Unless you air your laundry, divorce in the church is as isolating as a child’s temper tantrum during the Sunday morning service.

When my husband of 27 years suddenly and unexpectedly left, it was weeks before my large-church-pastors noticed I was missing from Sunday morning services.  And even weeks more before someone called to check in.


Jill English is an avid encourager of humans and lover of words. She writes at Red Tent Living.


Too Busy

I can’t blame them. I didn’t reach out. I was busy. I was inhaling and exhaling, managing shame, scrounging for hope, paying bills, and depositing what little emotional reserves I had to care for my devastated daughters, reeling family members, and befuddled friends.

I was too busy facing the disappointment of opening my eyes in the morning, realizing that God hadn’t granted my nightly plea to take me in my sleep because I didn’t know how to live this way.

No Casseroles

There were so many things I didn’t know about how to go through an unexpected divorce. There is no YouTube video, no manual, no to-do list for how to do it well. Yet, the one thing I did learn is that you won’t get a casserole from church when you’re in the middle of burying a marriage.

I realized this after the fact. A year after my husband left and before the divorce was final, my dear church friend lost her husband to a sudden heart attack.

Read the rest of Jill’s story here.

APPLICATION: As people of faith, we are very good at meeting people in times of death and illness. There are no judgments around these things, and we do not need discernment about who was in the wrong. But what if there were no casserole rules? What if we loved those in need with no judgement? What do you think? Please leave a comment and share your experience in the section below. Thank you.


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Bob Jones

Bob Jones

Happily married to Jocelyn for 40 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vinnie and daughter Jayda; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love being a pastor and inspiring others through communicating, blogging, and coaching. I enjoy writing, running, reading, and ball hockey. I'm a fan of the Esks, Bruins, Celtics, Red Sox and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers

3 Comments

  • Carole Holmes Schlachta says:

    I have not experienced divorce. I cannot reply.
    But I have experienced a real life of 56 yrs, marriage by unexpected death. My husband was a wonderful Christian man. He is now with Jesus and I know I will see him someday be cause of the Lord’s death on the cross. Rather than anger I would like to hear a rev with death and grief.

  • Christina says:

    This is spot on. After going through a divorce in the church, I can relate to this 100%. My marriage died along with many friendships along the way. It was the hardest experience I’ve endured! But through it all, I have helped other ladies that have had the same experience. Thank you for sharing Pastor Bob

  • Bob Jones says:

    I carry the weight of your hurt, Christina. I did my best to help but felt it fell short of all you, and the kids needed. As I watch from a distance now, I am so proud of the woman you are and the wounded healer you have become. You’ve made some hard choices and helped a lot of women in your journey. God bless.

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