Saturday, November 16, 2013

Undercover Agnostic: (Update 24): The Pentecostal Boss and the Pregnant Neighbor

There have been some recent developments with two past characters from my Undercover Agnostic series, the pregnant neighbor “Jennifer” from the post The Cult of Fetus Worship, and the Pentecostal boss of mine (let’s call him “Carl”) from my second post, Questions From My Boss About My Unbelief, that I wrote in January 2013.

First, I’ll start with Jennifer. Apparently either her doctors had made a mistake, or she had misunderstood what they had said. Their warnings about missing limbs and brain damage to the fetus were about what would happen if her blood pressure and blood disorder problems were to continue, they haven’t so far.

Ultrasounds have shown that nothing seems to have gone wrong so far, and so she had changed her mind about going to Maryland for the late term abortion. It still makes me mad that most states, including Illinois, wouldn’t have done it, even under extreme and/or life threatening circumstances, it’s putting religion over doctors when it comes to healthcare decisions.

What was just as bad as the broken legal system was the fact that my mother was still trying to convince her not to have an abortion despite the fact with what we knew at the time, she could have died giving birth (3 women in her family had actually died in the past under similar circumstances, it’s genetic).

Its why, in frustration, that I had titled the post “The Cult of Fetus Worship”, if someone is so strong in their views against abortion that they would rather take the horrible odds against a woman’s life in extreme circumstances over the idea of her having an abortion, they’re not “pro-life”, it’s a cult of fetus worship in reality.

Though she has decided to give birth, she is making arrangements with a local couple to adopt. Her doctors, once they knew she wanted to give birth, had started helping her to find possible adoptive parents.

This is all going on with her husband’s support (he had been married before, didn't’ want to have any children, but a vasectomy reversed itself, it’s rare, but it can happen), but her teen daughter is rather disappointed about this, she wanted a new sister or brother to be added to the family. Hopefully this won’t affect her already existing mental health issues (which was one of many reasons that they wanted to put the child up for adoption if she gave birth).

In recent weeks, Jennifer has moved with the family to a neighboring town, they wanted to own their own home, and their rental house was rather small (about 500-600 square feet), with old windows that let in too much air, and let out too much sound. Apparently their landlord wasn't interested in replacing those windows.

The Pentecostal Boss:

In the post Questions from My Boss About My Unbelief back in January, I talked about my boss, I’ll call him Carl, who apparently word had gotten around to him through the company that I was a former Christian. Everyone at the company knew he was a rather religious man, though he never talked about it, and rarely made any mentions of god, and usually in a calm, manner of fact way, he never tried to convince anyone of anything.

He was usually a happy guy, and had this odd persona about him to the effect that you could easily imagine him being one of those Mormon missionaries that knock on your door on a Saturday morning (in fact, I had wondered if he was a Mormon). He would always show up to the dock office in a polo shirt of some kind, and khaki pants (while most warehouse floor supervisors didn’t even bother dressing that formal), with a calm, cool demeanor to him, friendly to everyone.

One extremely slow work day this past January, he had pulled up to the guard shack, since his shift ended an hour before mine, and had asked about what he had heard about me leaving Christianity, I had told very few people at the company about this on rare occasions when religion was brought up somehow, but apparently that was enough to get back around to him.

I had told him most of what had happened in the long process to deconversion, but had left out some of the more extreme and personal details, like the abuse in my past

I had told him about my depression, and my mom’s response to my nervous breakdown, and the issues I had with the Bible and with the very concept of a god. He had listened without any judgment, and unlike most religious people, he understood how that would push someone towards unbelief, and didn’t try to convince me otherwise.

As he talked, I began to realize that he was a fundamentalist Pentecostal and not a Mormon, as I had been wondering about. I had told him about my own experience with the Assembly of God denomination as a young boy, and my first speaking in tongues experience.

This week, I had noticed a paper pinned to a board next to the electronic system that we use to clock in and out for each shift that said “It has been a pleasure working with all of you, God bless”. No name was given on the paper, and I had asked one of the night supervisors standing there who had put it up, and he had said it was Carl. I saw him as I was leaving getting into an electronic go cart that supervisors often use to shuttle back and forth across the building (the building is a mile long, end to end).

I had asked him if that was his farewell note to the company, and he had said that it was, he had put it up around noon, because some people had been asking him. He had only told some people in the administrative office that he was leaving to go to another company, and had wanted them to keep it quiet until he was about to leave, he said he didn't want a lot of fanfare when he left, but apparently someone in that office had let it leak out that he was going.

I’ll miss him, he was one of the few supervisors in the company that really accepted me for who I am, unlike the arrogant floor supervisor he used to have to work side by side with who couldn't stand me, and I felt the same way about him (he has since been fired for unrelated reasons). Most of them just seemed to tolerate me out of politeness.

His opinion of me didn't change after I had told him about leaving Christianity, which makes him a rather rare person among religious fundamentalists, when I had originally published that post, there were concerns from some people, including blogging friend, Ahab, that it could happen, and that it wasn't really appropriate (or legal) for him to ask.


  1. I'm glad he respects you for who you are after you told him about your deconversion.


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