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Theologian defends stand on condom use

December 22, 2010

Father Martin Rhonheimer, the noted theologian who has been caught up in the controversy surrounding Pope Benedict’s remarks on condoms, has written an open letter defending his argument that the non-contraceptive use of condoms is not necessarily condemned by Church teaching.

Sandro Magister of L’Espresso, who publishes Father Rhonheimer’s letter, argues that the theologian—a priest of Opus Dei and professor at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, who strongly upholds Church teaching against contraception—has won support from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, in its December 21 statement cautioning against misinterpretations of the Pope’s remarks. The CDF statement, Magister claims, “agrees completely with Rhonheimer’s positions.” While it seems a considerable exaggeration to say that the CDF endorses the Rhonheimer argument, it is true that both the Pope’s remarks and the CDF statement leave room for the theologian’s position.


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