PURITY MATTERS: Pornography

St. Pope John Paul II once said that :

Papa Giovanni Paolo II durante la Santa Messa a San Benigno Canavese il 19.03.1990.

  “There is no dignity when the human dimension is eliminated from the person. In short, the problem with pornography is not that it shows too much of the person, but that it shows far too little.”

We see too little when our vision of another human being stops at the level of their skin.  The problem of porn is rampant and we the faithful have become like frogs in a pot that is slowly being heated to the boiling point.  We have allowed ourselves to be apathetic and unresponsive to a cultural trend that is ruining many lives and marriages, as well as further contributing to the “culture of death” and the continuing devaluation of the human person.   As parents we need to be aware of this very disturbing cultural phenomena. At theCanadian Catholic Organization for Life and red-light-300x227Family Conference 2012, participants were told that the average Canadian child has been exposed to “hard core” pornography before he or she reaches Middle School.  With the advent of the internet the problem is not just isolated to questionable magazines in the local corner store or movies in some seedy ‘sex shop’.   Rather, the problem is quite literally in our kitchens, family rooms, and bedrooms.  The media is generally unsympathetic and suggests that we as Catholics are prudes.

 However, we take the Liturgical- Sacramental worldview that says that the human body is a mystery and hence we cover it(modestly and appropriately), not because it is bad but because it is HOLY.

images-theotokos-1-e1369866318677 (1)The human person is not a commodity which can be bought and sold but is of infinite worth and dignity, with an ETERNAL destiny.  We believe it is always wrong to USE another person even if they are consenting to that use.

 

Prayer for Purity:

images-Christ_Pantokrator_Cathedral_of_Cefalù_SicilyJesus my Lord, Who became man and  graced us with the beauty of Your life and with Your example of faith, purity and love; help me, I pray, to love You with all my mind, heart and soul, and to live according to Your teachings.  Strengthen me when temptations strike, that I may remain pure in thought and stead fast in virtue, doing such things as are pleasing to You.  Grant me faith, courage and love, that I may serve You in holiness all the days of my life, through the prayers of the most holy Theotokos, and of all your Saints. Amen.

From Beneath Your Mantle: A devotional prayer book.  Compiled by Fr. Peter Babej.  Available from the Eparchy of Saskatoon, Ukrainian Catholic Religious Education Centre.

Fighting the War Against Porn—

A Strategic Plan

  1. All Pornography is destructive, whether you experience it on network television or from some other source such as books (even those that seem socially acceptable like the Fifty Shades of Grey series) computer, smart phone, other electronic devices,movies or magazines.  This is our starting point. Throw out or delete ALL Pornographic materials.  Do whatever it takes to keep yourself and your family safe from these–including parental controls and accountability software when appropriate.
  2. Use your time to do other things, and stay away from any potential sources of pornography particularly when you are lonely, tired, bored or upset.
  3. Fight boredom with activity.  Physical activity will make you healthier, soul and body.
  4. Do not keep a problem with porn to yourself.  Be accountable to someone.  A trusted spiritual director or counsellor can be of great assistance in order to speak honestly and openly if you are struggling. IMG_0984-225x300
  5.  It is a sign of strength to seek help, and when  required even professional help, and to recognize that trying to go it alone is not usually effective or successful.  Announcing STRIVE: A 21 Day Online Program for Porn Addiction Recovery
  6. Pray frequently especially things like the Jesus Prayer (“Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me a sinner”; repeating the name of”Jesus”; a short prayer of “Lord Have Mercy”, or even a sign of the cross) which can be accomplished even when doing other things, not only to keep your mind and heart focused on God but to invoke and release His power to transform your heart and mind.  God will give the needed grace and mercy.
  7. Receive the sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist as frequently as possible.  Great grace flows through a confession made with a repentant heart and daily reception of our Lord in the Eucharist via the powerful prayer of the Divine Liturgy.
  8. Ask for the prayerful support of others, who are not afraid to go into battle with you.
  9. Ask God for eyes to see the dignity of all humanity.  Remember that all women are someone’s daughter, sister and even mother, and all men are someone’s son, brother and even father.  Treat people with respect as sisters and brothers; father and mothers, as the scripture teaches.  (1 Tim 5:2)
  10. Seek to learn and truly understand what the Church teaches about sexuality and human dignity.  Take a course or read a book on the Theology of the Body.  You will probably be surprised by the practical and life changing wisdom you will find there. Do not be discouraged.  You are not fighting this battle alone (many other men and women also struggle) and with God’s grace and mercy victory will be yours.

 Lord Jesus Christ,

Have Mercy on Me a Sinner!

Adapted from the Archdiocese of New York, www. flrl.org/truefreedom.htm

Offering information on The Battle with Porn

Please note that the following sites are not affiliated with the Family and Life Office of the Eparchy of Saskatoon. We provide this information solely for your information. We are not responsible for, nor do we endorse, their policies, the views they express, the products and services they offer, or the content of their materials or websites.

    • RECLAiM Sexual Health offers an anonymous, science-based, Catholic Online Recovery Program, and provides resources for those who desire to reclaim God’s plan for their lives, and the lives of loved ones impacted by pornography or other unhealthy sexual behaviors.
    • www.theporneffect.com: A  Canadian based Catholic online community which offers support and encouragement to those affected by sexual sin .Click here to read an article about the founder of www.theporneffect.com and how this young man overcame his addiction to pornography
    • www.dads.org: The official website for St. Joseph’s Covenant Keepers
    • www.integrityrestored.com: For Catholic men to break free of pornography addiction
    • www.unityrestored.com: Using porn? Know someone using porn? There is help
    • www.maritalhealing.com: The official website of the Institute for Marital Healing
    • www.familylifecenter.net: The official website for Family Life Centre International
    • www.fathersforgood.org: A parenting website sponsored by the Knights of Columbus
    • www.pornnomore.com: A Catholic website with information, prayers, and witness talks for those  struggling with pornography
    • www.loveisfaithful.com/: My House Mission from the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas:  An initiative aimed at fostering the virtue of chastity by building awareness of the effects of pornography in society, offering support and healing for those harmed by it, and educating Catholics on what they can do to protect their families from its influence.
    • Click here to watch the My House video  by the Colorado Spring diocese
    • Matt Fradd:  a Catholic man with a passion for sexual integrity
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