Tag Archives: HIV-AIDS

World AIDS Day and Pope Benedict

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Today’s known as World AIDS Day. The focus of the day is “an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day and the first one was held in 1988.” This dreadful disease has claimed many millions of people world-wide –and sex is not always to blame. AND condom use is the answer.

With all the advances in medicine, there are still gaping holes in education and prevention in the fields of medicine, pharmacology, spirituality and society. The recent trip of Pope Benedict to Benin highlighted yet again the need before us. Specifically Benedict called for a holistic response to the AIDS pandemic.

Pope Benedict stated:

The problem of AIDS,in particular,clearly calls for a medical and pharmaceutical response. This is not enough, however: the problem goes deeper. Above all, it is an ethical problem. The change of behavior that it requires -for example, sexual abstinence, rejection of sexual promiscuity, fidelity within marriage- ultimately involves the question of integral development,which demands a global approach and a global response from the Church. For if it is to be effective, the prevention of AIDS must be based on a sex education that is itself grounded in an anthropology anchored in the natural law and enlightened by the word of God and the Church’s teaching.

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Vatican and Good Samaritan Foundation talk on AIDS

Stats for those living with HIV-AIDS is somewhere around 33 million,  records the World Health Organization (WHO). Recently, the HIV-AIDS epidemic was studied at a Rome conference hosted by the Holy See and the Good Samaritan Foundation. The conference was titled “The Centrality of Care for the Person in the Prevention and Treatment of Illnesses caused by HIV and AIDS.”

Various experts and Vatican officials, including the Pope’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, where he said that our work ought to be centered on the patient in way that a holistic approach is followed: the whol person and not only the disease needs to competent assistance and friendship. Experts from 26 countries attended the conference.

It is estimated that there are some thing like 117,000 health centers across the globe that treat AIDS patients. With all the money wasted on frivolous things, the WHO said their research revealed that in 2009 about $16 million was used for AIDS research and treatments. Problems exist in medical care and safety because only 35 percent of patients in third world countries have access to treatment. Do the math: roughly 10 million people don’t have access to any type of medication and proper health care. 

Prayer for Those Who Suffer with HIV, AIDS

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God of our
weary years, God of our silent tears, O Good and gracious God, you are the God
of health and wholeness.

In the plan of your creation, you call us to struggle
in our sickness and to cling always to the cross of your Son. Father, we are
your servants. Many of us are now suffering with HIV or AIDS.

We come before
you, and ask you, if it is your holy will, to take away this suffering from us,
to restore us to health and to lead us to know you and your powerful healing,
love of body and spirit.

We ask you also to be with those of us who nurse your
sick ones. We are the mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, and friends
of your suffering people. It is so hard for us to see those whom we love
suffer. You know what it is to suffer. Help us to minister in loving care, support,
and patience to your people who suffer with HIV and AIDS.

Lead us to do
whatever it will take to eradicate this illness from the lives of those who are
touched by it, both directly and indirectly. Trusting in you and the strength
of your Spirit, we pray these things in the name of Jesus. Amen.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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