Loading
Belgian ambassador to Holy See told to condemn Pope's condom remarks
Pope Benedict XVI
Pope Benedict XVI
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Wednesday, April 15 saw an unusual meeting take place as the Ambassador of Belgium to the Holy See delivered an official condemnation of the Pope's remarks on the use of condoms to prevent AIDS in Africa from his country's House of Representatives.

Ambassador Frank de Coninck was ordered by the Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs to lodge the official condemnation with Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Vatican's Secretary for Relations with States.

In reaction to the move, the Vatican Secretariat of State said it "notes with regret this action, unusual in the context of the diplomatic relations existing between the Holy See and the Kingdom of Belgium."

The Vatican also said it "deplores the fact that a Parliamentary Assembly should have thought it appropriate to criticize the Holy Father on the basis of an isolated extract from an interview, separated from its context, and used by some groups with a clear intent to intimidate, as if to dissuade the Pope from expressing himself on certain themes of obvious moral relevance and from teaching the Church’s doctrine."

The Secretariat of State also pointed out that the Pope did more than make remarks on the effectiveness of using condoms. Pope Benedict, the Vatican recalled, offered a two prong plan for combating the AIDS crisis. The first part involves "bringing out the human dimension of sexuality," and the second consists of convincing people to offer "true friendship and willingness to help persons who are suffering."

But all of this was passed over by the media as it unleashed a firestorm of criticism, particularly in Europe, the Vatican charged.

Amidst the oftentimes harsh criticism, the Secretariat of State pointed out that it found consolation in the fact that "the moral considerations articulated by the Holy Father were understood and appreciated, in particular by the Africans and the true friends of Africa, as well as by some members of the scientific community."

Numerous members of the African medical community, many with experience combating AIDS, as well as some American experts spoke out in favor of the Pope's words at the time.

Dr. Edward Green, a Senior Harvard Researcher for AIDS Prevention, told CNA that science is finding that the media is actually on the wrong side of the issue. In fact, Green said that not only do condoms not work, but that they may be "exacerbating the problem" in Africa.

In today's statement, the Vatican also noted that the Regional Episcopal Conference of West Africa (CERAO) also welcomed the Pope's words.

"We are grateful for the message of hope which [the Holy Father] came to entrust to us in Cameroon and Angola. He came to encourage us to live in unity, reconciled with one another in justice and peace, so that the Church in Africa can herself be a burning flame of hope for the life of the entire continent. And we thank him for having restated for all, in a nuanced, clear and insightful way, the common teaching of the Church concerning the pastoral care of sufferers from AIDS."

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Oct
23

Liturgical Calendar

October 23, 2014

Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Gospel
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Eph 3:14-21
Gospel:: Lk 12: 49-53

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/23/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Homily
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14