Archive for December 2021

The Moral Dimension of Vaccine Mandates   3 comments

When I was a wee lad, my parents had to prove my status regarding certain vaccines before they could enroll me in public schools.

When I was applying to colleges and universities for my undergraduate and graduate degree programs, I had to do the same before I could enroll.  If I needed a booster, I got one.  If I had not received a given vaccine, I got one.

When I was a freshman at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, Tifton, Georgia, I told the germane officials that I tested a false positive for tuberculosis.  I told the truth.  Said officials, not convinced, sent me to the Tift County Health Department for a chest x-ray.  They the college sent me to my county health department once a month for a few months.  A nurse drew a sample of my blood and gave me a bottle of pills.  I finally proved that I was not going to give anyone tuberculosis.

These were well-reasoned and proper policies.

I, as a Christian who takes the Bible seriously, cannot escape mutuality, a principle encoded into the Law of Moses, the messages of the Hebrew prophets, and the moral teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.  We are all, in the eyes of God, dependent upon, responsible for, and responsible to each other.  We belong to God and each other.  Whatever one does or does not do, affects others.

Without romanticizing the United States homefront during World War II, I note that sharing sacrifices and hardships was the consensus position.  That is not the consensus during this COVID-19 pandemic, sadly.  When I read stories about delusional and/or selfish people who refuse to get vaccinated, I read stories about public menaces.  When I read stories about unvaccinated COVID-19 patients in hospitals harassing doctors and nurses, I shake my head.  When I read stories about the families of such patients threatening the lives of medical professionals, I wonder what the hell is wrong with these people.  When I read stories of people with conditions other than COVID-19 who have died because they had to wait for room in overwhelmed hospitals, I wonder what will convince some people to get vaccinated.  The stubbornly unvaccinated and those who enable them have blood on their hands.

So, yes, I support vaccine mandates in the public and private sectors.  Yes, I favor making the unvaccinated pay higher insurance premiums.

The current economic problems are tied to the ongoing pandemic.  Do not blame any politicians, except those who enable the stubbornly unvaccinated.  Mainly, blame the stubbornly unvaccinated.

Strictly enforced vaccine mandates are morally defensible.  They are consistent with mutuality.  Nobody has the moral right to be a modern-day counterpart of Typhoid Mary.




The Thirtieth Anniversary of My Confirmation   Leave a comment

Above:  The Flag of The Episcopal Church

Photographer = Kenneth Randolph Taylor


Thirty years ago today–Sunday, December 22, 1991–the Right Reverend Harry Woolston Shipps, the Eighth Bishop of Georgia, confirmed me into The Episcopal Church at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church.  I have been a contented Episcopalian since.

I spent about fourteen years (1991-2005) in six congregations in the Diocese of Georgia.  About sixteen years in St. Gregory the Great Episcopal Church, Athens, in the Diocese of Atlanta, followed.  I have returned to the Diocese of Georgia and joined Calvary Episcopal Church, Americus.

The Episcopal Church suits me.  I am on this planet to be an Episcopalian, I am certain.   Therefore, December 22 is one of the anniversaries I observe annually.




Blogging Update–December 12, 2021   Leave a comment

Above:  My Writing Desk, December 12, 2021

Photographer = Kenneth Randolph Taylor


All appearances to the contrary, I have not dropped off the face of the blogging earth.  Yes, my pace of posting has slowed down considerably.  However, I have been drafting posts for a new series, “Reading Luke-Acts,” intended for BLOGA THEOLOGICA, perhaps my most cleverly-named weblog.

Yes, I do have Thomistic tendencies.  Yes, I was thinking of the Summa Theologica when I chose the name of BLOGA THEOLOGICA.


The Anglican rosary is new, as of this morning.

I have gotten through Luke 12 and started the second half of a composition book.  I am, by my reckoning, halfway through the Gospel of Luke and three-thirteenths through Luke-Acts.

I make no distinction between matters intellectual and matters spiritual.  For me, they are one and the same.  Serious Bible study, therefore, is intellectually and spiritually rewarding.  I do not shrink from the historical-critical method or any other critical method.  My historical training tells me that parts of Luke-Acts are not historical.  So be it.  I accept good theology and reject bad history.

I may begin to post segments of “Reading Luke-Acts” at BLOGA THEOLOGICA by the end of 2021 or shortly after the beginning of 2022.  I have yet to select a date to begin.

In the meantime, 2628 posts exist at BLOGA THEOLOGICA already.  And I will eventually return to my Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days here at SUNDRY THOUGHTS.

I also refer you, O reader, to ADVENT, CHRISTMAS, AND EPIPHANY DEVOTIONS, the first of three weblogs with which I cover the church year.

Pax vobiscum!




Posted December 12, 2021 by neatnik2009 in Various Memories and Opinions

Reusable Bags   2 comments

I like to use reusable bags when shopping.  I keep them behind the driver’s seat in my truck.  I do, on rare occasions, forget to take reusable bags into a store (such as a grocery store), however.  Most of my reusable bags are big and blue.  They bear the name and logo of my former parish in Athens, Georgia.  A few others are from Dollar General.

Yesterday, I went to Dollar General in Americus, Georgia, where I live.  First, I put my mask on, due to the pandemic.  Then I carried two reusable Dollar General bags to the store, placed them in a shopping cart outdoors, and entered the store.  After I had selected the items I wanted to purchase, I went to check out.  I placed the reusable bags on the counter first.  The cashier was confused.  She asked if I wanted to purchase the bags.  I explained that I wanted to use the reusable bags.  Then she understood.

I live in a disposable society.  This is not a healthy way for a society to be.  Using reusable bags habitually constitutes a modest effort in living responsibly.  It also seems to be relatively rare in my culture, unfortunately.