New Site Focuses on Overcoming Pornography through Atonement
By Ryan Morgenegg, Church News staff writer
“Through the enabling and the redeeming power of the Atonement, all those affected in any way by the pernicious plague of pornography may be strengthened to overcome it and be healed of its evil consequences.” —Elder Craig A. Cardon of the Seventy
To help fight the growing tide of pornography that threatens to capture the souls of mankind, the Church recently released an anti-pornography website that focuses on the power of Christ’s Atonement. It is located at overcomingpornography.org. The site is an enhancement to information and resources previously provided on the combatingpornography.org site.
“The name itself, Overcoming Pornography through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, communicates the central message and focus of this effort,” said Elder Craig A. Cardon of the Seventy. “While with His disciples on the eve of His gift of the Atonement to the world, the Savior declared, ‘In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world’ (John 16:33). Through the enabling and the redeeming power of the Atonement, all those affected in any way by the pernicious plague of pornography may be strengthened to overcome it and be healed of its evil consequences.”
Working together under inspired leadership, the Church Welfare and Priesthood Departments pooled resources and knowledge to build a site that provides practical examples, tools, and prevention techniques with spiritual power to change and overcome addiction.
“The site is intended for those willing to exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, with special emphasis for individuals, family members, and Church leaders,” said Elder Cardon. “We trust that it will be a benefit to the world.” With so many struggling with pornography addiction, this will be a beacon of light, strength, and help for those dealing with the effects of pornography, no matter who they may be, he said.
Using doctrinal principles with practical applications, the information on prevention and recovery features real people using the concepts in their own lives with success. For example, the site has videos about Troy and Kerri, a married couple devastated by pornography. Kerri shares how she found hope and healing through Jesus Christ and His Atonement after learning about her husband’s addiction. An extra benefit is that the videos can be shared online through email with others who might be blessed by the message.
The design of the site is meant to stand out from the world of flashing banners, pop-ups, and advertisements. It is light, simple, and inviting. The focus is on the Savior and the peace He can bring. “While many clinical and professional helps and means of support are found on the site, those important resources are presented within the context of the only source of lasting strength and healing for the soul,” said Elder Cardon. “The design and look of the site attempts to communicate this truth.”
After many years of denial, Troy faced the reality of his addiction to pornography. Through honesty, repentance, and applying the healing power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, he found peace. His life, his marriage, and his family were healed.
Written content on the site is presented in a question and answer format. Users can find what they need at the moment by researching a question and then clicking on an answer for further details. The resources available on other sites of the Church regarding pornography have been brought together in one place so users can find relevant information quickly and efficiently. Utilizing responsive design, the site will also work with mobile devices and will adjust to fit a wide variety of mobile phones and tablets.
President Gordon B. Hinckley and Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve called pornography a “scourge.” With regard to this scourge, President Thomas S. Monson said: “Pornography is especially dangerous and addictive. Curious exploration of pornography can become a controlling habit, leading to coarser material and to sexual transgression. Avoid pornography at all costs” (“Preparation Bring Blessings,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2010).
Internet research website Top Ten Reviews reported that the worldwide pornography industry earned about $97 billion in revenue in 2006. That’s more than the combined revenue of McDonalds, Coca-Cola, Apple, and American Express in 2006, according to Forbes.com.
The new Church site conveys a message of hope that there is a way back from addiction. It introduces real people that have overcome it. President Monson said: “My beloved friends, under no circumstances allow yourselves to become trapped in the viewing of pornography, one of the most effective of Satan’s enticements. And if you have allowed yourself to become involved in this behavior, cease now. Seek the help you need to overcome and to change the direction of your life. Take the steps necessary to get back on the strait and narrow, and then stay there” (“Until We Meet Again,” Ensign or Liahona,May 2009).
Kerri was devastated when she learned of her husband's addiction to pornography, but she found hope and healing through Jesus Christ and His Atonement.