.- The National Conference of Bishops of Brazil has issued a strongly-worded response to President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who insinuated last week that the Church is hypocritical for opposing the distribution of condoms as a principal means of preventing AIDS.
Last Wednesday in Rio de Janeiro, during the presentation of an AIDS prevention campaign centered exclusively on the distribution of condoms, Lula said that sex “is something that almost everybody likes” and that “many times this issue is not discussed because ‘my mother doesn’t like it, or my father doesn’t like it or the Church doesn’t like it’.” He said that an “international day against hypocrisy” should be created in response.
During his remarks Lula also stated, “Teenagers should not be told when they should have sex,” as “sex is something that almost everybody likes and is an organic necessity.”
The Brazilian Bishops’ Committee on Life and the Family issue a statement in response saying, “The Church does not agree with the way in which the President addressed the problem of the use of condoms.”
The brief statement underscored that “the position of the Church is clear. It always has been. It has not and will not change.”
“We will not cease from repeating our opinion on this. The way to educate our teenagers and young people is not through permissiveness, inciting them to engage in behavior without norms. Rather, we need to educate them based on consistent good principles.”
“This orientation falls first and foremost to parents,” the statement emphasized. “The family is the first and most important source of formation in human principles and values for the child. When the parents act thus, there are not being hypocrites. And the Church defends the fundamental right of parents.”
“We are not hypocrites. We never were. We never will be. We are consistent,” the statement indicated in conclusion.