The Truth About Condoms
The Tablethttp://www.thetablet.co.uk/article/228410July 2004
Most people are convinced that an HIV-infected person who has sex should use a condom to protect his partner from infection. Whatever one may think about a promiscuous lifestyle, about homosexual acts or prostitution, that person acts at least with a sense of responsibility in trying to avoid transmitting his infection to others.
It is commonly believed that the Catholic Church does not support such A view. As a BBC Panorama programme recently suggested, the Church is Thought to teach that sexually active homosexuals and prostitutes should refrain from condoms because condoms are 'intrinsically evil' (The Tablet, 26 June). Many Catholics also believe this. One of them is Hugh Henry, education officer of the Linacre Centre in London, who told Austen Ivereigh in last week's Tablet that the use of a condom, even exclusively to prevent infection of one's sexual partner, "fails to honour the fertile structure that marital acts must have, cannot constitute mutual and complete personal self-giving and thus violates the Sixth Commandment".
This is why contraception, regarded as a human act qualified as "intrinsically evil" or disordered, is not determined by what is happening on the physical level; it makes no difference whether one prevents sexual intercourse from being fertile by taking the Pill or by interrupting it in an onanistic way. The above definition also disregards the differentiation between "doing" and "refraining from doing", because coitus interruptus is a kind of " at least partial " refraining.
The definition of the contraceptive act does not therefore apply to using contraceptives to prevent possible procreative consequences of foreseen rape; in that circumstance the raped person does not choose to engage in sexual intercourse or to prevent a possible consequence of her own sexual behaviour but is simply defending herself from an aggression on her own body and its undesirable consequences. A woman athlete taking part in the Olympic Games who takes an anti-ovulatory pill to prevent menstruation is not doing "contraception" either, because there is no simultaneous intention of engaging in sexual intercourse.