you're a Christian and supposed to love other people and there is a good reason to believe this protects others, then why not do it? 

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On 6/14/2020 at 5:34 PM, Arctic Mama said:

So this is kind of irrelevant too.  Are we not supposed to meet with the possibility of communicable disease ever again then? Or never without masks? There is always a risk of spread, no vaccine on the horizon, etc.

There are more important things in life than a virus, and death comes to us all. How long do we continue this behavior and mitigating our meeting and habits and who gets to decide that for the church? Is it three months more? A year? Until a vaccine that may or may not ever come and may not have total efficacy arrives?

 

When is it ‘safe’ and who gets to choose? I have no illusions that we are somehow at zero risk of it showing up here, especially when there is spread in this area (it’s just very very low and the fatality rates are even lower).  There is so much finger shaking and pontificating on the public safety on this thread, but precious little discussion of where the line is that makes sense to resume normal civic life with this risk in the background.  As a church we decided where it was for us, as a hospital my child’s facility decided that for themselves and their patients, as a homeschool group my kid’s extension program decided their lines too.  There are always lines, this is not something reasonable to require for life here on out in any communal singing or tight quarters indoors situation.

For us and our area, we crossed the line for safety and have resumed life, most of us.  Some have made a different assessment and are staying home still.  That’s okay too.

My take on this is that there are ways of doing most things safely so that almost everyone could take part if they want. If you choose to take risks, fair enough I guess, but you are thereby excluding those that don't choose to take the risks. If there are 2 ways of doing things, 1 that involves risk and excludes a number of people, and 1 that doesn't involve near as much risk and would include many, if not all, then why on earth would you not choose the safe one. That is what I find hard to understand. My church is choosing the unsafe one. I am not particularly worried for my own safety, if there is spread in my area I work with those patients in ICU so face far more exposure there probably, although with the benefit of PPE, but I have decided that I want to do everything I can possibly do to not make the problem worse and not spread it to anyone if at all possible. So their choices to take risks mean I can't attend. There are things - like meeting outside, sitting spread apart, not singing etc, that might make it possible for me to attend. But that is not what they have chosen so it is what it is. Only time will tell what was the right thing to do, but looking at states like Arizona, Arkansas and S Carolina now  makes me nervous. It's also not all about death, it's about suffering and flooding the system. A friend of mine just worked 8 weeks in a NJ hospital. When she arrived there, in a 700 bed hospital, there were over 400 patients on vents. That is a crazy situation no matter how you slice it.

ETA I have worked with these patients in the first round of this mess and I can tell you it is not the flu.

Edited by TCB
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I have been thinking about this a lot and why this bothers me so much. My brain sometimes needs to catch up with my outrage to articulate why exactly that is. So in this case,  It is not about the masking or love thy neighbor for me. It is basically pro-life and how we define it.

One of the things that has bothered very much in the pro-life debate in American christianity is abortion and how there is no mercy or compassion even in the case of incest and rape. It is all sin issue, taking a life. So how does that correlate in a pastor not wearing a mask if he/she has no medical reason, but mostly uncomfortable ? It is because it is a pro-life issue to me. If you believe all life is Imago Dei (the image of God), then it applies not just to the unborn, but the vulnerable among us. Perhaps they may not die this instant, but exposing vulnerable people when you can prevent it by a simple mask is not very pro-life to me. We are asked to be understanding towards those who do not mask and I get they have absolute good reasons not to, the science is shaky, so on. But from my christian and pro-life POV, this is why this issue has bothered me so much. That when  it comes to their freedoms, other vulnerable people do not seem to matter, but they can tell others especially victims of rape and incest what to do and guilt, shame without any compassion.

People can probably poke a lot of holes in my theory and even call it a stretch. They are entitled to their view. But pastors especially who do this and mix politics from the pulpit are to me, whitewashed tombs.

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1 hour ago, prairiewindmomma said:

Katie, are you referring to dexamethasone? The steroid has been around forever. The initial reports in the US back in Feb and March were that steroids like and including dexamethasone were causing harm. It’s been much like the ace 2 inhibitor stuff. We are getting very mixed data. I am hesitant to call dexamethadone a wonder drug here. I know our local hospitals didn’t have tremendous success with it with the initial outbreak.

The study is, I think, quite promising though. I have not looked at it in great depth though and should do. There were many things that were recommended at first that turned out to be either useless or possibly even harmful. The avoiding steroid thing came from information from China I think, and I think it was taken on board here initially and so steroids may well not have been widely used. The greatest benefit of dexamethasone was found in the population of extremely sick patients on vents. My experience with my facility in the first round of illness was that, at least initially, we were avoiding steroids. I'm surprised your local hospital used it initially because there was definitely information making the rounds then that it might be contraindicated. We don't used dexamethasone much in usual practice in our ICU, mostly methylprednisone and hydrocortisone. I think dexameth. is sometimes uses in neurology for patients with brain tumours.

Edited by TCB
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5 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

Because when I brought up the huge loss of life, I was told that well, our population is bigger now. The only reason I see for that to matter, is to be saying that we can afford to lose more people. That it isn't in fact a huge loss of life for 100,000 people to die. 

If someone says, in response to my concern for a hundred thousand people dying, "well, we have more babies and immigrants, and we don't want overpopulation" that sure sounds like they are saying it is okay for those people to die, we have plenty of extra people. 

I haven't seen, on this board, anyone saying the bolded.  I have seen people say we have a larger population now than we had in the past.  We don't look and say that COVID-19 is much worse in the US than in Belgium because we have had over 100,000 people die and Belgium has had less than 9750 people die.  We look at the deaths relative to the population.  In putting our minds around the risk and prevalence of death, there is a reason for looking at the prevalence relative to the size of the population.  This reason is grounded in mathematics, probability, science, and risk assessment.  

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37 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

Nm not worth it

I have no idea what you wrote before you edited it but it's kind of rude to write "not worth it." If you really did not want to engage, you could have left it NM. 

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2 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I have no idea what you wrote before you edited it but it's kind of rude to write "not worth it." If you really did not want to engage, you could have left it NM. 

No, I absolutely meant it.  Responding to and discussing things with you and several others is absolutely not worth the aggravation.  You don’t listen, you’re not reachable or flexible, and less so gracious.  Sharing blogs or arguments or scripture will go nowhere and I’m a fool for bothering on this forum.  This is not the place and you ladies aren’t the people it’s wise for me to expend effort with.  It was foolish and naive of me to try.

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4 hours ago, SKL said:

 

The fact is that a lot of people die every year.  That doesn't make any life less valuable, it's simply a fact.  

Putting Covid19-positive individuals in nursing homes was a great way to show how much our state/local leaders care about those most at risk.  That damage is done and that caused roughly half of the Covid19 deaths in some states.  So it should not be surprising that people are skeptical about "health recommendations" coming from the same people.

 

Ok, sure, it is a smaller percentage of the population, but we still, most of us, think when we walk by say, the Vietnam wall with all the names on it, "wow....that's so much life lost!". We don't say, "well....people die every year." 

100,000 people dead from a disease that is spreading, and that can partly be prevented by a small action...and people are like, "well..I mean, what can you do?"

You can wear a mask! That's what you can do! And it would help those people in nursing homes too, since it would limit the community spread which would limit spread into the nursing homes. 

3 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

There are dozens and dozens of Christian churches not requiring masks that in no way represent any of that sentiment in Christianity, I feel like that has to be said.  Heck; the sermon my pastor preached on Sunday was specifically in Romans 13, on respecting the governing authorities. And the entire guidance from the beginning of meeting back up was that on not judging one another for what level of precaution one felt they should take, and honoring one another in love in respecting the boundaries and guidelines the other preferred.  
 

This thread disgusts me, but probably not for the reasons most of you are patting yourselves on the back for. Plenty of Christians in this country are managing to love their neighbor and not wear a mask without some sort of selfish, haughty motivation or political statements at hand.  We are believers first, and foremost, after all.

I expect this to fall on deaf ears, but am compelled to say it anyway.  You’re not more righteous and loving for wearing a mask than your neighbor is for NOT wearing one, because this is not a sin issue and the heart motivation behind either action is where the judgment rests.  It’s not completely cut and dry, even if the pastor in the initial example may well have been sinning, himself.

Well obviously not all Christian churches, most of the people here discussing it are saying their church the priest/pastor is wearing a mask, complying with rules, etc. 

As for not judging others on what level of precaution they take for themselves, that's fine. But when we are talking about what level of precaution they take regarding infecting others, that's totally different. It's why we have laws against smoking in public buildings, etc. 

And yeah, I'm going to say, that if you are in an area with enough community spread that there is a law requiring masks, and you are in an enclosed space for a significant period of time as described by the OP, wearing one is in fact more loving of an action to your neighbor than not wearing one. How could it not be?

23 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

I haven't seen, on this board, anyone saying the bolded.  I have seen people say we have a larger population now than we had in the past.  We don't look and say that COVID-19 is much worse in the US than in Belgium because we have had over 100,000 people die and Belgium has had less than 9750 people die.  We look at the deaths relative to the population.  In putting our minds around the risk and prevalence of death, there is a reason for looking at the prevalence relative to the size of the population.  This reason is grounded in mathematics, probability, science, and risk assessment.  

Right, but my point about saying it was more than died in war, is that we DO think that was a lot of life - not in relation to the population, but in general. At least, i do. I was responding to the idea that this isn't a dangerous illness. It is. It has killed a LOT LOT LOT of people, but more than that, it has put many more in the hospital, in sick beds for weeks, into rehab, etc. That it isn't dangerous is flat out false. 

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2 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

No, I absolutely meant it.  Responding to and discussing things with you and several others is absolutely not worth the aggravation.  You don’t listen, you’re not reachable or flexible, and less so gracious.  Sharing blogs or arguments or scripture will go nowhere and I’m a fool for bothering on this forum.  This is not the place and you ladies aren’t the people it’s wise for me to expend effort with.  It was foolish and naive of me to try.

I think people have done a good job of responding to this situation, but I also think that you feel when people say that this Pastor is sinful for not wearing a mask or whatever, that they are saying that anyone anywhere is just as bad for not wearing one. I am personally not talking about your situation, I don't know the numbers there, and I'm not talking about other places, I'm talking about this situation, where it is required by law and spread is such that masks were deemed a needed public health measure. 

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8 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

No, I absolutely meant it.  Responding to and discussing things with you and several others is absolutely not worth the aggravation.  You don’t listen, you’re not reachable or flexible, and less so gracious.  Sharing blogs or arguments or scripture will go nowhere and I’m a fool for bothering on this forum.  This is not the place and you ladies aren’t the people it’s wise for me to expend effort with.  It was foolish and naive of me to try.

Maybe they just aren't convinced by your arguments, just like you aren't convinced by their's (you may well include me also so I should probably say ours instead of theirs). Honestly I think that is ok. It is OK if we don't agree, we can still discuss.

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6 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

No, I absolutely meant it.  Responding to and discussing things with you and several others is absolutely not worth the aggravation.  You don’t listen, you’re not reachable or flexible, and less so gracious.  Sharing blogs or arguments or scripture will go nowhere and I’m a fool for bothering on this forum.  This is not the place and you ladies aren’t the people it’s wise for me to expend effort with.  It was foolish and naive of me to try.

I didn't write that you didn't mean it. I wrote that it's kind of rude to write "not worth it" in response to someone when you edit a post. Edit it to NM and move on. 

Your attitude here is interesting given that you just criticized everyone here for feeling self-righteous and not knowing what was in their hearts. 

No one here has said anything about you or your situation. You, on the other hand, wrote that we were patting ourselves on the back and being self-righteous. 

I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings. That was not my intent. 

But you are not going to reach anyone (if that was your intent) by telling them they are self-righteously patting themselves on the back. 

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39 minutes ago, TCB said:

I think dexameth. is sometimes uses in neurology for patients with brain tumours.

Yes, ^dd^ took dexamethasone with her brain tumor.  Its use for more than a few weeks generally comes with significant weight gain, endocrine impairment (dd ended up with Cushing's), and the need for a prolonged step-down schedule. It's about 6 times as strong as prednisone and has a longer half-life. Dexamethasone is also used in rheumatology and pulmonology in some parts of the US as a 1-3 day alternative to 5-10 day courses of prednisone. Having moved around a bit, it's interesting to see some of the regional differences in what meds are used.

I do agree the warnings were out there....I think in some instances they were just throwing everything they could at it....and I'm west coast so we had some of the early stuff.

 

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