Pope getting soft?


Philippine bishops said, although they admitted that they haven’t read yet the Pope’s statement.

“He speaks of condom as a permissible tool, not the primary tool, to arrest further spread of the HIV virus; condom is not the moral solution to the alarming spread of the virus and disease,” the bishops’ statement said.

But still, speaking of condom as a “permissible tool” is something new from the traditionally conservative Church.

Some sectors, especially those supporting the reproductive health bill in Congress, are already celebrating.

They might have found an unlikely ally in the Vatican.

Others, however, said the news from Rome is welcome but wanting.

He should have included migrant workers, seafarers and call center agents as among those who can be forgiven for using latex, said Ellene Sana of the Center for Migrant Advocacy.

She said for these sectors the use of condom is a “necessity.”

The Pope SUPPOSEDLY said male prostitutes can use condoms because they are vulnerable to HIV and AIDS.

Benjamin D. de Leon, president of the Forum for Family Planning and Development, said the Pope’s stand on condom use “is weighed and found wanting” because those usually afflicted with AIDS are usually not prostitutes.

Of course the best way to avoid the dreaded disease is by not doing anything – not having sex, duh!

The bishops said: “We see in this teaching Pope Benedict as a truly concerned shepherd – not neglecting the evil of the contagion, but helping prevent it, and reminding the entire human family of the care that our infected brothers and sisters very badly need. Let us view this as the Holy Father’s concrete expression of respect and protection of the God-given human life.”

If male prostitutes can use condoms to avoid AIDS, what prevents female prostitutes from encouraging their clients to also use condoms to avoid the disease? What prevents husbands from using condom when he does it with his wife? What prevents a wife from requiring her husband to use it?

The condom will not be for contraception, they will say. It will be for the prevention of the spread of HIV and AIDS.

There goes everything.

“It is misleading to think that the Pope said that condom is OK in the fight against AIDS. What he said was that it is not a moral and a real solution, but in some cases, it can be a first step toward the right moral direction,” said Novaliches Bishop Emeritus Teodoro Bacani.

“You only have one action (sex with condom), but there are two effects (contraception and AIDS prevention).

But of course, the effect that you will choose is that with lesser evil,” said retired Archbisop Oscar Cruz.

The use of condom can prevent birth but can also save people from contracting fatal diseases.

There is no doubt, however, that the Pope’s statement is a departure from the traditionally “conservative” position of the Church on contraception. Health rights advocates said “it’s a wise step.” Joe Torres


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