Kids, See Something, Say Something

We’ve been talking quite a bit about the state of education in our country, encroachment of government agencies, removal of a child from a home, teachers’ new curriculum with a socialist bent, and pedophillia. Then, Judy W said something this morning which hit me broadside…. and made me tear up. She reminded me of one particular kid who landed on our doorstep in the middle of the night. He was terrified. This isn’t a story about “that” kid, because his story is too sensitive for this forum, but it is a story about speaking up….., doing the right thing….., even when faced with rabid opposition……, to protect children.

I was drafted to teach 4th grade Sunday School at the local Presbyterian Church. This is the church where I was baptized, married, and my son was baptized. My grandfather was a deacon and my dad was a deacon. Heaven knows, I am NOT the best Christian, full of “sin” and multiple character flaws. I can’t rattle off scripture and details of biblical stories are kind of fuzzy to me. BUT, if reliability and pragmatism are highly praised virtues, then I’m the “Christian” to call. Nonetheless, I wouldn’t be anyone’s first choice to teach 4th grade Sunday School. Let’s just say, my approach was a little bit “unorthodox” – pardon the pun.

When assigned the task, the elder ladies of the church lectured me, because they knew me. They handed me the booklets and materials to teach….., along with a litany of advice on HOW to teach the children. I groaned and scowled but nodded, dutifully. This meant I had to prepare lessons, do the requisite reading, and be able to answer questions, from smart kids. Oh, my! At the time, I had an infant child, B&B guests every Sunday morning, mandatory breakfasts, and 5 rooms to turn before 3pm – with no staff on Sunday. How in the world was I going to get it all done, and be dressed, gorgeous, and engaging, for church + Sunday School?

Admittedly, for several Sunday school lessons, I winged it, and the kids and I learned our lessons together. My paying guests usually ran late and I barely made it out of my door in time for Sunday School but the kids were happy. Oddly, as time passed, I noticed more and more kids in my class.

One day, Ms. Susan (not her real name), who was a generation older than me, showed up in my class to yell at one of my students. Caroline was in 5th grade and supposed to be in Miss Susan’s class, but Caroline was sneaking into my class, because my class was more fun. The way Susan spoke to Caroline was nasty and unduly vicious. Caroline began to cry. Caroline was wrong to sneak into my class, but Susan was WAY out of line. It was obvious the problem was more about Susan, than it was about Caroline. I took it up with Susan and Caroline remained in my class. My class continued to grow…., which apparently led to more resentment among the church ladies. It reminds me of how the media and Never-Trumpers feel about President Trump. They hated my style but could not argue with my results. Hey, I brought snacks to my class!

One beautiful Sunday morning, right before Easter, I was completely unprepared for Sunday School, flat busted with no time left to read the lesson. I was desperate for a creative solution.

The previous week, WalMart had a sale on tents. All their camping tents were in a big bin by the front door. These were $150-250 tents, priced on sale at $10-15. On a lark, I bought 15 tents for the boy scout troop and had them sitting by the back door for Monday night’s scout meeting. I grabbed the tents and left for Sunday School. Executive decision, we were going to have Sunday School – OUTSIDE.

Gathering the class, they helped me unload the tents. The kids were so excited to be outside, DOING something. We pitched tents, and laughed together. At one point, I recall 5-8 church ladies hanging out of the window, gawking. I waved. I asked all the children to turn around and wave. We were trolling them before trolling was cool. One can only imagine what they were saying, “What the hell is Daughn doing now?”, or something along those lines. Of course, they had to keep their own students away from the windows, inside, in prison.

My lesson that day was on self-reliance. We all got settled into our tents and munched on snacks from the B&B. We arranged the tents so our door flaps were open to the center and I could talk to and see everyone. I asked them if they ever prayed before a big test at school, and asked God for help, or to get an “A”. They all nodded, of course they asked for help from God. I then asked them if they ever prayed for a good grade when they knew they hadn’t studied as well as they should have. The kids stared at the ground and hesitated. I told the joke about the man in a flood, who prayed for God to save him. A car passed and the driver stopped to offer assistance. A boat passed, and the captain offered help. Yet, the man said no, as he was waiting on God. As the flood waters rose and the man was drowning, he lashed out at God, “Why have you forsaken me?”. God replied, “Are you kidding, I sent you a boat and a car!”

Moral of the story = the kids had the tools to get good grades on their own. Count on yourself and don’t bother the “big guy” because you haven’t done your job. I likened the story to being able to pitch their own tent, instead of mom or dad doing it for them. Now, they knew how to do it, so they would never be cold or wet, again.

Self reliance.

At the end of class, the kids were helping me fold up the tents. Three older ladies came out to yell at me because we “trampled the grass with our tents”. My reply, “I thought we were in the job of raising children…..not grass.”

The church bells rang, and the kids were off for a session on the playground before church. We had a 30 minute break in between Sunday school and the service. I headed up a small enclosed staircase, to drop off materials when I noticed a younger woman sitting on the back steps, sobbing tears, barely able to catch her breath. She was sitting on the bottom step. I recognized her but did not know her name. She was new to our church.

“Woah”, I said as I swung low to sit on the step next to her, “What’s wrong?” I had disturbed her silence. She thought she was out of the way and invisible to everyone. “It’s okay…., nothing….., nevermind…..”, she tried to choke down the emotion and compose herself. “Nahhhh….”, I replied, “I’m not buying it and I’m not leaving ’til you tell me, so you might as well unload.” Well, she did.

She, we’ll call her Brittany, looked up at me, and for a moment she studied my face, judging me, as if she was trying to decide if she could trust me or not. I shrugged my shoulders, opened my hands/arms, and said, “Get on with it. Let’s go. Spill it. I’m not leaving until you do.” I guess that worked. She burst and told me, “They locked my son in a closet.”

The accusation hit me like a wave. My hands went to my hips, defiant. I cocked my head and said, “What the hell did you say?” and “WHO locked your son in a closet?” I was stammering, sputtering, spitting, and my rage was rising as her sobs moderated. We were on a seesaw, trading emotions. She told me all the details.

Her son was autistic, 3yrs old, did not speak, and was sometimes “bad”. The teacher, whom I knew WELL, was frustrated with him disturbing the other students – read as “HER CHILDREN”. He was “scaring them”. So, she locked the boy in a closet……. and it wasn’t the first time. I came undone. I was ready to charge in, confront the teacher. Brittany begged me to stop. She didn’t want to go up against powerful members of the church and was unsure what to do. She assumed she and her husband would have to find another church —- it had happened to her before. “What????!!!!!”, I was out of my mind, angry. She said, “He’s on the playground now, he’s okay for right now.” I peered around the corner, sure enough, her son was happy and playing – oblivious and innocent.

One of my worst faults is to charge in, without surveying the field. I recalled my dad’s wisdom, “plot and plan”. I grabbed her arm and said, “Come with me, we’re going home to smoke and think about what to do.”

I live around the corner from the church. We hit our back kitchen door at about 120mph, and lit cigarettes in the kitchen, blowing smoke up the vent. We drank iced tea and fixed her makeup. By the time we were done smoking, she was laughing. We were bonded. She became a girlfriend in those 15 minutes. We hatched a plan.

Because she was young, new, and not of a founding family, the elder ladies were intimidating her. They had no such hold over me, and besides, they were in-the-wrong and extraordinarily “un-christian”. The woman who locked Brittany’s son in a closet was a stone-cold bi$ch. I knew her well and we had tangled before. She was the daughter-in-law of a prominent family and a school teacher (locking an autistic kid in a closet – are you kidding me?). My grandparents and her in-laws started the Repub club. They played bridge together. We belonged to the same country club. In fact, our families STARTED and funded the country club in the 60’s. She would NEVER challenge me. Yet, Brittany was afraid of direct confrontation and thought about changing churches. “Leaving us???” I was mortified. Nononono, that was unacceptable to me. Fear of confrontation does not exist in my bloodstream, but I made a deal with Brittany, if our plan did not work, I understood her decision to leave our congregation for another one with more compassion.

In church, various families have their own pews. No one sits on the first pew – too awkward. My family usually sits halfway down on right side. The bi$ch’s family usually sits third row, right side. So, Brittany and I decided to sit in the front row, right side, directly in front of Bi$ch, facing the minister. We walked in at the last minute and marched right down front. Of course, everyone was curious as to what I was doing in the front row. The minister looked at me and he knew something was going on….. I nodded to indicate, “it’s okay.”

We sang loudly. Heck, we sang loud enough to compete with the choir. We sang so loudly even GOD could hear us sing. And we chuckled about it, too. I checked over my shoulder. The bi$ch on the third row was squirming. Tension was building.

After the sermon, about halfway through the service, the minister does a 5 minute segment, children’s time, and brings in the kids from the playground. Normally, the kids then sit with parents for the second half of the service. Confused about what was happening, with us in the front row, the kids kept waving at us. At the end of the segment, the kids, all of them, crammed into the front pew with us. While the minister was speaking we kept them busy with tic-tac-toe. The boys snuggled in, and I re-tied shoes. The girls wanted to try on my rings. When we sang, we ALL sang loudly. The kids shook the rafters, singing. They knew something was different but were happy to be part of it all.

Before the benediction, there’s a point in the service where members shake hands. It’s supposed to foster ‘fellowship’ – you know – all those warm fuzzy CHRISTIAN feelings, before we depart. I was waiting for that moment….

I reached over the pew to the bi$ch, and with two hands, I yanked her across the second pew. She was bent over at the waist and gasping. I’m tall and she’s my same size, but I was pi$$ed. I leaned over slowly and whispered in her ear. I told her if she ever did it again, I would have her head on a stick. She tried to wriggle away but I held on tight. Others in church noticed, her husband noticed, but I wasn’t letting go. The kids were wide-eyed. 

Continuing to whisper into the back of her head, I had to spit out her hair. I remember thinking her hairspray was as foul as her cold black soul. I demanded she formally apologize and tell the deacons, in session, AND, if she didn’t….., I would. I threatened her with everything I could think of at the moment. My version of the story would not be pretty. Finally, I let go of her and she arose, straightening herself. Then, can you believe it….., she had the nerve to glare AT ME, in an accusing manner. Doubling down, I leaned far across the second pew, into her and said, “Funny, you WOULD take the position that I’m the asshole on this issue. What you’ve done is reprehensible and would cost you your job.” I was pointing the ‘mom’ finger in her chest, poking her. Her entire family heard me. 

Pausing, I flipped the switch, cold and cool, and at the top of my voice, for the entire congregation to hear, I spoke the normal salutation, “And May God Bless You Today.” I was spewing venom at her. Oh yes, everyone in church knew something was wrong.  

After church, several church members approached us to ask what was going on. We all know how ‘church’ is. Sometimes, gossip is the preferred currency. I sloughed it off and told everyone it was up to the “bi$ch” to explain, and , “Maybe you should ask her…” She did apologize to Brittany, immediately, and to the deacons, formally. New procedures were instituted, two teachers in that class. Brittany was accepted unconditionally … into a church.. the way it’s supposed to be….. Right?

Brittany and I became best friends. She and her husband bought the house across the street – with help from my grandmother. Our kids grew up together and our husbands were great friends. We went on vacations together. Her autistic son spoke his first words at my house (but that is another story), and her son was my son’s best friend. I thought that’s what Christian fellowship was supposed to accomplish. You know…, walk the walk.

Frankly, it doesn’t matter if we are Christians or Martians. We should never, ever, hesitate to go out on a limb for a child. We should speak up and demand satisfaction, fairness, shaming those responsible when necessary.

Yeah, that same autistic child, who was once locked in a closet, is a good kid. He just graduated from Florida State.

And today, I found out I’m going to be a grandma, for the first time. Eldest daughter is 11 weeks pregnant. Life goes on. What could be more important than our kids?

family

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134 thoughts on “Kids, See Something, Say Something

  1. Fantastic story,Fantastic writing’ Fantastic !
    The compassion y’all showed is unbelievable. Reminds us all of how we should respond when we see someone in need.

    Liked by 9 people

  2. Great story Daughn and you are correct, even those of us without kids have the Momma Bear instinct.

    I am very happy to hear the boy & his Mom has done so well.

    On a positive note, last week at a birthday party there was an adorable little girl of 6 who was autistic. Full of energy and smart as a whip. Momma proudly told me she will be mainstreamed next year. She was a real sweetie. Momma had trouble keeping her from running up to me and was worried but I did not mind.
    ….

    PS I absolutely HATE bullies and will also step in and face them down on behalf of another.

    Liked by 13 people

      1. daugh what a wonderful story!!!
        I have bee there and am really proud of you how you handled the situation. 🙂
        I can vividly picture you with the kids and that woman I call the Angel of the church. A pastor used to call women like that Angels in the church.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Lookin back, the kids probably thought we were sitting in front because we were going to take them somewhere. That is probably the reason they all piled into the pew with us.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank God for people like you Daughn.
    Not only are you willing and able to speak up for yourself, but also for those who cannot, because they are unable or fearful.

    See something, say something.

    Words to live by.

    Liked by 12 people

  4. Very sobering story, Daughn. Do you see the similarities between your story and the way the religious leaders showed such disdain for our Lord?

    And His letters to the churches in the book of the Revelation were scorching!!!

    (Congratulations on the new baby!! What a lucky baby!)

    Liked by 11 people

    1. Evil done in the name of religion, is not religion…….. it just plain ole evil, right?
      One of the things I despise the most is a ‘fake’ Christian/Jew/Buddhist/Muslim whatever.

      Liked by 9 people

      1. Great story, Daughn, and kudos to you for standing up and making a true Christian response to most un-Christian behaviour. That woman reminds me of the Scribes and Pharisees, who Jesus referred to as “Blind Guides” and “whitewashed tombs” (I’ll put those in a different response, as your situation reminded me most of the following verses):Matthew 18:1-11:

        18:1: At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?
        2 And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
        3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
        4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
        5 And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.
        6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
        7 Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!
        8 Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire.
        9 And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.
        10 Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

        Liked by 6 people

      2. And, speaking of blind guides and whitewashed tombs, Jesus lays it out to the Scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23 (whole chapter):

        23 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
        2 Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat:
        3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
        4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
        5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
        6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
        7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
        8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
        9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
        10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
        11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
        12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
        13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
        14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
        15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
        16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
        17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
        18 And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty.
        19 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?
        20 Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon.
        21 And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein.
        22 And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.
        23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
        24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
        25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
        26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
        27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.
        28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
        29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
        30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
        31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
        32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
        33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
        34 Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
        35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
        36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
        37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
        38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
        39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

        Would that we Christians could walk the walk as well as we talk the talk.
        May GOD forgive us for our failures, and guide and help us in living HIS Will and HIS Way. Bless you for walking the walk. What you did was indeed a sermon for the day.

        Liked by 6 people

  5. Magnificent story Daughnworks, I seriously could read your book when you publish it (it’s like the Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood meets Steel Magnolias 🙂 )…..did NOT expect the pew showdown, but I LOVED it. Way to stick up for sometime in need and reset the tone. Not just about setting an example in theory, but in action as well.

    (and a hearty hug for your wonderful news of the expected bundle of joy on its way! )

    Liked by 12 people

    1. Oh, we’re definitely Ya-Ya’s. Certified.
      One day, I’ll tell the story about the homecoming queens and the gypsy.
      MA-Kswiss, you know how… it’s okay if someone insults us, we can take it.
      But when someone insults someone we love, it’s different.
      I swear, I think I would have brawled with her, right there, in the middle of church. I’ve never hit a soul but I really wanted to harm her.
      Not my place to seek justice, however.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Just saw this Daughnworks……yes, when they insult someone you love, or someone defenseless…..suddenly the protection vibe rises a few notches……

        (side note, I LOVED the DS of the YaYA sisterhood books……they were fun, yet intense. Thanks for replying back…and can’t wait to hear the homecoming queens and gypsy story…lol)

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Loved your story DNW. Don’t know why, but it brought to mind a tad of comeuppance for some of the church ladies years ago at my former parish.

    At the Fish Frys, the good ladies of the parish were raffling off their hand made quilt. It was on a display stretcher as people walked into the fish fry.

    The pastor was not totally their favorite, but I found him an excellent priest. The pastor came in with his sidekick German Shepherd. A very well behaved good dog. The dog went up to the quilt, lifted his leg and peed on it. I thought that was the funniest thing ever, and still do. The good church ladies were dumbfounded. I could only think the dog was a good judge of character.

    Liked by 9 people

  7. Oh Daughn!! What a great Story! “Brittany” was one lucky /blessed lady to have you as a champion and friend–Bestie!! Love that your son’s best friend was autistic! Shows you raised a son just like his momma!!

    SOOOOOOOOOO Excited for you about to be GMAMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍
    As someone above just said! Lucky baby😘😉🍾🍾🍾🍾

    Liked by 9 people

  8. I’m sincerely glad things worked out so well for Brittany and her son. At the same time, given your reference to church and our faith, I cannot help but honor the Spirit moving in me to take a BIG risk with you and ask….

    What happened with your sister, the one you knew so well who abused Brittany’s son?

    Not to sound like a jackass….and at risk of sounding like a jackass….God’s Word is VERY clear on how to handle such matters.

    “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”
    Matthew 18:15-17

    You had a duty to Brittany and her son, but you also had a duty to your sister who was in the wrong. You’ve only told part of the story, and from what you said I cannot help but infer that you engendered a lot of resentment for the public shaming you forced her into. And perhaps not just her, but her family as well.

    How did your relationship with your sister who was wrong turn out, and, more importantly, her relationship with God?

    If you saved the boy but lost your sister, when you could have saved both, well….it’s not such a happy ending, and you aren’t so righteous. Nor am I, let me quickly add!! Nor am I, I repeat for emphasis.

    We are all beggars before the Lord.

    I mention this, sister, because such subterfuge and subtleties is precisely how Satan ensnares us. We think we do right, only to realize later on that we allowed ourselves to be trapped. After all….

    “The path to hell is paved with good intentions.”

    That part re: the boy and his mother is wonderful, but the truly important part….in Christ’s eyes…..was your adult sister who was abusing the boy. How did you make things right between yourselves, and between her and the Lord?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Sometimes God allows us to do some humbling and ego deflation for Him.

      My guess the biotch did some soul searching and her family was cheering on DNW. It was the word to the unwise. She probably changed her hoity-toity ways after her ego healed. If not, then she got a good deserved second kick in the pants from someone else.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. I could tell you a similar tale not too very different from this one, where I was in Daughn’s shoes, and the one it turned out God needed to humble really wasn’t just the other person but myself as well!

        Thing is, I didn’t see that for a very long time, and the “good works” I thought I had done wasn’t actually in service to a God but rather my own ego. Turns out I fooled myself for a long time on that point.

        And this is why I ask.

        Tell me about a time when you were righteous and I’m “meh”. But tell me about a time when you thought you acted righteously and learned different…well, then I might actually learn something useful.

        As it stands, I hear Daughn’s tale as one who devised a way to publicly shame someone else while looking righteous in the eyes of others inside of the Lord’s house. Daughn said not one word about praying to God about how to handle this, or seeking her pastor’s guidance and help. This is what she said….

        “We hit our back kitchen door at about 120mph, and lit cigarettes in the kitchen, blowing smoke up the vent. We drank iced tea and fixed her makeup. By the time we were done smoking, she was laughing. We were bonded. She became a girlfriend in those 15 minutes. We hatched a plan.”

        As far as I can tell, God had no part in her plan, and yet her story takes place inside the church.

        Since Daughn posted the story unbidden, I want to know how God was a part of her plan, and how she saved not only her relationship with her wayward sister, but served God (not her ego) in the process. The tale is only half told, and I’d like to know the rest.

        I don’t think that’s too much to ask, given that this story trades on CHRISTIAN good works in the house of the Lord.

        As I’ve said in these pages before…..Pride is the #1 sin, and lead to so much else, including blindness. I know, I have far too much of it myself.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Many times through the years, I learned how wrong I could be about something and wish I didn’t do or say something. God seems to hit me up with correction immediately. He thankfully doesn’t seem to put people in my path who need to be handled in a manner different than my nature.

          The most humbling people can be our own kids. 🙂

          Liked by 5 people

        2. Oh honey, I take that humility pill every day. So many times. I still wrong on a daily basis and I still try to learn something on a daily basis.
          In this case, it was obvious. GOD gave me those tools.
          I needed to comfort a stranger, which I did. She had no support system in town and was overwhelmed with three young children and a husband who traveled often. It was instinct to care about her and her son. The mean woman had to be confronted, which I did. I done completely in private, she would have ignored it. As I chose to do it, she had to explain—- something. Otherwise, in good conscious, I could not stand while she taught the class again.
          Right?
          She did the right thing at the moment. Apologized and told he deacons what happened. It was a little scandal but fixed.
          If I had false pride, I would have sucked up to the other older ladies and let the younger woman languish.
          I just……. couldn’t let it pass.
          If it hadn’t worked, I would have respected Britt’s decision to leave the church and it would have been a loss for all of us. It worked. Life is not easy. It’s bumpy. It worked.

          Liked by 4 people

          1. No, you couldn’t let it pass, nor should you have. That was not in question. Thank you, sincerely, for the reply. I’m no one’s saint, that’s for sure.

            Liked by 2 people

        3. Daughn had the hand of God, “divine intervention” to handle this person in the only way she would understand. Have you considered other parishioners, who may have been and probably were treated with the same vile as this little boy? They too were vindicated. Pride has it’s place, the number one sin but not in this case. God Bless Daughn who defends the ones who need it most, children.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. In the end, it was an easy fix. We had another church member who was a special ed teacher for the elementary school. She took that particular class, with a helper if something occurred. It wasn’t a hard solution.

            Liked by 3 people

    2. Actually, that’s what she did. It was “kept between us” in whispered tones. She apologized to Britt, and told the deacons. Two teachers were put into that class and within a year, they transferred to a metro church. She was revealed. And she’s always been “too big” for a small town.
      Our families are still close. I adored her mother/father-in law and her husband. It would be impossible to ignore each other in such a small town. Her son came to my son’s birthday parties and vice versa. Her eldest vandalized my husband’s work vehicles, and that was another confrontation. Her daughter was a brilliant young girl, that used to work for me. The mother always had a horrible attitude though and in the end, it shaded her children.
      When her youngest and my son were in boy scouts together, over a decade later, her son was in my son’s ‘face’ about an award he received. Some kind of Order of the Arrow, and Gunner was selected. Her son was upset about it, and at some point, Gunner had all he could take and cold-cocked her son. He went out like a light. Of course, the award was stripped from Gunner….., but he still claims it was worth every minute.
      The scout master, husband of a girlfriend, still tells the story and howls with laughter.
      He did deserve it.
      Another 5yrs later, both children were selected to attend our states Math and Science school.
      Think about it, 125 kids in the whole state and those two were chosen.
      Gunner stole his girlfriend…..

      Liked by 5 people

  9. Another quick church story. The good ladies of the parish were always putting the bite on us younger ones to make or bake for this or that. Well, us young ones had our hands full with kids and struggling to keep our parochial school open, PTA, and what not plus sending a dish over for every funeral.

    I had finally had enough. I had to make a gelatin dish for some organization in which I didn’t even belong. Plus, I don’t DO gelatins.

    But, okay, I made a gelatin gazpacho or aspic. Whatever I named it. Finely chopped raw vegies, unflavored gelatin, a short can of V-8, and because it wasn’t sickening looking enough, I added very finely chopped cauliflower. Perfect. It looked like barf suspended in gelatin.

    I made a grand presentation of it with cruets of white vinegar and seasoned white vinegar aside the silver plattered gelatin. I delivered it and left.

    Funny, they never asked me to make anything again.

    Liked by 8 people

    1. Plain Jane that is so funny..:)

      The church I attended was preparing for their annual dinner and the chef was an owner of an establishment for the rich and famous in own.

      I volunteered to help and they put me cleaning the dining hall and help set up tables. While I busy the chef brought in pies and the ladies ask me to help bring things from his car into the kitchen.
      Harold ask me who I was because he had never seen me before. As the day went on I made the mistake to tell the Queen Bee that I volunteer the next day in the kitchen and help cooking. The lady looked at me as nasty as she could muster and said ” you do not volunteer for the kitchen you have to be ask and you will not be ask but we need you to serve the food.”
      As Harold was leaving he looked at me and said loud ” I want you in the kitchen and work across form me.”
      He then whispered “this will kill the old biddies.”

      The next day I came with me Henkel knives and Harold and I made under his direction a wonderful main meal for 200 people. The rest of the woman made salats and cleaned up.
      When my husband came to pick me up the women said “she is in the kitchen Harold and she are talking up a storm about food .”
      Harold and I became friends but died couple of months later. He wanted me to teach him how I make my strudel he loved so much.

      Liked by 4 people

        1. Plain Jane
          “That story deserves a big Bwahahaha. Love it. Righteous church women make me crazy. They got their just desert of comeuppance.”
          ________________________________
          This gets even better. Now I was accepted into the kitchen and all was fine until I went to Seminary then it was ” how dare she get out of the kitchen who does she think she is.”
          Needless to say I go no longer and there is no church in Town I would want to attend. They are close homegrown communities and one will be a intruder for ever.
          So many churches and church leaders lost their ways.

          Liked by 5 people

        1. daughnworks247
          “For a lesson in strudel, I would gladly pay you a visit. What a wonderful story. Thank you.”
          ____________________________________
          To make strudel is easier than one might think.

          I am sick with the flu and in bed the past 5 days. When I feel better I give pointers . The homemade strudel I make has a dough close to noodle dough but needs to sit warm until one can stretch it thin.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. please take care of yourself! I hope you are better soon!
            my mom is a wonderful baker and I learned many of her recipes–but I could never stretch the struedel dough without making holes! She could take a small ball of dough and stretch it to cover a whole table–without any holes! She made apple, potato bacon and cabbage struedels–what kind do you make?

            Like

      1. It can get even better…watching grandpa and grandsons. Holy cow…they just crowd DH. We so far have only 1 granddaughter, but we have a ball together.

        Liked by 3 people

          1. I regret the times I didn’t speak up about the grandkids. I have no regrets about the times I did speak up. Both DILs and our daughter have a good relationship with me. They all know I don’t mince words and normally can understand why I speak what I speak. When they can’t understand right away, eventually they do.

            However, I do bend over backwards to follow their instructions while babysitting.

            We do have 6 living on earth, from age 23 to 4, plus one due in August, God willing. We have 4 that God took back to Himself.

            Liked by 6 people

              1. I will not forget them even though I never “knew” them. Their moms are women of real strength to keep trying.

                It sounds like you have experienced such loss. I am sorry for that. God is good and wise in His ways though.

                Liked by 3 people

  10. Side story:
    Same mean woman was my son’s 2nd grade art teacher. It was his first year of art class and he brought home his first painting for prominent placement on the frig.
    But both sides of the paper were painted.
    “What?”, I said.
    He explained they didn’t have enough paper.
    “What do you mean, you don’t have enough paper?”, I was riled.
    He then explained “some” of the kids didn’t have enough paper – like my kid. Same woman, filled with hate.
    I stopped what I was doing.
    Women like her need to be stopped.
    I called the local plant of the biggest printing company in the world and picked up 25K lbs of paper, it was rejected on the roles – I got it for free – same as she could have done.
    I then went to 3 local hardware stores where we all have commercial accounts, and asked them for their scrap paint. Paint that was mixed up incorrectly. I had over 200 GALLONS of paint.
    I then bought and paid for ever small artists brush they had.
    And they kicked in 5 gallons of mineral spirits to wash out.
    It took 4 trucks to bring it all.
    I marched into the school with all my men, and freight, on dollies. Spoke to the principal, who was a wonderful man, and told him I had been informed the art department —- DIDN’T HAVE ANY DAMN SUPPLIES.
    He grinned – he knew what was going on.
    Instead of calling the bi$ch to the office, he waved me on – “Go ahead and deliver it yourself, I think it will have more of an impact.”
    He followed me, just to see the look on her face.
    He opened the door, and we breezed in. I told her it came to my attention that SOME kids had to paint on both sides of their paper, ruining their pictures – no time to dry.
    She was flabbergasted – but BUSTED, again.
    She has a black heart.
    We loaded so much paper and supplies into her classroom, she barely had room to walk.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Bwahahaha. Hope she had to sling the stacks around with her own muscle. Some people just never learn. Bet she was a self righteous democrat.

      Liked by 3 people

        1. She’s the kind of woman who would never extend a hand, unless she was climbing a social ladder.
          Heaven knows I have tried to be kind to her. Her attitude has not served her well. I thought, maybe, she felt like she did not belong, being an in-law. Tried to befriend her. Nope.
          Her husband is wonderful.

          Liked by 3 people

  11. Great story, Daughn.

    Disappointed to read that Presbyterians do ‘the Peace’ (shaking of hands), too. (Ugh.) A post-Vatican II Catholic practice that has spread to Protestant denoms in the spirit of ecumenism.

    Fellowship belongs before and after church, as in days of yore — the late 20th century.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Agree. I hate shaking hands. Especially if the kid next to you was picking her nose.

      About 5 years ago DH and I just put up our hands in the Hi motion and smile.

      I really want our attention to be on Our Lord, not the neighbor in church. There is time for that after Mass.
      Vatican II malarkey.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. This x1000!

        Thank you, Jane.

        The Peace, oddly enough and for whatever reason, comes exactly at the time we are moving towards contemplating our Lord’s sacrifice on the Cross.

        That should be done in all solemnity, yet our hierarchies — Catholic and Protestant — want mankind to focus on mankind for about ten minutes.

        Better that we give our blessed Lord that amount of attention instead.

        The Peace is entirely wrong and is just one of the many reasons people are leaving the Christian faith. It is instinctively — as well as theologically and scripturally — incorrect.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Beautifully stated Churchmouse. Amen.

          BTW, I love your name. So often I wish I was just a wee mouse during Mass, or just hide behind the pillars just so I could focus only on Him.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. Thank you.

            ‘So often I wish I was just a wee mouse during Mass, or just hide behind the pillars just so I could focus only on Him.’ It is so much better that way, isn’t it?

            I go to the 8 a.m. service at my church. Fewer people, fewer distractions.

            On the walk there and back, I enjoy listening to the birds sing in the calm and silence. It is almost as if the birds are chirping in praise of their Creator. (England is truly blessed in that respect. I’ve never heard such sweet and enthusiastic birds in my life.)

            Liked by 3 people

            1. Sounds wonderful. I miss morning Mass during the weekdays at the monastery. I just cannot get my body to work with me that early in the morning anymore.

              Liked by 3 people

              1. But you no doubt pray at home, watch a televised Mass and/or can get an extraordinary minister to come by with Holy Communion.

                My late grandmother was most grateful for the home Communion from the nun who visited her. Those visits meant so much to her on spiritual and interpersonal levels.

                May God continue to bless you and your family abundantly, Jane.

                Liked by 3 people

              2. Oh we get to Mass for the Sabboth and Holy Days with no problem so far, thank God. It’s just the weekday morning Masses that I can’t seem to make my body co-operate for. We’d have to be out of the house by 6:40 a.m. and walk up a short hill once we parked the car. No can do any more.

                The next closest church has an 8 a.m. and we’d need to leave home by 7:30. Maybe when the weather warms up my limbs will be more co-operative. It seems like my trainer at the gym is helping me a lot with my balance also.
                May Our Lord continue to bless you also Churchmouse.

                Liked by 3 people

    2. churchmous i am a Presbyterian who also likes Catholics and often used to go with a friend to Wednesday noon Mass. The Priest even ask me one time to brig the element forward I declined out of respect.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. There is a close relationship — a solemn respect for the Lord and worship — that Catholics and Presbyterians share.

        No doubt that is why you were asked to bring the elements to the altar. They instinctively knew.

        Not that other Christians aren’t equally respectful, but I have noticed (having read online) that a number of Catholic and Presbyterian converts have gone either way. I think it relates to the emphasis on doctrine.

        I’m an ex-Catholic, now Anglican, but I test Presbyterian on Christian denom quizzes. I enjoy going to the Reformed church when I go to France (near-Presbyterian equivalent). They meet and greet beforehand, and always make sure you have the right liturgical booklet and hymnal.

        There’s no ‘Peace’ stuff with them. They know when to say ‘Bonjour’ and shake hands — and it ISN’T DURING the service.

        Liked by 3 people

  12. There comes a time when we feel compelled to push back against the wrongness which we see.
    It’s like today, in politics.
    I’m no leader, no governor, no Congressman, but in my own little speck of dust community, we should stand, especially for a child.
    There was a huge discussion among leadership of the church. One woman suggested that Britt leave the child at home, because the “child was a problem”. That’s not a good answer. Can’t do it.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. How do you ‘Socialize’ a child if you do not take them out in public???

      And of all places a church should be willing to help and be more forgiving of a child with a long learning curve. I can understand where you might not want the child in the church during SOME services until his social skills are a bit better but SHEESH, at least at the churches I attended there were services where even the tiniest child was welcome. (I distinctly remember getting my rump warmed by my Mom at age 4 for acting up.)

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Growing up with her son had a deep impact on my son. When I least expected it, Gunner was slow and patient with his friend. It stuck. He’s still strongly defensive when it comes to children or adults who have similar problems. Closest thing he had to a brother.

        Liked by 5 people

  13. As a father of an autistic son, I applaud this! The mother needed support like this, thank God she didn’t change Churches, it would have been victory for the “teacher.”

    Nick Anderson

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I also have an autistic son in his early 20’s. How is your son doing? We’re in that weird limbo land after HS but before certain adult services are available. He wants to get a PT job but is Highly Resistant to getting any help from “the system” after having been burned & brutalized for years through/by the school system.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Daughn, well I just cherish your stories. Thank you for sharing them here and congratulations on the good news! Drillerwife has been longing to have a grandchild for a while now, it’s so aggravating. I’m all “no, im not old enough yet!!” 😐 … 😬

    Liked by 3 people

  15. What a timely post. A traditionalist Catholic bishop has written about the issue of what to do with a heretical pope. In the midst of this very long theological treatment, he posits the following:
    “There could be a truly extravagant situation of a pope who practices sexual abuse of minors or subordinates in the Vatican. What should the Church do in such a situation? Should the Church tolerate a Papal sexual predator of minors or subordinates? For how long should the Church tolerate such a pope? Should he lose the papacy ipso facto because of sexual abuse of minors or subordinates? In such a situation there could originate a new canonical or theological theory or opinion of allowing the deposition of a pope and the loss of his office because of monstrous moral crimes (e.g. sexual abuse of minors and subordinates). Such an opinion would be a counterpart of the opinion allowing the deposition of a pope and the loss of his office because of heresy. However, such a new theory or opinion (deposition of a pope and the loss of his office because of sexual crimes) would surely not correspond to the perennial mind and practice of the Church.”

    Here is the full article: https://onepeterfive.com/bishop-athanasisus-schneider-on-the-question-of-a-heretical-pope/

    I am greatly intrigued and troubled by the fact the bishop used the example of a sex-abusing pope. The worldwide trafficking of children has been in the news and churchmen as well as entertainers and of course the Clintons have all been named. I wonder if this bishop was subtly warning us of something?

    Here is an explosive article that touches upon just that subject: https://www.barnhardt.biz/2019/02/26/follow-the-money-natacha-jaitt-spoke-at-length-about-gustavo-vera-being-funded-by-bergoglio-remember-mccarrick-wuerls-papal-foundation-and-the-25-million-bergoglio-demanded-for-the-dermatolog/

    I pray that every last vestige of this filth is exposed and justice is done for the children.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. I do not know if this is a truthful blog, but here are some connected articles on that nasty subject:
        These are from a Twitter thread but I get: Thread author has been suspended on Twitter Luckily I saved the information but unfortunately not the person’s handle.
        ………………

        This article reports the DOZENS of arrests of Pedophiles in the Catholic Church since Trump took Office https://thegoldwater.com/news/22605-Catholic-Priest-in-the-Vatican-Arrested-for-Child-Pornography

        The Priest Arrested Today At The Vatican? He was in Washington DC as a Diplomat. The US State Department Wanted to Charge him for Possession of Child Pornography
        Guess what happened?
        Pope Francis RECALLED TO ROME under “Diplomatic Immunity” to avoid charges
        https://thegoldwater.com/news/8183-Pope-Protects-Pedophile-Priest-with-Diplomatic-Immunity-Recall-to-Prevent-State-Department-Charges

        Catholic Priest in the Vatican Arrested for Child Pornography-
        http://thegoldwater.com/news/4717-Police-Raid-Drug-Fueled-Gay-Orgy-At-Cardinal-s-Apartment

        July of 2017
        Vatican Police raid what’s described as “drug-fueled gay orgy” which occurred at the apt of Secretary to Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, the Head of the Pontifical Council for Legislative texts and a personal adviser to the Pope

        February 2018
        Pedophile Priest in Idaho Arrested with Child Pornography, LSD, Ecstacy
        #PedoGate
        *https://thegoldwater.com/news/17910-Pedophile-Idaho-Catholic-Priest-Busted-with-Child-Porn-Ecstacy-and-LSD

        November of 2017:
        In the Bronx 96-Year-Old Monsignor Harry J. Byrne not only possessed child pornography but would take them to other Priests to share the disturbing images and videos of children being raped.
        *http://www.thegoldwater.com/news/10885-96-year-old-Catholic-Priest-in-the-Bronx-Indicted-for-Child-Pornography-Shared-with-Priests

        September of 2017,
        A pedophile Priest in Baltimore,61-year-old Fernando Cristancho was arrested after law enforcement agencies said that he not only sexually assaulted children but filmed the rapes to produce child pornography.
        *https://thegoldwater.com/news/8802-Baltimore-Priest-Charged-with-Making-Child-Porn-with-Young-Boys

        August of 2017
        A pedophile Priest in New Jersey was arrested for the possession of child pornography, at which time 55-year-old Kevin Gugliotta told police that he possessed child pornography “because he was angry at God for his poker losses”
        *https://thegoldwater.com/news/7155-NJ-Pedophile-Priest-Claims-he-Collected-Child-Porn-as-Revenge-on-God-for-Poker-Losses

        August of 2017
         Bishop Thomas O’Brien was accused of molesting an underage boy in Arizona.
        *https://thegoldwater.com/news/6108-Another-Catholic-Pedophile-Bishop-O-Brien-Charged-With-Molesting-Underage-Boy

        July of 2017
        A high-ranking Catholic in Germany,70-year-old Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller was found guilty of sexually abusing numerous children
        *https://thegoldwater.com/news/4617-German-Cardinal-Guilty-of-Sex-Abuse-Removed-by-the-Pope

        June of 2017
        A pedophile Catholic in the United Kingdom, Bishop Peter Ball, raises enormous controversy after it was discovered that the convicted child rapist was protected for years by the Church of England. *http://thegoldwater.com/news/4121-Pedophile-Bishop-Protected-by-the-Church-of-England

        June of 2017
         Father Jose Ataulfo Garcia Rapes 30 Children and WALKS AWAY FREE without any charges
        Vatican has ALWAYS had powerful influence in Latin America / South America
        *http://thegoldwater.com/news/4933-No-Charges-After-Catholic-Priest-w-HIV-Rapes-30-Children-Vatican-Forgives-Him

        July of 2017
        The Goldwater also reported an incident where m 574 young boys were molested at a Catholic Choir Camp in Germany, marking one of the single largest sexual assault cases in terms of victims to date.
        *http://thegoldwater.com/news/5324-547-Children-Molested-At-Catholic-Choir-Camp

        In #Michigan Last Summer-Priests Are Even Raping Other Catholic Priests
        A Priest Faced Charges For Raping Another Priest in a Homosexual Sexual Predator Case
        Walked Free
        *http://thegoldwater.com/news/5475-Hallmarks-Black-Priest-on-Priest-Homosexual-Rape

        WORST OF ALL The Vatican Refuses to Pay 700 Child Rape Victims
        Vatican Said the KIDS “CONSENTED” to the Sexual Assault
        https://thegoldwater.com/news/6954-Catholic-Church-Refuses-to-Pay-700-Child-Sex-Victims-Claims-They-Consented

        Last Winter we found out that the Vatican Continues to Pay CONVICTED RAPISTS AND PEDOPHILE PRIESTS benefits for LIFE
        http://thegoldwater.com/news/9478-Why-Are-Convicted-Pedophile-Priests-Still-Receiving-Life-Long-Benefits-from-the-Vatican

        Liked by 3 people

    1. GMT, thanks for posting this information. I’ve read the articles in the links…used to follow Barnhardt and haven’t read any of her posts in quite some time…it does seem the Bishop is preparing people to consider possibilities bringing forth history as a base.

      Kevin Annett has done tremendous work beginning as a pastor in the United Church of Canada and went on to establish International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State (ITCCS) in 2010. I saw a recent interview where he told about their website being taken down which is happening to many groups today with the “wrong” information available. Below is a documentary with interviews of Aboriginal People telling their stories that just a few years ago would have been hard to believe coming from people telling stories of other people…there is no doubt these people are speaking truth…

      Liked by 1 person

  16. I am breaking an old OT rule: I confess to having NOT read the entire thread.

    Although cradle Catholic, I KNOW that Presbyterian/Reformed “our pew” thing. And I have direct experience, although not as severe, of a child (MINE!!!) being abused by a “Christian” teacher in a [so-called] Christian school.

    We took him out after learning he was being denied LUNCH for not finishing something or other on time. This is an off the charts intelligence measurement child. Think he was BORED by the (can’t say the words)? They were trying to “learn him” at the tender age of grade 1 (promised us he would be in an upper grade reading class since he could read circles around his so called age group). And we were paying for this “service.” And they LIED.

    He never went back to school. Was educated from home through “high school”, eventually enrolled in an arts school on his own, then we fought the system in order not to have him produce a GED when he wanted to go to a prestigious College of the Arts…Worked his tail off and graduated with a BA honors from that liberal arts place…and received multiple employment offers…one of the few who did in his graduating class…back some years ago.

    End of rant.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. PS Paved the way for his brother, who never had to endure that horrible system, but, again, enrolled in university class(es) when he wanted to, at age 16…and became so frustrated. “Mama, these people are STUPID! I know more than the professors!”

      Liked by 5 people

    2. Roberta, you’re my kind of mom!
      Not every kid fits a cookie cutter. Have to adjust.
      Don’t you wish kids came with a manual? A reference guide?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The first born sure never comes with instructions…at least if one is thousands of miles from one’s own parents & god parents. Or if one comes from a somewhat to “normally” dysfunctional family!

        Like

  17. Daughn

    This was a wonderful post…. I don’t know why, but something came to mind from way back.

    Maybe it is wrong to have a favorite, but this is what I thought about you…

    Blessed are the peacemakers,
    for they shall be called children of God.

    👍🤗

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I so love your stories!!
    Congratulations!! I adore being a grandmother! My granddaughter is the child of a teacher–so she is surrounded by “educational toys” galore–except when she comes to visit us. we are creative together–we draw and paint, we pretend, we giggle and even made up our own language. We throw on music and dance like nobody’s looking–cuz out here in the woods no one is…

    Liked by 1 person

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