Marian Choueifati

As a publishing ministry rooted in scripture, we don’t gather people around books, but around ideas.

In staying as relevant as possible to the needs of regional churches and communities, we have noticed that porn addiction has infiltrated the creeks and crevices of individuals, families, and churches. Why? Because it is easy, cheap, and one click away.  

When we talk about pornography, we often overlook that it comes hand in hand with addiction, the kind that is even more dangerous than addiction to substances. What is even more alarming is that 68% of church-going men watch porn regularly (Barna Group), yet churches are silent and help often takes the form of condemnation and public disciplinary efforts. By that, individuals grappling with addiction begin moving away from the church, instead of running towards it for refuge.  

To raise awareness among churches, pastors, youth leaders, and parents, Dar Manhal al Hayat hosted a dialogical seminar on the 6th of April to break the silence and establish a safe space for healing. As part of this event, we launched a long overdue book by Toni Haddad titled “Porndemic”. With more than 160 attendees representing 43 churches and Christian organizations, an unprecedented conversation took place within the evangelical community and beyond, sending a ripple effect of mercy and grace among couples, families, and churches.  

As noted by Bassem Melki during his discussion of the problem within a shame and honor culture, the first step towards recovery and putting an end to silent suffering begins with cultivating an atmosphere of confession, understanding, and support among individuals. Instead of pointing fingers and getting trapped in an endless cycle of blame and shame, the speakers focused on understanding the “why” behind the problem. As described by Toni Haddad, the driving force behind porn addiction is the brain’s dopamine-seeking reward loop. Pornography provides immediate relief from psychological pain, stress, frustration, disappointment, or any other negative feeling. By that, pornography takes the form of an unhealthy coping mechanism that provides immediate but momentary pleasure.