Please listen to Father Broom's talk on this crucial topic

Above all our battle is not with flesh and blood but against the evil spirits intent upon our destruction and eternal ruin.  Spiritual weapons must be armed and used for battle: prayer, penance, Confession, the Most Holy Eucharist, Marian Devotion, and knowledge of the Ignatian Rules for discernment. 

Nonetheless practical steps must be undertaken to prevent the ravenous wolf of pornography from entering our homes, our families, ourselves, our children and wreaking disaster.  In other words, we must marshal forth the spiritual and the practical in a harmonious whole.

In two prior articles we highlighted the effects of pornography and the spiritual means to conquer this ravenous wolf; now we will present practical steps that parents can take to help themselves in this fight, but especially in aiding the sheep of their flock from the invasion, penetration and devastation of this ugly and ravenous wolf of pornography.

Indeed Jesus is the Good Shepherd and we are the sheep of his flock. Furthermore, we are called to be the Good Shepherds to the flock—the children and teens—that God has entrusted to our care for the protection and salvation of their immortal souls.   The Good Shepherd knows His sheep, knows their voice and is even willing to lay down his life for all of his sheep as well as each one individually. The following must be the strategy or game plan for parents as Good Shepherds to their flock.

1.    VIGILANCE!  A constant vigilance and awareness of the omnipresent enemy on the lurch who is ready to attack. St. Peter compares the devil to a lion roaming around looking and waiting for the moment to attack.  Parents must not live in fear, tension, with stress and anxiety. But on the other hand, they must not be naïve into thinking that their children are invulnerable and beyond temptation. In this valley of tears nobody is immune from the assaults of the devil, the flesh and the world. These three negative forces can be launched with respect to porn.  Lust comes from being sons and daughters of Adam and Eve. The devil lies and seduces us into believing we have a right to eat from the forbidden fruit; the world promises us true happiness is this life--- all these can be applied to the searching out of pornography. Jesus warned us: “Stay awake and pray for we know neither the day nor the hour. For the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.”

2.    RELOCATE COMPUTER.   Logistics have great importance.  A teen that has a computer or lap-top in the quiet of his room has the easiest access to Internet porn, if not during the evening hours then he does in the early hours of the morning. Disconnecting the computer and locating it in a public place--- for example, right next to the kitchen, where everybody moves about freely—can be of enormous help to deter and prevent seeking out porn.

3.    COMPUTER FILTER.  Another positive suggestion would be that of subscribing to a Computer filter that serves to “filter” and block out immoral smut which we call pornography. There are various, but one that could be subscribed to at a relatively low price would be SAFEEYES.COM.  Do it! It could save your sheep from the wolf!

4.     SUPERVISION OF COMPUTER USE.   Good Shepherds that you are called to be, parents could assign specific blocks of time in which their son/daughter would be using the computer and be actually supervising the time and use.  Mom might be cooking and looking over her shoulder at the same time.  Never forget that pornography is a solitary sin that is done in the darkness. Jesus said it clearly that sins are chosen to be done in darkness. Judas left Jesus and rushed out into the darkness to betray the Lord.

5.     FRIENDS?    Parents must keep tabs of the friends of their children.  There are many definitions of what a friend is. (Many of these definitions I believe are false; these are pseudo-friends.) A true friend is one in whose company and after he has spent time with this friend has become a better, more pure, more holy, and more pleasing to God.  At home parents have a greater control on their children, but outside it is a moral free-for all!  Therefore parents must know the caliber and quality of their kid’s friends. A bad friend can prove catastrophic to your son’s life!

6.     VISITS TO OTHER HOMES.   Following up on the concept of “Friendship”, parents should not allow their teen son/daughter to visit casually and freely alien and unknown homes. Why?  For the simple reason that in your home you might have set up the most disciplined environment in town; whereas, in another home all is permitted!  Lewd magazines, cable, free access to the internet and unsupervised T.V programs--- all of these might be free of charge in your son/daughter’s visit to their “Friend’s” house.  Why launch your child into the den of the lions and wolves????

7.    CELL-PHONE/ “Smart-phone”/ Internet access.  What is to be said now is highly explosive if ordered to many teens: no cell-phone with access to the Internet.  Why? Simple! In the free hours at anytime and anywhere your son/daughter can access porn. Worse yet, they can pass on porn to countless numbers of people throughout the whole world. Worse yet, your daughter can send indecent messages of self. Once done and sent such a message can never, never, never, never, be retrieved--- meaning that your daughter can be labeled as cheap for the rest of her life. This can jeopardize ongoing education, profession as well as her future vocation in life. Parents be wise and Good Shepherds to the sheep of your flock!

8.     SUPERVISION/ACCOUNTABILITY.  Parents, check-up frequently on exactly what your teens are downloading and viewing.  In all we have written remember this: much better preventive medicine rather than curative medicine. In other words, much better to prevent your young from falling into the mire and mud of pornography than to pull them out of the polluted quicksand!

9.     SCREEN-SAVER!  Although it may seem to be of little importance, still placing a Screen-saver with the picture of Jesus, Mary, the Angels and the saints or a combination of the above can be of great utility. Why? St Teresa of Avila asserts that one of the principle reasons why we sin is that we forget the presence of God. If we know that an All-loving, all-kind, as well as an All-just God is carefully peering down on all of our actions, this can prevent us from eating the forbidden fruit of pornography.  Remember the Psalm:  “If I scale the highest heights of the mountain, you are there; if I plummet to the depths of the sea, still you are there. Even in the darkest moments of the night, You O Lord see me as if the sun were beaming down on me at midday!”

10. COMPASSION AND MERCY!  If parents have discovered their teen is involved in the use of pornography, the worst thing would be to get angry and yell at him/her.  On the contrary, as  a Good and loving Shepherds to your wounded sheep now it is time to work on education, healing, open communication and team-work collaboration. In unity there is strength.  The devil loves to do all in the dark--- the same with respect to pornography!  If this is brought into the light then spiritual as well as practical measures can be undertaken to heal, correct and save in time and in eternity.

Let us lift our eyes to Mary most holy and St Joseph her most chaste spouse and beg that she will cover  our minds, hearts, souls, children and our families with her most pure and powerful mantle of protection. O Mary conceived without sin pray for us who have recourse to thee.