Catholic thinkers: Pope will be remembered for marriage defense

Rome, Italy, Feb 20, 2013 / 03:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Two leaders from one of the world’s largest pro-life groups think Pope Benedict XVI will be remembered for defending traditional marriage and his contributions to bioethics.

“He defended marriage as between a man and a woman and made statements, which later he was attacked for, because we really are in a very concerning situation where same-sex ‘marriage’ is being legalized worldwide,” said Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro, director of Human Life International’s Rome office.

“People are going to realize how the pressure to give legal status to same-sex ‘marriage’ grew in this decade, they’ll will see it as a problem, and they’ll see Pope Benedict as prophetic after having been very clear that this goes against nature,” Msgr. Barreiro told CNA Feb. 15.

Joseph Meaney, the institution’s director of international coordination, pointed out that people raised by same-sex parents are already coming forward to talk about all of the problems caused by marriage being redefined.

“It has become this sort of libertarianism gone wild, where everyone has a right to everything,” Meaney said.

He also believes secular media attacked Pope Benedict much more than Blessed John Paul II.

“One thing that made my heart really bleed for him is when he went on his first trip to Africa, and on the plane, before he even landed, they asked him about the AIDS crisis and he said that the condom is not the solution to the AIDS crisis,” Meaney recalled.

“Everyone, including public health experts, have agreed about this, but the journalists on the plane flashed out the word that Pope Benedict is against the condom and the world attacked him.”

Msgr. Barreiro, a bioethics expert, believes the Pope will also be remembered for his stance against freezing human embryos.

“It is a tragic situation to speak about frozen babies that are the consequences of artificial conception and are artificially outside the human body due to an immoral approach by couples who can’t conceive,” he said.

“They believe they have the right to a baby,” he explained, “so they try to conceive it outside of the body and many times they produce several babies that are either left aside for future implants or simply abandoned.”

Pope Benedict contributed to the discussion when he released “Dignitas Personae” in Sept. 2008.

“There were many people within the Church who tried to find a moral solution to that tragedy and one was to propose that women adopt those frozen babies in the womb and bring them to life,” said Msgr. Barreiro.

“But this document reached the conclusion that that solution is neither moral nor natural,” he explained.

Both Msgr. Barreiro and Meaney believe Benedict XVI’s papacy has successfully built upon and continued the work begun by his predecessor Blessed John Paul II.

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