Ronan Farrow Condescends: 'Irresponsible' Catholic Church Dogma Is 'Costing Lives'

March 13, 2014 | 6:08 PM EDT

From the 13 March 2014 edition of MSNBC's Ronan Farrow Daily:

RONAN FARROW: He has been credited with modernizing the Catholic Church, but one year after Pope Francis took office, has enough progress been made on social issues, such as same-sex marriage and birth control? Our panel is going to weigh in next, and they are priests with an inside take you will not want to miss....

FARROW: ...I want to touch, first of all, on some of the health issues – particularly with this growing population in the developing world – 158 million Catholics in Africa. We see a lot of those populations afflicted by pretty pressing public health challenges – 23.5 million people in sub-Saharan Africa alone, for instance, living with AIDS. Yet, the Church does still ban contraception in those places. Is that costing lives?...

FARROW: ...I've had conversations with people in some of these African – Catholic majority countries – where it is very important to them that there's still a principle of abstinence and still a principle of not using protection, and they're in the midst of epidemics here. You don't think that it's irresponsible, given the emphasis on mercy and the preservation of life, that there's not more leeway on that doctrine?

FARROW: ...We see what's happening unfolding in Syria. There's a lot of criticism that the Church hasn't gotten more into the nitty-gritty of what policy actions should or shouldn't be taken in that crisis...1994 and the Rwandan genocide – where, in a half Catholic country– Rwanda was 50 percent Catholic – the Church stood by pretty much in complete silence as 800,000 people were slaughtered. A lot of comparisons right now in the news out of the Democratic Republic of Congo to that last genocide – do you think that the Church needs to be doing more to speak about that conflict? All it's gotten from this pope is a passing mention in a general speech on conflict.