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Safe Haven Sunday Confronting the perils of pornography

Originally Appeared in : Vol. 100 No. 04

Why does the Church care about pornography and what can we do about it? Bishop Hartmayer responds —

“We care as a church because it’s destroying the soul, the soul of the person, but it’s [also] the soul of the church and society because it reduces the human person to a thing, something to be used, something to be sold, something to be degraded. And so our understanding of human life, our understanding of the dignity of a woman or the dignity of a man has been so damaged by the industry of pornography that we’ve got to do something to stop it. And prayer is a powerful way of reducing the effectiveness of pornography. It’s like any other ill in society. If you stop supporting it, it will no longer exist because there’s no more money in it, because it’s all money driven. And so if we stop supporting it, then it will hopefully die on its own or certainly be reduced significantly. That should be something we pray for as a community in our churches and our families and in our own personal prayer life. It should be something that we ask God to give us the grace to fight the battle that pornography has presented itself to be in the lives of so many people.”

 

Statistics About Pornography

Let's look at some data to see the scope and effects of porn in society and the church.

  1. Over 40 million Americans are regular visitors to porn sites. The average visit lasts 6 minutes and 29 seconds
  2. There are around 42 million porn websites, which totals around 370 million pages of porn.
  3. The porn industry's annual revenue is more than the NFL, NBA and MLB combined. It is also more than the combined revenues of ABC, CBS and NBC.
  4. 47% of families in the United States reported that pornography is a problem in their home.
  5. Pornography use increases the marital infidelity rate by more than 300%.
  6. Eleven is the average age that a child is first exposed to porn, and 94% of children will see porn by the age of 14.
  7. 56% of American divorces involve one party having an "obsessive interest" in pornographic websites.
  8. 70% of Christian youth ministers report that they have had at least one teen come to them for help in dealing with pornography in the past 12 months.
  9. 68% of church-going men and over 50% of pastors view porn on a regular basis. Of young Christian adults 18-24 years old, 76% actively search for porn.
  10. 59% of pastors said that married men seek their help for porn use.
  11. 33% of women aged 25-and-under search for porn at least once per month.
  12. Only 13% of self-identified Christian women say they never watch porn - 87% of Christian women have watched porn.
  13. 55% of married men and 25% of married women say they watch porn at least once a month.
  14. 57% of pastors say porn addiction is the most damaging issue in their congregation. And 69% say porn has adversely impacted the church.
  15. Only 7% of pastors say their church has a program to help people struggling with pornography.

Source:9/18/2018 by Luke Gibbons -

diosav.org/images/family-life/safehaven/15_Statistics_About_the_Church_and_Pornography.pdf

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