I never received childhood vaccinations.

By ExCS group contributor Jodi B. This is part of a series of first hand stories about vaccinations and Christian Science.

I never received childhood vaccination. I was religiously exempted by an easily obtained form in the Commonwealth of Virginia. I was protected by herd immunity my whole life and mistakenly thought it was my parents’ prayer (and later, mine), keeping me safe from measles and polio and such “out there.”

At the age of 16, I was away at Cedars Camps in Lebanon, Missouri, and there was a measles outbreak there. The State of Missouri kicked in and said “all those campers need to either be quarantined or go home and be quarantined there at home.”

I wanted to take my stand about staying proud of never having been given a shot. I wanted to go home. My parents wouldn’t let me.

The Missouri Health people came in and gave those of us who stayed, shots for the Measles. Another counselor friend of mine told me “it’s just ‘water in, water out,’ and for some reason, that helped me with my prayers on my fear of getting a measles shot.

I was so afraid I then had the actual measles and I told one of my older campers. She was probably 15 at the time. I didn’t want her to sit by me at dinner lest she get the measles from me. She was so disappointed that I would dare think she wasn’t spiritual enough to resist getting the measles.

I felt sad that I had made her feel disappointed. She sat with me anyway, in an awkward dinner. She never got the measles. I didn’t, either.

5 years later, I was about to graduate from Principia College. It was 1994. A few weeks before graduation. Word came around campus that 3 seniors might have the measles. They had never had the measles shot. There was a measles epidemic on campus. Everyone who had been vaccinated could leave campus – come and go freely. Anyone who had not been vaccinated needed to either go home and be quarantined or be quarantined on campus.

A lot of us had been vaccinated at Cedars Camps. Maybe 30 of us on a campus of maybe 600 students. Principia wrote to Cedars and obtained our vaccination records, because none of us had our own records.

I felt so proud that I could come and go off campus. So I did it just because I could, though I rarely left campus at any other time. I think my friend who had traveled to Korea and had all of her vaccinations and I drove to the store to buy donuts. Just because we could and she had a truck.

The 3 seniors were quarantined in a beautiful, well kept old house on campus that had since been needlessly neglected and then condemned, never got the measles. I was so glad those 3 students didn’t get the measles. We all graduated on time.

After becoming a mom of two elementary school boys, I subsequently left Christian Science due to mounting issues increasing in severity that were most decidedly NOT being healed in Christian Science.

We got one of my kids tested. He was found to be on the autism spectrum.

One of my sisters-in-law is a medical nurse and had a newborn son. I was scared of vaccinating my elementary school boys. She assured me that her newborn was vaccinated and would be given all shots on schedule.

She also taught me that term “herd immunity.” I had been protected by herd immunity and never by prayer.

I got my sons and me vaccinated using an alternative vaccination schedule. My boys’ schedule was set up by their brand new pediatrician. Mine was set up by the Department of Health in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

We have also gotten the flu shot every year too. We all used to get the flu every single year. We haven’t gotten it since starting to get the flu shot (except for this past year when the flu was particularly aggressive, but the shot kept people from dying even if they still got the flu after getting the shot).

I have gotten and continue to get professional help so I can be a better parent to my son on the spectrum. He is thriving now as a person unlike the traumas he was going through while on the spectrum, and attending Christian science Sunday school.

The vaccination had zero affect on either of my boys in regards to autism. And I am so grateful all 3 of us have our complete vaccinations now.

2 comments

  • Jane

    Hello, thank you for your post. I have a fourteen year old daughter who attends Principia boarding school in Missouri. She just began this year and loves it. I am not a christian scientist but her father is. He at some point decided he did not want her to get any more vaccinations. She was about eleven at the time, so they went to get the letter for the school board in New York and began going to meetings regularly. He eventually took her for a visit to Principia and they told her it would be like a slumber party avery night. She wanted to go and I would not let her. I had recently lost my son and for many reasons including their position on modern medicine I was adament that she not go. He took me to court to send her there and with the courts heavily weighing on her wishes he eventually won. I am happy she likes it and plan on spending several months a year there so thatI do not miss her entire high school experience. What bothered me most is that the school is so desperate for students they offered her a full scholarship and even wrote letters for the court etc.. they were fully aware of my situation and my feelings about her attending. I felt it wasn’t very christian! Anyway after all that, why do you still send your son to Christian Science Sunday school? I am in no way judging, I have no problem with any one practising what ever religion they choose, I suppose even my daughter. I was just curious. I am concerned with the news articles about measles outbreaks etc.. her being so far away and knowing they discourage medical interference. She did get all of her original shots and I di have them spread out the doses. I am not convinced how much she believes but after losing my twenty year old her only brother whatever helps her and does not hurt her. Sorry for the long post, Sending love Jane

  • Hi, Jane!

    You ask a great question. And because my extended family is in CS, I stayed in the church way too long. I was very brainwashed. Horrendously brain washed. I literally thought I was giving my kids the best experience by staying in Christian Science and taking them to Sunday school religiously.

    Now that we are all out, we are all so grateful to be out! I did the best I could. I just got back from getting blood work for an upcoming surgery. The people who know me best continually tell me they are so glad I am taking care of myself now and getting this surgery done. ❤️