Catholic Responses to Aids in Southern Africa

The Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) AIDS Office and St Joseph’s Theological institute have collaborated on “Catholic Responses to AIDS in Southern Africa” launched recently during the plenary session of the bishops of the SACBC in Manzini, Swaziland, and in several centres in South Africa.

The book looks at the response of the Church over the past thirty years, outlining the programmes to address home based care of the sick and the dying, antiretroviral treatment which helped turn the tide, prevention, and the care of orphans and vulnerable children.

Cardinal Napier’s paper takes a critical look at the response of an urban diocese to the pandemic, Bishop Dowling’s details the response of a rural diocese.  Fr Michael Czerny SJ from the office of Cardinal Turkson in Rome examines the Church’s global response to AIDS. Different papers examine the theology of sin in the context of AIDS, the tricky question for the Catholic Church regarding the use of condoms, the issue of whether or not there should be HIV testing for candidates to seminaries and religious life, how a particular theological institute has addressed the issue of AIDS, AIDS as a theme in spiritual direction, and AIDS and inter religious dialogue.

The book brings together the work of AIDS activists and theologians, and makes details of the Church’s response available to a wider public.

The papers were originally presented at a theological conference held at St Joseph’s Theological institute in Cedara, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa in January 2013.

Available from Paulines Multimedia Centres in Johannesburg and Durban, from the Catholic Bookshop in Cape Town, from Mariannhill Mission Press, and from the SACBC AIDS Office (

Cost R 100 plus postage and packing.

Also available from the Kindle Store.

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Bishop of the Diocese of Manzini (Swaziland)

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