Texas televangelist says people need faith, not flu shots

Gloria Copeland

Televangelist Gloria Copeland, an evangelical adviser to President Trump, told her devotees that since they follow Jesus they've already had their flu shots. "He redeemed us from the curse of flu", Copeland said in the video posted January 31 on the ministry's Facebook page. "He redeemed us from the curse of flu".

More than 37 children across the country have died during a nasty flu outbreak that is already one of the worst on record, even though the season typically peaks in February.

While health officials continue to urge people to get flu shots during a season that has been marked by widespread illness, Copeland told followers that faith in Christ is all that's really needed.

Copeland ended the video with words of encouragement in defeating the deadly virus for followers, sharing to "get on the word (and) stay on the word".

"Well, listen, partners, we don't have a flu season", Copeland said, according to a video that was posted to Right Wing Watch and shared by the Huffington Post. "Inoculate yourself with the word of God". Jesus himself gave us the flu shot.

Using a verse from the Bible to make her point, Copeland said followers were already healed by Jesus' stripes, but for those who are dealing with the flu, she prayed for them.

In 2013, Eagle Mountain International Church, a church in Newark, Texas founded by the Copelands, came under fire after a measles outbreak was linked to members of their church.

"We know what's wrong with you".

Commentators showed mixed reactions, but several said she was inaccurately representing Christian teachings. "Now, which do you want to do?"

Copeland suggested people attempting to avoid catching the flu repeat the mantra: "I'll never have the flu", and inoculating themselves with the word of God. "Do you want to do that, or do you want to sit in here on a Saturday morning, hear the word of God, and let faith come into your heart and be healed?"

The 2017-18 flu season has temporarily shut down school districts and sent many people to emergency rooms and urgent care centers.

"Sometimes people ask, 'If God's medicine works every time, why are there so many believers who are still sick?' There are two reasons", Gloria Copeland wrote.

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