Televangelist: Don't get flu shot, inject word of God instead

Commentary: Gloria Copeland, a spiritual adviser to the president, says there's no need for inoculations during this most awful of flu seasons. "Jesus himself gave us the flu shot," she says.

Chris Matyszczyk
2 min read

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"Hallelujah," says Copeland. "Get a flu shot," says the CDC.

Gloria Copeland/Facebook screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Some only believe in scientific evidence, while others think their religious beliefs explain everything. 

But I'd suspect even those who hold that science and religion are incompatible also believe the US is undergoing a severe flu season.

An exception is Gloria Copeland. She's a very successful televangelist based in Fort Worth, Texas, and a sometime religious adviser to Donald Trump.

Copeland, however, may not get on so well with medical professionals who believe the current flu season (I believe! I believe!) is among the worst ever.

Copeland took to Facebook last week to expound on her alternative remedies.

"We got a duck season, a deer season, but we don't have a flu season. And don't receive it when somebody threatens you with 'Everyone's getting the flu.'"

Some people find themselves unable to avoid receiving the flu when their temperature rises, their nose runs and they feel like their legs weigh more than tablets of stone.

Gloria Copeland Talks About the Flu

It’s NOT flu season! Yes, you heard it right. The flu is NOT a season we have around here because Jesus bore ALL our sickness on the cross. This includes the flu! If you’re overcoming the flu right now, listen in as Gloria prays for YOU! Are you believing for a miracle in your health? Join us for Miracles on the Mountain, Feb. 16-17 with Healing Evangelist Billy Burke. Admission is FREE. Learn more and register here: kcm.org/miracles18. #victory #overcomer #flu #flushot #fluseason

Posted by Kenneth Copeland Ministries on Wednesday, January 31, 2018

For Copeland, though, this is nonsense.

"We've already had our shot," she said. "He bore our sicknesses and carried our diseases. That's what we stand on." She was referring to Jesus Christ. Or, at least, her interpretation of Jesus Christ.

"Jesus himself gave us the flu shot," she continued. Well, yes. Many would, of course, argue that. But could it be that he gave us the flu shot because he knew there was a flu season? 

Copeland didn't immediately respond to a request for enlightenment. She does, though, believe that all it takes to be healthy is positive thinking, rather than, say, a flu shot.

"If you say 'I don't have any symptoms of the flu,' well, great. That's the way it's supposed to be," she said. "Just keep saying that 'I'll never have the flu. Put words [sic]. Inoculate yourself with the word of God."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention seems to differ in its approach.

It insisted, in a weekly report for the week ending Jan. 27, that "the proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza was above the system-specific epidemic threshold in the National Center for Health Statistics Mortality Surveillance System."

According to that report, 53 children in the US have died from the flu as of the end of January. Eighty percent of those children hadn't had a flu shot.

Between Oct. 1 and Jan. 27, 14,676 hospitalizations due to the flu were reported in the US, according to the CDC. Most of the US was subjected to the highest threat level of flu the CDC measures. 

This science suggests that perhaps inoculating yourself with words, even God's own, may not be enough.

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