Today I heard about a story before leaving for work that has been on my mind all day. An autistic boy who a church has banned from coming to their church. They actually have a court order saying he's not permitted in their church.
While I recognize there are 2 sides to every story I have to tell you that this story infuriates me!!! As if having an autistic child isn't challenge enough but now this poor family is having their church turn against them. Where is the compassion and love???
Having been around many autistic children, I know that parents,teachers, caseworkers, whomever cannot always control the actions of an autistic child. Watching the HBO special a month or so ago one of the autistic children even stated that he didn't know why he always did things and sometimes he wished he wasn't that way but it couldn't be stopped. Watching that movie really opened my eyes to what goes on for the autistic child.
This boy from Minn. is a large boy and his parents have had to sometimes take what others would perceive as drastic measures to control him such as sitting on him or using restraints. They have sat in the last pew or the cry room to try to keep their son away from others to minimize any disruptions he may cause. It upsets me greatly that this church has not reached out to this family and asked what they as a congregation can do to help. Not keeping the boy at home....that's not an answer. They are trying to share their love of God with their son in attending church.
I sincerely hope someone wakes up soon and offers this family a welcoming hand. It's a sad fact of our world when we can't treat our neighbors as ourselves. Don't just read the words....live them!