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Autistic boy banned from Minnesota Church

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posted on May, 18 2008 @ 06:41 PM
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Autistic Boy banned from Minnesota Church




A Catholic priest has filed a restraining order against the parents of a severely autistic 13-year-old boy in an effort to keep him from attending the church in Bertha on Sundays.

The Rev. Daniel Walz alleges that Adam Race's unruly behavior endangers others who attend the Church of St. Joseph.


Not sure what to make of this. I can see the church side, but can see the family's side as well. If he is truely a danger, there has to be a better way, as I dont agree with banning him 100%

Edit: Spelling

[edit on 18-5-2008 by Spoontoad]




posted on May, 19 2008 @ 01:53 AM
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A true christian would understand in my opinion and do everything that could be done to accept this young man. There was an autistic kid that went to the church I went to when I was younger. It was understood by everyone that he was special. He would make noises when he wasn't supposed to. He would give hugs. He would do all sorts of things.

I thought he was awesome. I would hear funny stories about him, like when he said the prayer at dinner time and he thanked God for each and every eating utensil, the condiments, etc... It was a long prayer. I was also raised to believe that special people are blessed.

It makes me wonder why they would alienate this young man. Is his behavior chasing away other members? Perhaps members that tithe? Why should he have to have mass at home? This is a great oportunity for people to give service, to learn patience, to love.



[edit on 5/19/2008 by eye open doors]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 01:59 AM
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Shame on the priest. He could try to talk to the parents, maybe offer some help as far as the "church" putting up the money for some counseling or some form of help.

I can see where he'd be a problem if he screams during mass, in that case maybe nicely ask the parents to find him a suitable babysitter or something!

Maybe he did and we just dont know it.


Where's the compassion?



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:09 AM
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Maybe the priest wasn’t ‘interested’ in the boy so he banned him…..

Just too autistic for the priest’s ‘taste’…



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:28 AM
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I have to agree with this decision.
I feel for the parents, and wish they did not have to go through this.
However, this is very similar to "mainstreaming" children with severe learning and behavior problems.

Through no fault of their own they can be dangerous to other students.
Not to mention the time and resources that are diverted towards the handling of situations as they arise. In any type of educational system, this is unfair to the other students. they lose precious learning time.

The same is true for church attendees, their churchgoing experience is effected. A misbehaving child is a diversion.
It doesn't matter WHY the child is misbehaving, it just doesn't work in some public situations.

Perhaps some sort of compromise can be reached here. Maybe he can attend to a lesser extent.

I hope that doesn't sound cold.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 03:17 AM
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I have to agree with spacedoubt on this issue too. NOT because i am Catholic but because of the issue. However sad it seems, this had to be done. A consideration, perhaps, is that possibly churches, and NOT only Catholic Churches, need to make provision for individuals like this so that they are not excluded from mass etc. Possibly have a room not unlike a "cry room" where parents with babies can sit and other parishioners are not affected by a crying or screaming baby.

Just a thought.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 04:47 AM
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I can see banning an autistic kid from anything. They're loud and disruptive, and at times impossible to communicate with. I wish it wasn't so and I'd like to see autistic children receive good care and help but I can totaly understand baning an autistic kid from a church as reasonable.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 09:15 AM
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This isn't an autistic kid just making a few noises.

According to the AP story, “Adam struck a child during mass, nearly knocks elderly parishioners over…, spits and sometimes urinates in church and fights when he is being restrained. He also… assaulted a girl by pulling her onto his lap and….There were people… who could have been injured or killed…”

Adam’s parents call his banning from the church “discriminatory”. You bet it is. There’s such a thing as RATIONAL discrimination.

Of course, “Some disability advocates are getting behind the Races,” which just goes to show that there’s no end to Political Correctness, to hell with public safety and common sense.

We’re not talking about general discrimination against all handicapped or autistic people here, but just a particular individual with dangerous and disruptive behavior.

Does Adam even know he's in a church or does he want to be there? Is the church setting helpful to him or is it subjecting him to sensory overload?

Some people have cited God’s love of everyone. But what would Jesus have actually done in this situation? He probably would have affected a miracle cure of Adam by “driving out his demons.”

Unless this church can affect such a miracle cure, is it unreasonable to ask Adam’s parents to accommodate everyone else’s rights to public safety and undisrupted worship? It seems they’re more set on making a political point.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 09:38 AM
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The child is autistic, and apparently viewed as a danger to others. Autistic children often demonstrate erratic behavior, however banning a family from bringing their child to their chosen place of worship is wrong in my opinion. The family more than likely takes solice in that God is smiling down on the child in their place of worship. I happen to know first hand, as I am the parent of an autistic child. I would agree with Shearder that the family should be required to sit in the 'screaming baby' room, but not banned.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 09:45 AM
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My son, 13, is severely disabled, and has Aspergers, which is a type of autism, and I am familiar with these kids. Many are geniuses but cannot relate otherwise and some make noises.

I agree that a church should be a place for worship and one cannot have a baby crying during the services and other noise as well must be stopped. I would never take a child that makes noises to a quiet place and expect others to put up with it. If the church does not have a facility where the child can be taught or entertained while the parents worship, then they should not attend.

A church cannot have interruptions and noises that interrupt the service and so I side with the church on this one..common sense and common courtesy demand that we keep those who cannot control themselves away from places where their disability causes trouble or interferes with a legitimate function. That child is probable closer to God than any priest will ever be so no need to have him in a regular service.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 09:50 AM
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Carol Race said it all started last June, when Walz and a church trustee visited the Races at their home address the behavior of Adam, who stands taller than six feet and weighs more than 225 pounds.

In an affidavit, Walz said the church "explored and offered many options for accommodations that would assist the family while protecting the safety of parishioners. The family refused those offers of accommodation."

According to Walz, Adam struck a child during mass, nearly knocks elderly parishioners over when he hastily exits the church, spits and sometimes urinates in church and fights when he is being restrained.

He also one time assaulted a girl by pulling her onto his lap and, during Easter mass, ran to the parking lot and got into two vehicles, starting them and revving the engine, Walz alleged.



I have a friend who works with autistic people. He is 6 foor 3 and over 300 pounds and he has a hard time controlling some of them when they get worked up.

I can see how this should be a concern for the Church.

Autism sucks, but you have to look at the larger picture.

[edit on 19-5-2008 by pavil]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 09:56 AM
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Originally posted by lombozo
I would agree with Shearder that the family should be required to sit in the 'screaming baby' room, but not banned.


While I can understand your viewpoint, I would think that putting this 13 year old with a bunch of babies is just asking for something bad to happen.

It sounds like the Church tried to work out something with the parents but they were having none of it. He has shown to be a danger to others in the past, the Church has to look after EVERYONE'S well being.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:00 AM
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reply to post by dgtempe
 


Please read the article. They did try to work it out with parents. He was being very disruptive and put other parishoners at risk.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:00 AM
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reply to post by pavil
 


You make a very valid point. Well said. I do not, in fact I cannot argue your point.
That being said, I do disagree that a family is unable to bring their child to a worship service. Perhaps a private service. I don't know what the answer is, but surely there is a resolution available.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:14 AM
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reply to post by lombozo
 



Agreed. We don't know both sides of the problem here. The Church is doing what it deems in the interest of it's flock. A private mass might work, or if they had a separate room that could accommodate them easily. Just reading it, it sounds like the parents try to control Adam, they just cant.

That's why my friend is doing what he does, the parent's just can't physically control the kids. I am talking very big and strong teenagers here who have a tendency to be violent, not that they are doing it intentionally. Not all Autistic children are like that.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:25 AM
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Jesus was definitely concerned with himself above all - that he got quiet time to pray. When he went to visit the lepers, he would shoo them away and tell them to be quiet while he prays. If they weren't too disruptive during his prayer time, he may them take time to heal them.

I'm sure his vision of the future was that everyone in church remain very quiet. This is definitely more important that helping your fellow parishners with a difficult time.

He would want all disruptive people to live in a cave outside the village.

He believed that church funds should be used to purchase new marble statues and golden chalices, and not to accomodate a disabled boy.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:34 AM
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One thing I'm not clear on is if the restraining order was for the church, the parishioners or for the priest. I'd think that the priest would want to do as much as he could to be a spiritual leader for the child, maybe even practicing home visits.

I find it hard to accept that someone who's dedicated their life to forgiveness would make a final decision to take legal action against people for wanting to worship.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 12:11 PM
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I still believe that they are cutting themselves off from powerful spiritual lessons by alienating this child. Also, What sort of message are they giving the young men and women, and the small children in this congregation? How will they view people with autism?

The church pisses on my floor, is disruptive to my congregation, and knocks people over frequently. Yet I tolerate (however challenged at times) the hypocracy and general harm to society. I understand the intent is generally out of love, even though I believe they are being mislead.

This young young man is a gift, and they toss it away as they would have you toss your spirit away.

The Church and that Catholic Priest


[edit on 5/19/2008 by eye open doors]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:05 PM
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Originally posted by eye open doors
I still believe that they are cutting themselves off from powerful spiritual lessons by alienating this child. Also, What sort of message are they giving the young men and women, and the small children in this congregation? How will they view people with autism?

The church pisses on my floor, is disruptive to my congregation, and knocks people over frequently. Yet I tolerate (however challenged at times) the hypocracy and general harm to society. I understand the intent is generally out of love, even though I believe they are being mislead.

This young young man is a gift, and they toss it away as they would have you toss your spirit away.

The Church and that Catholic Priest


[edit on 5/19/2008 by eye open doors]


You ask- "How will they view people with autism?"

You can thank the media for whatever misconceptions the general public has about this illness. Sensationalized events such as this do no help. This is either an attempt to expose blasphemy in the church, or a desperate grasp at anything autism related to go along with the reported escalating autism cases.

Awareness is KEY here people- at least when autism is concerned. But what I see here is something I see in my own experience with autism spectrum disorders- denial.

This family is DENYING that their child has a problem. Rather than learning to work with and control their offspring, they turn to everyone else and expect them to conform.

The church did not kick out this autistic individual- the church kicked out the individuals family. He just unfortunately happens to be in it.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:34 PM
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I'd be curious to know how the boy acts when he isn't in church. My (very limited) experience with retarded kids has never seen anyone that acted violent or offensive to this degree. I wonder if the boy might have a touch of either demon possession or believe somewhere inside that he's got a demon. The one autistic kid I knew fairly well was a friend's little brother in high school. He used to pee on people's shoes while using the urinal because he'd swing himself back and forth, spraying the walls and anyone who was dumb enough to stand up to one of the urinals next to him. I never once saw him grab someone or do anything like this story says the boy has done.

As for allowing him in the church, it seems that the parents are unwilling or unable to recognize the fact that their preferred solution isn't the only way nor the best way to ensure everyone in the parish has an opportunity to worship comfortably and with the proper level of decorum and peacefullness. Otherwise, they would have accepted one of the solutions offered them by the priest. Seems like an example of people who think "Well, if we have to suffer through this, then we'll damn sure see to it that as many folks as possible suffer alongside us." I find their attitude irresponsible and pathetic.



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