Southern Baptists denounce condoms to prevent HIV infections

By Editors

Originally published on June 21 2003 12:00 AM ET

Southern Baptists at their annual meeting in Phoenix on Wednesday passed several resolutions, including one that urged compassion for HIV-positive people but also denounced condom distribution as a way to prevent HIV infections. The resolution instead backed abstinence-only efforts that emphasize a "biblical view of sexuality" to prevent the spread of HIV and praised the recently approved federal $15 billion international AIDS initiative that earmarks money for abstinence education in developing nations. The resolutions are not binding on individual churches, but serve as official recommendations for members of the largest Protestant denomination to follow.