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Porn addiction is an 'epidemic' in the Church; pastors must address issue from pulpit, ex-porn star says

Brittni De La Mora
Former porn star Brittni and Rich De La Mora host the podcast "Let's Talk Purity." |

Porn is an “epidemic” to the world that affects all areas of life, from marriage to the Church — and the consequences will be devastating if the Body of Christ fails to take it seriously, a former porn star has warned. 

On an episode of “Let’s Talk Purity,” a show Brittni De La Mora co-hosts alongside her husband, Richard De La Mora, the former porn star who famously left the industry behind to become a Christian, said that the reason many pastors are silent about the issue of porn is because they’re struggling with addiction themselves. She cited statistics revealing that 50% of pastors watch porn. 

“I believe the Church is so silent on this topic because if you're suffering silently with a porn addiction and now you're called to go preach the message on Sunday, you're probably not going to start preaching porn,” she said. “With secret sin comes shame.”

“The Church has been so silent,” she added. “I don't think I've ever really sat in a church service and just heard somebody like, ‘Hey, let's just talk about porn.’”

Stressing that porn is an “epidemic to the world and also to churches,” the couple identified several reasons the issue is so devastating to marriages and families. 

“It's a floodgate. It's an open door; porn is a gateway, especially when it comes into marriages,” Richard said, warning that porn introduces both insecurity into marriages, destroys intimacy, and quenches the Holy Spirit. 

LISTEN: Subscribe to the “Let’s Talk Purity” podcast on Edifi

De La Mora compared porn consumption to drug use, revealing that she struggled with severe addiction during her time in the industry. 

“It started off with the pills and then it moved to the heroin. It started off with the coke and then it moved to crystal meth, and so porn is the exact same thing,” she said. “You might think that it's innocent ... and you’re watching simple scenes but then, over time, over the next couple of years, that's just not fulfilling you anymore. It gets worse and worse and worse.”

“Maybe at first you are viewing humans as humans, but as you start watching porn ... now you're pulling hair or spitting or slapping somebody because you have now dehumanized people based on what you've seen on the computer,” she said. 

Ultimately, porn addiction is a “heart issue” that needs to be dealt with head-on, Richard added. 

“Scripture teaches us to run away from pornography, run away from these desires, run away, from sexual immorality ... because pornography is not something that you defeat alone,” he said. “That’s why my wife and I are so big on having this conversation because so many people battle with it and they live in silence.”

Recovery begins with “repentance,” he said, and a true desire to change. He encouraged those struggling to identify what, exactly, they’re attempting to “escape” from by consuming porn. 

“Stop using porn as an excuse for something that you should be talking about,” he said. “Because if you want true freedom and restoration, all this happens when there's communication, when you're opening up,” he said. “So what is the deeper issue? What is the root? What is the heart issue?”

In a previous interview with The Christian Post, Ted Shimer, founder of The Freedom Fight, an online addiction recovery program, said that problem, even among the Church, is particularly relevant given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with Pornhub and other sites “capitalizing” on the lockdown.

“This is such a massive issue in the church, and we need more people who understand it and are equipped to help others break free. Because this next generation of believers that are going to be entering the church — I promise this is going to be a huge issue in their discipleship. If we haven’t been equipped to address this effectively, we’re going to be offering shallow and ineffective solutions.”

Shimer acknowledged that talking about porn in the church is “awkward, uncomfortable, and surrounded in shame,” but stressed that it’s “not going away.” 

“Pastors and church leaders need to address it with effective, Gospel-centered, scientifically-informed solutions because it’s not simply going away,” he said, adding that only 7% of churches say they have the resources to assist their members with this addiction.

“When addiction is only dealt with on a certain level, it's more awkward and shaming than it should be,” he explained. “When we start understanding it from an addiction factor and look at the brain science piece and address it from a holistic and discipleship standpoint, we become more equipped to deal with it.”

Listen to Richard and Brittni De La Mora describe the dangers of porn on their new “Let’s Talk Purity” podcast.

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