As we look forward to our future, I feel compelled, as your shepherd, to address with all of you the issue that is wreaking havoc in our lives as individuals, marriages, and families and indeed throughout our society today. Pornography is a pervasive problem in our modern American society. It causes corrosive damage to children, whose innocence is stolen; to men and women, who feel great guilt and shame for viewing pornography, occasionally or habitually; to spouses, who feel betrayed and traumatized; and to men, women, and children, who are exploited by the pornography industry.
This new website, Clean Heart Online, prepared for our use by Covenant Eyes, is focused on serving and providing resources for Catholic Ministry Leaders, Educators, Parents and those who struggle with addiction.
I feel strongly that we need to undertake an initiative as a diocese to educate ourselves on the destructive power that pornography use has on so many areas of life today. As Catholics, we must face this reality and its challenges. We must create a family atmosphere that deals realistically with the negative consequences of pornography use today.
Most Reverend Carl A. Kemme
Bishop of Wichita, Kansas
“We must see our role in protecting children from pornography as our sacred duty, as well as an aspect of our work to create safe environments in accord with our ongoing implementation of The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. May we educate ourselves on reliable resources for pastoral support of the faithful and for the healing of pornography use and addiction and make them available to families, parishioners, and others in our care.” – Create in Me a Clean Heart
“You are beloved sons and daughters of the Father. Be not afraid to approach the altar of mercy and ask for forgiveness. Many good people struggle with this sin. You are not alone; there is always hope! […] Knowing the truth of who you are in God and receiving spiritual help are critical, but those who use pornography often need further assistance. Freedom from pornography is a daily choice and calls for ongoing formation. The Church encourages you to seek ongoing support such as counseling, spiritual direction, coaching, accountability groups, couple to couple groups, conferences, and retreats for men and women. These are all means to employ as you seek freedom. Software is available for monitoring on-line activity and blocking pornographic material; these may be a necessary means of avoiding the near occasion of sin.” – Create in Me a Clean Heart
“Parents and guardians, protect your home! Be vigilant about the technology you allow into your home and be sensitive to the prevalence of sexual content in even mainstream television and film and the ease by which it comes through the Internet and mobile devices. Educate yourselves about filtering software that can assist in protecting your home. Foster openness and trust with your children, so they know that they can come to you if they see a sexual image; by talking about it with them calmly, you can give them a healthy framework in which to interpret it.” – Create in Me a Clean Heart
“…[T]eachers, religious educators, youth ministers, and safe environment coordinators: parents have given you a responsibility to protect their children not only from physical dangers but also psychological, moral, and spiritual dangers. You can have a great influence on the children and youth entrusted to your care, and you can help equip parents with the resources they need to protect and teach their children. Children are vulnerable to all influences, good or bad. Create an environment suitable for learning chastity by modeling and teaching the chaste life. Be vigilant over technological access, and monitor it in age-appropriate ways. Young people should be taught that certain types of websites or programs are inappropriate and sinful. Be sure to explain the reasons why they are unacceptable.” – Create in Me a Clean Heart
Do you know of someone who is struggling with an addiction?