Pope condemns violent games

His holiness says violent and sexually explicit media, including games, are "repulsive" and "a perversion," particularly when aimed at minors.

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Pope Benedict XVI, the current head and spiritual leader of the Catholic Church, voiced his opinion on games today from the Vatican, saying that violent or sexually explicit games are a "perversion" and "repulsive."

As part of the annual papal message for World Communications Day, the theme of which was "Children and the Media: A Challenge for Education," the pope talked about the media's effect on children, paying particular attention to games and films.

"Any trend to produce programs and products--including animated films and video games--which in the name of entertainment exalt violence and portray antisocial behavior or the trivialization of human sexuality is a perversion, all the more repulsive when these programs are directed at children and adolescents,'' the pope said.

Pointing toward the growing influence the media has on youth, he said the media can support a family's educating of children provided it "promotes fundamental human dignity, the true value of marriage and family life, and the positive achievements and goals of humanity." He called upon the leaders of the industry "to safeguard the common good, to uphold the truth, to protect individual human dignity, and promote respect for the needs of the family."

Pope Benedict XVI's entire address is available in English online.

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