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Pope Francis: “normal” porn also weakens the soul

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As covered by La Reppublica, a mainstream media of Italy, Pope Francis sent a message to the seminarians: “Priests and nuns also have the vice of porn on the web. Beware: the devil enters from there and weakens the soul”.

Francis met them in recent days and warn them that while “Technology should be used because it is progress” pornographic content is dangerous “If you have them on your mobile phone, delete them”.

The Pope warns seminarians against digital pornography and warns that it is a “vice” of “priests and nuns” as well. “It is a vice that has so many people, so many lay people, and also priests and nuns. The devil enters from there. And I’m not just talking about criminal pornography such as child abuse: that is already degeneracy. But of somewhat ‘normal’ pornography. Dear brothers, beware of this,’ the Pope said in a meeting with seminarians studying in Rome, which took place on Monday 24 October but of which the Vatican is now releasing the contents.

Digital is progress

The Pope responded to a seminarian who asked him how to deal with the digital world and social media. “I believe these things should be used, because it is an advancement of science, they do a service to be able to progress in life,” the Pontiff replied. Then he admitted: “I don’t use them because I came late, you know? When I was ordained a bishop, 30 years ago, they gave me one as a present, a mobile phone, which was like a shoe, about this big. I said: ‘No, I can’t use this one’. And finally I said: ‘I’ll make a call’. I called my sister, said hello, then I gave it back. ‘Give me something else’. I couldn’t use it. Because my psychology was off or I was lazy, we don’t know.”

“Use mobile phones but delete pornographic content”

Instead, he tells the young seminarians that mobile phones and all digital devices must be used. “You have to use them, you have to use them just for that, as the help to get by, to communicate: that’s fine.” Then he added that care must be taken, for example, not to waste too much time. But also not to use them as a tool for pornography. “There is another thing, which you know well: digital pornography. I’m going to spell it out. I will not say: ‘Raise your hand if you have had at least one such experience’, I will not say that. But each of you think about whether you have had the experience or had the temptation of pornography in digital,’ he said, speaking to the seminarians.

Porn weakens the soul

“The pure heart, the one that receives Jesus every day, cannot receive this pornographic information. That, today, is the order of the day. And if you can delete this from your mobile phone, delete it,” the Pope pointed out to future priests, “so you will not have temptation in your hand. And if you cannot delete it, defend yourself well so as not to get into this. I tell you, it weakens the soul. It weakens the soul. The devil enters from there: it weakens the priestly heart’. And he concluded:

“Excuse me if I go into these details about pornography, but there is a reality: a reality that touches priests, seminarians, nuns, consecrated souls. Have you understood? All right. This is important”.

Pornography a threat to public health

When Pope Francis spoke on Friday about the challenges facing families, including threats to human dignity such as pornography and surrogacy, the Catholic News Agency quoted him saying that:

“We also talk about the scourge of pornography, which is now spread everywhere via the web,” the pope said at the Vatican on June 10.

“It should be denounced as a permanent attack on the dignity of men and women. It is not only a matter of protecting children — an urgent task of the authorities and all of us — but also of declaring pornography a threat to public health,” he told members of a family association network.

Quoting a 2017 speech he gave to a congress on child dignity online, the pope added that:

“it would be a serious illusion to think that a society in which abnormal consumption of sex on the web is rampant among adults is then capable of effectively protecting minors.”

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