Charlotte Young/Staff writer
Issue date: 11/4/07
Yes I know it is a stale issue of this newspaper,but relevant all the same.
It can start with a lonely night at home. There is seemingly nothing to do but surf the Internet. Soon enough, a pop up or a Google search leads to an interesting find and with a pinch of curiosity and a click of a mouse, the road to sexual addiction begins – even among church women.
A new book from Pure Life Ministries by authors Steve and Kathy Gallagher, “Create in Me a Pure Heart,” explores the scope of the problem among Christian women and provides biblical answers for the church and the struggling woman. The book, to be released today November 1, declares the problem a crisis brewing in the church. It addresses the unique issues a struggling woman faces and provides the biblical answers she needs to break the cycle of addiction. The book also challenges the church to address the growing problem.
“These women need help,” said co-author Kathy Gallagher. “But until we create an atmosphere in the church where they feel it’s safe to come forward and admit their struggle, the majority of them will remain bound in their addiction.”
Pure Life Ministries reports that 20% of Christian women have the malady; but Christian men have them beat at 50% laboring under the addiction to porn, chat rooms and online sex. But the women are not talking.
Rev. Dr. Barbara A. Reynolds, director of the Harriet Tubman anti-drug program at Greater Mount Cavalry Baptist Church has not met women with sex addiction issues. “I don’t think they’re not doing it. I don’t think they’re coming to church to talk about it because it’s too embarrassing,” she said. “If you’re into Internet sex, it’s a very private act. So why would you tell anybody?”
Joyce A. Joseph, a certified sex therapist, asserts that all addictions are symptoms of a deeper emotional pain, which is sometimes conscious and sometimes unconscious. Sexual addictions however, are a bit more complicated, he said.
“If an orgasm is involved, it makes it more difficult because the body is wired,” Joseph said. “The orgasm changes the body chemistry; dopamine is getting released. If on top of that you have shame, emotional guilt and self judgment, you’ve got pleasure mixed with emotional pain.”
Joseph reports that cybersex has become a real problem in the last 10 years. “You can get on the Internet and research a harmless subject and end up with all kinds of sexually perverted information,” she said. “One day I was researching breeds of horses; before I knew it I had gone into themes of beastiality.
Certainly the church needs to talk about it, Rev. Reynolds said. “Too often the church runs from issues that they need to go into for fear of being criticized,” she said.
According to a press release from Religion News Service, Beverly Lahore, Founder of Concerned Women for America, calls “Create in Me a Pure Heart” “ground-breaking, clearly defined hope for deliverance.”
Gospel Recording artist Clay Crosse said it will be “a comfort and a help to so many women who have felt isolated for far too long.” Lisa Bevere, Messenger International, adds that it is “a straight forward, raw and urgent call to holiness.”
About Pure Life Ministries Founded in 1986, Pure Life Ministries assists Christian organizations and individuals dealing with sexual addiction by providing counseling services, teaching materials and a speaking bureau. The Ministry has operated a residential facility for men struggling with sexual addiction since 1991. For more information on PLM, visit http://www.purelifeministries.org.