Woman told to leave church after staff mistake her coriander for marijuana

A frustrated woman was left in tears when she was told to leave a church for bringing "weed" to a sermon – but it was actually fresh coriander.

Ashley Antiveros claims she accused of bringing drugs when she attended a service involving prison inmates at Redemption United Methodist Church in Oklahoma City, US, on Sunday (November 14).

But a spokesperson for the church has disputed her claims, saying they were simply following policy in barring food being brought to prisoners.

In the now-viral footage she posted on TikTok, a female church member repeatedly tells her: "You have to leave now. You're not gonna bring drugs in here."

Ashley corrects her: "That's cilantro! That's like a food, I promise you, that's for the menudo. That's not weed. I'll show you."

But the woman asks her to stop and get out of the church.

Ashley opens the bag and asks the staff to "smell it", insisting that it's not a bag of marijuana but a mix of cilantro and oregano.

"I’m not like that, that’s why I’m so mad," she says. "Please, just smell it. I will leave but I just want you to confirm it. It's for the food."

At this point, a pastor tells her that he's in the middle of a sermon and that Ashley needs to "chill" so they could chat about it after.

In a second video, Ashley said the staff threatened to call the police when she asked for the food back.

According to KOCO Channel 5, the Redemption United Methodist Church regularly holds worship services for members as well as inmates from the correctional facilities at Department of Corrections.

Like other guests, Ashley said she wanted to share her prepared meal with her sister.

In a statement the church posted online: "The video clip that is being circulated around social media of an incident that occurred at Redemption Mission Penn Avenue in Oklahoma City on November 14 is of a person who was upset because the staff did not allow her to give a bag of food to a family member who is an inmate attending the faith service.

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"Family members, visitors and guests are welcome to attend the services and were previously allowed to bring food to be consumed on-site, but could not give food items to inmates to take back to correctional facilities.

"Redemption Church does not discriminate against any persons based on ethnicity or family of origin. This policy of the Department of Corrections and the staff at Redemption Mission Penn Avenue applies to all persons."

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