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Dear Friend of Catholic Answers,
One of today’s silent but most deadly “spiritual killers” is pornography—especially Internet pornography.
Pornography kills the soul because using it is a mortal sin.
It kills marriages because it’s a form of unfaithfulness…It turns love into lust…And it often leads to extra-marital affairs and divorce.
And it kills the innocence of children who unintentionally stumble upon it when they’re on the Internet.
Today, pornography is the #1 most downloaded and most viewed category of material on the Internet.
According to the Internet Filter Review, the worldwide Internet porn business is a $97 billion-a-year industry—and growing.
It’s no wonder. At last count, there were 4.2 million pornographic Web sites, with 420 million pages of pornographic material. (These numbers grow by the hour—because thousands of new sites come online every week.)
43% of all Internet users view porn sites while they’re online. The estimate is that 72 million people visit porn sites each month.
According to Media Metrix, more than 70% of men ages 18 to 34 visit a pornographic site each month.
2.8 billion pornographic e-mails are sent every year.
Because of the Internet, laws against pornography and obscenity have become virtually impossible to enforce. No longer can local communities effectively control the influx of filth in their midst, as they did in days gone by. Today, it’s spread from computer to computer in the blink of an eye.
In the old days, a man had to risk being seen walking into an adult bookstore. But not anymore. With the Internet, he doesn’t even have to leave his house.
And the number of children being exposed to pornography has skyrocketed due to the Internet.
According to research conducted by the London School of Economics and Political Science, fully 9 out of 10 children from ages 8 and 16 have seen Internet pornography—usually without even intending to.
The Internet Filter Review reports that the average age of a child when he is first exposed to Internet pornography is 11 years old.
Of children 15 to 17 years old, 80% have multiple exposures to hard-core Internet pornography.
90% of 8- to 16-year-olds have viewed pornography online—most while doing homework.
In 1996 while battling the ACLU (a major supporter of Internet porn), the United States Department of Justice stated…
“Never before in the history of telecommunications media in the United States has so much indecent (and obscene) material been so easily accessible by so many minors in so many American homes with so few restrictions” (U.S. Department of Justice, Post Hearing Memorandum of Points and Authorities, Reno v. ACLU, 929 F. Supp. 824 ).
Internet pornography is truly a plague that has infested our land—and it’s infecting our homes, our families, our churches, and our entire community.
Yes. Even our churches.
According to a survey conducted by Christianity Today, 51% of pastors say Internet porn is a temptation they struggle with.
A survey by Promise Keepers revealed that 53% of the men at their rallies had been involved with pornography during the previous week.
And a “Christians and Sex” survey conducted by Leadership Journal in March 2005 discovered that 57% of pastors say that pornography is the most sexually damaging issue in their congregations.
According to the National Catholic Register, Fr. Mark Bautista of British Columbia—who has been a pastor of several major parishes—estimates that up to 30% of the men in any given parish are regular viewers of Internet pornography.
He said he’s noticed a staggering increase in porn use that coincides with the growth of the Internet.
It’s not just among the men of the parish, but the children, too. He routinely hears porn confessions of boys and girls as young as 13.
Christopher West of the Theology of the Body Institute says that at least 80% of Catholic adults have used pornography and that up to 40% of Catholics view porn compulsively.
Our apologist friend Jeff Cavins agrees. In his view, 40% of Catholic men and teenage boys are regular porn users.
Internet porn has ensnared untold millions of people.
Tragically, a very high percentage of them are our fellow Catholics.
That’s why I’m writing to you today.
I need your help to distribute a special “intervention” guide that we recently created at Catholic Answers.
I call it an “intervention” guide because it’s designed to help a person break the habit of viewing Internet porn.
The guide 12 Ways to Overcome Pornography gives the reader simple and effective steps which will help him or her break the habit of using Internet porn—and all other porn, for that matter.
The guide is non-confrontational…non-judgmental…and it doesn’t point an accusatory finger at anyone.
That’s because this problem has to be dealt with very delicately—using the most sincere form of Christian charity.
You see, people who have this problem are ashamed of it. And yet, it becomes so engrained in their lives—especially with the ease of access to porn over the Internet—that they find it difficult to break the habit.
Therefore, we created this “intervention” guide to help people when they’re ready to be helped.
We’ve designed it to be disseminated inside parish bulletins. That way no one will feel singled out.
To distribute this guide, we need your help. Please prayerfully consider what you can give at this time, and send us your gift by clicking here now.
We estimate that to undertake this project and get this guide into parishes and into the hands of thousands of our fellow Catholics, we will need to raise at least $65,000, but we simply don’t have that money.
We decided to take on this project in addition to all our other work because of the gravity of the problem…and because of its effect on the spiritual health and the well-being of millions of Catholic families.
Sexual sin has always been the #1 way the devil takes people away from the practice of the Catholic faith.
Our goal at Catholic Answers is to help people stay in the Catholic faith!
But we need your help to make this goal a reality. Click here now to make your donation to this important project.
So your gift at this time—of $35, $50, or perhaps $75 or more—will make sure we can help countless Catholics who are caught in the soul-destroying grip of Internet (and other forms of) pornography.
As Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver put it…
“Pornography poisons the human heart, imagination, and soul. It is pure poison. It should be controlled like any other toxic waste. And don’t be fooled. This isn’t ‘censorship.’ It’s a matter of public health and common sense.”
Will you help our fellow Catholics who suffer from this problem?
Your gift, today, will extend a loving hand that could save countless marriages…and souls.
I hope to hear from you soon.
Sincerely in Christ,
P.S. Again, this is a topic that can’t be discussed easily. You can’t just walk up to someone and say, “Hey, buddy. Do you look at Internet porn?”
Therefore, the guide 12 Ways to Overcome Pornography gives people the opportunity to get help without anyone being singled out as being addicted to pornography.
In return for your gift of $35 or more, we’ll send you five copies of the guide that you can share with others.
Please give what you can so that this “spiritual act of mercy” can help rid our Church of the plague of pornography.
Thank you, and God bless.