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Church Leader Follows Girl Into Toilet To Tell Her She’s Too Fat To Wear Shorts

by : Emily Brown on : 08 Jul 2019 17:52
Woman body shamed by church leaderWoman body shamed by church leader@roo_jenna/Twitter

A 19-year-old has shared footage of a church leader who followed her into the toilet to tell her she ‘couldn’t wear jean shorts because [she] was too fat’.

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Jenna, from Swansboro, North Carolina, posted the shocking footage on Twitter last Sunday (June 30), explaining she loves to sing on stage at church with the contemporary band but the encounter made her not want to return.

The 19-year-old had been wearing a long sleeved top and denim shorts when the church leader followed her into the bathroom.

Watch the hurtful exchange here:

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At the start of the video the older woman could be heard talking about another girl who she described as ‘chubby’ and claiming she was wearing an ‘appropriate’ dress, presumably to imply that, in contrast, Jenna’s outfit wasn’t ‘appropriate’.

Jenna asked if the leader was calling her fat, to which she replied:

Oh, you don’t think you are?

The 19-year-old stuck up for herself brilliantly, arguing:

No, cause I fucking love who I am.

She later shared a picture of the outfit in question:

On Twitter, Jenna explained the leader had said ‘fat girls don’t wear shorts’. She described herself as being ‘shocked’ and ‘upset’ and rightly said she should feel loved and accepted, especially at church.

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The 19-year-old added the leader had caught her at a particularly vulnerable time as she had gone into the bathroom to check if she’d received any updates about a family member in hospital.

She added:

if she would have said that to me two years ago when I was in therapy for suicide… I honestly don’t think I would be here today…

I suffer with depression, anxiety, and ADD, and I can be very impulsive but what she did was straight up rude

At the time of writing (July 8) the video has been shared over 52,000 times and while many people have responded with positive comments aimed at Jenna a few people have understandably expressed anger towards the church leader.

However, the young churchgoer has asked people not to condemn the woman and emphasised she does not hate the leader.

She added:

Yes, the words she said hurt. Clearly bullying is wrong.

But please do not send any harassing or mean things to her because that is not what we are supposed to do.

Jenna shared the footage with her pastor, who told her the woman wouldn’t be given any leadership role in the church again.

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The lead pastor also sent out a letter following the incident, which read in part:

It has come to our attention that great harm has been done in an incident that occurred this past Sunday where a faithful and very gifted young lady and worship leader was body shamed for her appearance.

We are shocked and saddened by this act. The church is supposed to be a place of safety, love and acceptance.

The teenager has thanked everyone who sent her supportive messages and added she’s ‘still wearing her shorts’ as the leader could ‘never take [her] confidence away’.

No one should be shamed for their choice of clothing but Jenna certainly handled the situation brilliantly.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to [email protected]

Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Life, body shaming, Church, Fashion, weight

Credits

roo_jenna/Twitter
  1. roo_jenna/Twitter

    @roo_jenna