The issue of contraception has always been a heavily contested issue in the Catholic Church. That’s why a headline in this morning’s Telegraph “The Pope drops Catholic ban on condoms in historic shift” stopped me in my tracks.
I thought I had misread the headline, but as I read on I quickly came to see that this “historic shift” was just one step in the right direction.
Turns out the church now believes that it is acceptable to use condoms only if is to reduce the risk of spreading HIV/AIDS. In fact, according to the Pope it could be a responsible choice to use contraception as long as it is intended to preserve life and avoid possible death. If used in this manner, using a condom could even be acceptable when having sex outside of marriage.
For an institution that has long opposed the use of contraception by Catholic couples because it interferes with the creation of life, this is a notable shift. Using condoms to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS – and protect people from any sexually transmitted infections – is a message that everyone should hear so I’m happy to see this change in attitude form the Pope.
Such information was gathered in a personal interview with the Pope – the first time such an interview has occurred in the Church’s history. The Pope’s comments will be published in the book Light of the World which touches on his views on other issues such as the sex abuse scandal, drug trafficking, and sex tourism.
What do you think about the Pope’s new views on contraception? Do you think his announcement will help reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS?
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Photo credit: Photo by trec_lit used under a Creative Commons license.
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