In a press release, the major German publishing company Weltbild owned by the Catholic Bishops of Germany says the company is considering suing the slanderers who have accused it of profiting from porn, because the erotica sold on its
website does not meet the legal definition of pornography.
Last week media in Germany reported that the company Weltbild, owned by German dioceses and the bishops conference, carries 2,500 porn titles. The press also reported that the bishops had
ignored the pleas of Catholics who had tried to halt sales of erotic book.
Following the publication in the German media, LifeSiteNews verified that there were hundreds of erotic images, mostly book-covers, on the Weltbild site. Some of the covers
featured full frontal nudity and explicit photos typical of the covers of pornographic magazines like Playboy.
Weltbild was also found to be carrying softcore DVD's that would be deemed pornographic by Christian standards, but do not meet the
legal definition of hard-core pornography in Germany.
Since the story broke in the German media, the publishing company has been removing supposedly 'offensive' pages from its website and disabling search engine functions for searches on its
website using words such as erotic.
The bishops' company press release states that less than 0.02% of its annual turnover comes from the erotic offerings of the company and thus headlines such as Catholic Church makes a fortune with porn
are simply untrue and defamatory.
It should be noted, said Weltbild in its press release, that: 'pornography' is a clearly defined legal term. They add that according to that definition, Weltbild offers no pornography
and has never done so before.
The pope has called for an end to prostitution and pornography, saying the practices denigrate women and represent a serious lack of humanity.
The pope made the remarks as he welcomed Reinhard Schweppe as Germany's ambassador to the Holy
See Nov. 7. The pope's talk focused on the church's role in defending human dignity... and no doubt the issue that the catholic church owned publisher, Weltbild, has been spotted publishing erotica.
The pope said:
A relationship that does not take into account the fact that a man and a woman have the same dignity represents a serious lack of humanity.
With the materialistic and hedonistic tendencies that seem to be
gaining space in the West, there is a growing form of discrimination against women.
The moment has come to energetically halt prostitution as well as the widespread distribution of material with an erotic and pornographic content,
including through the Internet in particular.
The pope said the Holy See would encourage and assist the Catholic Church in Germany so efforts against these types of abuse would be more decisive and clearer.
The Catholic church in Germany is to sell Weltbild, its bookselling arm, after the unit admitted last month to publishing erotic novels.
Weltbild is one of Germany's major book publishers. Catholic leaders were outraged that the profitable
company's book range included steamy pulp novels with titles like Boarding School for Sluts and The Lawyer's Whore and advice on how to practise esoteric superstitions.
Germany's 27 bishops met this week to press the 12 bishops who
co-owned Weltbild to end the investment after Weltbild defended its commercial policy of publishing whatever books met market demand.
Weltbild said it welcomed the decision to seek new ownership without delay .