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Dear Pastor Deanna...

The following is a letter (names/locations changed)  from a young adult pastor's son that came to my inbox  in response to Tuesday's blog post.  I'm sharing it with his permission, taking identifying details out.  This note is one of many that arrived, from PK's, PW's, and Pastors, all sharing their experiences and just wanting somebody to listen.  I got letters from pastor's kids who had been physically and emotionally abused by church members, PW's sharing about their emotionally scarred PK's who want nothing to do with the church and are currently prodigals, others who just wanted somebody to pray who has been in their shoes.  My heart goes out...

Dear Pastor Deanna:

I just read your PK post, and then the one you linked with your son Dustin's essay. I started getting really emotional.  It was like everything came flooding back from the church my parents pastored when we lived in Detroit, and some of the (much rarer) psychotic experiences in Columbus. This is an issue that needs a LOT more exposure.

It's just crazy to think about some of the experiences I have sort of blocked out like Dustin described, I thank God that my siblings haven't gone through it as bad, (although, my next oldest brother probably got a pretty good dose). You know, when you're a young kid, your parents are kind of like God to you, they know EVERYTHING, right from wrong, never make mistakes, and are your whole source of life, then to have people in church, (where kids are supposed to feel safe) just be verbally assaulted and hear their parents be slandered, it's incredibly traumatic. I remember my best friend's Dad coming up to me in the foyer after church when I was 16, he started screaming at me, "you're dad is a f'ing liar and spewing lies from f'ing satan, your mom is practicing witchcraft!...." and so forth.   Who else deals with that level of chaos except maybe the President's kids?!

I would never put my kids in a Christian school.   I grew up thinking I was a horrible kid from around the ages of 10-15 because of that school in Detroit. I used to beg my dad every single year to let me go to public school, I would DREAM about being able to go to public, school. I remember when I first came to that school the principal, had me and some of the other kids in his office and had a paddle in their for corporal punishment.   I was 11! I asked him "what's that for?" He said, "turn around and put your hands on that chair." I nervously did so thinking we were joking around, and he then hit me with it HARD. I mean, I've been spanked a lot growing up and this was not a light joke of a tap, it was extremely hard. Then he just laughed at me! I was humiliated in front of all these other kids and it actually hurt REALLY bad, I remember running out to the back of the building and crying on the swing set! I got detention and demerits non-stop in that school, and I think it really contributed to me having a very rebellious attitude during those years.

Okay, I just wanted to vent for a second. thanks for writing this blog.

Love,
Josh

Let's lift up ministry families everywhere, for peace, healing and God's power.  They serve on the frontlines and need our support, never our criticism.

Comments

Anonymous said…
My husband's siblings, who were older than him- have a million stories about growing up PKs... Later, his parents became missionaries overseas- he has similar stories to which you describe... He tells of evangelists calling him out by name to come forth and repent- in front of large crowds of people... he tells stories of gossip destroying churches...

In the end, however, I think his experiences have helped him understand others and truly understand the heart of Christ.

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