A pastor with the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP) in Sizinda, Kingstar Chipata, said teaching youths about condoms was an important aspect in making them responsible in their sexual lives.
Chipata said although sex should never be encouraged outside marriage, churches could not avoid raising condom awareness in the church as a preventative measure against HIV infection.
He said this should be done to ensure youths do not get wrong information from other sources.
Chipata was speaking during a media tour organised by the National Aids Council where an HIV awareness programme, Join In Circuit, targeting the community, especially the youth, was launched by the Association for Rehabilitation and Prevention of Tuberculosis (RAPT).
RAPT is currently working with the church to help disseminate information about the pandemic.
“We are not telling the youths to go and use condoms because it is against Christian ethics,” said Chipata. “If they go through those lessons, which include how to use condoms as a preventative measure against HIV, it is like you are teaching building to students, but those students are not yet builders.
“It is a skill that they would use later in their lives, when they are mature and qualified for it. So, teaching the youths about condom use would help them when they are married and when they want to protect their partners from getting infected.”
He added: “We want people to know that we live in the world and not in heaven and so these programmes are important because HIV/Aids is affecting everyone.”