Pastor Jackass' latest email:
You and your baby have been constantly in my prayers since we met and will continue to be. I want you to know that and that I care deeply for you and your baby in the Lord. I also wanted to write to ask for your understanding and forgiveness for any of my inadequacies as a pastor: I surely have many. My intention is always to bring the Word of God to my parishioners and I never want my failings or personality to get in the way of that Word. As you look forward to the months and years ahead, I believe that there is much in the Word of God that you should consider in faith and humility - for as the Psalmist said, "Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a guide to my path." When you want to talk about that Word of God in a confidential and non-confrontational environment, know that my door is always open.
I actually laughed when I read it. "cares deeply"? "inadequacies as a pastor"? Please! What arrogant garbage.
A friend and my mom seem to think that word has gotten back to him about how horribly I think I was treated. The comment about "confidential and non-confrontational" make me wonder. It's true I have talked far and wide about it and my family has done the same. Someone could have spoken to him about it inspiring the apology. As for his door always being open...give me a break, I'll never darken that doorstep again.
Even funnier, Mom's response after I forwarded her the email:
"Sounds like he got the word. I'd tell him to blow it out his ditty bag! Hope you have a return e-mail prepared for him. If not, I can help. Don't (DO NOT) go easy on him - he has earned all the wrath you can throw at him!!FOOL, what a bunch of crap! How fast can he back track, bet skid marks can be seen somewhere. Damn right, he had a lot of inadequacies - make a list, a long one. Don't let him get away with this "I'm so humble crap"! I think that's all fake anyway. Apparently he thinks you're the one who should be humble. Don't think he's changed his thinking in any way - just maybe realized his delivery was so horrible. But that really doesn't change the meaning of the initial discussion. Don't think it'd be at all beneficial for you to meet with him. I expect he'd just keep hammering away at you in an attempt to make you repent - which we both know is NOT necessary!! He as much as admits that with the "non confrontational" bit. It's a good thing you can laugh - my ears are red!"
She's so mad, but "Blow it out his ditty bag"? actually made me LOL. I have no idea where she comes up with these things. I asked her what a "ditty bag" was and she said she didn't know, it was just an old saying.
My response back to him:
"Thank you for your apology but you should know that I felt none of this caring or love that you write of during our meeting, only callus criticism and judgment. I understand these are controversial issues and difficult for some to talk about. However, until meeting with you, I had never encountered a preacher who wouldn't look me in the eye or who didn't offer to read scripture or pray with me no matter how difficult the topic. I was very upset for days not as a result of what you had to say but how you said it. I suggest you seek counseling in tact and compassion. Clearly, I cannot stay at a church where my child may be treated harshly as I have been. Please do not contact me again."
I'm ready to put this whole horrible experience behind me. The responses I've received in real life and here on the blog have proven to me many times over that there is a hell of a lot more LOVE and acceptance in the world than narrow-minded cruelty.
Also, I believe that never does something negative happen that something good doesn't come out of it:
--I've experienced my first flash of mother tigress "I'll kill you if you hurt my baby" emotion. Outside of love for my baby, this is probably the strongest emotion I've ever felt. I know I can stand up and protect Sweet Pea if I need to.
--I've been forced to move outside my comfort zone and find a new church home. My childhood church hasn't met my religious needs for years but I was too comfortable there and too lazy to make the effort to find one that fit me. Now I know I will.
--Now that I've handled this crazy kind of harshness, I know I can handle it in the future if I have to. I can voice my beliefs without being emotional or backing down.
Probably more that I'm not seeing right now. I really believe that every little thing happens for some purpose. Pray for us tonight, girls....
Well, I just spoke to S about this whole mess. She had told her mom about the meeting and her mom was horrified as everyone else has been. I guess her mom said something to the preacher before or after church sticking up for me and saying that he should not have said that to me. Apparently, they had a short conversation about it. The preacher got visibly upset and admitted he probably shouldn't have said all that to me. S's mom told him that she didn't think I was coming back and he acted surprised. I'm so surprised and touched that S's mom would, unasked, confront him like that. I really want to go right over there and hug her to pieces. I now know what prompted this apology..he wanted to feel better about himself. No matter, I'm done with it and moving on.