Have you ever left a church over pa?

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 1:41pm
CVRTBB's picture
Joined: 11/23/2001 - 09:00

WARNING: Looooong Rant!

We started going to a new church this summer after leaving one that my pa son had numerous reactions (some anaphalactic) at, we had been members for over 6 years.

When we first started going to this new church I thought things were going to be great... they already had 2 children going there who had a peanut allergy and 1 of them had a milk allergy. Didn't take long for my bubble to burst [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/frown.gif[/img] I have NEVER been to a church that is so food oriented in my life! The last Sunday of every month is a church supper and any day in between that they can find an excuse to have one. After the first two having first a HUGE can of mixed nuts then a peanut butter pie I decided we'd just skip all the dinners. Of course my kids were devestated not to be included in the fun but I made up for it by getting pizza on the way home each time it happened. Last Sunday morning was the last straw!! The children's church teacher made no bake cookies and was about to add peanuts to it when the kids reminded her of the allergy... so does she put them away? NO, she divides it in half and puts them in half. Then tells the kids its ok for them to eat the ones that don't have them. I was FURIOUS with her and with my kids for taking her word for it! She told them that the other ingredients were ok for them to eat. UGHHHH! I'm sure she never checked a label on the chocolate or anything else she used! Not to mention cross contamination issues! When I tried to talk to the Pastor's wife about it she got really defensive and told me to talk to the teacher. I have several times, but it doesn't seem to matter.

So, I guess I'm done with church. I've soooo had it with people who call themselves Christians but don't act like it! I'm tired of fighting for my kids lives. I guess I'm just plain tired. I fought to be able to go to church when I was a kid. I rode a bus to Sunday School 2 hours each way to be able to go. (We lived way out in the country and were the first ones picked up and the last ones dropped off.)

Sorry to rant, I'm just so tired of fighting! I've been homeschooling my children this year because they had always gone to the christian school at our former church. When we left the church I lost my teaching job and my kids tuition... so needless to say I was really wanting this new church to work out. It's just not worth putting my children in constant danger. Two of them came home with itchy, burning eyes and mouth last night... that was the last straw. Residue must be all over the fellowship hall where the kids were and the plates were still in the trash in one of the classrooms from sunday.

Sorry to go on and on, I'm just not knowing what to do and so frustrated.

Take Care

[This message has been edited by CVRTBB (edited September 29, 2006).]

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 2:02pm
PA-Mom's picture
Joined: 09/18/2006 - 09:00

I have not had to leave church because of peanuts. I do know that at our church kids bring snack often & I'm always on the lookout for peanuts but have not seen any yet. I did have a similar situation as a volunteer for bible camp. I TALKED with the director about it. She said she would take care of everything. The first night already they have "may contains" for the snack. In the future I will not only talk to the director but send her some information/facts so they can be better educated.
If you are looking for a new churuch perhaps you could talk to the pastor first and even give some educational information. If that does not work maybe get together with a group of people in your neighborhood for bible study or prayer group?

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 2:07pm
joeybeth's picture
Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

yes. i have left a church before due to peanut allergy issues. there is too much food and too much of it being pushed on the kids. people say they "get it" but they really don't. i have found church to be much worse than school and other settings. not sure why, but i have found that to be the case. the last time we went to church (more than a few years ago), my then 7 yr old PA daughter had to physically keep adults from putting reeses pb cups in her 5 yr old PA sister's mouth. literally. and this happened AFTER many discussions about their PA. i found that there were just too many variables to attempt to control in a church environment. for example, even IF the sunday school teacher for the day understood PA and our issues and needs, older kids from the jr. high or high school classes might pop in with a candy surprise for all the little ones or a game might be played in which candy was the reward and whoever supplied the candy that morning was unaware of the PA problems within the group. i just got tired of fighting it and worrying about my girls and i really don't miss church at all, sad to say. i also found there were a lot of homebaked goods and things like doughnuts and other bakery items in practically every room and every setting in church. not for me and mine, thanks.

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 2:42pm
StephR's picture
Joined: 02/03/2003 - 09:00

I never realized how good our church is about allergies (in comparison) until reading this. There is a 'No Nut' policy in the church with very large signs on all of the childrens classroom doors as reminders. This is a very large church and they have ha many PA kids. They even have signs in kids classrooms reminding classroom workers of what to look for in case of an allergic reaction.

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 2:44pm
CVRTBB's picture
Joined: 11/23/2001 - 09:00

Wow, you are really fortunate! That's wonderful!

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 10:45pm
Christabelle's picture
Joined: 10/03/2004 - 09:00

I get the most blank looks and dull eyes when I speak about the allergy at Church.

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 10:53pm
stephi13339's picture
Joined: 03/09/2006 - 09:00

We go to a small church in our small town. My DH and I have been going for years now, he's the former youth pastor and now an elder. After her PA dx we noticed that she was getting contact rxns at church. In fact, one time someone brought a jar of PB to a soup and sandwich luncheon. We didn't even want to go back, thinking about all the peanut residue everywhere.
So, the next Sunday I went to church a few hours early and CLEANED EVERYTHING. I mean, EVERYTHING. There were people there, workers, teachers, pastors- and they noticed my "strange" behavior. Cleaning all the toys, all the little nooks and crannies. So, I explained to them about peanut residue and possible reactions. I then asked the pastor if we could make the church nut-free. He totally agreed, even did some research on his own. The pastor and my DH made a speech, we put up signs, I spoke with the nursery workers etc..
When they have a luncheon , I make sure to remind the person making the announcement to mention the PA. So far, everyone's been good. (not that we would eat the food anyway) The treats handed out so far have all been safe.
Since then she's had a few contact? reactions. I think VBS with all the new kids in there- messy hands KWIM? Well, if we are at church and we notice a hive- WE LEAVE. It means that peanut residue is somewhere, she could put her hands in her mouth, you can't see the residue. just too many variables that we can't control, so we're outta there.
We don't try and hide it either. I mean, we couldn't anyway. Its pretty obvious when it happens. I'm obsessively checking her to see if anymore hives are popping up. DH and I are "whispering" back and forth to each other.. its probably a funny scene.
I think that's key- being up front and honest about whats dangerous to her. Speak to your pastor honestly, tell him what needs to be fixed, what he (or someone else) needs to be on top of. And that you're willing to leave over this. Maybe there needs to be a "special" meeting of all the workers.
This is so sad for you. I understand. When that person brought the jar of PB, and all the kids were eating it- I felt so betrayed! When she had her first rxn, I was at a church cookie swap and had to rush out. Everyone had heard our prayers and fear about her allergy. I thought they understood. I was sooooooooo upset and ready to leave. But Dh wanted to give it one more try. So we did, and it workerd out [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
If you're giving it your all, and they just don't get it- then what can you do? Its not your fault, you can't force them. Just know that there are kind people out there that will overrule the ignorant ones, that will stun you with their generousity. Keep looking and don't give up [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
BTW- where are you located?

Posted on: Thu, 09/28/2006 - 10:59pm
lalow's picture
Joined: 03/24/2004 - 09:00

our church is not peanut or nut free that is for sure but i havnt found it to be to much of an issue. to my knowledge there are not peanut or nut products in the classrooms my son is in. there are may contains but i put a sign up about what he can have and bring snacks for them and stick around when necessary. because ds is allergic to milk too i dont let him eat anything at the cookouts basically. our associate pastor is allergic to peanuts but that doesnt seem to stop people from bringing them. they have stopped bringing snacks with peanuts to choir which is a very nice thing (they have snacks for the kids while they are waiting cause it is right after school). i stay with my son much of the time and remind people constantly that he has his own snack. i dont let him go to the childrens church with the older kids cause the teenagers teach it and they bring stuff with peanut butter sometimes or the other week they made birdfeeders. he doesnt go in that room either. in the next few years until he is old enough i will educate so hopefully it wont be a problem. the church has accomidated for kids in the past. i guess their was a girl that was anaphalactic to milk so i know they can do it. there are 3 kids with peanut allergies but i seem to be the most vocal. i never really hear the others even mention it to the teachers. i think i would go speak to the pastor and just explain that you want to continue to go to chuch and participate in activities but you cant if your childrens lives are in danger and ask for help. i agree that food seems to be a central theme in church. donuts, donuts, donuts.
James 4 yrs, NKA
Ben 3 yrs, PA and MA and SA

Posted on: Fri, 09/29/2006 - 1:38am
kjtran1's picture
Joined: 09/27/2006 - 09:00

OMG! Literally! I have been there done that in the school system, but I never heard about it in churches. That is just awful. Its truly sad, that they focus all around food. they just don't get it. I think we each need to find our own spirituality and find peace...but its hard to be sitting in a pew praying...while your kids are being fed peanuts. I agree with the other post, find another church, talk with them up front. Although, there is the possbility they won't be christian like and treat PA kids like lepers. Take care!

Posted on: Fri, 09/29/2006 - 4:12am
Chicago's picture
Joined: 04/21/2001 - 09:00

DD is older now - so not a problem - but I never understood why the kids could not make it thru a 40 min. Sunday school lesson W/O A Snack!
Wonder why Americans in general are overweight?

Posted on: Fri, 09/29/2006 - 5:28am
SallyL's picture
Joined: 02/20/2006 - 09:00

My church is like StephR's. Just great. Can't say enough about them.
Don't give up yet - there are great churches out there. Pretty upsetting though hearing about how unsafe other churches are. Of course though - that goes for anywhere...not just churches.



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