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CFC in the News - 2013

South African Press Association

Catholic leader disappointed by bishops

8 May 2013

A Catholic leader has expressed his disappointment after Kenyan bishops allegedly "attacked" Catholics over Condoms4Life campaign.


In a statement, Jon O'Brien, president of Catholics for Choice said, "It is sad that the Kenya Episcopal Conference chose to attack Catholics rather than address the critical issues raised by the Condoms4Life campaign.”

According to O’Brien, Catholics believe in God and also believe that sex is sacred.

“We believe in caring for each other. We believe in using condoms," he said.

O’Brien said Catholics around the world embrace the belief that using a condom to protect themselves and their loved ones is profoundly pro life, because it saves lives when they prevent HIV & AIDS.

He said many bishops around the world have encouraged the use of condoms where they're needed for HIV prevention, adding that even Pope Benedict said 'where the intention is to reduce the risk of infection' condoms can be 'a first step in a movement toward a different way, a more human way, of living sexuality.'

"Catholics, from the pope in Rome to bishops and faithful laity everywhere, agree that condoms can, and even sometimes must, be used. But the Kenyan bishops reject all this wisdom, and instead order Kenyan Catholics to put their lives at risk,” he said.

He was hopeful that Kenya's bishops will listen and learn from Catholics from every walk of life and every country.

“People's lives depend on it; the bishops' intransigence is dangerous and disrespectful. But the church is not limited to the bishops. It is the people of God, we who are baptized believers, laity and clergy together,” O’Brien said.

He added that they have a right, and indeed, a duty to speak up about matters that affect their lives and urged Catholics to use condoms.

This piece was originally published by SAPA.