It’s a possibility. Reformists in the Church have been pressing for the use of condoms in some cases, and Benedict has been somewhat receptive to their overtures.
This isn’t new. A couple of months back there was a similar story about it. Now it looks like a report has been finished and submitted to the Pope. Here’s what the speculation is about condom use:
He did not reveal its conclusions. But Cardinal Barragán is known to favour reform and Vatican sources said it was highly likely that he had come out in support of using condoms in marriages where one of the partners was HIV-positive.
Now use of contraceptives for health reasons is not something new. Women are allowed to take the birth control pill for health conditions. Because it can cause abortions, however, the couple is asked to refrain from sex while the woman is on the pill.
It’s a similar take with the condoms, however, to a smaller degree. Condoms can’t cause abortions, so they’re a safer stance than BCPs. They are primarily a method to prevent male-to-female transmission of HIV, primarily in Africa where infection rates are at the epidemic level.
While some look at this as good news, I’m not sure I’m comfortable with allowing condom use in marriage, even when it’s health related, primarily bbecauseof the traditional dogma regarding contraceptives.
Catholics believe that coitus involves 3 people– the man, the woman and God. As sex is a creative act, God must be present. To remove the creative potential from the act, it effectively turns the glorious union into paired sexual gratification, which is a function of lust, a sin. By sanctioning sin in Marriage, the second biggest Sacrament next to Eucharist, the Church is contradicting tradition and, more importantly, contradicting one of the Sacraments.
I have also seen two other methods that have curbed the spread of HIV. The ABC method has been successful in Uganda. However, the biggest, and I think most iimportantleap in fighting HIV has been male circumcision. (Pointy-headed eexplanationhere.) Additionally, the medications that are currently in use for fighting HIV have been getting better and better, and there is talk of a vaccine. Of course, the vaccine idea scares the pants off of me because to vaccinate someone you have to infect them with weak or dead HIV virus. Um, no thanks.
Taking into account all of these measures, for the Church to sanction condom use in marriage is unnecessary and will jeopardize Sacramentality as a whole because it sets precedent for marginalizing the meaning of the Sacraments when it is seemingly necessary. I know it makes me sound like a cold hearted bastard who doesn’t care about people dying in Africa, but I have to speak on behalf of what is good for the Church and its people. And any such decision will save lives in Africa, but it will cost the Church its soul.