Page 4, 5th December 2003

5th December 2003
Page 4
Page 4, 5th December 2003 — Pope offers prayers for victims of Aids crisis

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Pope offers prayers for victims of Aids crisis


POPI. ItiHN Paul II has offered prayers for people with HIV/AIDS and encouraged Catholics to care for those with the disease and to educate people in chastity to prevent the spread of the disease.

"While I pray for those struck by this plague, I encourage all those in the Church who provide a priceless service of welcome, care and spiritual accompaniment to these brothers and sisters of ours," he said.

Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragan, president of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers, called for wider access to medicines to fight the diseases that kill patients weakened by AIDS and to medicines that help to control the disease.

"The scandalous death rate in poor countries," where AIDS drugs are priced beyond the reach of most governments and patients, "cries to God for vengeance," he said.

He said that campaigns to educate people about HIV/A1DS should be "based on sure and authentic human and spiritual values" which "favour the culture of life and responsible love," not "policies that foster immoral and hedonistic lifestyles and behaviours".

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