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Pope Benedict XVI Stirs the Pot

In a bold and unorthodox move, Pope Benedict XVI expressly acknowledged that in some situations condoms might be acceptable. Though he did not change the official stance of the Catholic Church, he opened the door for debate. In indicating that condoms help prevent disease, the Pope seemed to advocate safety over morals.

Earlier this week, the Pope released a book, Light of the World, wherein he reasoned that, while condoms aren’t a moral solution, they exude responsibility and a step in the right (moral) direction. As reported by the New York Times, the statements were ambiguous and when questioned, Benedict  retorted with a smile. Specific examples the pope cited include prostitutes, which in itself is amusing since the church doesn’t quite advocate for prostitution. It was clear in Benedict’s message that the use should be to avoid disease, not pregnancy. However, contraception does tend to prevent conception, which is also against Catholic doctrine.

Benedict has stirred up a bit of opposition. The New York Times reported that several prominent individuals disagreed with the pope’s actions, going so far as to tell the publisher not to publish the his book. Though Benedict is not changing the church doctrine, one cannot deny the influence his words have on the Catholic community and the world. Perhaps in the future, there will be one less thing to confess for. Perhaps change is on the way.

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