Joanna Krupa, the Polish model on the cover of this month's Playboy magazine has released a statement countering critics of her recent advertisement for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in which she professes herself to be a practicing Catholic who is “working to stop senseless suffering of animals, the most defenseless of God's creation.”
Krupa's comments came in response to statements made by Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, in reaction to Krupa's most recent ad campaign with PETA: “Be an angel for animals. Always Adopt. Never Buy.”
One of the ads features Krupa wearing angel wings and a digital halo while holding a large, elaborate cross which barely covers her nude figure. The other shows a topless Krupa, again with angel wings and a halo, holding a dog while a rosary dangles from her hand.
Donohue blasted PETA for a lack of reverence and an ignorance of ethics. "The fact is that cats and dogs are a lot safer in pet stores than they are in the hands of PETA employees," Donohue said in a statement. "Moreover, pet stores don't rip off Christian iconography and engage in cheap irreligious claims." "It also has a long and disgraceful record of exploiting Christian and Jewish themes to hawk its ugly services. Those who support this organization sorely need a reality check,” he continued.
“It's understandable that the Catholic League is wary of another sex scandal, but the sex we're talking about pertains to dogs and cats,” Krupa's statement reads. “In my heart I know that Jesus would never condone the suffering that results when dogs and cats are allowed to breed,” she added.
The model who appeared, unclad, in PETA's 2007 “I'd rather go naked than wear fur” campaign said, “As a practicing Catholic, I am shocked that the Catholic League is speaking out against my PETA ads, which I am very proud of.”
“I'm doing what the Catholic Church should be doing, working to stop senseless suffering of animals, the most defenseless of God's creation. I am a voice for innocent animals who are being neglected and dumped by the millions at shelters,” she asserted.
Terry Polakovic, Executive Director of ENDOW (Educating on the Nature and Dignity of Women) told CNA that if Krupa is “a serious Catholic, she might want to devote some time to catechesis.” Polakovic referred Krupa to John Paul II's, “'Theology of the Body,' wherein he explains how the human body speaks a language of its own.”
Earlier this year, Krupa defended nudity by saying the human body is a work of art. "I think worrying about going topless in a photo shoot or film is really ridiculous," she told Fox News. "And the fact is, Pope John Paul said, since we were born naked, it is art, and it's just showing a beautiful body that God created."
Krupa's suggestion that the late Pope John Paul II endorsed photographs of half-naked women because they depict "a beautiful body that God created" is simply wrong," said Joan Frawley Desmond, a Catholic journalist who studied at the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family.
Desmond added, “For the Pope, the human body has been created by God as a priceless 'gift' of one spouse to another. Great art respects this 'truth' and treats the naked human form with dignity. In contrast, the casual display of the naked body transforms this inestimable 'gift' into 'public property.'”
“It is not enough to say “The body is a work of art” and then proceed however you might wish,” Polakovic remarked. “ That the body may be perceived as a work of art needs to be understood within a much larger context of the overall understanding of what it means to be a human person, that is, a union of body and soul. We must understand the dignity of the person, which stems from being created in the image and likeness of God.”
“For a beautiful woman like Joanna to be under informed about her true nature and dignity as a woman made in the image of God is a real sorrow. And more worrisome is that it poses a danger to other people who are similarly confused about their nature and purpose and look to a famous model to school them in truth,” Polakovic added.