Church leader berates breastfeeding woman for causing ‘men to lust and stumble’
Amy Marchant nurses her daughter Autumn, 1, at home in Brighton. (Photo: Susan Bromley/Livingston Daily)

A Michigan woman was shamed by church officials for breastfeeding her one-year-old daughter.


Amy Marchant, 29, says that she had to feed her daughter and couldn't relocate to a private area, the Livingston Daily reports. Later, she got a Facebook message from a female church leader demanding she abstain from public breastfeeding in the future.

“She told me to cover up, use an empty classroom, or go down to the main worship area, to part of the bathroom, but which has a nursing area attached to it. It wasn’t presented as an option. She told me to do one of those three things from now on.”

When Marchant asked for apology from the Church, officials doubled down on the idea that Marchant had been wrong to feed her daughter in this way.

“I was told it was immodest, that it was not shaming, that (breastfeeding) can cause men to lust and stumble,” Marchant said. “They said as long as they provided places for women to nurse, they didn’t have to allow them to nurse anywhere.”

Church leader Ben Walls Jr. apologized, yet doubled down on the idea that she'd been wrong to breastfeed in this way.

"We are not against anyone breastfeeding anywhere in the church. That is not what the problem was. Both breasts were totally exposed… From their perspective, it’s natural, we know, but we felt it inappropriate for boys and men, and we weren’t trying to shame, we were trying to deal with others who were uncomfortable and how they felt. Hurt, embarrassment, and shame was not intended.”