Originally published as an eBook, Fifty Shades of Grey has become a phenomenon, selling more than 100 million books worldwide, spawning two sequels and is now the subject of a film adaptation starring Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson set for release Feb. 13.
But the story's depiction of sex, bondage and sadomasochism between two young unmarried lovers has disturbed religious leaders. As chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, Bishop Richard J. Malone of Buffalo has released a letter to other bishops discussing the issues against both the book and the movie, as well as listing online resources on how to deal with pornography addiction.
"Leaders in the Religious Alliance Against Pornography (RAAP) have stated, 'The contrast between the message of Fifty Shades of Grey and God's design for self-giving and self- sacrificing love, marriage and sexual intimacy could not be greater,'" Bishop Malone wrote. "As you know, we as bishops have spoken with a united voice against domestic violence, and in particular, violence against women. We have also emphasized the need to overcome the exploitation of sex and violence in communications."
You can read the bishop's entire letter here.