The current U.S. Catholic features South African Bishop Kevin Dowling's article "It is Not Immoral to Use Condoms to Prevent AIDS" .
Many others decide, for whatever reason, that they cannot or will not follow the church's ideals in sexual ethics and in doing so could transmit a death-dealing virus to another through a sexual encounter. We do not live in an ideal world -- on the contrary. What have we to say to this real world? ...
For me, the condom and microbiocide question is not simply a matter of chastity but of justice. In this frightening pandemic, should we focus all our efforts on proclaiming an ethic of sexuality, or should we not also commit ourselves to an ethic of protecting and saving life? If life is indeed sacred to us, we should surely not compound one failure in regard to chastity with another failure in terms of justice by not taking the means we have to prevent the transmission of a death-dealing virus.
Trouble is, your Excellency, that there exists no area of morality in which some folks will not decide -- "for whatever reason" -- that that they cannot or will not follow the Church's teaching. Do they all enjoy a right to protect themselves from the undesirable consequences of their sins?
Take any moral prohibition ... the one that discountenances wife-beating, for example. Regrettably, some husbands will arrive at the conclusion that they can't live up to the Church's "ideal" in this area. But slugging his wife puts a husband at risk of knuckle abrasion and tendonitis. Do we issue him with leather bag mitts and instruct him in their use, so as not to compound a failure in charity with a failure (your Lordship's word, not mine) in justice?
An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:
Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!
Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($163,080 to go):
All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!
Posted by: Pseudodionysius -
Oct. 19, 2003 9:51 AM ET USA
Diogenes. No, we don't. Rather, we give him 2 terms in the White House, make his serial lechery, debauchery, and alleged rape "Safe, Legal and Rare" and then pay him hundreds of thousands of dollars a pop to tell us how to get long life and prosperity in the 21st century, while his wife campaigns around the MacBeth cauldron against the family. It does, after all, depend on what the meaning of "is" is; and whether you are campaigning for "reproductive rights" -- ie The City and not Man.