Apr 17, 2006

Church Lock-Down

4/17/2006 — cori

Leave it to my family to almost cause a church lock-down this past Sunday. Easter, of all days. We went to church having no clue the pandemonium our presence was about to induce. What would cause such a hooplah that the church would consider going into lock-down mode? - Bennett! Yep, leave it to Bennett. He's the only one who this could have happened to.

I would say the church we attend sporadically has maybe 1000 - 1500 attendees. Quite large. They just installed this new, state-of-the art computer check-in service that allows parents to check all their children into their appropriate Sunday Schools in no time flat. This was the first time we ever experienced such technology - especially at a church service. So, we go about the routine of checking in 3 children. A little printer pops out a name tag with all their appropriate information. Each child is now donning a smart little sticker on their backs.

We dropped Chloe off first and Gavin second, being that their classes were in close proximity. However, we had to go upstairs to drop off Bennett. But upon drawing nearer to his class he had a change of heart and decided he would rather sit with us in 'big church'. We had no qualms with that, so we all headed back down stairs, never thinking twice about the fact that he was already 'checked-in'. We warned nobody that our child was with us - why should we? Ahhh, but that was our fatal downfall.

Bennett was the perfect little gentleman in big church. He sat quietly, listened intently and never once complained. We were so proud of him. About 10 minutes before the service was a to let out, we saw our number pop up on a screen in the sanctuary. Chuck jumped up and responded to it immediately, fearing it was Chloe.

However, once he reached the lobby, he saw a Policeman and a church employee waiting for him. He immediately thought maybe something happened to Gavin. They then informed him that they had lost Bennett. Chuck explained that Bennett was in the sanctuary with us. After their initial relief, obvious frustration set in - on both parties.

Come to find out later, the church's director of security had his whole team, plus the cop searching the premises for Bennett. They even pulled Gavin out of his Sunday School and questioned him about his brother's whereabouts. Since the church is so huge and impersonal, nobody knew what we or Bennett looked like and so, nobody came to find us in service.

Once church let out, the director of security made a bee-line towards us and informed us of the graveness of the situation we just caused by signing our son in, but not bringing him to his class. He told us that if we had not answered the page in the service, that the next step would have been a total church lock-down. They would have had to interrupt service and inform everybody that we were morons...uh, I mean, that a child was lost and everyone was needed in pursuit of his search.

Thank God we answered our page!!!! We had already caused enough pandemonium. I'm still rather speechless about the whole event and left to ponder 'why did this happen to us?'

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