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Botswana prelate: Condoms not a solution to AIDS

Catholic World News - May 27, 2011

“Common sense” chastity, and not government-promoted “condom sense,“ is the solution to the AIDS epidemic, Botswana’s leading prelate said in an interview with Aid to the Church in Need.

“It is in the educational aspect where we differ,” said Bishop Valentine Tsamma Seane of Gaborone. “The government, for instance, promotes condoms; condom-sense instead of common sense. The Church talks about common sense because the Church understands that as human beings we are intellectual beings with the ability to control ourselves, and we can do that if we are educated.”

“You cannot think that by distributing prophylactics to people that you can say that you are doing something,” he continued. “If people are conditioned they become totally dependent and then they lose their ability to contain themselves and you end up behaving on your impulses, feelings and senses and forgetting that you have the ability to say ‘yes’ or ‘no' and forgetting that you are a responsible person.”

Discussing his priorities as bishop, he added that “I want to encourage local vocations to the priesthood and religious life. I want the indigenous people to be able to discern and respond to God's call so that the Church can be in the hands of the local people who understand the culture of the people. So far it is very promising because there are 16 young men in the major seminary.”

5% of the nation’s 1.9 million people are Catholic, according to Vatican statistics.

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