The campaigns against Hiv/Aids that is still going on insist on condoms as a sure way of prevention. The Catholic Church still holds a strong No to condom! I can imagine your disappointment and perhaps your anger! Let me explain to you.
Let us get it right. The Catholic Church is concerned with preaching Christian values to be lived. We guide and enlighten but we do not take any decision for you. Here we are concerned with what pushes you to use condoms. The church does not tell you how to have sex. We are interested in values not in techniques. Our problem is that condoms are a technical solution to a moral problem. Do not make of condom a normal way of making love. People use condoms because they are afraid. They are not sure of their sexual partner. There will come one day in your life when you say to your lover “now let us be serious, let’s make love”. Then you do not think of using condoms anymore. Who on earth expresses his love with a condom? You think of using condom only when you do not trust your sexual partner or you are not ready for the consequences. You are afraid! And you may be right! That’s where the Catholic Church comes in. What is sex with fear? Shall we have condoms for lips and tongues so that people kiss each other without fear? Let us be serious!
Sexual relationship is a beautiful expression of love between man and woman. There is a difference between having sex with somebody and making love. You are having sex when the sexual act is simply done because you want to satisfy strong sexual desires. You then go to a prostitute. Or you try on the first prey that will seduce you. You are looking for fun, “sex-fun and funny sex!” True lovers make love. It is the expression of that strong feeling they have for one another. They also feel a great physical pleasure. But what brings them to the act is a strong heart feeling. They feel a psychological pleasure of being one. Women are more sensitive to that than men. That is why they suffer more when a relationship breaks up. They ought to teach men what is love. We do not love with our sexes only. We love with our hearts. Please do not make condoms for hearts!
Our Catholic’s position is to proclaim the necessity of love in any sexual relationship. Sex with fear is like science without conscience. Sex seeking physical pleasure only is dehumanising. Our cry is: “Men, stop using women as sex machines”. There is more in a woman than her erotic organs. Seek first a relationship of love. Pleasure comes with it. Happiness is in a good and loving relationship. Condoms do not build up a loving relationship. Some of those people who market or advocate condoms have beautiful families. They never use condoms. Condoms are for fun seekers who fear. Life in fear is not life. It is survival.
In a situation of a married couple where one member is HIV positive I express my compassion to the couple. It is a very difficult situation. When it is the woman who is positive, she is likely to be abandoned by the man. What a painful situation. Should they continue a normal relationship and give birth to HIV positive children? It is up to the couple to decide. You are responsible for your life. Be responsible for your decisions. Our light here is this: “do not kill, love your neighbour as you love yourself”. HIV/AIDS cannot break the strong bound of love you have for one another. It is a difficult situation you need to face together in love and faith. The first question is not shall the husband use a condom or not? The real question is shall we continue to live together with this virus in the blood? Then how? Many people answer quickly to the first question and decide to use condoms but in reality they have another safer partner outside. Be responsible. Nobody cares about how you will make love. What we care for is your sincere loving fidelity to one another.
In a situation where the lovers are not married but they are living together usually the relationship breaks up before the church says anything. The one who is positive becomes more and more loving and tries to keep the relationship. But fear takes over. The safe one takes his or her distance slowly till she or he disappears with a safer new partner. Condoms here are not even a solution. Condoms cannot secure the heart from fear! In the case they decide to continue to live together on the decision that he will use condoms, they will have to solve the thorny problem of having children. Again we say, “We are interested in your loving relationship. Talk to each other about it and take a decision. Be serious and responsible”.
To men and women, young and old, who are simply, having fun with each other without any life commitment our message to you does not concern condoms. Our message is about your life. Human beings are more than pleasure. What is your life all about? What do you want to make out of your life? A life of fun becomes easily a funny life! To live is to have some values to hold on. True happiness lies in a loving relationship based on trust. True friendship gives meaning and dynamism to our life. I wish all the women could tell the gentlemen who come to them with sweet words: “you’re great! But I don’t need a friend whose pockets are full of condoms. I need a friend whose heart is full of care.” Do you really care?