Gloria Copeland is the co-founder of the Kenneth Copeland Ministries (with her husband) in Texas and cited as a spiritual advisor to President Donald Trump. She and her husband serve on Trump’s evangelical advisory board. This week Copeland is in the center of a firestorm after telling her followers that you may not need flu shots if you “inoculate yourself with the word of God.”
The country is facing a raging flu crisis with rising deaths over one of the severe seasons in decades. Yet, Copeland is shown in a video clip saying
“Well, listen, partners, we don’t have a flu season. And don’t receive it when somebody threatens you with, ‘Everybody’s getting the flu.’ We’ve already had our shot: He bore our sicknesses and carried our diseases. That’s what we stand on.” She adds that the faithful can ward off the flu by saying “I’ll never have the flu. I’ll never have the flu.”
In 2013, Copeland Ministries was accused of opposing vaccinations during a measles outbreak. The Copelands denied it and called for vaccinations.
We have previously discussed the Copelands, including Kenneth Copeland’s defense of his private jets as bringing him closer to God and avoiding “long tubes full of demons.”
The possibility of a lawsuit is always present but this is ultimately a statement of faith, not medical advice. It is a reckless sermon however that could be easily understood as claiming that faith alone is a flu vaccine. With the rising death count, that message could prove lethal.