I got this from Father Z who got it from Father Fessio. It’s absolutely brilliant:
Here’s an example of this distinction that parallels what the Pope said.
Muggers are using steel pipes to attack people and the injuries are severe. Some muggers use padded pipes to reduce the injuries, while still disabling the victim enough for the mugging.
The Pope says that the intention of reducing injury (in the act of mugging) could be a first step toward greater moral responsibility. This would not justify the following headlines: “Pope Approves Padded Pipes for Mugging” “Pope Says Use of Padded Pipes Justified in Some Circumstances”, Pope Permits Use of Padded Pipes in Some Cases”.
Of course, one may morally use padded pipes in some circumstances, e.g., as insulated pipes so that hot water flowing through them doesn’t cool as fast. And one may use condoms morally in some cases, e.g. as water balloons. But that also would not justify the headline “Pope Approves Condom Use”, though in this case it could be true. But it would be intentionally misleading.
Now that’s a good analogy! Thank you Father Fessio! Please pass this along to your friends.