El Paso Bishop Says That Going to See “Fifty Shades of Grey” Is a Sin

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Fifty Shades of Grey took in more than $90 million at the box office over the holiday weekend, which means that at least some of y’all saw it. Those of you who did, though, should know that according to El Paso Catholic Diocese bishop Mark Seitz, you’re a sinner. 

As the El Paso Times reports, the bishop expressed his serious objections to the film over the weekend: 

Bishop Mark Seitz of the El Paso Catholic Diocese said Thursday that seeing the movie “Fifty Shades of Grey,” which opens Friday, would be a sin because it’s pornography with a dangerous appeal.

“To be a consumer of pornography is to participate in it. And that’s a sin. Whereas the true nature of a sexual relationship is to allow a person to give himself or herself for the sake of the other, in pornography, the end becomes not self-donation but self-gratification—the opposite of its intended purpose,” he said.
Seitz said in a statement that is not the way God intended for sexual expression to be enjoyed.

Opinions can vary on the quality of Fifty Shades (it currently enjoys a 21 percent rating on film reviews aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes), but the Catholic line on the film is relatively steadfast; Seitz appears to be the first leader in the church to say that watching the film is a sin in and of itself, but others have condemned it and the message the film sends. 

Pornography is a strong word to describe the film, but it’s one that anti-Fifty Shades protesters have used regularly when talking about the book. 

If Fifty Shades is porn, it’s definitely a different kind than what tends to be out there; most pornography is aimed at men, but the marketing of this film has been very focused in its aim toward women. Nearly 70 percent of the tickets have been bought by women, a number that flies not just in the face of most porn but of most movies

In any case, a whole lot of people saw Fifty Shades of Grey this weekend, and according to the El Paso bishop, that makes for a whole lot of sinners. 

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