Pastor Desiree Allen
Pas­tor Desiree Allen

One of the chief crit­i­cisms of Chris­tian cul­ture is that it’s too judg­men­tal. That sins are often ranked from ‘best to worst’ and judged accord­ing­ly.

So when Harlem, New York pas­tor Desiree Allen went pub­lic with her preg­nan­cy and refused to stop preach­ing as a result of it, many com­mend­ed her. Allen points out that male pas­tors often get wom­en preg­nant, but can con­tin­ue to preach because their indis­cre­tion can be hid­den.

“After the ini­tial shock was joy. Yet, under­neath some­thing else was lin­ger­ing. Anger? No. Dis­ap­point­ment? No. It was pure and utter dread. Not at being preg­nant. Not at whether or not I would be a good moth­er. What had my stom­ach turn­ing, oth­er than nau­sea, was me being preg­nant AND a pas­tor. Let’s face it. The church has not had a good track record of accept­ing unmar­ried wom­en who got preg­nant. If you’ve been in church for any peri­od of time you’ve heard or wit­nessed the after­math. Shun­ning, slut sham­ing, being sat down from your posi­tion, hav­ing to go up in front of the church and con­fess your sin, etc. etc. No one can be naïve enough to say this type of stuff doesn’t hap­pen in church. An ugly truth is peo­ple in church lead­er­ship have sex out­side of mar­riage, affairs, do drugs, drink, so on and so forth. Gen­er­al­ly, the­se are not con­sid­ered accept­able acts. BUT I have seen many church­es turn a blind eye to this behav­ior, because it can be hid­den. Don’t ask. Don’t tell. To be preg­nant is a very vis­i­ble indi­ca­tion of a pri­vate act and for some rea­son pro­vides peo­ple with more of a need to respond.”

Ulti­mate­ly Allen decid­ed that she could not con­tin­ue liv­ing in a state of shame and con­dem­na­tion.

“I real­ized I had some bag­gage and I want­ed to deal with this preg­nan­cy on my own terms regard­less of how peo­ple felt or respond­ed. In those first few months I decid­ed I couldn’t car­ry the weight of oth­ers’ opin­ions and judg­ments includ­ing my own. I also had to con­front the ways in which I judged oth­ers based on their deci­sions and actions. I decid­ed I was going to walk with my head held high, because I was proud and excit­ed to be preg­nant. Often, when peo­ple think you’ve done some­thing wrong or have sinned they want you to walk around with your head low in guilt. Oth­er­wise, how would THEY know you were sor­ry? Well, I wasn’t sor­ry or ashamed. Shame and hap­pi­ness can­not reside in the same place. I decid­ed to only sur­round myself with those who had pos­i­tive ener­gy. I knew there would be rough days, but I also knew the good would out­weigh the bad. So when the first com­ment was made about my preg­nan­cy being an abom­i­na­tion I wasn’t both­ered, because it wasn’t MY truth. Plus who uses abom­i­na­tion any­way? Can we say anti­quat­ed?

I had a choice on how to define my own hap­py and write my own sto­ry. I thought about the wom­en who were belit­tled in their church­es for being preg­nant. The wom­en who felt abor­tion was a bet­ter option than humil­i­a­tion. The girl or young wom­en of a pas­tor forced into abor­tion, because the fam­i­ly couldn’t han­dle the shame. The wom­an who left the church per­ma­nent­ly because the mem­bers couldn’t accept her child. The wom­an who watched the same peo­ple who loved her each Sun­day avoid her like a plague. The wom­an who would give up every­thing to be preg­nant regard­less of the cir­cum­stances and still finds her womb bare. So many wom­en who may have made a dif­fer­ent choice if they under­stood the pow­er they had. If some­one had told them, it was ok to make the best choice for them ignor­ing the out­side voic­es. It would get bet­ter. They could out­live this. I under­stood what some peo­ple thought, what some scrip­tures said, but also the valid­i­ty of my own expe­ri­ence.”

Allen’s church com­mu­ni­ty ulti­mate­ly sur­round­ed and sup­port­ed her, and she plans to con­tin­ue preach­ing through the dura­tion of the preg­nan­cy, as well as after. 

You can read her full sto­ry here.


Elle is the edi­tor and cre­ative direc­tor of the YouTube chan­nel and blog, Quest for the Per­fect Curl at Her chan­nel focus­es on nat­u­ral hair, beau­ty, and fit­ness. She loves prod­ucts that smell like dessert, yoga, and glit­ter. Fol­low her @qftpc.

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166 Comments on "‘I Cannot Carry Your Judgment’: Pregnant and Unwed NYC Pastor Says She Refuses to Be Shamed Out of the Pulpit"

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??? This is exact­ly why I couldn’t wait to get away from Chris­tian­i­ty and all its hypocrisy and fool­ish­ness. It lit­er­al­ly takes a pas­tor to expe­ri­ence real life to exhibit any com­pas­sion and set aside sham­ing and con­dem­na­tion.
This is like a theif preach­ing about all the sins but steal­ing, or a Killer preach­ing about every­thing but mur­der. Can’t we just put this obvi­ous­ly b.s reli­gion busi­ness aside and exist as empa­thet­ic beings togeth­er?


Get­ting away Chris­tian­i­ty is the worst mis­take you could have made.…it is turn away from Christ who died for you…He is your only hope return to Him

My dear lady, it is not Chris­tian­i­ty that is hyp­o­crit­i­cal. It’s cer­tain indi­vid­u­als who claim to be Chris­tian that do hyp­o­crit­i­cal things. If you and I both exam­ined our­selves, you’ll find that Chris­tian or non-Chris­tian we have per­son­al stan­dards that we our­selves fail to keep and make con­ve­nient changes or excus­es to avoid acknowl­edg­ing that. This wom­an may have failed to be account­able as a pas­tor by point­ing the fin­ger at male pas­tors mess­ing up (some of them, not all) but she is not Jesus. Look to Him in His Word & what He did for you on the cross… Read more »

[…] “One of the chief crit­i­cisms of Chris­tian cul­ture is that it’s too judg­men­tal. That sins are often ranked from ‘best to worst’ and judged accord­ing­ly.” ~ black­girl­long­hair […]


This is a bunch of BS!!. How you gonna be a pas­tor and CHOOSE to get preg­nant out of wed­lock. Then turn around and con­demn the church for believ­ing what god said about it just to make your­self feel bet­ter? This is what you call selec­tive Chris­tian­i­ty or bet­ter fake chris­tian­i­ty or she may not be a Chris­tian at all. Just because you call your­self a preacher don’t make you a Chris­tian. Real chris­tians live to please God not them­selves Thank good­ness god loves uncon­di­tion­al­ly.


It’s NOT about sham­ing her. When we mess up, God’s pur­pose and plan still con­tin­ues in our lives.

AC Forver

t’s not that Chris­tian­i­ty is a joke but the way peo­ple who pro­claim to be Chris­tians. Peo­ple are doing what­so­ev­er they like and tri­umph­ing it in the name of Chris­tian­i­ty. Read your bible ! She is out of order for being a female preacher (not my opin­ion) but it’s in the bible.


That’s a tough call. It depends on what church…some expose the sin and ask the per­son to “step down” for awhile. It’s not per day about judgement.…none are perfect…but account­abil­i­ty. I hope she and the baby are healthy.

A.P. Millz-CT

LOL… this is why I can’t with so-called Chris­tians.. She prob­a­bly shamed a few wom­en in the past for the same acts..

The church is such a joke.  Three months before she got preg­nant I’m sure she was teach­ing and preach­ing that sex out­side mar­riage is a sin. Then she too got bust­ed. The­se preach­ers are such hip­ocrits. Male and female. Females aren’t sup­posed to be preach­ing any­way accord­ing to the very book they preach from. Church is a joke. A pick and choose what best suits you smor­gas­bord of a pyra­mid scheme. Bet the baby show­er will be lucra­tive… In Jesus’s name. In the real world she shouldn’t be shamed. Chris­tian­dom how­ev­er is an ever evolv­ing world of what­ev­er works for the preacher… Read more »
Glojean ShortStuff Flannagan
Glojean ShortStuff Flannagan
The TRUE BELIEVER’S church is not a joke real­ly. It is the folk that per­pe­trate a fraud that makes the sup­pos­ed­ly house of God look bad. There are a few preach­ers that are seri­ous about God’s Word and they do not play. The bible says “Study to show thy­self approved”. I for one am very obser­vant and will not sit under a preacher that does not take his posi­tion seri­ous or teach accord­ing to the the bible. God is the judge of us all and those peo­ple that stand in the pul­pit and lead God’s peo­ple astray will have to… Read more »
Ria Pendergrass



Did you have a bad expe­ri­ence at a church? What the deal?

I think we’d be hard­press to find any­one who HAS NOT had a bad expe­ri­ence from a church “the church”. I think God is try­ing to get us to sep­a­rate him from man. Flesh will fail you every­time. Rela­tion­ship with him is waaaaay more impor­tant than reli­gion. Some peo­ple go to church reli­gious­ly. Hav­ing a form of godliness.….we have to get our rela­tion­ship with HIM right and it’s sad to say but it’s not found in the four walls of a church. Jesus spent very lit­tle time in the syn­a­gogues. There was so much hypro­crisy in the church. He was… Read more »
You real­ly didn’t answer my ques­tion, but that’s okay. Your choice. From my expe­ri­ence, church is not the hor­ri­ble place that you make it out to be. My church and oth­ers like it do great things in their com­mu­ni­ties through min­istries in edu­ca­tion, health and serv­ing the poor. We church peo­ple also com­fort fam­i­lies in the time of death, ser­vice the sick and shut in and cel­e­brate joy­ful times such and mar­riages and births. Hav­ing a per­son­al rela­tion­ship with God is most impor­tant. It’s good to be in fel­low­ship with oth­er believ­ers. We can grow spir­i­tu­al­ly togeth­er and serve the… Read more »
Yup, I said it

You act like Kandi is a Trump or a HIlton. Bob Whit­field make $30 mil­lion and its gone now. So I believe that yes she made coins in the 1990’s but it wont Rothchild type coins so those Bravo checks are noth­ing to shake a stick at.


Ah, the white man’s reli­gion again :sigh:

When will black peo­ple wake up?


Chris­tian­i­ty isn’t the white man’s reli­gion lmao it was in Africa cen­turies before it went to Europe. Why do peo­ple keep say­ing this?

Glojean ShortStuff Flannagan
Glojean ShortStuff Flannagan

“Study to show thy­self approved.” Peo­ple Chris­tians because they believe and fol­low Christ.

Ria Pendergrass

Because they heard some oth­er igno­ra­mus say it. When they stand before God on Judg­ment Day, they won’t be talk­ing that mess. ?

Crimea River

Because it wasn’t “in Africa cen­turies before it went to Europe”.
Roman Empire ruled over every coun­try in that region before, dur­ing, and after Jesus’ life and death. Cru­ci­fix­ion was pri­mar­i­ly a Roman cus­tom. There is no way in hell (pun intend­ed) that Chris­tian­i­ty came before Jesus who lived under Roman (Caesar’s) rule.
Edu­cate your­self, don’t pass on igno­rance. If you read the New Tes­ta­ment, The Roman Empire is all up in there. Pon­tius Pilate was a Roman.


The Romans may have cru­ci­fied Jesus but he was not White. You’re just prej­u­diced

Crimea River

I nev­er said Jesus was white, I nev­er men­tioned any­thing about col­or. You have no idea what col­or I am but you call me prej­u­diced. Again­st who? And why?


White man’s reli­gion. Real­ly?

Taneesha Culture Clash Thomas
Taneesha Culture Clash Thomas

God bless u pastor…the sin was in the act…but the baby is a bless­ing regardless…no need to sit in judg­ment for 9 months to please people…as long as you’ve rec­on­ciled ur for­give­ness with God…you’re good


ahh no,what is the prob­lem that she is unmar­ried but has a part­ner right? becuase if that is the case, she needs a piece of paper to be. in wed­lock? or is she promis­cu­ous and don’t know who the baby dad­dy is? in this case get your behind off that pul­pit. lol. this is a non sto­ry if she has a com­mit­ted part­ner the end.