PBR Protest Continued
My very helpful ex-roommate has been keeping me abreast of the Catholic pray-in at the Plain Brown Wrapper. He forwarded me this email:
I just wanted to let you guys know how things are going in regards
to the e-mail I sent three weeks ago about praying in front of the porn
shop down town Grand Forks:
The first week there were three of us praying. We got a lot of
rude comments, it was very busy at that time, I saw one guy walk away, and
at the end of the night a drunken guy came along and threatened to take
our life! (we're fine!)
The second week we had six guys attend. It was not as busy, we
got some more rude comments, and we got interviewed by the Grand Forks
Herald - they put an article in the Sunday paper.
As you know, we will be praying tomorrow from 9 to 10pm... and I
hope and pray, and I beg you to pray, that the eyes who read and the
ears that heard the article will be lead closer to Our Lord. We need to
pray that the faithful will join us in prayer for the poor souls who are
trapped to the addiction and sin of pornography, lust, etc... Also, we
need to pray for those who don't believe - that they may...
Yesterday we celebrated the feast day of St. Maria Goretti -
Virgin and Martyr - patron St. of Purity - Pray for us! She died at the age
of twelve.... she was stabbed to death, preferring to die rather than
be raped. The rapist - his urge and desire to do such an awful thing -
started with pornography.
Today - the first Friday of the month - we reflect on the Sacred
Heart of Jesus. Think of the deep sorrows of Christ’s most Sacred Heart
– His sorrow, that we would view His sons and daughters as OBJECTS and
even DESTROY them... You think He suffered on the Cross, well I know
He's suffering all the more for His children to come back to Him - how He
desires and thirsts for souls... how He loves us... Let us unite our
hearts to His!
I was also told that a local Bible study started praying a few
months ago for the porn shop to close, for some assistance from God... The
lady said, "and you guys came about!" Gentlemen, thank you for your
prayers! If you can't make it to pray on Saturdays - that's ok, but I beg
and urge you not to stop praying for the poor souls enslaved to this
horrific sin, the workers, those involved in the industry, for the shop
to close, for protection of our own souls... Even if it's one Hail Mary.
It simply all comes down to Heaven and Hell - we are going to one
of the two places FOR ETERNITY and your prayers are making a
difference! So, let us not waste any time, and fall to our knees and pray, pray,
pray. Thank you and continue the good fight!
I hope and pray all is well, God bless,
Since I missed the first one, and was unaware they were continuing the protest, I decided to saunter down to the PBR that night (since I needed massage oil anyway).
Well, the massage oil was a bust, as my favorite brand appears to be discontinued. However, I am glad that I talked to the nice protesters, and in fact rethink my earlier snark of their email.
Mind you, I still think that they are almost completely wrong, but they were polite and non-judgmental and were very willing to answer my questions, so I have to give them something.
Onwards to the interview:
What are your objections to pornography?
Pornography objectives people. It is degrading and harmful to the person in it, and it is harmful to the person consuming it. It harms the soul, it is an enslaving addiction. Jesus says "if you look at a woman with lust in your heart, I say that you have committed adultery", so all of these people are committing adultery. As a secular argument, I could see how pornography leads to rape. Ted Bundy even said that he went from pornography to violent pornography. The whole culture trains us to view women as objects, like Britney Spears. Pornography reduces sex to pleasure. Sex is supposed to be a self-gift, not just cheap pleasure. The stuff [in the store] cheapens sex...I have not seen in the store and I don't want to.
You've been doing this for 3 weeks, correct? 4 weeks.
How long do you plan to continue?
WE don't have a clear length. God willing, until the store closes.
So your ultimate goal is to close the store?
No, we want God to close the store. Prayer will work. WE may not be powerful, but god is, and we are the strongest when we are uniting ourselves with god through prayer.
What do you feel you are accomplishing?P
prayer is powerful, and especially witnessing like this. We are fighting against people who see women as objects, and showing men that they don't have to do this.
In your email, you talk about St. Maria Garatti. Could you explain to me why she is a saint?
The story of St. Maria is that she chooses to be stabbed instead of being raped. She represents the desire for purity, and not rejecting Jesus.
So are you saying that women who are raped are not pure?
No, we...no one would say that. It's more about loving God more than life: maturing...not rejecting Jesus. I'm not very good at this...try newadvents.org for more information.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Just that pornography hurts so many people. It hurts family relationships. Would you want your husband coming into this store? It wrecks family, it's expensive, and people have become bankrupt. Sex is a self-gift: if you divorce love from sex, it's cheap. Pleasure is selfish... the removes and aspect of sex taking out the love. All humans need love.
In an effort to get both sides, I also went into the PBR. I was going to ask them some questions, but I only have to ask one before the manager swooped in and said that "No comment" was the word. The only question I got out was: "How has this affected the store" and the answer the clerk gave me was "more people have come in when they protest. They get curious what the store is about".
My response tomorrow.