Arg. Most of you probably heard about the Pope’s little African snafu, when he declared that condom use cannot help prevent the spread of AIDS. Of course, like many of the beliefs he propagates, this is demonstrably false.
But many over-looked another, equally incendiary and thoughtlessly dogmatic statement he made while in Angola.
The Washington Times reports:
[Benedict] criticized the “irony of those who promote abortion as a form of ‘maternal’ health care.” The pope was referring to an African Union agreement signed by Angola and 44 other countries that abortion should be legal in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is endangered.
“How disconcerting the claim that the termination of life is a matter of reproductive health,” Benedict said.
Oh yes, how terrible it is that several African countries have taken steps to reduce maternal mortality and death from back alley abortion. It’s such a tragedy that these countries allow rape and incest victims choices regarding how to handle the crime done to them. Indeed, how disconcerting the claim that reproduction has anything to do with a woman’s body, health and life.
The pope has his finger to the pulse. Finger To The Pulse.
The pope left Africa on a final note of the importance of aid to the poor.
On Monday, the pope urged Angola’s leaders to make “the fundamental aspirations of the most needy people” their main concern.
“Our hearts cannot be at peace as long as there are brothers that suffer the lack of food, work, a house, and other fundamental goods,” the pontiff said in his airport departure speech.
However, the Catholic Church in Angola has been seizing land owned by poor families in order to build new Catholic churches. Over 2,000 families have been displaced, some violently. When Amnesty International pled with the pope to address this issue…
Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi referred the question to Angolan Bishop Monsignor Jose Manuel Imbamba. The prelate denied anyone had been evicted or houses destroyed.
Nice one! Publicly declare compassion for the poor. Then violently remove families from their land to make way for new churches. Just what Jesus would do.