Skip to comments.From Playboy Pornographer to Christian pastor: the unlikely story of Donny Pauling
Posted on 03/21/2012 12:57:09 PM PDT by Morgana
November 2, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) It was the very same day that pornographer Donny Pauling was called in by Playboy and offered $4,000 a day to produce a new lesbian reality series, that he unexpectedly found himself at a moment of crisis.
Pauling had already made millions from pornography over the past eight years, ever since he began shooting porn part-time behind his wifes back. But $4,000 a day was unprecedented, and there was something about the offer that made Pauling feel that if he took it, he was making his final commitment to the porn industry, and there would be no going back.
As he was driving home after that meeting at Playboy, suddenly he pulled over to the side of the road, and began praying. I was like, God, it doesnt matter what I do, you bless me, Pauling told LifeSiteNews.com in a telephone interview. And basically what I was saying was, Thanks for the new porn contract.
But, he says, as crazy as it sounds, after this prayer he immediately felt as if he was hit with electricity. The feeling was so powerful, and so unmistakable, that Pauling says he knew beyond a doubt that it was God.
Pauling had already been praying occasionally, after encountering members of the radically unconventional XXXChurch, who make it their mission to reach pornographers, porn stars, and prostitutes with the message of the Gospel. But it was several days after the experience in the car that he says he finally decided to give his life to Jesus, and to leave the porn industry. That was in September 2006.
On September 28, 2006 Pauling wrote on his personal blog: Im scared. I really, truly am. Terrified. Petrified. All of those things. But, he added, I feel a huge sense of relief and happiness for the first time in a LONG, LONG time.
The making of a porn producer
While Pauling clearly remembers his first encounter with pornography it happened in third grade, when he stumbled upon a porn magazine - he doesnt trace his subsequent problems with pornography to that experience.
It wasnt until after he got married that addiction reared its head. That was in the early days of the Internet - and easy access to pornography. Pauling found himself spending more and more time online looking at porn, either when he was at work, or late at night, when his wife was asleep.
He became so taken with what he saw that he decided he wanted to produce porn himself. Pauling was self-employed, and worked at his own private office, so it was easy for him to start recruiting girls and doing photo shoots without his wife knowing.
It wasnt until Pauling physically cheated on his wife for the second time, three years into producing and selling porn, that he finally came clean with her. He called her from a porn convention and told her about his secret life.
She flipped out, he says, and that was the end of his marriage.
But now that porn was no longer his dirty secret, Pauling was free to devote himself full-time to producing smut. After his marriage fell apart he moved into his office, quickly found himself another girlfriend, and in the very first month doing porn full-time, he made $50,350.
He was hooked.
How to get out of the porn industry
Pauling ultimately worked as a porn producer for over eight years. During that time he says he made millions of dollars, lived a non-stop party lifestyle, recruited hundreds of girls into the porn industry, and was completely and utterly miserable.
In the first place, he couldnt ignore the fact that his lifes work was literally destroying lives, especially those of the models he recruited and initiated into the brutal world of porn. When asked now if he finds porn appealing, Pauling responds: Theres nothing appealing about a girl curled up in a corner sucking her thumb because her mind is so blown by what shes been doing.
But it also didnt help, he notes, that he was motivated in large part by a burning hatred for Christians and Christianity.
The former pornographer traces this hatred to his strict upbringing as the son of a Pentecostal pastor, during which he was taught a legalistic definition of God (God was just a set of rules and regulations, he says) and witnessed the abject hypocrisy of many of the Christian leaders his father knew.
After he started making porn, he relished running into some of his old Christian friends, who would ask what he was doing. I loved throwing porn in their faces, he says.
But things began to change after he met members of the XXXChurch, who every year would set up a booth at the Las Vegas porn convention, and hand out bibles emblazoned with the words Jesus loves porn stars.
Instead of being outside protesting and holding signs telling people that God was going to send them to hell where they would burn in torment, members of XXXChurch were inside setting up booths, doing makeup for girls, Pauling said. And instead of judging them, they told them that they were beautiful and that God loved them, and that there was nothing they could do that could change that, and that He wanted more for them.
Eventually, Pauling says, he came to realize that if he were to be a Christian, this is the kind of Christian I would want to be, and the kind of Jesus I would want to serve.
The transformation didnt happen overnight in fact, it took over several years - but he credits the love-based approach of XXXChurch with bringing him to the point where he was able to send up that confused prayer in his car, and to listen to the response.
After that mystical experience in the car, I quit, and I just walked away, he says. I knew it wouldnt be easy, because I had a lot of bills. So I lost everything I owned. I had property I foreclosed on. His girlfriend of five years also left him for a manager at Playboy.
But I was never more at peace, even though it was a tumultuous time.
How to beat a porn addiction
After leaving the industry, Pauling enrolled in school to become a pastor (mostly, he says, to rewire his brain - he has no plans for the time being to actually lead a congregation), and started up an Internet marketing company. He has also travelled the world speaking to millions of people about the reality of the porn industry, and about how to beat addiction.
He says he is convinced that the same love-based approach that brought him out of the industry is the same approach needed for those who are addicted to porn, and want out.
So many people dont ask for help because theyre sitting there feeling guilty about their actions, saying, there I go, Ive done it again, he says. I think that they need to realize that, although sin does separate us from God, He still loves them. It doesnt matter what theyre doing. His love doesnt change. Its not conditional.
Practically speaking, Pauling urges those who are addicted to porn to be completely open with someone they can trust, and then to set up a system of accountability someone they can talk to regularly about their struggles with addiction.
The trick, he says, is simply never to give up. Ive had people come up to me and say they heard me speak two years ago, and they havent looked at the stuff since, he says, but thats not realistic for everybody.
It doesnt matter how many times you fall down, Hes still there to pick you up and put you back on your feet.
Pauling compares the experience of overcoming addiction to that of a child learning to walk. Just because the child falls over and over again, he says, doesnt mean the father tells him walking just might not be for him.
God who loves us that much is not looking for a reason to send us to Hell, hes looking for every reason to bring us to Him, he concludes. So just stand back up. Stop letting your guilt get you down.
Good story. As a man, you fight it every day. Even on FR.
That doesn’t erase all of his sins of course. Sounds like he has a big pile of them too.
Amen Brother, Amen.
Not for us to decide if he does or not.
Remember the saying: ‘But for the grace of God there I go’.
Was watching a documentary about porn recently. Had no idea the affects on the male brain and exactly how addictive it is. More than addictive, is how destructive it is. Men who view porn, over time can not gain an erection naturally, thus have to use more porn to do so.
What is strange is these same men would rather look at porn than be with their wife/gf. Or have to look at porn to be with their wife/gf.
This just goes to prove that being sexually stimulated is in the brain and not the sex organs.
This documentary said that the makers of Viagra and other drugs like it know this concept well and cash in on the men who are addicted to porn. Last I heard Viagra was $10. a pill so you go figure what that can cost to a man in his 20’s the rest of his life.
Now I don’t know if this story is true but I am gonna pass it on anyway. Who in America has the best sex? Would you believe the one group we poke fun of the most often in here? The Amish. Think about it. Porn free and conservatively dressed. Yea maybe they do have something to teach us.
“That doesnt erase all of his sins of course. Sounds like he has a big pile of them too.”
He had his “Road to Damascus” moment in life. Pray for him. Pray for all others like him.
You are right. Those who are happily married their whole life are probably doing something right.
Like I said, I’m not the final judge. I can have my own opinions though.
Nothing erases your sins. The truly repentant can give them to Jesus, though. Then, by the Grace of God, they are forgiven.
I'm curious about this statement:
After leaving the industry, Pauling enrolled in school to become a pastor
Was that an online course or something offered at his community college?
Sorry but my gut feeling is that Donny Pauling is still a self serving fraud, hungry for money...........
You want to convince me of your sincerety Donnie, do some missionary work.
his sins cannot be erased by doing good, but they can be washed clean by the blood of the Lamb.
Seems to me he’s done a complete turn around, which is what repentance means. America needs to do the same, a complete turn around. 180*
When King Manasseh who sacrificed his firstborn by burning him alive to Molech repented, God forgave him. Lots of similar facts in the Bible.
And the early Christians didn’t trust Paul’s conversion, either.
That doesnt erase all of his sins of course. Sounds like he has a big pile of them too.
I disagree. When this man repented and accepted Christ as his Savior, all of his sins were washed away and Christ and will remember them no more. He is forgiven. Forever. Will he ever sin again? Every day of his life. But that what prayer is for. To ask forgiveness everyday. Paul tells us to pray continuously. It is hard to sin when you are praying. Prayer brings you closer and closer to Christ.
If you ask him to describe where he came from and how he feels now. One word will describe it! Especially after the business he was in and that word is: CLEAN
He apparently has a deep and abiding faith - that he shouldn’t actually have to work for a living.
“So who is Donny Pauling replacing, Swaggert?”
Actually no. Swaggert just got caught with a Playboy. Jimmy later cried crocodile tears before the tv camera. He did not help publish it.
I can’t say if Pauling’s heart is in the right place or not only time will tell. I do know that a lot have left the porn industry and become christians. Would be nice if more would.
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A true story about pornography. And it doesn't even go into any of the really destructive evil details. Just how one can indeed become free from porn. It ruins lives and there is not a pinch of doubt about it. And if anyone says "but I/people I know use it and we're not ruined". "Ruin" doesn't necessarily mean you lost your family, house and job. Although it can.
Pinging both lists since homosexual pornography ruins lives as well.
You didn’t read the next sentence in which it stated that he has no plans to become a pastor, he went to school to help himself.
As usual, you post crap.
1. The next sentence said he wasn’t going to be a pastor.
2. You think pastors don’t work for a living?
You post crap all the time too.
For the time being.
He has no plans.
For the time being.
The times being what they are, who knows? He didn’t dismiss the possibility.
And I have known a few pastors. With a deep and abiding faith. That they shouldn’t have to work for a living. Even God only took ONE day off.
And I was joking.
Lighten up Francis.
That doesnt erase all of his sins of course. Sounds like he has a big pile of them too.
- - - —
No, but his faith in Christ does.
No, I don't post crap as you claim. I merely express scepticism in so called "converts" who are now attempting to profit from their alleged conversions......
Why do you fear me? Are you upset at your lost investment in Heritage USA that you sent to Tammy and Jim or your lost prayer request to Robert Tilton?
I don’t “fear” you and I never donate to crap.
then what is you problem with me? And stop with the innuendos and be specific, ok?
I never had the advantage of your education. Thanks for the spelling correction..........
I don’t “fear” you, and generally avoid reading anything you post but my eyes happened to read that particular comment, which is crap, as all your comments are.
Thank you for your attention.......I'm flattered. By the way,
I merely express scepticism in so called “converts” who are now attempting to profit from their alleged conversions......
- - - - -
And exactly HOW is he profiting from his conversion?
Your skepticism is unwarranted.
It's not a matter of erasing them, God forgives and separates them from us as far as the east is from the west. There's nothing too big for God to forgive and thank God it's not up to us to try to pay for them.
You have not business judging him based on his compliance to your arbitrary standard of behavior.
I think it's more important for him to do what GOD is calling him to do. He doesn't owe it to anybody to *prove* anything to them.
FWIW, how many of those involved in porn have you ministered to lately? Or ever?
Each and every one of us answers to GOD for what we do.
There's not enough information in the article for you to pass judgment on his life and it's not your place to anyway.
As for working for a living? How is being a pastor worse than sucking off the government teat as a *researcher* doing research on government grants?
And I was joking.
Yeah, right. That's what the bully says every time he's caught red handed and wants to weasel out of responsibility for what he said or did. Then it's everybody else's fault because they didn't get it and have no sense of humor anyway. Classic blame shifting....
Thanks for sharing your insights, dear metmom!
Like a broken sewage pipe, nothing else comes out.
Yes, thank you for your comments!
Uhhh . . . let me think . . .
The pastor gets paid by voluntary contributions from his flock?
You can always tell the person who hasn’t had the 2 Cor 5:17 change happen, because they can’t understand it in others, and continue to judge them by their “before” life, because the unchanged person is STILL in their “before” life.
I will pray for you.
Eventually, Pauling says, he came to realize that if he were to be a Christian, this is the kind of Christian I would want to be........ he credits the love-based approach of XXXChurch with bringing him to the point where he was able to send up that confused prayer in his car, and to listen to the response.
This is what would most likely work for gays, as well. It's better than hatred.