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From John Murphy 15 June

What a wonderful idea! Does this proposal target money collections as well as blood collection? Imagine if we could all line up at specially-opened blood collection centres on Good Friday and give our blood. It really would be worth bottling. It could become a tradition just like the Children's Hospital Appeal like and would be a great fillip for the Red Cross as well. Well done!

From Brian Haill 16 June

We write to applaud and endorse the public statement this week by Uganda's President Museveni in which he called on Africa's bishops to drop their opposition to the lifesaving value of condoms in the battle against AIDS.

A Melbourne-based Catholic AIDS-care agency ourselves that's been involved in this field of work for almost 20 years, we make the same appeal to Australia's Catholic Bishops.

The Ugandan leader's appeal finally explodes the myth that abstinence or fidelity alone can beat AIDS: they can't because they don't have regard to reality or human nature.It's probably the most explosive statement of the year to date in the face of the mushrooming pandemic.

We invite readers to visit the Catholic AIDS Ministry page of our website at www.aids.net.au where they may read of the growing global call for the Vatican to realise the great paradigm shift: that condoms in the battle against AIDS are lifesavers!

As President Museveni said so succinctly: " This (support of condoms) is not to support immorality, but to recognise the weakness of those we live with and help them to live a healthy life" Amen to that!

Brian Haill is the President, The Australian AIDS Fund Inc.


From Judy Reilly 16 June

The exceptional research of the Deported to Danger report team, lead by Sr Carmel Leavey, shows the lack of foresight amongst those who would prevent religious leaders from having a say in public affairs.

The climb down by Prime Minister John Howard is the final and welcome step in a campaign by many citizens, including religious and other church leaders, to effect change in government policy. One can be sure of little in this life, but it would seem that Petro Georgiou and his supporters are unlikely to have achieved this outcome without the entry of Christians (and others) into the asylum seeker debate.

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