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Against the Pending Approval of Condoms - Part III

The Current Vatican Moral Relativism

Kathleen Willett Redle

After dealing with the Catholic doctrine on contraception (Part I), and how this invariable doctrine was sabotaged by Gaudium et spes and later conciliar teachings (Part II), let me now in this final Part III address the position of the present day Vatican on the topic.

In my opinion, no one could be more representative of the Vatican position than Cardinal Georges Cottier. He was the last Papal household theologian in charge of checking the orthodoxy of everything the Pope says or writes. On February 1, 2005, Catholic World News reported the words of Cardinal Georges Cottier in an interview on condoms and AIDS. The nucleus of his declaration is that the use of condoms “could be considered legitimate when people are prisoners of unusual circumstances, and the condoms are used solely for the purpose of preventing the spread of disease.”

 Cardinal Georges Cottier

Papal theologian Card. Cottier admits the use of condoms
The quite imprecise concept of persons as “prisoners of unusual circumstances” makes me wonder what these words mean.

The most probable interpretation is that Card. Cottier adopts the modern psychological theory that people are “victims” of their own vices, that is, that they are not guilty for their bad moral actions. This theory not only goes against Catholic Morals, but also is against the common good of society, since society cannot have stability if evil people are not considered responsible for their actions and duly punished.

Cottier did not condemn people practicing sex outside of marriage making it their choice to practice vice over virtue, sin over grace, incontinence over self restraint. His statement opens a Pandora's box of sexual promiscuity and spreads confusion among the faithful, already ravaged by the many moral scandals rocking the Church. In fact, it will give the green light to illicit sexual behavior. Almost anyone can use the excuse (with the Cardinal’s rubber stamp of approval) that he is experiencing “unusual circumstances,” and thereby start to use condoms.

Cottier’s progressivist statement is mixed with a more conservative approach when he says that “the only morally acceptable means of fighting AIDS is through sexual continence.” Then he adds: “Condom use contributes to the risk of contagion.” These are good statements that contradict the previous one I analyzed. They were affirmed in blatant contradiction, without any explanation from Cottier. I ask: What will prevail in the mind of Catholics? Will it be the traditional teaching or the novelty of having a papal theologian approving condoms? I think that the answer is obvious, the latter.

The bottom line on Cottier's statements leads one to the conclusion of moral relativism and condom use for every sexually active person, married and unmarried. Anyone can make the argument that every act of sexual intercourse holds the danger of the transmission of AIDS. The simple fact is that the statistics are showing that condoms and other forms of birth control are promoting pre-marital, extramarital and homosexual sex because they leave the sexually active parties engaging in illicit sex. Condom use actually encourages the anti-life, anti-child mentality and the idea that sex is only and primarily for human pleasure, which is false (see Part I of this series).

An encouragement to impurity in marriage and conjugal infidelity

The condoning of condoms to avoid AIDS will confuse married couples who to date have followed the Church’s prohibitions against condoms and other artificial devices of birth control. Many will look at all of the “exceptions” which theologians such as Cottier advocate, and protest: “Not fair! We should be allowed to use condoms too because we worry that our spouse may get AIDS from a blood transfusion!”

Others doubtful about the fidelity of their spouses can find an excuse to use condoms and change their formerly good practice of avoiding them. Approval of condoms in supposed “unusual circumstances” will ultimately lead to a broadening of the practice and more marital infidelity. Human nature steeped in sin finds it too easy to rationalize. We will see a mushrooming of Catholics claiming they are “the exception” and that the new moral laxness applies to them. The birth rate will sink even further in Western nations if the Church advocates such a policy of moral relativism.

Following the precedent of the Anglicans

Cottier’s reasoning of using communicable diseases like AIDS to excuse inexcusable behavior is the same “health risk” issue used in the Lambeth conference in 1930 to allow Anglican couples to use artificial birth control. There has been an explosion of divorce, sex outside of marriage, pornography, and abortion ever since. Now Card. Cottier wants Catholics to follow the same path as the Anglicans.

Free Condoms at WYD 2001

At World Youth Day members of Challenge the Church prepare to hand out condoms
Instead of damning up the hole in the dike, he wants to enlarge it. He destroys the foundation of good married life.

To conclude, if we follow Card. Cottier’s advice for handling the AIDS crisis, instead of trusting in God’s holy laws and the perennial teachings of the Catholic Church, we will see the wall of the dike blow so badly that the institution of marriage and family will be swept away by a flood tide of sexual promiscuity.

Only those persons who, like Noah’s family in the ark, separate themselves from the immoral pagan culture and build their lives upon Catholic Morals will avoid being swept away by the flood of doctrinal and moral apostasy, planned by the ideologues of Progressivism.

Is Cottier’s statement representative of the Vatican official line on condoms? I don’t know how a man can be more representative of the Vatican than a papal theologian, which is what he was. After his statement, the Vatican did not deny his words. The rumors from it only increased that a new approach regarding condoms would be taken by Benedict XVI shortly. What new approach can it be if not a liberalization of the Catholic prohibition?

If this is the case, these comments on Cottier’s words may well apply to what will come.


Blason de Charlemagne
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Posted February 26, 2007

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