Saturday, November 8, 2014

Can I Come In?

Several months after placing my son for adoption, I was invited to come to a Methodist church to be a substitute piano player.  I play piano and have done so since I was nine years old.  I don't play that much anymore and eventually I would just be a casual member rather than a piano player.  The pastor at this particular small town church is a woman named Teresa.  On my first meeting with Pastor Teresa in the morning before service, we talked for a while about a variety of things.  But then because this is a small town church and because I was more or less committed to telling the truth to people, I decided to tell her about the one thing I thought could get me kicked out of this place.

"I have to tell you, the reason I came back to live with my parents was because I got pregnant," I say to her.

"It happens," she said with a nod.  Now realizing that if I did leave this church it would not be because of her, I continued,

"And my boyfriend and I didn't have the ability to give him a good stable home so we placed him for adoption. It's an open adoption and I get to see him."  She expressed her glee and happiness that things had worked out so well for everyone involved and I realized that I would not have to fear telling this woman anything.

Religion has been a strange subject in my life.  Mostly it's because I had something of a weird upbringing on the subject.  Stuck between a Methodist and a fallen away Catholic who both decided the Unitarian church was the one for them (until I was nine and after that we didn't go anywhere) meant my religious education was rather weird.  But, it has also left me more open minded.  For now I attend the Methodist church when I go to see my parents and a Lutheran church in the town where I live if I stay for the weekend.

After everything that happened with my son, I wasn't quite sure that any church would let me back in.  I had (obviously) has sex before marriage.  I had bore a son and placed that son in the arms of others to be raised.  These still carry a bit of social stigma and much social stigma (let's face it) comes from religion.  So you can probably understand my nervousness.

But just as I've been extremely lucky with who my son's adoptive parents and how everything turned out, I've been extremely lucky when it comes to find churches that will let me in and won't bother me about anything that I've done.  Both the Methodist and the Lutheran pastors at the churches I have attended have passed the test.  They and many members of both churches have seen pictures of my son and have talked to me very positively about what I've done and what all happened.  And it has been a help to me.

I hope that all of you have the courage to look for the people who will help you.  And while you may have some bad times, I do believe that sooner or later, you will find people who will support and believe in you.  And trust me, they will let you back in the door.

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