“The Bible has so much to say about healthy sexuality. Why has the church been so silent?” asked Aaron Baart, dean of the chapel at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa. Dordt College is supported by the Christian Reformed Church. In January Baart spoke to a group of more than 200 parents about youth and pornography awareness at First Christian Reformed Church in Hull, Iowa. The event was sponsored by the Sioux City County Task Force for Sexual Wholeness and is supported by several community organizations, Christian Reformed churches, colleges, and schools.
Baart’s aim was to create awareness among parents and provide education about pornography. Young people have easy access to pornograpy, and it’s something many young people openly discuss with one another. It is also a topic in which the church has been quiet. “I’m sick of seeing college students eight years into porn addiction. The only way to combat that is to reclaim the learning curve,” said Baart.
Sean Baccam, a youth leader at First CRC who helped hosted the event, said, “I thought the meeting was very informative. I wasn’t aware of how serious [this issue] was until I heard all of the statistics and stories. I appreciated that they shared resources they have available for help.”
Following the evening seminar, 250 students from Western Christian High School in Hull and 150 junior high students attended a chapel in which speakers talked about pornography and a healthy view of Christian sexuality. Baart has conducted similar seminars at area Christian schools and colleges for both parents and students. “A lot of data was offered as well as how we can create a grace-based culture within our communities that allows those who are struggling under the weight of pornography to be able to come forward and seek help without being shamed,” said Baart.
First CRC of Hull, Iowa: http://www.hull1stcrc.com/
Dordt College: https://www.dordt.edu
Aaron Baart of Dordt College: https://www.dordt.edu/cgi-bin/main/about_me/about_me.pl?username=abaart
Western Christian High School: http://westernchristianhs.com/