Back on May 3 we posted about the 2009 Commencement exercises at the (Jesuit) University of San Francisco. We mentioned that Commencement honorees/speakers included South African Bishop Kevin Dowling (who publicly supports condom use) and San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris (who supports same-sex "marriage.")
Referring to the Bishop's invitation, we quoted this statement from the "Catholics for Choice" website:
“Bishop Dowling, in an interview about HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment in South Africa said, 'Abstinence before marriage and faithfulness in a marriage is beyond the realm of possibility here. The issue is to protect life. That must be our fundamental goal.' Drawing attention to the especially difficult plight of women in the traditionally male-dominated societies of his diocese he continued, 'My passion is for the women. I'm in that corner.' About the African people, he says, 'They must use condoms,' maintaining his stance despite the Vatican’s continued opposition to such a policy”. Emphasis added.
We then asked:
"Dare we say that Bishop Dowling is being honored because of this position, not in spite of it?"
Well, at yesterday's exercise Bishop Dowling was introduced to the graduates, faculty, and families by Lilian Dube, Assistant Professor of Theology and Religious Studies at the University. And, lo and behold, she quite directly referred to his statement on condom use, and commended him for his "courageous stance."
For video of the commencement exercise go here. Select the "Friday, May 22, 9:00 AM" link. Professor Dube's commends the Bishop's "courageous stance" at about 26:30 into the video.
Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney