TV in the home, what are your thoughts?

Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Faith,

I’m completely new to Catholicism. I’ve been reading many articles about becoming a Catholic and I have a true appreciation and new outlook on many topics in regards to the Catholic faith. One Catholic article I read (I’ll attach the link below) talks about TV and limiting it or completely getting rid of it all together. We do not allow our children to watch TV, but I wondered how many others feel the same way? Do you come across many people in the church like us, who don’t have TV? Thank you. Please respond kindly to this question and to each other, as I am looking for those who would be willing to respond in love, and in the spirit of Christ.

http://m.catholicbible101.com/site/mobile?dm_path=%2Ftelevisionandyoursoul.htm&fw_sig_session_key=40eb526db1e06f6bc3b13017b5e6642506e0b689ec9d486ef4c9c59df6881f83-34661311&fw_sig_social=1&fw_sig_api_key=522b0eedffc137c934fc7268582d53a1&fw_sig_premium=1&fw_sig_permissions=none&fw_sig_tier=2&fw_sig_permission_level=0&fw_sig=984cdf29e6301ff315b3e70cebdb7e36&fw_sig_site=34661311&fw_sig_time=1522203751678&fw_sig_url=http://www.catholicbible101.com/&fw_sig_partner=webs&fw_sig_potential_abuse=1&fw_sig_access_token=bff9bb764b942bb06cb7c6913a953efdcc582335&fw_sig_locale=en-US&fw_sig_is_admin=0&fb_sig_network=fw#2103

We don’t have young children around so we have the TV going just for the noise, I think. We watch a lot of Reality Shows, home improvement, news, weather… Hardly ever movies. I watch EWTN but DH is not Catholic. I don’t really like sitcoms. Too much sexual innuendos even for two old fuddy-duddies… at least that’s my feeling. I hope someone with children will help you see what their TV time is like. Praying for you…

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I’ve run into several retired people in church who got rid of their tv. I only know of one family with children who did, but they didn’t do it for their souls. They’re atheists. They did it so their son would grow up interested in the world around him with no distraction from the world within a machine.

Growing up, my family limited tv time. We got one, maybe two half hour cartoons after school each day and a movie on Friday and Saturday night. Everything was screened ahead of time, except for PBS and EWTN. When my brother and I got too old for cartoons, we stopped watching a lot of tv except for the news and movies.

The tv usage picked up when my parents retired, but they worked so hard their whole lives that I’m not going to complain. If I want family time, they’re always up for a good talk over coffee or a game.

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Thank you for your insight! It’s good to see that you are being careful and staying away from the more inappropriate things on TV. I know the Lord appreciates your carefulness! Thank you so much for your response! God bless!

Yes, I agree! I try not to say to much to my parents either! I don’t always agree with them, but I try to respect them anyhow!:slight_smile: Thank you for your insight!:slight_smile:

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I don’t believe in paying for television. It comes from growing up with it being free and quite Limited. 5 channels at most and none of them were allowed to show the sexual content and violence available today. In my own life, my children and I watched very little television and the content was family oriented. My boys are grown and I don’t watch much television but when I do, I get it for free at my local library on DVD. Much of what is out today, is just too vulgar for my taste. I don’t want to give them my money even if I choose not to watch it. That’s what cable does. It funds that stuff.

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Thank you so much for your thoughts! I totally agree! I find it hard to believe that religious/spiritual people can watch the things that they do sometimes. Psalms 101:3: I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes. Thank you for responding to my post! God bless!

I really enjoy tv shows from sports to nature to EWTN to politics to economics to action movies etc. I won’t be getting rid of my tv for anyone and the Church does not require that we get rid of tv or limit it in any way.

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Dear thistle, I can see that you have been offended, as this was solely a post for people who know non watchers or who are non watchers, just to see if there are other believers with similar thoughts, as I’m new to the church. I’m truly sorry to offend you. I am sorry, I wouldn’t want to cause you any bad feelings. You’re right, you shouldn’t get rid of it for anyone, unless the Holy Spirit tells you to do so, and that’s between you and him. I think if we open our hearts to Him, He can guide us in all truth and in His holy ways. God loves you and wants the best for your life. I found this article interesting about TV facts, one being that the average American watches 15 years of TV if you add up the hours. Maybe, if the Lord would have you to do so, you could consider these thoughts. God bless!

Like anything else, the TV is an appliance that is morally neutral.

The TV statistics are on the decline, kids and adults spend more hours on their phone/computer screen.

Family sitting around watching a movie or a fun show is not what you do in every free moment, but, it can build some wonderful memories. I doubt anyone will look fondly on their childhood with “I remember all of the time I spent alone watching YouTube videos on my phone”.

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Dear TheLittleLady,

I agree! Watching YouTube doesn’t foster the best memories! Watching a family movie, may not be bad. I also agree that nostalgic family memories are important. I do disagree about TV being neutral, however. Here’s something to think about. How many times is God glorified on TV verses how many times would God be offended by the content? I bet God would be more offended than not on the majority of the programming. I want to be careful to not grieve the Holy Spirit, or my own soul for that matter. Thank you for bringing up a good point! May the Lord bless you!

Well, EWTN broadcasts 24 X 7 X 365 in multiple languages, and that is only one network!

We Catholics are not “holiness pentecostals”, we are allowed to watch secular entertainment. If your family decides no TV that is fine, but, don’t make it into a litmus test for holiness.

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Hi Witkey,
I can only tell you my experience. When my kids were around 10-12 years old, they kept arguing about something and the TV ( I don’t remember what), so I told them that that was that, and the TV was getting unplugged. They grumbled for a few days, then something magical began to happen…

Over the weeks all on their own, they pulled out board games, LEGGOS, books and art supplies and began talking and acting nicer with one another. The whole house seemed more relaxed and was much quieter. We went on like that for months and months and the two kids became closer. Then the Olympics began. I gotta say, my kids were competitive swimmers their whole lives, so how could we not watch the Olympic Swimming events? Then Track and Field and Gymnastics of course, then Fencing, then…

The TV was back. But I have to say that my husband and I were always very careful about what was on the TV the whole time the kids lived at home. We would watch Nature, Science or History, Cartoons and the old TV shows that were on back in the 50’s ( Like Leave it to Beaver and The Twilight Zone ). We kept the TV antenna on the roof, and just watch the old TV show reruns mostly and stuff on PBS. I never forgot what my Italian Grandmother said when everyone had TV sets in their homes…" “This should only be for people who are home sick or for old people who can’t get out anymore”.

God Bless

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Wow, TheLittleLady, Is this how you speak to Brothers and Sisters within the Catholic Church? I’m am new on the scene, and no I don’t come from a Pentecostal background. I’m amazed at your hostility when I reached out to you in kindness and sincerety, or at least I thought I did. I’m sorry you have become so upset. Also, I’m not referring to religious programming. I bet the majority don’t stick to one channel, though I’m sure there are exceptions.

I love the fact you brought your positive experiences to the discussion! Thank you for your thoughts! Also, thank you for bringing in the thoughts of your grandmother! I have a lot of respect for the ideas and thoughts of the elderly! They have much to teach us!:slight_smile: God bless you!

I see TV as morally neutral. As the Church has no prohibition against Television, that would mean that it is morally neutral.

Sorry that you feel hostility, none intended, just the basic facts.

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You are the final say in your home. If you limit it to certain (Pre-screened programs by you) then that’s the way it is. If you limit it to only Catholic programs then that’s the way it is. You are the example as the adult for those in your home. Do what you feel best for them.

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Great! Glad to hear you are not upset.:grinning:

Thank you CajunJoy65! You are an encouragement to me! :slight_smile:

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My daughter is grown and away at college so our viewing habits have changed a bit since she is not here. I was very particular when she was young about how much screen time she got and the quality of the shows.

There is a lot of junk on TV these days, and there is also some good quality entertainment available. So while TV may be morally neutral, some of the programming is not and that’s where a family with children has to be careful.

If you have young children and decide to not have TV, the kiddos may face some teasing at school, but you can certainly educate them on how to handle that. If teachers still use PBS specials for educational reasons, you can access than online, so frankly I can’t think if any reason why you would “need” access to TV for educational purposes.

Another advantage is you’ll have more spendable $$ for other more worthy endeavors.

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