Catholic World Report Interview:
Visit a street fair in San Francisco’s Castro district and you’re likely to meet Joseph Sciambra, 45, wearing a “Jesus loves you” t-shirt and handing out copies of his book,Swallowed by Satan. It tells the story of how, as a boy growing up in a lax Catholic family in Napa, California, he became addicted to pornography.
Sexually confused at age 18, Sciambra made his way to the Castro, a “gay mecca,” and immersed himself in the gay lifestyle for 11 years. He lived it to the extreme, even acting in gay porn. But rather than the happiness, acceptance, and fulfillment he sought, he found a life of misery.
With the help of Courage, the Catholic Church’s ministry to people with same-sex attraction, Sciambra embraced chastity and returned to the practice of the Catholic faith. Today, he makes a modest living running a Catholic bookstore in Napa, and devotes himself to a personal apostolate helping those in the gay lifestyle, “to offer them the hope that there is life after being gay,” he says. Sciambra also blogs regularly and shares his story in both the Catholic and secular media.
He recently spoke with CWR.
CWR: Some people argue that pornography does no harm to the viewer or to society. You believe instead that it was a factor that led you into a self-destructive gay lifestyle…