Skip to comments.Pope ok’s condoms (More of the context of the papal interview) (Ecumenical)
Posted on 11/20/2010 2:34:04 PM PST by Pyro7480
Now that I’ve got your attention, please buy a copy of the new book Light of the World, an interview of B16 by Peter Seewald, and find out for yourself. In addition to the question of condoms, you’ll also find that Benedict is an incredibly interesting and deep leader.
So, here’s the scoop. L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper (where I once worked), broke the embargo on the book and published some excerpts. Of course, if there’s something to do with sex and anything Catholic, you can be sure that it will get attention.
In a detailed section on the question of the use of condoms to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS, the Pope gave the following response:
“There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization, a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants. But it is not really the way to deal with the evil of HIV infection. That can really lie only in a humanization of sexuality.”
So, to clarify, he’s not endorsing condoms. He’s saying that it could be the first step of a particular individual to realize that their action is wrong. His example of a male prostitute is very particular. The Church doesn’t believe that male prostitution is a good thing; so it’s not going to endorse anything that would facilitate the behavior even if it’s ostensibly with the good intention of protecting one’s self or another. That good intention doesn’t change the nature of the behavior itself.
Here are the two questions that relate to the matter of condoms, pp 117-119. There’s a lot to unpack here. Stay tuned:
On the occasion of your trip to Africa in March 2009, the Vatican’s policy on Aids once again became the target of media criticism. Twenty-five percent of all Aids victims around the world today are treated in Catholic facilities. In some countries, such as Lesotho, for example, the statistic is 40 percent. In Africa you stated that the Church’s traditional teaching has proven to be the only sure way to stop the spread of HIV. Critics, including critics from the Church’s own ranks, object that it is madness to forbid a high-risk population to use condoms.
The media coverage completely ignored the rest of the trip to Africa on account of a single statement. Someone had asked me why the Catholic Church adopts an unrealistic and ineffective position on Aids. At that point, I really felt that I was being provoked, because the Church does more than anyone else. And I stand by that claim. Because she is the only institution that assists people up close and concretely, with prevention, education, help, counsel, and accompaniment. And because she is second to none in treating so many Aids victims, especially children with Aids.
I had the chance to visit one of these wards and to speak with the patients. That was the real answer: The Church does more than anyone else, because she does not speak from the tribunal of the newspapers, but helps her brothers and sisters where they are actually suffering. In my remarks I was not making a general statement about the condom issue, but merely said, and this is what caused such great offense, that we cannot solve the problem by distributing condoms. Much more needs to be done. We must stand close to the people, we must guide and help them; and we must do this both before and after they contract the disease.
As a matter of fact, you know, people can get condoms when they want them anyway. But this just goes to show that condoms alone do not resolve the question itself. More needs to happen. Meanwhile, the secular realm itself has developed the so-called ABC Theory: Abstinence-Be Faithful-Condom, where the condom is understood only as a last resort, when the other two points fail to work. This means that the sheer fixation on the condom implies a banalization of sexuality, which, after all, is precisely the dangerous source of the attitude of no longer seeing sexuality as the expression of love, but only a sort of drug that people administer to themselves. This is why the fight against the banalization of sexuality is also a part of the struggle to ensure that sexuality is treated as a positive value and to enable it to have a positive effect on the whole of mans being.
There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization, a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants. But it is not really the way to deal with the evil of HIV infection. That can really lie only in a humanization of sexuality.
Are you saying, then, that the Catholic Church is actually not opposed in principle to the use of condoms?
She of course does not regard it as a real or moral solution, but, in this or that case, there can be nonetheless, in the intention of reducing the risk of infection, a first step in a movement toward a different way, a more human way, of living sexuality.
FoxNews is now backpeddling on the blurb they put out earlier. I wish people would learn to read.
If the Pope quoted Psalm 14:1 ("The fool says in his heart: there is no God"), AP would headline it:
"In a stunning reversal of Catholic teaching, Pope Benedict has admitted..."
Oh dear. I love this Pope to death, but I feel this is really imprudent of him. Even if one can square this with Catholic moral teaching, moral heresy on sexuality is so strong among elites and governments and in the culture that the Pope has to hold the line on it. Anything like this is going to be spun and distorted to justify the culture of immorality rife in society. Sigh.
Why did he even wade into these waters?
Reading and comprehending requires too much effort for the vast majority of humanity.
Part of his job is to explain the reasoning behind Christian moral teaching.
That means using hypotheticals, comparisons, etc.
It's hardly the Holy Father's fault that journalists are vicious idiots.
The Pope said nothing wrong. His mistake is assuming normal language comprehenion and/or good-faith reporting standards in the EneMedia.
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FNC, in the tease for the story suggested that there had been a major reversal of Catholic teaching on sexuality. As soon as I heard that I knew they were wrong. When they actual story came up it was much softer and the reversal idea had disappeared.
...floating a trial..balloon, perhaps?
Hellya. I’d give Pope Benedict a Guinness, a hug, and a sit-around watching “Midsomer Murders” at this point. He must be wondering what happened to rationality, reading comprehension, and basic sanity in the world, poor dear.
My Dad must feel like this, but he’s in the middling stages of Alzheimer’s, so there’s no continuity ...
Yes, and this is a surprise?
Watch me do this:
(1) Sodomy is always wrong.
(2) Adding a condom to sodomy doesn't make it more wrong, because there is no possibility of procreation in sodomy to start with.
(3) If a sodomite uses a condom, hoping to prevent the tranmission of disease to his partner/customer/employee, that's kind of thoughtful of him, and that's a little bit of good.
See how easy that was ... and I'm just a suburban breeder with a business admin degree, not a doctor of philosophy.
I don’t think so since the pope is really talking about proportionality more than anything else.
If I were a priest, hearing the confession of a gay prostitute, I would be most worried about his moral degrading of himself and the men he sells himself to. The condom issue wouldn’t even make the radar because it is essentially inconsequential: no reproduction is even possible between two men so the condom use is not a violation of natural law in that situation. It hardly matters, however, because the grave sin of sodomy IS being committed. In other words, as the pope seemed to suggest, at least the prostitute is trying not to spread disease. That’s something. In the grand scheme of things, however, he is not only morally destroying himself he is probably also still spreading disease.
The pope already made it clear that condom use has not stopped the spread of HIV/AIDS and that it can never be used for birth control.
You’re spot on Tax-chick! I don’t know why this is difficult for people. It seems incredibly obvious me.
I’m noted for my reduction of apparent complexity to its obvious basics. I guess I’m B16’s intended audience ;-), because he must have assumed people would understand what he was getting at. He even added that, all good wishes aside, condoms often don’t prevent disease transmission.
I don’t disagree with your analysis. I just think he’s got to know that this would be twisted. I think the word “justified” in this context especially is open to misconstrual.
Your pope didn't say 'gay' prostitute...He said male prostitute...And as we know, male prostitutes service females...
So in that case would your pope encourage men who procure female prostitutes to use condoms as well??? And does your pope encourage contraception for prostitutes, male and female???
And in the case of male, gay prostitutes, does your pope encourage the prostitute's customers to use condoms???
I can't imagine a prostitute, Protestant or Catholic, who would be influenced by the moral code of your pope...
Sometimes it may be best to button the lips, even if you are a pope...
Pope Benedict is not a native speaker of English. I would hesitate to say that “he’s got to know” how the English-language enemedia would twist his words. And I don’t think people like our FR anti-Catholic pile-on are even on his radar screen.
Even we American FReepers aren’t always alert to the spin. Maybe we need to repeat 100 times a day, as we brush our teeth and hair, the immortal words of Ann Coulter, “The purpose of the ‘news’ is to advance the leftist agenda.”
I think the thread title needs to be changed...the pope said no such thing.
“Your pope didn’t say ‘gay’ prostitute...He said male prostitute...And as we know, male prostitutes service females...”
Uh, no. Almost every male prostitute in the world sells himself to men. The simple fact is that women rarely buy sex. And men are overwhelmingly the ones who buy sex from other men (and from women). Also, men who have sex exclsuively with women would have far less reason to be worried about HIV in the first place. I can’t believe I have to explain this to you. Once again we see the ignorance in the anti-Catholic set here at FR.
“So in that case would your pope encourage men who procure female prostitutes to use condoms as well???”
He didn’t encourage anyone to use condoms so your question makes no sense - which is no surprise.
“And does your pope encourage contraception for prostitutes, male and female???”
The pope doesn’t encourage contraception or prostitution so your question makes no sense - which, again, is no surprise.
“And in the case of male, gay prostitutes, does your pope encourage the prostitute’s customers to use condoms???”
Since he didn’t encourage anyone to use condoms, and he doesn’t encourage prostitution - gay or otherwise - your question doesn’t make sense. Again, that’s no surprise. Anti-Catholicism = ignorance after all.
“I can’t imagine a prostitute, Protestant or Catholic, who would be influenced by the moral code of your pope...”
I can’t imagine a Protestant, educated or not, actually being intelligent enough to get his facts straight on what the pope said.
“Sometimes it may be best to button the lips, even if you are a pope...”
Sometimes it might be best for Protestants to button their their lips, even if they are bigots...
Seriously, this will be used in so many bad ways.
I’m at a loss as to why people wait and wait to see what the final word from the Pope may be on this. Can no one live their lives without checking to see what they are supposed to be doing, saying, praying, thinking, reading, and living? Waiting on edge for the next ‘do’ list or ‘don’t do’ list seems very odd if you are over 5.
I’m thinking they have no contact with God...Their pope is the mediator between them and Mary, who is the mediator between their pope and Jesus...
If God is to communicate with them, He will do it thru their pope...
Male prostitutes are not my forte'...Thanks for bringing me up to speed on the topic...
He didnt encourage anyone to use condoms so your question makes no sense - which is no surprise.
Ok...Your pope only said that male prostitutes may be justified in using condoms...
“Male prostitutes are not my forte’...Thanks for bringing me up to speed on the topic...”
It’s not my forte either, but I am not ignorant about problems in the world. Apparently anti-Catholics are ignorant across the board.
“Ok...Your pope only said that male prostitutes may be justified in using condoms...”
You really don’t know what he said do you? The ignorance would be almost funny if it were not grounded in bigotry.
Exactly, Mrs. Don-o.
(And a very happy Solemnity of Christ the King to you and yours!)
No contact with God? Are you kidding? I spent most of my weekend with him. Three Masses, one of them a sung High Mass in the Tridentine Rite (I was one of the singers), and two Eucharistic processions. It's hard to spend more time with God than that, while still on earth, that is.
Their pope is the mediator between them and Mary, who is the mediator between their pope and Jesus...
No, that's entirely wrong.
Plaster statues are the mediator between me and Semiramis, who mediates between the plaster statues and Ishtar on my behalf. The Pope and his Dagon fish hat just gets in the way.
/acid sarcasm alert