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Priests in India call for pre-nuptial blood tests to fight AIDS

Priests in the Indian state of Kerala want the Church to require compulsory blood tests before marriage as a way to curb the AIDS threat.

The Nazrani Catholic Priests' Conference (NCPC), an association of the Syro-Malabar Church, says a Church law empowering parishes to demand HIV-negative certificates from couples could set a trend in the anti-AIDS battle.

Nazrani, or followers of Jesus of Nazareth, is the local term for Christians in Kerala, where the Oriental-rite Catholic Church is based.

Fr Francis Karippery, the NCPC general secretary, said that the group proposed the pre-nuptial AIDS test in January during a meeting of Trichur archdiocese's priests.

He said it has also prepared a proposal for the Kerala Catholic Bishops' Council, which comprises the Latin-rite, Syro-Malabar and Syro-Malankara bishops.

UCA News

Kerala Church mulls mandatory pre-nuptial blood test (Deccan Herald)

18 Mar 2003