Brigid Erwin's UPC Experience

Hi. I recently attended a UPC church and found that it was very disturbing. Growing up Christian and changing to Pentecost was very different. I attended the same church as Katherine, you published her experience, and I had recently written a paper for my college English class and was wondering if you'd be interested in reading it.

I was degraded actually by the pastor's wife because I wore jewelry and pants, etc. - you know the list. I wasn' t allowed to sing on the platform because of my jewelry. She told me that I wouldn't be able to find a decent husband who actually meant anything and have a good life if  I didn't change my ways.

From then on I wasn't allowed to wear jewelry on the platform. I thought ok, I can respect you. I don't believe this, but out of respect that's fine. But you know she made me cry. And she degraded my person, and that wasn't right. The fact was that a pregnant teenage, unwed girl was allowed on the platform (very pregnant) but I was not.

Things dwindled from here and I lost what respect I had for the church and haven't been back since. I attended that church for a little over two years. But when they started telling me that I  needed to stop wearing pants, and cutting my hair and wearing jewelry, that's all I could take.

It wasn't that bad of a church until then, but then they began to harass me about it. The funny thing was that I asked the preacher's wife during our discussion for scriptural proof, and she said there wasn't any. You just did it because it was a conviction from God. But I didn't feel it. More than half of the teens there didn't feel it. I interviewed another member and she said that it was just something that you did because you were supposed to. That's scary you know.


Posted February 1, 1998

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