Archbishop Nichols' Press Secretary: Reporting has been fair.
Blogged by James Preece on 25th November 2010
Alexander Des Forges is Archbishop Vincent Nichol's press secretary. He also seems to be involved with the Catholic Communications Network whose email address he used to send the following to most (if not all) of the diocesan communications officers in the country, instructing them not to "get involved".
Sent: Sunday, 21 November, 2010 10:25:55
Subject: FW: Background notes for guidance on the issue of what Pope Benedict said re. condoms
These are background notes for guidance on the issue of what Pope Benedict said re condoms.
Media reports are stating that this is a major change in Catholic teaching (I don’t think that is the case but the tone is significant and is clearly a pointer to the way thinking on the issue is going). That would be for the Holy See to say so we should not get involved in those conversations. I think the reporting has been fair, but the lead on this should come from the Holy See rather than statements from us. The guidance below can be used to help reporters factually and put the comments in some context.
The media reporting has been fair - we should not get involved.
The Pope will just have to deal with this on his own?
Somebody should have told the bloggers. We've witnessed widespread misquoting, misrepresentation and subsequent confusion. We've seen headlines like "Pope Benedict says that condoms can be used to stop the spread of HIV" (here) which definitely do not fairly represent what he actually said.
Will any of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales be doing their bit to counter the media narrative? Will they like Cardinal Burke be helping to clarify what Pope Benedict actually said?
No. Because Vincent Nichol's media man has told them not to.