13 November 2020 | The leadership of the Adventist denomination in Germany has issued a public statement about the coronavirus. The statement rejects conspiracy theories related to the pandemic and warns against trivializing the virus. The APD (the offical German-language Adventist news agency) reported the statement was issued by Pastors Werner Dullinger (Ostfildern near Stuttgart) and Johannes Naether (Hanover), President and Vice-President of the Free Church in Germany.

In warning against trivialization of the COVID-19 pandemic, the leaders said, “We see irresponsible behavior in this, which contributes to the endangerment of the population and carries traits of solidarity. We encounter this clearly and with the clarity of the factual discussion. The current development of new infections and the numerous deaths speak a language of their own that leaves little room for alternative interpretations.”

The statement also rejected efforts to paint the crisis as something deliberately engineered by powerful entities: “Here reality is taken ad absurdum and the complex interrelationships of a serious global crisis are reduced to an unprovable ‘alternative.'”

Denominational entities are not allowed to disseminate such theories through Adventist churches, institutions or media outlets.

The leaders say this is not a “muzzle” or form of “censorship,” but rather a policy issue regarding official representation of the church.

The statement is supportive of government-imposed restrictions related to COVID-19, saying legal and ethical considerations have so far been handled well. The denomination says these restrictions will need to be monitored in light of fundamental rights.

“Jesus showed his solidarity and was not afraid to meet the sick and helpless in order to heal them,” said the leaders, asking members to think about how to protect themselves and others.

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