Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte made the comments in reference to the widely-publicized case of the nine-year-old sexually abused girl in Brazil impregnated with twins by her stepfather.
In his interview with Quebec’s Le Devoir newspaper (click here for the original en Francais), Cardinal Turcotte also gave his views of Pope Benedict’s condom comments in Africa, saying it would be “ridiculous” to suggest that the pope said condoms should not be used.
The interview is certainly not something you hear every day from a cardinal, and naturally some are upset, such as at LifeSite, which has the story here.
In reference to the Brazil case, Cardinal Turcotte said:
“Personally, I am against murder, but can understand that sometimes, when someone is being attacked, they need to kill someone in self-defense. I am against abortion, but I can understand that in certain cases, there is almost no other choice than to practice it.”
Turcotte had also criticized the excommunications by the local archbishop, saying the case called for a more “evangelical” approach.
On the pope’s condoms remarks, Turcotte, it would be “ridiculous” to suggest that the Pope said condoms should not be used.
“Essentially, the pope said that it took two things to fight this disease, the means, but also a change of mentality. He pronounced this sentence to show that condoms were not in and of themselves the perfect solution; we took his words out of context and all this was largely amplified.”
“As if the pope had said that condoms should not be used. This is ridiculous! When someone has AIDS, it is his or her responsibility to protect the people with whom he or she has intercourse.”
The latter comment certainly seems to be where mainstream Catholic teaching is, even in the Vatican! I think his take on the pope’s intent probably spot-on. His remarks about the girl in Brazil will likely be less well-received, because he said publicly what many only say–or think–privately.