East Texas Pastors Reaction To HPV Mandate - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

2/7/07-Tyler

East Texas Pastors Reaction To HPV Mandate

The discovery of the HPV vaccine is a gift from God says Pastor Vic Willmann with Trinity Lutheran.  But, he says, it should be the parents who decide if it's right for their child.

"Every gift of God needs to be used in well thought out, moral and spiritual principles that we hold as God's people," says Willmann.

"I understand what Governor [Rick] Perry is trying to do. However, I don't feel we're addressing the real issue which is educating our students and our families about biblical sexual morals," says Pastor Thomas Thompson with Grace Community Church.

Thompson says this is the time teach girls and boys about abstinence. Something that has long been written in scripture.

"We feel that the bible says that it's God's will to abstain from sexual morality and that would mean sex outside of marriage. So the best way to prevent HPV is to practice abstinence before marriage and faithfulness after marriage," says Thompson.

Pastor Mark Edge of Shiloh Road Church of Christ agrees on the issue of abstinence. But he says girls could still be at risk.

"You could have a girl who rose up living a totally pure life and marry a man, perhaps a christian who's been redeemed, but engaged in relationships before marriage who carries a disease that's transmittable to her. And this vaccine can protect her from something that was not her mistake but someone else's, her husband's," says Edge.

One thing all these pastors agree on is more time is needed. Time to have honest dialogue on HPV and find the answer to what would Jesus do.

"I think He would say come to me, let's talk it over and I think we do that by getting into the word and by prayer," says Willmann.

Thompson adds,"and if they choose to have the vaccine they should, and if they choose not to then they ought to opt out."

Christine Nelson reporting. cnelson@kltv.com

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