Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Pope's Comments about AIDS in Africa

There's been a lot of stir the last few days about comments the Pope might have made about condoms in Africa. While we in the church pride ourselves on our ability to stick our feet firmly down our throat -- we are as dextrous as Chinese gymnasts -- in this case I think the Pope's been quoted out of context.

If you're interested in this stuff, here is the passage in question:

I would say that this problem of AIDS cannot be overcome with advertising slogans. If the soul is lacking, if Africans do not help one another, the scourge cannot be resolved by distributing condoms; quite the contrary, we risk worsening the problem. The solution can only come through a twofold commitment: firstly, the humanization of sexuality, in other words a spiritual and human renewal bringing a new way of behaving towards one another; and secondly, true friendship, above all with those who are suffering, a readiness - even through personal sacrifice - to be present with those who suffer. And these are the factors that help and bring visible progress.

Certainly on other occasions the Church has spoken out in a way similar to the current press coverage. But in this instance, it would seem an important message is getting lost.

Here is the full interview.

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