Saturday, February 23

DO-NOT-KNOCK

As many of you know that I have been living in DC (Alexandria, VA to be more accurate) for last seven months... and I want to announce today that I was "virgin-broke" when two missionaries came to my home.

Now if you are not Deaf, you will have difficulty to understand this phenomena that plagues the Deaf households. So I am going to give you a bit of Deafology 101 lesson...

There are many churches of different denominations. So many choices for the believers. But for Deaf believers, their choices are narrowed down by finding a church that offers signing services-- by a Deaf pastor, signing pastor, or through interpreters. And those Deaf-friendly churches wage a war among each other to get a large turnout by Deaf people at their services. War, indeed.

They draw out their battles by tracking down Deaf people (believers/non-believers) and knocking down their doors and thrust a DVD that offers an ASL version of chapters in the Bible... and then praying that those shell-shocked Deaf people will come out and pay their deeds to the church that showers them with booty.

Now what does it got to do with me?
I am Deaf. I am a non-believer. So I am considered a top priority for many Deaf-friendly churches who think Deaf people need to be saved by finding Jesus in their heart. They may believe that because I don't attend a church, they think it is because I don't know about the "100% signing" services in my area.

Growing up in an fairly agnostic/atheist household, my mother had to shoot away Mormons, Jehorvah's Witness, Christians who sign all because they share one viable information: there is a Deaf child that hasn't found Jesus. Upon greeting them at the door, she would politely smile and signed back: "no, thank you, my Deaf daughter is fine and doesn't need to meet you. Bye bye" and then deadbolting the door. Often I would ask: "the church people want to meet me again?" My mother nodded and prodded me along to finish my homework, eat my dinner, or whatever the kids won't do.
As I get older, my mother got tiresome of those missionaries banging on our door so the last resort had been taken-- simply ignoring the knocks and hoping they would leave us alone.
(One time a missionary even got the nerve of getting in our fenced backyard because he thought that we don't have flashing doorbell and didn't know they were at the door. Can't they get a frigging hint?!)

All suddenly, one day it all stopped. The visits, the VHS (now DVDs), the pitiful look on them when I said "no thanks" as if they just witness a poor Deaf person evolving into a sinner.

I forgot all about this phenomenon... until today.

I have only lived in this place for seven months and the "church people" have found me! How could it be?!
We don't invite any friends to our home (for many of them, we "live too far out of DC") nor gave addresses to any of them (however now one name pops up in my mind) so how could they know we live here?! Well, it is quite possible the neighbors are the culprits. They could mention to their pastor about "a Deaf couple who apparently don't go to a church on Sunday!"

It doesn't matter who is the culprit, but it is a well-known fact that the "church people" can sniff out Deaf people no matter how secluded one can get. Their battle formations have improved and became stealthily.

Like "DO NOT CALL" registry list for the telemarketers, I wonder if there is a "DO NOT KNOCK" list for the church people?

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