Question about a couple eloping

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Debby in Philly, Jan 28, 2007.

  1. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    A question for you pastors out there:
    There was a couple in our church who had only know each other for a few months. They are both 24 years old. He had just joined the National Graud, and had been sent to Texas (from Pennsylvania) for basic training. When he graduated, she accompanied his parents to Texas for his graduation, and then returned home with them. After a few phone calls between them, he asked her to marry him. She got on a plane, without explanation to anyone, and went back, and they were married by a judge. She has returned home, since he is not done down there until May.

    The question is this: Why would the pastor say she was "immoral" for having eloped, and forbid her to teach her kindergarten Sunday School class? Sources close to the couple (family, friends) say there is no evidence of their having "come together" in the Biblical sense before the marriage. We are all in amazement over this. While elopment could be considered rude to the family, how is it "immoral?"
     
  2. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant
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    Has the family asked the pastor for an explanation?
     
  3. Lagardo

    Lagardo
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    Elopement, in and of itself, is not immoral although there are other factors to consider. For example, it may be hurtful to family. I think an explanation is in order as to why the pastor believes this. Perhaps he felt the marriage had other motives? Perhaps he didn't like the courtroom wedding (although, I suppose the couple may be planning a church wedding when the groom returns)? I hope that before any more decisions are made, the pastor can explain himself to the woman.
     
  4. Karen

    Karen
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    I am not a pastor, but I will comment that similar weddings happened over and over in WWII, sometimes with the couple knowing each other for a very short time. Many of these weddings lasted for 50-60 years. (I'm compiling a scrapbook from my hometown newspaper.)

    They were grown adults. Is the family upset about her eloping?

    Somebody should ask the pastor why he thinks this way.
    On a practical basis, I would want to attend my child's wedding, but nothing you have presented sounds "immoral".
     
  5. El_Guero

    El_Guero
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    Well, he might know something that he is not sharing with the congregation, or he might be wrong.

    Without knowing more about the issue, everything I could say would be merely conjecture.

    But, in today's world - that was fast.

    God bless

    Wayne

     
  6. gb93433

    gb93433
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    In OT times all marriages were civil events.

    A Christian man I taught with years ago was married to a woman at the time for 33 years and they were married before a judge. At the time of their marriage he was 18 and she was 16. She finished high school and both of them went on to finish college and he got a doctorate. Both families supported their marriage.
     
  7. gb93433

    gb93433
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    Immorality calls for discipline of its members in the church. When was that done?
     
  8. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    There wasn't. All that happened is that they eloped.

    She was at church Sunday, but the worship leader was not allowed to congratulate her on the marriage from the front. Officially, it was as if it hadn't happened, except that I am now short 1 teacher, and the prominent family who had been allowing her to live with them has kicked her out ("she's a bad influence on my children"), and another older woman in the church took her in until her husband comes home from Guard training.

    I and several deacons and others are at a loss to explain the reasoning. Again, they did nothing other than elope.
     
  9. Lagardo

    Lagardo
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    Sounds like people are having difficulty in differentiating between their prefercences and God's. I think if there are deacons who cannot explain this, then these deacons should talk with the pastor as to what (according to scripture) is immoral in this situation.
     
  10. Shiloh

    Shiloh
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    Some pastors have their own "rules" and when these "rules" are broken....someone will pay. Lots of times some of these guys lord over their flock so to speak and are "ticked off" when a teacher in their church does something they don't like. They don't have to have a scriptural reason. I know what I am talking about.....look around at some of the nuts on this board. By the way I am a pastor (probably one of the nuts) and I know some guys in Philadelphia...:praying: ..and I think I might know where you came from, Old Paths?
     
  11. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    Uh, who or what is an Old Paths?
     
  12. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    My grandpa was from Georgia and was moved to Texas by the Amry during WWII to help people in the cotton mill in Itasca, TX. My Grandma worked there. They met and he asked her several times for a date. She declined. She finally relented and went with him. They were later married at the home of her pastor with only the pastor, his wife, my grandparents, and a female cousin present. My grandma's parents were not there. All of this took place 6 weeks after my grandparents first met, and 2 weeks after their first date. He was 22 and she was 21. They were married for 40 years, until his death.

    If the only reason for this behavior by the pastor and others is because the young lady eloped, then he should be ashamed of himself. Frankly, it is none of his business how she chooses to get married. She is a grown woman and is legally, and scripturally, allowed to decide these things.

    If this is a "rule" this pastor has, then I wonder what other "rules" he has that you and the church may not know about. The deacons really need to talk to this pastor before he starts running off people from the church for other non-scriptural reasons.
     
  13. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    I finally got an answer from the pastor. He said that there was other deception perpetrated by these two. Her position at our church was as a sort of "missionary" purposely coming to our church so as to lend a hand. She was staying with a couple and their children who are actual missionaries, whose mission field is our church. So I guess it was seen as "unprofessional" that she become involved with a member, let alone eloping with him. But the pastor says we are here for them, to support them in any way we can. It was just not deemed proper for her to continue to teach, and, apparently living with these folks, after the deception had occured.

    I still don't see how that all precludes her from teaching a bunch of Kindergarteners. I still love her anyway. Love happens!

    (The pastor has since apologized to me for the inconvienence of having to find another teacher on such short notice.)
     
  14. Lagardo

    Lagardo
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    Sounds like this may fall into some of the guidelines of her status as a missionary, rather than a moral judgment on her marriage. If that's the case, then I'm sure she knew the consequences ahead of making her decision.

    I pray that God is glorified in you, your church, and this new couple.
     
  15. PamelaK

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    So God can not bring two people together through moving one of them to serve at a new church and meeting his/her mate there or through someone there? :confused: I have to say I am still quite puzzled by your pastor's viewing it as "deception". I guess I am just missing something here.
     
  16. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    I'm always a little saddened to hear of people who are put off by single people who meet in church or church functions or as a result of church work and then get married, such as what this girl was did.

    Should she have been cruising the local bars for a man?

    Your pastor is not the only person with the "raising of the eyebrows" when it comes to single people being brought together by circumstances of the church.
     
  17. Sularis

    Sularis
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    Wow

    I mean - it is better not to go looking for a spouse from the field where you serve as a missionary - but to call it a deception and a sin - that would take proof that the young lady was "dating" or "courting" if you prefer, the locals while serving and not just one other guy

    I mean the Biblical precedent of 3 witnesses:

    if she dated three guys - then ok there's a problem
    if she only dated him - then there's no problem
    if she only dated one other guy - then there should be a short period of re-evaluation

    Of course I'm assuming less then 5 years - since a good relationship leading towards marriage should take a year to 2 years - with preference towards the two! But hey I know guys are {SNIP} - so we try to speed things up
     
    #17 Sularis, Feb 7, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2007
  18. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    I stand by my original comments.

    What other extra-biblical beliefs does this pastor have? Just who is he to tell two grown up single people who they can or can not love and marry?

    Frankly, it's none of his business.

    Of course, since I don't believe in missionaries or Sunday school teachers, I don't really know why I'm complaining. Maybe it's just the principle.

    I am not only looking for a woman to one day marry, but I sincerely hope I find her in the church.
     

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