Home Abortion Aids & Hiv Euthanasia Homosexuality Lebanon Natural Family Planning Contact Me   
Daily News  »
Archives
Photo Album
Arabic Church News
Arabic Church Titles
Arabic Encyclopedia
Arabic Vatican News
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Church History
Code of Eastern Canon Law
Code of Western Canon Law
Council for Justice and Peace
Papal Documents
Papal Encyclicals
Paths of the Spirit
Pontifical Academy for Life
Saints & Angels
The 21 Ecumenical Councils
The Catholic Encyclopedia
The Encyclopedia of Philosophy
The Fathers of the Church
The Holy Father
The II Vatican Council
The List of Popes
The Mysteries of the Rosary
The New Jerusalem Bible
Way of the Cross
Question and Answer
- Faith FAQs
 
Newsletter
Your name:
   
Your email:
   
   Subscribe Unsubscribe
 
Latest Posts
- Saint’s Day Mass as an Ordination Liturgy
- Liturgy Q & A: Blessings and Affiliations
- Pope Francis: The Church is the Family of God’s Children
- Holy Father’s Address to World Meeting of Families
- LITURGY Q&A: Deacon’s Role at Incensing
 
   
Media
- Tv Charity
- Radio Maria
- Radio Charity - Lebanon
 
Slide Shows & Movies
- Psalm 23
- Be United Against...
- You Are Mine
- Abortion
- Mother Teresa
- Promise
 
Calendar
  September 2018  
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
30 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Number Of Visitors:
406568
 
Africa's Bishops Back Pope in AIDS Message. Affirm Church Is Truly Present in Fight
ACCRA, Ghana, NOV. 27, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Representing the "most efficient" and "most truly present player in the fight against AIDS," bishops of Africa say that this is no time to diminish efforts in the fight.

This was the affirmation in a message for the Dec. 1 World AIDS Day from the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM).

The message, signed by Cardinal Polycarp Pengo, archbishop of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, noted that "the theme this year, 'Universal Access and Human Rights,' challenges discriminatory laws, policies and practices that stand in the way of access for all to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support."

The bishops' message comes with the authority gained by the fact that the "Church is second to none in facing HIV in Africa and caring for people infected and affected."

"Earlier this year," the message stated, "responding to a journalist en route to the continent, Pope Benedict XVI said: 'The most efficient, most truly present player in the fight against AIDS is the Catholic Church herself.' And we African bishops know he is right."

Body of Christ

Cardinal Pengo lamented that "official concerns about the pandemic are receding" and exclaimed "the Body of Christ has AIDS, and [we] express our pastoral determination as Family of God to provide fitting responses. For our continent is still the worst afflicted."

The bishops' message noted that it is false to presume "treatment is now available to everyone."

Instead, the statement explained, only a third of those who need treatment get it and, after two years, only 60% are still on treatment; for every two people on treatment, five are newly infected. Globally new HIV infections are still outnumbering those going on treatment and those dying of AIDS. 

"The number of orphans, abused, vulnerable and infected children continues to grow exponentially," the cardinal affirmed. "Stigma remains a powerful enemy. The Church knows very well the real impact of HIV and of AIDS upon her sons and daughters, and it will be so for decades to come."

Papal wisdom

Though Benedict XVI's warning that condoms are not the solution to AIDS caused an international media stir when he visited Africa in March, the bishops affirmed that the Pope is right.

They said, "[W]e seriously warn that the problem cannot be overcome by relying exclusively or primarily on the distribution of prophylactics. Only a strategy based on education to individual responsibility in the framework of a moral view of human sexuality, especially through conjugal fidelity, can have a real impact on the prevention of this disease."

In fact, the SECAM message continues, it is the Church's understanding of marriage that "prompts the most effective behaviors for preventing the sexual transmission of disease: namely, abstinence before marriage and fidelity within marriage."

Call to youth

Cardinal Pengo had a poignant invitation for young Africans.

"We address ourselves particularly to our youth, in whom we firmly believe," the message said. "Let no one deceive you into thinking that you cannot control yourself. 

"Abstinence is the best protection. For those who are not married, it is also the only moral course of action. Accordingly, formation of the human person is the true recipe, the key to it all, and we are intent on preparing you to be tomorrow's salt of the earth and light of the world, active, generous and responsible members of society and Church."

The SECAM message concluded with a prayer to the Blessed Virgin: "May our Holy Mother Mary, Queen of Africa and Health of the Sick, intercede for us at the throne of grace."