Alright, alright, this is silly, stupid stuff. But it really annoys me, so here goes...
The Telegraph reports that Carla Bruni—former supermodel, singer, third wife of French president Nicolas Sarkozy—is strongly criticizing Pope Benedict XVI for "his approach to contraception in Africa" and that due to the Pope's unwavering defense of Catholic teaching on the matter, "she has allowed her Catholic faith to lapse":
She departed from her post's traditional religious neutrality to accuse the Pope of "damaging" countries like Africa with his stance on birth control.
The Italian-born former supermodel risked angering believers in France and beyond by declaring that the Pontiff's proclamations showed that the Church needed to "evolve".
In March, the Pope sparked controversy while on an Africa tour by saying that the AIDs pandemic which has crippled the continent "can't be resolved with the distribution of condoms; on the contrary, there is the risk of increasing the problem".
Mrs Bruni-Sarkozy said: "I was born Catholic, I was baptised, but in my life I feel profoundly secular.
It's curious to me that Bruni-Sarkozy suggests it is Pope Benedict XVI who has caused her to "feel profoundly secular." After all, Cardinal Ratzinger was a number of years from being pope when Bruni was carrying on a torrid love affair in her twenties with geriatric rocker Mick Jagger (she was introduced to Jagger by her then-boyfriend Eric Clapton, and left Clapton to be with Jagger within a few days), which was just one of several high profile sexual dalliances the energetic Italian beauty has pursued over the years. The Independent reports:
Seven years ago, while living with the French publisher, Jean-Paul Enthoven, she fell in love with his son, the philosopher Raphael Enthoven, who was 10 years her junior. They married after he divorced his wife, Justine Lvy, the daughter of a better known French philosopher, Bernard-Henri Lvy. Mme Lvy took her revenge in 2004 by writing a successful novel loosely based on the stealing of her husband, called Nothing Important.
Bruni may have been born and baptized Catholic, but her approach to living has been, to use her apt words, profoundly secular, as described in this December 2007 news piece:
In February this year she remarked: "I’m monogamous occasionally but I prefer polygamy and polyandry. Love lasts a long time but burning desire — two to three weeks."
Nor is she shy of talking about sex. "Sex, very pleasant. It’s one of the advantages of getting older... age increases sensuality and the pleasure," she has said.
But, amazingly, not a word about Mass, studying the Catechism, considering life in a convent, or praying the Rosary! Are you as shocked as I am?
So there you have it: a baptized Catholic who seems to have had flings with nearly every famous man she's ever met is saying she is now—just now! only now! just today!—a lapsed Catholic because the Pope's/Church's refusal to condone the use of condoms is going to cause AIDS to spread further in Africa. "I think the Church should evolve on this issue. It presents the condom as a contraceptive which, incidentally, it forbids, although it is the only existing protection," she told Femme Actuelle, a women's magazine. Apparently she hasn't heard of abstinence; or perhaps she cannot wrap her profoundly secular lifestyle around the notion. Does she not see that her own rather, um, loose approach to sexual relationships has probably tainted her perspective on such matters? Whatever the case, if I were Mr. Sarkozy I'd think twice about introducing Bruni to rock musicians. Or any man, for that matter; you never know what those profoundly secular, predatorial, polyandrous women will do.