Is the Pope Justifying Condoms?

by Steve Ray on December 9, 2015

  Not sure what to think of the Pope’s words on the plane home from Africa. What do you think?

If his point was that we should solve hunger, exploitation, pure water issues, and other tragedies in Africa then good, I am in total agreement.

But, it doesn’t seem wise to me to speak in such an unclear way that allows people to conclude he is using Jesus’s words about doing things forbidden on the Sabbath in a way that could be used in favor of condoms and contraception. 

He looks tired and I assume he was after his African trip but we need to be careful what we say and how we say it especially if our voice has such authority and goes around the world.

Maybe I am being overly critical or missing something…

Fr. Z’s Comments

Cardinal Turkson weighs in

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Andrew December 9, 2015 at 3:57 PM

I wish he wouldnt speak off the cuff so often without giving follow up explanatiin.

Cindy December 9, 2015 at 6:12 PM

Steve, I do not think you are missing anything. I love Pope Francis and I really try hard to think the best and apply what he says to myself and not leap to conclusions about his meaning. However, I have to admit that I also am no longer going to deny I’m having to struggle to do that with some things he says and furthermore I’ve realized I’m ONLY struggling to give him the benefit of the doubt because he is the holy father and not because his choice of words isn’t clearly confusing. Were he not the holy father, I probably would have already concluded he’s mixing ideology with faith. There are obviously many criticisms of him that are unfounded and ridiculous. However, as of late, I’m really starting to question this pattern of leaping to defend or put a ‘positive’ or ‘faithful’ spin on his confusing comments. It is possible he actually means what he says and I think we shouldn’t be afraid to admit that. I’m not saying we need to go around publicizing it but it’s also not necessary to make it a task to be his defender or interpreter. The holy father is a grown man and I’m sure he’s been advised countless times to be careful with what he says and I think he is careful, but honestly, and it pains me to admit, it really seems he’s more careful not to challenge the status quo, than to confuse Catholics. I’m Hispanic and I’ve watched some of his TV dialogues with his Jewish Rabbi friend from Argentina when he was bishop. He told a story of a group of pious Catholic women that were so involved in the parish but that disillusioned him. They turned out to be more externally pious than actually. I would not be surprised if Pope Francis has a bad opinion of faithful Catholics because of hypocritical Catholics he’s experienced in the past. I think he assumes faithful Catholics are “rigorists” and “un-merciful” because he’s been tainted with past experiences.

Marisa December 10, 2015 at 12:35 AM

Pope Francis`s hard earned wisdom is rooted in sincere faith and a very practical knowledge of human needs and potentials. He tries to reach out to EVERYONE not just religious people. Reminding us that we have a moral obligation to be kind and generous to the poor and disadvantaged – clearly the message of Jesus Christ – He said it again and again – Luke 6:20-21 Mark10:21-22 (could list many more) If you have a problem with this message you have a problem NOT with Pope Frances but with Jesus Christ.

Matthew Burton December 10, 2015 at 9:46 AM

We have had Pope’s in the past that have been truly awful. I don’t hesitate to say that I too have my concerns, however I know that I am not the Pope and that if I was to be in the Chair of Peter I would most certainly fail. So if we find fault in something our brother says then we should offer up more prayers and small acts of penance to assist him with the struggles he may face. This is what we are called to do as the members of the Body of Christ. What one member experiences can either benefit or harm the other members so let us always be mindful of what our Shepard is in need of and may we be blessed to be counted among the flock that offers up prayers on his behalf. After all, we are given by God what we deserve. Let us not be convicted of a wasted life.

Emma Green December 10, 2015 at 1:00 PM

Perhaps he’s intending to confuse us or at least to challenge us. Perhaps he’s showing us. In this year of mercy that mercy always triumphs over judgement. In terms of the use of condoms being forbidden by Jesus, well I can’t find any reference to that in the Bible!!!! Perhaps teaching is going to change who knows?

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