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YOU WILL DEAL: Pastor Desiree Allen Will NOT Be Run Out The Pulpit For Being Pregnant & Unwed

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Pastor Desiree Allen leads a church, she’s pregnant and…she’s not married. Taboo? Some would say. But, she’s not going to let “THE church” run her out of the pulpit. Find out why inside…

When it comes to unmarried pregnant women in the church, it’s almost like the congregation loses its collective mind. The judgment when it comes to “certain” -- and by certain we mean public, because we all know everybody everywhere is a sinner.  Some more than others....mmhmm.

So, imagine what the “holy rollers” thought when Pastor Desiree Allen, who leads the highly attended First Corinthian Baptist Church in NYC as the Pastor of Arts & Spiritual Formation, revealed she was pregnant…and unwed.

There’s a double standard when it comes to sex outside of marriage. Male pastors can get a woman pregnant -- even if he's married and has children outside his marriage -- and still preach in the pulpit on Sunday mornings as if everything is perfect. But when it comes to a woman, they are often looked down upon and shamed for having sex outside of marriage.

Despite what anyone says, Pastor Allen, who’s engaged, says she will not be shunned out of the pulpit. She’s embracing the gift she has been given whether you like it or not.

In a post on her personal website Not Cinderella, she says:

“After the initial shock was joy. Yet, underneath something else was lingering. Anger? No. Disappointment? No. It was pure and utter dread. Not at being pregnant. Not at whether or not I would be a good mother. What had my stomach turning, other than nausea, was me being pregnant AND a pastor. Let’s face it. The church has not had a good track record of accepting unmarried women who got pregnant. If you’ve been in church for any period of time you’ve heard or witnessed the aftermath. Shunning, slut shaming, being sat down from your position, having to go up in front of the church and confess your sin, etc. etc. No one can be naïve enough to say this type of stuff doesn’t happen in church. An ugly truth is people in church leadership have sex outside of marriage, affairs, do drugs, drink, so on and so forth. Generally, these are not considered acceptable acts. BUT I have seen many churches turn a blind eye to this behavior, because it can be hidden. Don’t ask. Don’t tell. To be pregnant is a very visible indication of a private act and for some reason provides people with more of a need to respond.”

 

Pastor Allen came to the realization that she will NOT carry other people’s opinions on her shoulders and that she will not let others make her feel ashamed for something she was excited about.

“I realized I had some baggage and I wanted to deal with this pregnancy on my own terms regardless of how people felt or responded. In those first few months I decided I couldn’t carry the weight of others’ opinions and judgments including my own. I also had to confront the ways in which I judged others based on their decisions and actions. I decided I was going to walk with my head held high, because I was proud and excited to be pregnant.”

She added,

“Well, I wasn’t sorry or ashamed. Shame and happiness cannot reside in the same place. I decided to only surround myself with those who had positive energy. I knew there would be rough days, but I also knew the good would outweigh the bad. So when the first comment was made about my pregnancy being an abomination I wasn’t bothered, because it wasn’t MY truth. Plus who uses abomination anyway? Can we say antiquated?”

She talked about how she witnessed so many women get shunned from the church for being pregnant and unmarried and wondered, if they had support from the very place one SHOULD get support, how much of a difference it would have made.

“I had a choice on how to define my own happy and write my own story. I thought about the women who were belittled in their churches for being pregnant. The women who felt abortion was a better option than humiliation. The girl or young women of a pastor forced into abortion, because the family couldn’t handle the shame. The woman who left the church permanently because the members couldn’t accept her child. The woman who watched the same people who loved her each Sunday avoid her like a plague. The woman who would give up everything to be pregnant regardless of the circumstances and still finds her womb bare. So many women who may have made a different choice if they understood the power they had. If someone had told them, it was ok to make the best choice for them ignoring the outside voices. It would get better. They could outlive this. I understood what some people thought, what some scriptures said, but also the validity of my own experience.”

Pastor Allen shares she decided to reveal her pregnancy to her church staff when she was three months along, and surprisingly, they showered her with support. She says after sharing the news she felt empowered and free to enjoy her pregnancy.

 

Now, she says she’s not going anywhere. She’s going preach in that pulpit until she can “no longer waddle on the stage.”

She concluded,

"So no, I cannot carry your weight about MY situation. Whoever you are. I have my own beautiful, amazing and miraculous weight to carry for the next few months and a lifetime."

Well good for her! What are your thoughts on a pregnant, unwed woman preaching in the pulpit? Speak on it in the comments!

Photo: @TVodounou
 

 


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