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All This Talk About the Pope and Condoms…

…makes me dislike the media a little less. But not much less, so keep reading.

In this instance, at least, it’s more like they don’t get the nuances of moral theology. They’re not pushing an agenda: they’re just ignorant. I can excuse them that, because moral theology is by far one of the more complex fields of study.

Kudos to Pope Benedict for approaching a teaching I’d be hesitant to speak publicly on. It’s gutsy, precisely for the reason we’re seeing today. I know exactly what he was getting at: we’d talked about it on multiple occasions at the seminary, regarding condom use in an already illicit situation (homosexual activity/fornication). The problem with saying such a thing publicly is that nobody understands the nuance of the theology, so of course they’ll run with it as the media has and say, “Aha! The Pope approves of condom use!”

No… no, not at all. What the Pope is saying is that condom use doesn’t make the act any more illicit than it already is, so sin doesn’t compound upon sin. And AIDS doesn’t exactly spread through monogamous relations with one’s spouse.

Most of the recent studies out there put the failure rate of condoms at 15% in terms of disease prevention. The media is still stuck in the 90′s where I grew up, telling us to practice “safe sex” with a condom because it’d be the magic bullet which prevented AIDS transmission. So much for that.

My method — and the method espoused by Pope Benedict — works much better.

Eleven Awesome Things

In an effort to keep everyone abreast on my recent activities, behold: I bring you eleven awesome things!

#1) PRIESTHOOD. Of course I’d lead with this. It’s been a great adventure thus far, and as it has become my life/absorbed the overwhelming majority of my time as of late, I could do a whole post just on the awesomeness of priesthood. Which I’m bound to do, at some point or another. With the exception of #2, the rest of this list is just awesome stuff I’ve noticed along the way.

#2) MY BISHOP. Or my former bishop. He was recently named as the Archbishop of Seattle, effective December 1st. I’m extremely happy for Archbishop Sartain, though we as a diocese are sad to see him go.

#3) ST. THOMAS MORE’S UTOPIA. Never read it before I picked it up recently. It’s good. If you like political philosophy, check ‘er out.

#4) THE WALKING DEAD. A&E’s new series. It’s awesome. Check out the comics if you like the series. A good TV show/movie will stay true to the book, after all.

#5) GENE WOLFE. The guy’s a genius. I’m going to do a massive post on Wolfe after I finish the Sun books.

#6) CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS. At the end of the day — especially if it’s been a busy one — a few pixelated terrorists need to get theirs.

#7) BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER. Didn’t think I’d like it, but I do. The later seasons aren’t as great as the first three, but no huge revelations there. It’s generally accepted that the quality of the series decreases over time.

#8) THE DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS. Great band. Great southern rock.

#9) NEBRASKA FOOTBALL. No matter what happens from here on out, I’m proud of the Huskers. GO BIG RED!

#10) CHTHULHU. Always awesome.

#11) SPAWN. Lately, I find myself returning to boyhood interests. Spawn and Wolverine were my favorite comic book characters growing up, and the Spawn series is even better than I remember it.

*****

And because I wouldn’t want to give off the impression that I’ve lost my critical/cynical nature, four not-so-awesome things:

#1) JUSTIN BIEBER/POP MUSIC. It’s terrible. If Justin Bieber is the Kurt Cobain of his generation, then I feel really, really sorry for that generation.

#2) NAPERVILLE TRAFFIC. Also terrible. I despise driving enough to begin with. Don’t need help.

#3) HULU PRIME. It’s a bust. $9.99 to stream on the television exactly what one gets on the Internet for free. Plus you still have to watch the ads. Nice try, Hulu.

#4) THE CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS. No defensive cohesion. They look awful.

*****

Until next time!