Need advice. Got a problem with a Sister in Christ.

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Jkdbuck76, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. Jkdbuck76

    Jkdbuck76
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    Hello. This is a long read, but I need your help.

    I need some advice on a situation that happened last thursday.
    Here's the background:
    1) my wife is very VERY allergic to live flowers. They cause her throat to close.
    2) two or three years ago, we asked that people please NOT bring live
    flowers into the church because of her allergies.
    3) the people complied (which was a surprise).
    4) if anyone negligently put flowers in the church, the pastor would discuss
    the situation with them and then he'd kindly remove them for us.
    5) this has never caused any problems that I know of.
    6) the woman in charge of the decorating also understood this and has complied
    with our requests.

    Here's the problem:
    7) the woman in charge of decorating decided to put live flowers in the church
    on Maundy Thursday, just before we celebrated communion.
    8) my wife had an allergic reaction, but thankfully with the use of some meds
    we stoppped it. She still broke out in hives all over, had breathing trouble. The
    meds kept her up all nite.
    9) my wife called the woman while I was sitting there and really got very loud with
    her. No name-calling. No cursing. She just let her know in very uncertain terms
    that she did NOT appreciate her purposefully setting flowers in there.
    10) decorating lady wanted to argue about it and was very proud to tell my wife
    that she made the decision herself to put flowers in the church.
    11) my wife explained to her that live flowers expell pollen, the A/C picks it up and
    spreads it all over the sanctuary....the point being that "sitting in the back pew"
    won't save her.
    12) my wife hung up on her.
    13) decorating lady left 2 voicemails. one saying that she didn't think my wife was
    very Christian-like in the way she spoke to her. The other that the flowers were
    removed and that she'd hate to see my wife miss church on Easter.
    14) the Pastor spoke to her. According to the Pastor,while she says she is sorry,
    she thinks that she did nothing wrong. The reason she put them there was so that
    if the Pastor had removed them, she and her husband would leave the church and
    go someplace else. She wanted to cause an incident where the Pastor had to choose
    between "the young people" (my wife and I) or "the old people".
    15) So if what the Pastor says is true, then this lady has a grudge against the Pastor,
    wants to fabricate some type of "blow up" incident which allows her and her husband
    to leave...and she doesn't care if she hurts my wife in the process.

    16) Her husband, like myself, is a deacon.
    17) The more and more I think about this thing, her lack of acknowledging any
    wrong-doing, her grudge against the Pastor (and to some extent, my growing grudge
    against her), more fed up and angry I get. I mean, who is SHE to endanger my wife
    because of some kind of power trip/grudge?

    What do I do? If she'll do this, there's no telling what else she'll do.
    Help!
     
  2. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
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    If I were you I would let the pastor handle it. And if I were the pastor, I would tell her not to let the door hit her in the fanny on the way out.

    But since I am neither I will pray that this lady comes to her God-given senses and if not that she will leave quietly.

    Quite frankly what she did was tantamount to attempted murder.
     
  3. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    First off, let me say WOW!

    You were able for 3 years to not have live flowers in the church. Our church, you can't get people to not wear perfume for 1 short hour! Think about it.

    You have the understanding and caring of an entire church for all this time, yet one incident occurs and you are very upset. Yes, I understand you believe the dec. lady to have done this purposely. But still, when was the last time you all told her (and the rest of the congregation) how much you appreciate them for caring in this matter?

    I'm going to tell, most people do NOT understand the difference between dealing with flowers indoors and dealing with them outdoors. Your decorating lady, who most likely has an issue more with your pastor than you, probably can't comprehend why you wife would have this severe reaction from a flower arrangement but not from walking outdoors. What I'm trying to say by this, is that she probably didn't realize just how personal an issue this is for you. Her problem seems to lie elsewhere and this was just a little test to help her decide what to do about it. Your wife, while reasonably upset, probably caught her offguard. Now what was supposed to be a simple little act to get what she thought would be a minor reaction from your pastor, has blown up into a mountain in front of her.

    You'd think, she'd just apologize to you and be done. That she has not may simply mean she doesn't understand why this is such a big deal for you. And all this is getting in the way of, and confused with, whatever the original problem was in the beginning.

    Personally, I'd deal with it very gently. Perhaps, writing a thank you letter of sorts, or getting up on Sunday night and thanking the congregation for their support over the year while including the information on your wife's condition (surely you have new members who don't know this) and explaining what happened to her the day live flowers were in the santuary and expressing that you realize it wasn't done purposly would go a long way toward settling this, without ruffling more feathers. Perhaps your pastor could say a word or two as well about how he was busy and didn't notice or some such thing.

    And then let it go. Be done. Make it your business to go into the santuary on Sunday's and check for live flowers before your wife comes in. That way you can be seen as taking responsibility for her health and aren't just leaving it up to everyone else.
     
  4. guitarpreacher

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    If your wife's allergies are that bad, how does she walk through the flower beds that are part of everyone's landscape - malls, restaurants, homes, grocery stores? Almost every grocery store in our area sells live flowers. How does she walk from your house to the car, or anywhere else for that matter?

    Not trying to start anything, just asking.
     
  5. Jkdbuck76

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    We have to avoid those places. Walk all the way around them. It takes lots and lots of pre-planning. If a place is too filled up, we don't go. If people smoke there, we don't go. When your allergies are as bad as hers, then you have to live a life of avoidance.

    Flower beds? No. She cannot go near them. That's why when she goes into a store, she has to pick the right door. Sounds silly, but in reality, it is a very scary thing. She lives a very unique life. Her allergy doctor has been at it for 20 years now and she has only seen one other person as bad as she is.....which puts her way at the end of the bell curve.
     
    #5 Jkdbuck76, Mar 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2008
  6. tinytim

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    First of all, ask yourself how you and your wife can glorify God in all of this...

    Think of a way to serve this lady in a way she has never seen, and then think of a way you can serve God through this in a way you have never done...

    This may be a growing point for your family.

    Then make sure you are not holding anger or a grudge... If there is something you need to ask forgiveness for, make sure you do...

    Then Go to the lady.. gently. Ask her and her husband out to dinner with you and your wife. And let them know how you feel.

    Don't be accusatory.. IOWS, instead of saying, "You did this" "you shouldn't have" use phrases like, "when this happened, it made US feel"
    Or "when you put those flowers in there, it made us think you didn't like us"

    Then be reconciled, and let it go.

    It sounds as if the Pastor needs to worry more about this woman than you do.

    But by showing her truth in love, you may help restore even that relationship.
     
  7. donnA

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    This is something the pastor should have handled from the beginning, since it happened in the church. The woman needs to be removed from her decorating posistion, since she abused it so. Calling the woman and getting loud solves nothing, and makes the problem worse.
     
  8. webdog

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    ...first find out what she is allergic to :D
     
  9. Revmitchell

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    Regardless of why she did it and how it effected you and your wife you need to remove yourself from the conflict between this woman and the Pastor. Forgive her and require no resolution between you and this woman. There will be plenty of conflict between her and the Pastor. When to many people feel a need to add their hurt and unjustices to the mix it splits churches. (not that you would do this) Pray for the spirit of division in the church.

    God Bless
     
  10. Joe

    Joe
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    Hello Brother

    Your wife can die from flowers and you are surprised people in your church would refrain from going out of their way to bring something that which would cause her death?? Hmmmm..... does that make sense to you?

    So the woman in charge of decorating fully knew that going out her way to personally bring flowers, or allowing others to, could cause your wife's death. This is fact.

    Wow, that's serious. I am glad she pulled through it

    This is nuts. Your wife calls a lady who attempted to murder her and tells her something "under no uncertain terms". And you let her call this woman? You're both loosing it imo

    Is there some reason why this incident wasn't reported to the authorities? You need to do so, insist upon a police report. This incident needs to be on record, it could happen again. What happens if she decides to crush up penicillin and put it in someone's glass she knows is deathly allergic to this during a church potluck?

    She was very proud to take credit for attempting to kill your wife, lovely.
    Obviously, she's a psychopath....Pray for her.

    She shouldn't have been egging this woman on by speaking with her at all. Lock your doors.
    LOL yeah and attempted murder is one of the fruits of the spirit :laugh:

    She tries to kill her...then she's worried her victim may miss church on Easter? Don't tell me, she only brought one bunch of flowers instead of three bunches to get your wife to cause her to become ill, but not quite to the point of death because she is concerned she may miss church on easter? What's the plan after Easter services, to finish her off?
    Lock your doors

    Brave Man

    I hope your Pastor had a few witnesses who heard this. It needs to be reported to the authorities.
    The Pastor needs to lock his doors. This is nuts.
    Scary.....he needs to change the locks in his house immediately. Find him a nice woman.

    Let the Pastor deal with the grudge, that's not your problem. Anger never helped anyone, you have a potentially dangerous situation. You need to report this, as does your Pastor. He is responsible for the we---being of his church members. He must insist this Deacon step down immediately. NO IF'S AND'S OR BUT's. If this Deacon doesn't offer to step down, he is selfish to endanger the lives of other church members. This is not normal behavior, and it could escalate.
    You hit the nail on the head. If your Pastor doesn't take care of his church member's well being, find another church. He has an obligation to report this to the authorities as you do, and to insist the Deacon not only step down, but he is to be ex-communicated for the safety of the rest of the congregation.
    This Deacon's wife just may be some kinda retard, not fully understanding what she was doing, I am not sure. Either way, something must be done, it must be reported. This Deacon has his hands full with her.

    I am not totally convinced this is all about "built up anger against your Pastor", and your wife just happened to be caught in the middle, thus made the victim. That's bizarre, but it could certainly be true.
    Woman who attempt to murder other woman around here, well it's usually a crime of passion.
    Only you know whether your wife is "appealing" to men in general. With all due respect, if your wife hit on this decorating ladies husband, whom is also a Deacon in your church, then she got what she deserved. But that's probably not the case. No need to comment on this part, just report it to the authorities and ensure your Pastor does the same.

    We have some kids in our church allergic to peanut butter. Similar situation to your wife's. One child's throat closes up if he just smells it. No one is allowed to bring peanut butter, cookies made with peanut butter, etc.. to church- and we have signs in the children's rooms reminding the workers of this.
    Hope I wasn't too hard on you, just want you to understand how serious this is. Blessings to you and your wife
     
    #10 Joe, Mar 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2008
  11. Deacon

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    Let the pastor handle the situation with the other woman.

    IMO you and your wife have contributed to the situation by your negligence.

    Such significant allergic reactions as you have reported can increase with time and eventually be life threatening.
    She needs to see an allergist, ASAP!

    IMO, your wife should have taken precautions by popping an antihistamine tablet before the service...I'm sure the pastor would rather have had her fall asleep during the service than deal with this situation.
    I am slightly bothered by similar allergies and take medication before special services.

    Rob
     
  12. Joe

    Joe
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    There ya go :applause: :laugh:
     
  13. righteousdude2

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    Get Out the Yellow Pages

    Send this lady the yellow pages that advertise local churches. You may even take the time to circle several churches that you believe she would like. If this doesn't work, than you need to ask for those pages back and find a church that suits you and your wife.

    It is too bad that this has happened, but, sin makes people do strange things, and the flower lady is doing strange things.

    Righteousudude2
     
  14. Steven2006

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    While it is completely understandable as to why, the fact remains that your wife lost her temper and got angry first. So as hard as it might be, IMHO I would recommend your wife apologizing for getting angry with her. I would then explain again that how serious it is, and give the woman the benefit of the doubt that she didn't realize just how serious the reaction would be. Explain that because of the seriousness, that is why she lost her temper, but it was still no excuse.

    The rest is up to the woman. She should obviously apologize also, but that is really not your problem, but hers. You are only responsible for yourselves, not her.
     
  15. nodak

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    I too have allergy triggered life threatening larygospasms.

    Short and sweet: it is not up to the world to not expose your wife to her triggers. It is up to her to get on adequate control. There are varieties of means of control from desensitizing shots to cortisone shots to inhalers to pills to carrying an epipen.

    I know what it means to know what door of the grocery you can enter and what not to go. Don't get me started on perfume.

    Nevertheless, it is my responsibility to keep myself safe without expecting the world to sacrifice the joy of flowers, perfumes, certain food ingredients, and pets.

    To go off yelling at someone who exposed me is a control matter, imho.
     
  16. Joe

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    I spoke with a Sheriff (acquaintance of mine) by reading him your letter on the phone and he suggested your wife get a restraining order against this woman.
    First, it needs to be reported to the authorities BY YOUR WIFE. SHE needs to call. The Sheriff or police MUST take an INCIDENT Report. They can be lazy he says, don't like extra paperwork so pressure the Sheriff until he agrees. Or call again and have another Sheriff come out. Don't let them reduce it to some church squabble.

    Ensure you state the facts that she knew full well of your wife's condition and honored it prior by not bring flowers into the church. Then admitted later she brought the flowers deliberately out of anger against the Pastor, full well knowing it could kill your wife.

    Then state the names of the folks (church members who may be aware, get written statements and offer the Cops a written copy) of who are aware she admitted she planned this act against you, as I think you said she had boasted about it to others. Her boasting is VERY important to establish INTENT. You need the real hand written copies to present the Judge later.

    Second, the police report will be filed, and you can later obtain a copy of this report. Then file the paperwork for the restraining order, submit it with your statements and the incident report, go before a judge and request a restraining order. This is a quick process, our County grants same day restraining orders every day or three days a week, can't recall now.
    The judge needs to see there is an established intent, though I forgot but i think my Cop friend said you can bring witneses to court. Church members, the Pastor etc..who know of the situation. She will NOT BE in Court with you. You can ask, but to my knowledge, she will never about the other church member's statements or if they were witnesses for you in Court. She will only be officially served this restraining order.
    Definately bring the statements from other church members whom she has boasted to about what she did to you. They need to see it was premeditated.

    Intent is the key here, otherwise, it looks accidental. Obviously you know it wasn't accidental, but premeditated. Ensure the witnesses names, addresses and phone numbers are listed.

    He says she would be required by law to stay a certain feet from you, thus she would not be allowed on church grounds. [/B] If she broke this order by attending church services, she would be thrown in jail. It's likely going to be a 3-5 year restraining order he says, not a lifetime order.

    He feels you have a good shot at getting a restraining order because she admitted she planned this against you to others. You must list your church and address location in the order along with your home location.. It's premeditated[/B], and the fact it was due to her anger at someone else (the Pastor) and not you, makes it more disturbing.


    Aside from obtaining statements from your Pastor for the restraining order, you could pretty much keep him out of this portion. It's also an easy way to ensure church members safety.

    Ensure what I bolded in red is included in all statements, and told to the Police and Judge.

    There would be no reason to tell anyone of the written statement your Pastor gave you, or anyone else gives you, nor involve any more church members in this. Get rid of her before anyone else in church is hurt or killed.

    He is not a Christian to my knowledge, but attended our local Christian School. He reminded me somewhere in the bible when a woman was raped, she is ordered to scream and resist her attacker. To flee from the situation or she is in sin herself.

    So...you need to flee from her at the very least though this isn't rape but attempted murder. Have no contact with her. Same principal in our opinions.

    Hope this helps, and I am sorry you both must go thru this.
     
    #16 Joe, Mar 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2008
  17. Deacon

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    I'm sure your pastor will squeal with delight when you present your protection order.

    The church might consider arming the deacons and pastors.
    Shotguns are so burdensome during Sunday services but smaller pistols would work well.
    Anyone smelling of deadly floral scents or armed with a Carnation or Rose should be considered fair game; they are, afterall a threat.

    Carefully screen those suspicious blue-haired females, they've been know to camouflage flora in a decorative array in their pill-like buns. :laugh:

    Rob
     
    #17 Deacon, Mar 28, 2008
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  18. donnA

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    theres a lot of advice about being mean to the other woman. If you did that you'd be no different then her, and representing Christ no better.
     
  19. Joe

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    Why assume that she didn't take an antihistamine before the service?Talk about getting off topic, nor do I think it's our business how they manage her condition. We are not Doctors.

    Not to mention, you are incorrect in your layman's medical knowledge. Our son had asthma, and allergies to various flowers and grasses. Once his lungs almost closed up, and he could barely breath. The hospital gave him a tube with some misty stuff, he was able to breathe right after. He grew out of this condition, as they usually do, so acording to our Doc, this is how it normally goes. It doesn't automatically increase into a potentially life threatening situation. Though that can happen, even despite getting regular allergy shots and taking the medications regularly. Which is another reason why we need to take allergies seriously, especially when other's lives depend upon it.

    Generally around the change into Spring, there is more pollen. So the youth group doesn't go outside and play in the grass, it's for everyone's safety. Just a precaution.
    Nor do people bring peanut butter to church to deliberately placing our children's lives at stake because they are angry with the Pastor. Whether I had emergency inhailers or meds onhand doesn't null the seriousness of the premeditated crime. If she boasted she brought peanut butter on purpose, as this flower lady has done, she wouldn't be allowed back in our church. Guaranteed..


    Let's add these folks to our prayers.
     
    #19 Joe, Mar 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2008
  20. Joe

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    Lost her temper? Where did you read that? She raised her voice as needed to show the seriousness of the situation and stated her beliefs as a matter of factly in no uncertain terms. There was no cursing or namecalling, you are assuming the worst.

    You need to re-read his post. No where does it state she lost her temper. He is very upset, so maybe you could take your own advice and apologize to him for all of these negative "assumptions." Funny, you are concerned his wife is made the situation worse, yet what are you deliberately doing right now?

    The man is the head of the household, he must guide and protect his family. Maybe we can pray for him, offer him scripture and support, instead of poking fun about bringing guns into church :praying:
     
    #20 Joe, Mar 28, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2008

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