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Posts tagged ‘Jehovah Witnesses’

On April 21 brother Nelson, in the world better known as Prince was lost

The Very Best of Prince

The Very Best of Prince (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After the well-known Jehovah witness singer-dancer Michael Jackson the movement lost again a pop star. As an adult superstar musician Prince became a Jehovah’s Witness and went regularly to a place were there was no dance club or a recording studio, were there are not even any musical instruments except for a piano hidden in a closet that no one uses. The walls being of various shades of beige encloses a hall were nothing shines, and nothing is purple. Nothing about it says “Prince.”

Prince's Jehovah's Witness Kingdom Hall

The Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Minnetonka, Minn., where Prince was a congregant. (Matt Pearce / Los Angeles Times)

English: Prince performing at Coachella 2008.

Prince performing at Coachella 2008. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Auditorium A in the Kingdom Hall of the St. Louis Park Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses was the place were Prince reflected on his life and knew who was the real big superstar of this universe. Prince Rogers Nelson was not celebrated in that hall as Prince, the music megastar, but was like all others a Brother, brother Nelson, the Jehovah’s Witness. Here, one of America‘s greatest sex symbols didn’t arrive in spandex and stilettos but in conservative suits and ties. He was often hard to spot among the congregation of dozens unless you were looking right at him. And that wasn’t the only way he blended in.

Too many people forget that artists and even so called ‘world stars’ or ‘superstars’ also can leave at certain moments the world for what it is. They too can know that there are more important matters in this life and this world than ‘stardom’ in this world or than all the glory people want to give them. They too can know to whom the real glory belongs.

Over the final decade of his life, Prince worshipped at Auditorium A in the Kingdom Hall of the St. Louis Park Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Also people with fame can have enough wisdom to analyse the Bible and to come to the Biblical truth, willing to put human doctrines aside and preferring to give everything to the Word of God. Like Michael Jackson Prince was a fellow believer in the Jehovah’s Witness tenets: that Jesus was a saviour but was lesser to God, that these are the final days of civilization, that the dead will be resurrected, and that the world will live under a global government lead by Jehovah, a Hebrew name for God. Among the St. Louis Park congregation, Prince wasn’t a celebrity but an equal in faith.

For believers like us, this star was accepted as a brother. Congregant Josephine Parker, 74 said on Sunday April the 24th

“He wasn’t treated as maybe the world would treat him.”

Remembering Prince as a gentle soul and a “mild spirit,” and his death at age 57 braking her heart, she added

“I look forward to the time we can welcome him back on the Earth.”

Lots of things may be said about his life, lots of guesses may be made about his death. No matter how long we’ve made it, no matter our race, our colour, our creed, our sexual orientation, all of those who live in the land of music, will have felt his departure from this world as an earthquake, and for the brothers and sisters it came also as a surprise.

On April 21, 2016 the world lost a great musician. What the world perhaps did not know, that it was also a man with a soul, an inner feeling and a mind who was conscientious about more important things than all the glitter of this world.

Prince first visit to ireland

Prince first visit to ireland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Strangely enough for some, his flamboyant stage presence, extravagant dress and make-up, and wide vocal range was put secondary at certain moments of the week. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004, the first year of his eligibility Rolling Stone ranked Prince at number 27 on its list of 100 Greatest Artists — “the most influential artists of the rock & roll era”, he was humble enough to be a brother like the others in the Christian community of worshippers of the Most High Superstar, Jehovah God.

News went around that Prince may have been already 6 hours death before his body was found. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune one day before his body was found, Prince was also given intravenous fluids at a Minneapolis area hospital. Prince’s publicist said he was suffering from the flu.

Kirk Johnson who was also at the scene sent a statement to CNN through his attorney saying in part:

“I greatly respected Prince’s privacy, and ask in turn during this difficult time, others respect the privacy of those who worked with and represented him.”

But fans coming to know Prince was a Witness also started blaming the cause of his death Prince refusing a blood transfusion as a Witness. Those fans and acquaintances who have wondered whether Prince’s religious beliefs may have even contributed to his death, because Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t believe in taking blood transfusions for scriptural reasons, do forget that believers like us accept other and safer medical treatments.

Prince, who was raised as a Seventh-day Adventist, was converted — or at least helped along — by Larry Graham, the former bass player for Sly and the Family Stone.

“I don’t see it really as a conversion,”

Prince told the New Yorker magazine in 2008.

“More, you know, it’s a realization. It’s like Morpheus and Neo in ‘The Matrix.’”

Prince embraced the faith and even proselytized his neighbours around his Paisley Park estate in the Minneapolis suburbs, who were sometimes shocked to find the star on their doorsteps.

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Additional reading

Lawrence Wright’s 2013 bestseller made in documentary ‘Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief’

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Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (WBTS) main groups that broke away

There was an early split during the life of Russell and a number of splits immediately after his death and several in later times. Most of the earlier groups have held to the teachings of Charles Taze Russell and trace their origin to him and denounce Jehovah’s Witnesses as not tracing their origin to him. In response to this Jehovah’s Witnesses call all of these groups “the evil slave” class. They are:

  1.  New Covenant Believers
    was formed in 1909 by former Society secretary-treasurer E.C. Henninges, the Australia branch manager of the International Bible Students Association, also called Free Bible Students – based in Melbourne.
  2. The Pastoral Bible Institute
    was founded in 1918 by former directors of the WBTS.
    It is now defunct but still publishes The Herald of Christ’s Kingdom, first edited by R. E. Streeter and now with only an editorial committee publishing the magazine.
  3.  Berean Bible Institute
    formed in 1918 in Australia and publishes The Voice and the People’s Paper magazine. Membership is estimated to be less than 100.
  4.  Stand Fast Bible Students Association of Portland Oregon
    was formed in 1919 after Charles E. Heard and others had a pacifism issue with Rutherford over purchase of war bonds, which they considered to be wrong.
  5.  Laymen’s Home Missionary Movement
    was founded by Paul S. L. Johnson in 1919. He believed he had been appointed by God as Russell’s official spiritual successor. Johnson’s death in 1950 led to the formation of new splinter groups, such as the Epiphany Bible Students Association, and the Laodicean Home Missionary Movement.
  6.  Christian Millennial Fellowship
    as formed in 1928 by the Italian Bible Students Association in Hartford, CT after their break with the WBTS.In 1940 they began publishing The New Creation, a Herald of God’s Kingdom magazine and later relocated to New Jersey, forming branches in Australia, Austria, England, Ghana, Germany, India, Italy, Japan and Romania. However, eventually they discarded most of Russell’s writings and joined the “New Covenant Bible Students” as “Free Bible Students.”
  7.  Dawn Bible Students Association
    The Dawn Office in East Rutherford, New Jersey

    The Dawn Office in East Rutherford, New Jersey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    is the largest of the Bible Student movements. It was formed in 1931 when Norman Woodworth, cousin of C. J. Woodworth to resume publication of Russell’s Studies in the Scriptures, which the WBTS Tower Society had ceased to publish in 1927. Their magazine is entitled Dawn — A Herald of Christ’s Presence.
    In recent times some have distanced themselves from some of Russell’s teachings.
    In 1974, a splinter group was formed called Independent Bible Students.

  8. The Goshen Fellowship
    was formed by Jesse Hemery in England in 1951. He had been the overseer of the WBTS’s British Isles branch office, appointed by Russell in 1901 and holding that post until 1946.
  9. was formed by Romanian Witnesses after their isolation during the communist era when there was little communication with the WBTS. Evidently this involved a difference of opinion about procedures or in doctrine.
    *
    Note: The history of Jehovah’s Witnesses may be read in the WBTS produced book Jehovah’ Witnesses – Proclaimers of God’s Kingdom, although there are certain important omission concerning the splits, and a certain gloss and prejudice has been put upon some events.
Related articles

Different approach in organisation of services #3

Radio calls and booklets

Today the Jehovah Witnesses are the biggest known Bible Student Group in Belgium. At first they could find Bible Students groups associating with them and start growing from the previous preparations of those groups. But they too had to see members leaving them.

Français : Jumet (Charleroi - Belgique) - Chap...

Français : Jumet (Charleroi – Belgique) – Chapelle Notre Dame de Heigne (XIIe siècle) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As result of the broadcastings in the mid 20° century, in French and sponsored by the Brethren of Dawn from the U.S; 3 Belgian families were interested in the Present Truth. It was Brother Armand Lechien who got in touch with Brother Félix Pilarski through the mail service of Radio Luxemburg: Brother Félix aimed him towards Jumet. These 3 families left the movement they were members of (the Jehovah Witnesses) because they thought the teachings they heard were not in harmony

with the Scriptures. The Polish-Belgian Brother and Sister Wlodarski had got French brethren and sisters in their circles and found more brethren from the French Association des étudiants de la Bible coming more and more frequently to serve the Word of God (brother François Wozniak, Kosmalski A. Liszka, T. Kubiak, J., Osorowski S.,TF et Ed. Pilarski, Speil, a few from Saint Etienne and many others …..); the family Kula, their younger daughter and one son attended the meetings, in the following years just like in France, pilgrim brethren came from the United States and later from Poland.

Courcelles coal mine ” 6 périer ” Souvret

The families – Armand et Louise Lechien – Ernest et Helena Duchateau –  Edmond et Jeanne Henrioule decided to have meetings during the week (on Wednesday and Thursday) to study the Figures of the Tabernacle. With their agreement, the families Wlodarski and Kula joined them. The studies were held in two languages with the help of a translator (2 languages were spoken French and Polish).

Brother Félix Pilarski and other brethren worked a lot for these meetings because they spoke French perfectly.
Brother Félix Pilarski made a handsome contribution to the development of the meeting of Courcelles with edifying biblical discourses and his visits. He was also personally active in the country of Liège and in Brussels where he had a deposit of booklets. Other brethren also paid many visits; among them we can mention Brother Joseph Wozniak, Adolphe Debski, and others.
After Brother Ernest Duchateau died suddenly, meetings continued for some time. When Brother Lechien died after a quite long disease, we could see a repetitive thing around the house churches, the ecclesia of Courcelles disappeared in the mid 70’s.

Former town hall of Jumet, where the film “Why did He come to earth?” of the Bible Students was given.

On October 24th 1987, the ecclesia of Jumet organised two projections of the film “Why did He come to earth?” in the community City Hall of Charleroi. Those shows were announced with advertising: posters in public places, advertising in the city with loudspeakers, spots on local newspapers radio and TV, display on electronic screens, distribution of leaflets.
More than hundred persons attended these film projections. Leaflets and tracts were given to the participants but only few asked for further information and other booklets.

Soothed to sleep with man’s talk

Very soon in history the majority in Christendom went running after the false teachers. The myths were more pleasing to the ear than the actual truth. They were soothed to sleep with it. Early on the Brothers, as true followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, were in the minority. Their faith of the true gospel was of ‘origin’ pure, by the human impurities it was swung back and forth by the years gone.

In Belgium and the Netherlands remained Bible Faithful following Jesus’ command and continued preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God.
The first nor the second world war had kept them from it, even though many of them were anxiously looking forward to the action of the two warring camps, because they were against fighting, and because they adhered to a faith that was not liked by anyone.

That Jesus and his apostles spoke about the news that there would be established a Kingdom on earth, that would be ruled by Jesus Christ and in which the faithful of all ages would have a place alongside their Lord: i.e. as co-rulers, this sounded obviously not fine in the ears for them (the German Fuehrer wished to be the only ruler). But the cheerful message for humanity survived now the fight under people and brought unprecedented peace in some families.

The doctrine of Christ’s reign on earth was first treated as highly symbolic, gradually became labelled as a very questionable and useless thought and was ultimately rejected as an absurd invention of heresy and fanaticism.
God’s light happily extinguishes not; it is an eternal flame. The people of Israel in ancient times also reached detritus. They even served other gods. Nevertheless, there remain at this time believers in the One God and history now could repeat itself. Faithful to God those bible students wanted to share their findings and in spite the continuous opposition dared to go against the most popular doctrine of men.

Getting a base in Holland

After attempts from the Netherlands were made to bring Truth to England (in the 16th Century) and having a flight of truth seekers to the New World in the 19th century, now letters of truth seekers from the New World could again send truth to Europe.

The teachings of Elias Smith and John Thomas now, the time was ripe, an opportunity was given to a ‘resurgence‘ of Bible Faithful. They also found their way across the ocean and in all English-speaking countries they could find a foothold.

Through the centuries, the Gospel of God’s Kingdom, which was preached by Jesus and the apostles, showed a dynamic force which has all the opposition of powerful religious groups defied and still serves as the sole basis of faith for those who want to search God.

Website of the Brothers in Christ or Christadelphians in the Netherlands - Website van de Nedrlandse Broeders in Christus

Website of the Brothers in Christ or Christadelphians in the Netherlands – Website van de Nedrlandse Broeders in Christus

In 1956 in the Netherlands finally the group of Brothers in Christ could get solid and communities as “de Broeders in Christus“, arose in Den Haag (The Hague), Amersfoort, Ede and Groningen.

From 1957 officially recognised, seeing it as our duty to our Lord to make his name known among the people in our area, as well as among other nations, they made work of it to go around billing leaflets. They kept their focus on the Bible as the source of all knowledge and followed the guiding principle of the word of our Lord, “Freely ye have received, freely give.” They also began to spread the magazine “Met Open Bijbel” (With Open Bible) of which Rudolf Rijkeboer was the driving force.

Vanishing interest

It clearly appeared that after the ‘golden age’ with the children boom and citizens of Belgium having their life becoming better, the interest for the biblical message of Truth is vanishing with time passing on.
The Bible Students saw their number of members in ecclesiae decreasing.The visiting brethren and sisters from the Christadelphian Bible Mission (CBM) for 25 years made regular visits to put leaflets and pamphlets in the postboxes. Their short visits trying to get people on the street interested in the works of Christ and in the promises of God, did not work out. At the time (early 21° Century) they wanted to give it all up and several Christadelphians left Holland to return to England or to go to Australia.
At the end of the 20° Century some Bible Students with ex-Jehovah Witnesses formed the Vrije Christenen or Free Christians. In that movement was also the non-trinitarian Baptist Marcus Ampe very active. Even before he himself became a Christadelphian he had already brought others to the Christadelphian faith. In Flemish Brabant and in Hainaut, plus on the net, with him, again an effort was made to bring the Good News of the coming Kingdom.
The Belfry in Mons

The Belfry in Mons, one of the meeting places of the Free Belgian Christadelphians

Last year brother Marcus tried to get several Bible Student groups together, but failed because of their will to have a certain power and the will to keep everything in control themselves. Plus some, like our confrères which we ourselves could not get over the bend to join the other Christadelphians in Belgium, made it impossible to have the different bible Students exchanging ideas, meeting sessions and information about their where-about and working. For our Australian brothers, of the Australian Bible Students, the CBM members were not close enough in following the teachings of brother Dr. John Thomas and mixing with the too loose teachings would dilute the whole system (they thought).

The man from the North and his organisation, have most of the Bible Students (except the JW) living in Belgian. But they resisted in giving the addresses of their ecclesiae in Oostende, Gent, (Brussels) and Antwerp. this made that the few but very active Christadelphians from Brussels, Leuven and Mons, could not meet with more Christadelphians in Belgium.
We too had to face the difficulty of bringing people together in peace and where confronted with a loss in our ranks, but our invitation is still open to join as members of the Body of Christ, united in the love of Christ.
We are convinced that our preaching work is important and that even when we do not reach so many people in Belgium, we do hope we can reach some others far away from us. We do hope that our voice may also sound in the darkness and bring some light to people we do not know, but who we do hope to meet in the Kingdom of God. We look forward to meet many new faces, happy to be under the Guidance of the Lord and not bounded by single people, but constructed on the cornerstone Jesus Christ.
Though we may have a different approach in organisation of services we do believe we all should go for the same truth and for the unification under Christ, by which each group might have a different name, but is willing to be united in spirit, sharing to build up and construct positively working to help each other entering the gate of the coming Kingdom.
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Preceding articles:
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Please do find out more about the Christadelphians and find further related articles:

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  2. Two new encyclopaedic articles
  3. Who are the Christadelphians
  4. What are Brothers in Christ
  5. Discipleship way of life on the narrow way to everlasting life
  6. Christadelphian people
  7. Christadelphians or Messianic Christians or Messianic Jews
  8. About the Belgian Free Christadelphians
  9. What Christadelphians teach
  10. Small churches of the few Christadelphians
  11. Priority to form a loving brotherhood
  12. 19° Century London Christadelphians
  13. Breathing and growing with no heir
  14. Commitment to Christian unity
  15.  Parts of the body of Christ
  16. What part of the Body am I?
  17. The Church, Body of Christ and remnant Israel synonymous
  18. United people under Christ
  19. Fellowship
  20. The Ecclesia
  21. The Ecclesia in the churchsystem
  22. The ecclesia or Christadelphian church
  23. Our relationship with God, Jesus and each other
  24. Our ecclesia or Christadelphian-church
  25. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  26. An ecclesia in your neighbourhood
  27. Communion and day of worship
  28. Christadelphians today
  29. Small churches of the few Christadelphians
  30. Who Celebrates Easter as Religious Holiday
  31. Eostre, Easter, White god, chocolate eggs, Easter bunnies and metaphorical resurrection
  32. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  33. Harvest in Belgium
  34. Building up the spirit of the soul
  35. No reconciliation possible between CBM and Duncan Heaster from Carelinks
  36. Priority to form a loving brotherhood
  37. Change of name
  38. Quibbling siblings united or allied children of an organisation or a church
  39. Small churches of the few Christadelphians

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Male domination and tyranny giving opportunities to defile the Name of God

All human beings can and shall make faults in their life; Nobody can escape. The only one who did nearly escape was Jeshua, the Nazarene Jew who did everything to please his heavenly Father. But by doing so he more than once probably frustrated his earthly parents; For sure he made them twice in his lifetime very worried and sad. Once when he was 12 years old and did not follow up the wishes to stay close to his family in the big city Jerusalem. there he had not thought of the worries his parents might get when he would not be in the caravan back home. An other time he worried his mother very much was when he was taken prisoner and later brought up to the hill for execution nearby the walls of that same city. An other time he got out of the normal behaviour a human being should stay, was when he saw all those sellers in the temple, the house of God. He really lost his temper and threw the tables over and shouted to those vendors in what Jesus considered a house of prayer and not a sales market. Jesus like any other human being could sin, but did not. What he did was righteous in the eyes of God.

To be all the time righteous for any person is ‘very difficult’. When you look around you, you shall be able to see people you like very much and others you like less, but also some you do not like at all. From those you know you also shall be able to tell good things but probably also bad things. Also about yourself you shall have to admit there are good and bad things.

Secrets of Pedophilia in an American ReligionThere does not exist any organisation which can escape to undergo things in its ranks which would better not have occurred at any time. It is worse or gets really bad when organisations do not want to see what goes wrong in their organisation or worse even try to hide the things which went wrong in their organisation. In the last instance we do have to ask questions and we do have to be more aware of the danger of such activities.

When people in charge of parishes or communities to something wrong to people where they should take care off their wrongdoings are even worse than those who do not know better. We should always take into account the people who are poor in mind or who do have a brain which is not working like it should do. but by those who get a position to take care over a flock or some people who give their trust in his or her arms, than it becomes abominable.

When elders, priests, pastors, ministers commit acts which are an abomination in the eyes of God it becomes worse, because those people are considered ‘workers for God’ and should be defending the Faith. they should be an example for the community and for those who have to be brought to God. They should not be persons who give others the opportunity to blame the Church or to spit on religion or to defile the Name of God.

We can not deny that also by groups who call themselves Bible Students there can be found people unworthy of such name. We also can not deny that in such groups there can be found people who should know better, and who really study the Word of God, but could not resist doing things which are against the Laws of God.

No denomination in Christendom nor in Christianity seems to escape the evil of some men or women in own ranks. When there can be found such evildoers in a group which bears the name of the Most High it becomes even worse. But that should not get such organisations try to hide such things for others, because then they do even more damage to their own organisation and worse to the Name of God.

Rape Infographic

Rape Infographic (Photo credit: Snipergirl)

Former elder Mark Sewell is the last mentioned case of such an example which no Christian organisation would like to find in their midst. According to the accusations he used his “position of power” to “exploit and abuse” women and children over a ten-year period.

Officials at head office of the Jehovah Witnesses appointed a seven-man committee to investigate what had happened.

As a result Tom Brown was stripped of his post as presiding overseer but remained as an elder, while Anthony Sewell was removed as an elder because of events he concealed and tried to conceal.

A four-man committee then investigated the claims of assault and rape against Sewell, resulting in him being ‘disfellowshipped’, which meant being removed from the church and “shunned” by other Witnesses.

What is important that people look for the intentions of some one. Those of a person claiming to belong to Jehovah His organisation when he does fornication or rape does something which not only brings blame on that worldly organisation but also on the organisation of God and on His Name.

In 2012 the Watch Tower Society had already issued a letter to all Bodies of Elders instructing them on how to handle cases of child abuse in the wake of the Candace Conti verdict, but some years on now, we wonder how those elders in the different countries do the right thing and follow the rules of the countries in which they are working and living.

It was already chocking in 2012 that the Governing Body did not use the lessons learned from the Conti case to bring the Society’s child protection policy into conformity with the law, not to mention the basic principles of community responsibility.

Despite the jury’s multi-million dollar award of punitive damages against the Society in the Conti case, little was being done to ensure that similar cases would not arise in the future. And the world could hear of many many different cases of child abuse and of sexual harassment by elders and the female Witnesses.

For us we can not understand why parents in the 21st century still react like the parents in the 1950ies and 60ies did in the Catholic families. It can be that the Witnesses are only in that stadium and are 50 or 60 years behind the time, which would mean that over such time we are going to see empty Kingdom Halls or having only Kingdoms Halls in 2060 with just 5 or 6 attendants.

The organisation and the people leading a congregation should know that not one religion can make a psychological/criminal evaluation in case they themselves did not receive a higher education in that field. They also should know they have to take the responsibility to protect the weaker people in their community and should always investigate every sign of wrong going.

We agree that a person accused of being a paedophile should always be considered innocent until proven. But to say he is innocent unless two people witnessed the abuse (the victim and someone else) is ridiculous, because any sex offender shall probably take care there would be no witnesses or nobody who would come to stand up against him or her.

To have an organisation ruling out paedophilia because there would be no witnesses to confirm it would make that there nearly never would be a case in instances of child molestation to confirm the allegation. Certainly in very confined communities with very strict rules, like the  Jehovah Witnesses or any small  or big fundamentalist religious organisation, child molesters who are smart enough to carry out their despicable crimes without someone else watching, shall always feel the protective hand above them because nobody lower than them would go against them.

Saying that those accused of child abuse have not to be judged by “worldly” standards, but through God’s standards as determined through a mistaken application of the Mosaic law is taking the law in their own hands and not giving the Caesar what belongs to the Caesar (like Jesus said), but denying jurisdiction to do her work .

It was hoped that the Conti case might have resulted in the Society revisiting the “two witness rule”, but until now there is not such a thing.

Demanding a confession is not always to bring such a confession when somebody did really something he or she should know is really not allowable in our worldly nor in our spiritual society.

The rule the JW organisation asks to be followed goes in against any lawful acceptable position. when a child and her parents do not find others who have seen something which went wrong between the child and the sex offender, the parents may feel guilty to bring a complaint because they have no witnesses of the events their child is talking of.

“Do not admit an accusation against an older man, except only on the evidence of two or three witnesses. Reprove before all onlookers persons who practice sin, that the rest also may have fear…. The sins of some men are publicly manifest, leading directly to judgment, but as for other men [their sins] also become manifest later. In the same way also the fine works are publicly manifest and those that are otherwise cannot be kept hid.” (1 Timothy 5:19,24,25 – New World Translation)

However, in evaluating the evidence for internal congregational purposes, they must bear in mind the Bible’s clear direction: ‘No single witness should rise up against a man respecting any error or any sin . . . At the mouth of two witnesses or at the mouth of three witnesses the matter should stand good.’ (Deut. 19:15) {Shepherding textbook, chapter 12, paragraphs 18-21}

When a girl, woman, boy or man is on his own, not finding somebody who has seen that she or he is molested, this would mean she or he does not make any change in the congregation to be heard, and worse could become seen as somebody bringing the unity in the congregation in danger, so becoming herself or himself an object of exclusion.

To say

“the elders are not authorized by the Scriptures to take congregational action unless there is a confession or there are two credible witnesses.” {2012 letter to all Bodies of Elders paragraph 11}

shall not give any opportunity to righteous and honest elders to act lawfully and honestly.

Barbara Anderson, who once worked at the Brooklyn headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses from 1982 to 1992 and was a member of Jehovah’s Witnesses from 1954 to 1997, became a long-time campaigner for the Society to drop its negligent approach towards child protection. She did research as well as wrote a number of articles for their Awake! magazine and has done extensive research on issues related to child sexual abuse in the religion leading to interviews on major TV and radio programs as an outspoken critic of Jehovah’s Witnesses sexual abuse policies. The first time she heard about child sexual abuse within the organization was around 1984, which may be considered quite late, when we do know that lots of sexual offences in the other denominational churches had most of their offences in the 1950ies and 1960ies.

It can well be that by the wishes to stay truthful to Bible teaching there could be lesser cases, but as long as not more JW will come out of the dark to bring such accusations and developments after such knowledge into the open, we would not know for sure and could only guess. this guessing by the public can do more damage to the organisation which by many already now is considered to be a sect and not a proper church organisation.

Barbara Anderson writes on her website:

At the time I thought this behavior was an aberration, but later I found out just how wrong I was. The evidence that there were more than just the case related above where children of Jehovah’s Witnesses were molested and kept silent about the abuse, was the authorizing of a series of articles in the January 22, 1985 Awake! the cover title being, “Child Molesting, Every Mother’s Nightmare.” From my past experience with the Writing Department I knew that it was doubtful that the Society would have had a cover series of articles dedicated to the problem unless the child sexual abuse revelations were on the increase within the Witness organization and Witness leaders knew parents needed instruction how to protect their children from being molested and how to recognize signs of molestation. Sadly, though, there was little information in the articles provided to help caregivers and victims deal with the impact of abuse; neither was there a directive to immediately report abuse to the authorities. In fact, in the upstate New York case, it was school officials who notified the authorities about the sexual abuse of one of the children. {Awake! Articles Discuss Molestation; The Life and Discoveries of Barbara Anderson}

World headquarters of the Watch Tower Bible & ...

World headquarters of the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society of Pennsylvania, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

From 1992 on she was so worried about the Watchtower Society’s problematic procedures in the matter of child sexual abuse that she missed seeing the obvious—Witness leaders were treating accusations of child sexual abuse no differently than from the sin of fornication or drunkenness. In case they are still doing this so, as it looks like, it  is clear that the organisation world wide but even more important, the local organisations, would treat such accusations to serious to treat them on their own. Elders should understand that at first they may have to investigate it first, but as soon as they have any idea or hear of a possible child sexual abuse allegation, they should also inform the authorities, because child sexual abuse is a crime — a form of rape – a point the Society still does not seem to fully comprehend. Police handle crime, elders deal with sin!

Any crime is also a sin, but the handling should always happen on two sides. The first direction has to go to the police forces and juridical departments of the authorities. Next the juridical department of a church can take additional matters.

If elders need procedural directions for disfellowshipping someone for child abuse, it should be made clear that the instructions are only for that. Elders are not magistrates. If two witnesses are required to determine guilt to disfellowship the accused, so be it, but only so long as the authorities are notified of the accusation by those involved. {Finally Disillusioned; The Life and Discoveries of Barbara Anderson}

Putting the victims to the side where they have no voice or right of speaking made many leave the organisation but made also that many lost faith in the God which they had hoped would have protected them in “His Organisation”. What most of them forget to see is that William H. Conley, the first president of the Watch Tower Association formed in 1881 (not Charles Taze Russell) and Joseph Lytel Russell took care that people where willing to come to believe that what they, as human beings had formed, was not theirs but Jehovah His Organisation. They misused the Name of God to create an organisation which would take the right away to any other witness of Jehovah to call himself publicly a witness, because than everybody in the world would consider them to be a Jehovah Witness, being part of the organisation with that name.

Many Bible Students felt dishonoured by that organisation by which many people thought they would be part of, which they were not and are not. Lots of people take the Bible Students to be the same as the Watch Tower Society’s Organisation of Jehovah Witnesses.

Well-known Witness attorney, Hayden C. Covington with Lloyd Barry, Jack Barr, Arthur Worsley and Karl Klein did not take the necessary efforts to bring justice to those who did offences which should have been brought to justice. It were those persons who did not bring out the truth about Rutherford who choose only those around him who were willing to follow him and who would not oppose any idea of him. Rutherford endeavoured to mollify the authorities in every possible way. The organisation of today does not seem to respect the authorities yet.

Like we can see in other communities, like the Amish who are struggling with the changes in technology and society, there may be abusive domination and tyranny of women and children by rigid, domineering patriarchal men in the faith who used Bible teachings as a whip.

Gordon Leighton

Gordon Leighton, 53, was found guilty on two counts of indecency with a child, and six of indecent assault after a six-day trial.

In the JW society many elders are aware of such facts but do not handle it properly. Still today there may be found too many unhappy Witness wives complaining of their husbands’ misuse of their authority as head of the house. For children having to face such patriarchal dictatorship it is very difficult to come up to their father or to their mother to tell them when they are misused. Probably a lot of abuses are not coming into the open in the family itself. Befroe it comes into the open outside the family circle it must be already a very severe case.

We can read on Barbara’s site:

One angry woman told me about a Witness who claimed she was raped by a man, who also was a Witness, when she was cleaning the man’s house. When questioned, the man admitted to the elders they had sex, but he said it was consensual and he expressed repentance. She denied it was consensual and said she was raped. She was disfellowshipped for lying; he was not disfellowshipped because he admitted and regretted his sin. Witness women who knew the accused were outraged because the man did not have a good reputation and they believed he was not trustworthy. (Incidentally, no one reported the rape to the authorities.) {Respect for Women; The Life and Discoveries of Barbara Anderson}

It can not be that only after a victim, when she has become an adult, breaks her silence by making a complaint to the police that the authorities could come to hear about such a case and can come to investigate. It is even worse to know that still today many elders refuse to cooperate with the police investigation.

We can only hope the JW organisation shall be uncovered one day and shall have to confess like the present pope of the Catholic Church did recently and too late.

***


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Please do find additional reading:

  1. Religions and Mainliners
  2. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  3. A visible organisation on earth
  4. A Society pleading poverty
  5. Belonging to or being judged by
  6. Sharing thoughts and philosophical writings
  7. Parish, local church community – Parochie, plaatselijke kerkgemeenschap
  8. Do we have to be an anarchist to react
  9. Good or bad preacher
  10. Catholicism, Anabaptism and Crisis of Christianity
  11. Many churches
  12. What’s church for, anyway?
  13. Looking to the East and the West for Truth
  14. Surprising figures about Jehovah Witnesses
  15. Around C.T.Russell
  16. Biblestudents & T.C.Russell
  17. Russell and his beliefs
  18. Russell himself never claimed to be a prophet.
  19. Bijbelonderzoekers en RusselismBibleresearchers and Russelism
  20. Manifests for believers #1 Sex abuse setting fire to the powder
  21. Manifests for believers #2 Changing celibacy requirement
  22. Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger steps down as Pope Benedict XVI
  23. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  24. Responsibility for children who were molested by clergy
  25. Catholic church asking for forgiveness and promising to take action against child-abusers
  26. An Ex-Muslim’s Open Letter
  27. Why Think There Is a God? (3): Why Is It Wrong?

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The Secet Lives of Women

About sex abuse by Jehovah Witnesses:

  1. The Watchtower Punished: Society loses legal battle over child abuse case
  2. “We will decide who is a predator!” – New Watchtower Instructions to Elders on Child Abuse
  3. Barbara Anderson’s Anecdotes
  4. Why Watchtower shut down JWsurvey.org for over 24 hours
  5. The Girl Who Took On The Watchtower – Candace Conti Speaks Out
  6. Watchtower files appeal after JNOV motion is denied
  7. Bo Juel Jensen: Could he be Watchtower’s worst nightmare?
  8. Ex-Elder to appear in court after admitting to pedophilia on Facebook
  9. Elders frustrate UK authorities in child abuse cover-up
  10. In their own words: Candace Conti and Rick Simons speak out in their 2013 interview videos
  11. License to harm: Predator Gonzalo Campos was allowed by elders to prey on children
  12. Disfellowshipped but Not reported: UK pedophile subjected boys to “truly wicked” acts
  13. Under Siege: Watchtower hit with fresh child abuse lawsuit
  14. Zalkin files third JW lawsuit as New Mexico child abuse victim steps forward
  15. Watchtower files reply brief as Conti appeal continues
  16. Kathleen Conti supports new bill for victims of child abuse
  17. The Lawsuit Landslide: Irwin Zalkin representing Eleven child abuse victims against Watchtower
  18. Candace Conti speaks out at RNA 2013 conference
  19. Governor Brown’s SB 131 veto leaves Watchtower child abuse victims frustrated
  20. Oklahoma police investigating whether elders failed to report serial pedophile
  21. Jonathan Rose – the pedophile elder who won the support of a congregation
  22. Governing Body stands accused by District Attorney in Oklahoma child abuse case
  23. Kathleen Conti breaks down during emotional SNAP presentation
  24. Off the hook: Charges against Lawrence dropped as lawsuit is thrown out by judge
  25. A Life Lost and a Life Found
  26. Prevention order for jailed Jehovah’s Witness who fled to the Caribbean to molest kids
  27. Piling on the torment – New Moston elders allow pedophile Rose to quiz victims
  28. Elders labelled “spiritually corrupt and morally bankrupt” in Mark Sewell trial
  29. Jehovah’s witnesses pedophile policy
  30. This is the way Jehovah’s Witnesses treat victims of child sexual abuse
  31. Jehovah’s Witnesses Child Molestation Victims seek justice
  32. Pedophilia amongst the Jehovah’s Witnesses
  33. Abused lambs speak out (Silent Lambs)
  34. Battered lambs
  35. Video’s: Jehovah’s Witnesses ordered to pay $21 million in child sex abuse case
  36. Victim advocacy group for survivors of the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses within Australia
  37. Submission to Child Abuse Inquiry by Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Australia (April 9, 2013) – pdf

    Submission to Child Abuse Inquiry by Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Australia Annexure 1 – (Policy Letter to all Jehovah’s Witness elders) – pdf

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Of interest – Related:

  1. Cult or True Religion
  2. Who are Child Sexual Abuse Predators?
  3. Is Pedophilia a Sexual Orientation?
  4. Dr. Benjamin Carson: Same-Sex Marriage and the correlation between Homosexuality, Pedophilia, and Bestiality
  5. Domestic and Sexual Violence in the Church: A Sisterhood Reality Show Review
  6. Five Frequently Asked Questions About Religious Spiritual Abuse and Child Sexual Abuse
  7. Why do People Sexually Abuse Children? By Minister Marlene
  8. What is Child Sexual Abuse Grooming?
  9. Child Sexual Abuse: Submerge to Emerge
  10. Child Sexual Abuse Grooming: Confusion and Manipulation
  11. Sharp rise in paedophile sexual abuse calls
  12. Probe into twenty schools over Sexual abuse
  13. Women and Child Sexual Abuse
  14. Homeless Teens: How to Protect your Child from Sexual abuse
  15. You Are A Survivor Of Child Sexual Abuse
  16. Silence is Violence: End Child Sexual Abuse
  17. Ten Ways to Safeguard your Child from Sexual Abuse
  18. Ten Ways to Safeguard your Child from Sexual Abuse #10
  19. Why Child Sexual Abuse Grooming Must Become A Felony: The Story of Jason Kidd and His Daughter
  20. How Can You Define Premeditated Child Sexual Abuse?
  21. Overcoming Incest and The Effects of Child Sexual Abuse Grooming
  22. Will the Church Help Child Sexual Abuse Survivors with Mental Illness?
  23. How Should a Pastor Respond to Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse?
  24. Sex Education: Is it grooming children for child sexual abuse?
  25. [Media Release] Heal Me With Words™ Photo Exhibit during National Child Sexual Abuse Awareness Month 2013 +
  26. Heal Me With Words ™ A National Campaign where Healed People, Heal People for Child Abuse Awareness Month
  27. Marko Hamlin: One Man’s Story Of Overcoming Child Sexual Abuse and Depression
  28. Is Child Sexual Abuse apart of a Government-Funded, Satanist-Organized Plan?
  29. When Sisters Die: A Look At Child Sexual Abuse And Sisterhood
  30. Five Myths About Lil’ Wayne and his Child Sexual Abuse
  31. Sugar Ray Leonard at Penn State Child Sexual Abuse Conference
  32. Why Ressurrection Graves Introduces Child Sexual Abuse Grooming As A Crime
  33. [Exclusive Interview]: Domonique Scott of the Sisterhood Reality Show on Overcoming Child Sexual Abuse, Foster Care and Prostitution
  34. Thandie Newton Speaks Out About Sexual Abuse
  35. Pedophiles are Watching Coy Mathis, and Lil Poopy: What these Children have to do with Legalizing Sexual Abuse
  36. Quote of the Day: National Child Sexual Abuse Awareness Month
  37. Dr. John E. B. Myers at Penn State Child Sexual Abuse Conference on Family Court
  38. The Jennie Withers Story: How An All-Star Became A Survivor Of Spiritual And Child Sexual Abuse
  39. Jerry Sandusky: Guilty Of 45 Counts Of Sexual Abuse and What We Can Do To Prevent This From Happening In Our Own Lives
  40. Survivor on Boy Scouts of America release of Internal Child Sexual Abuse ‘Perversion Files’
  41. US border officials abuse unaccompanied migrant children: Rights groups
  42. US Military is riddled with Sexual abuse
  43. Female German Soldiers sexually abused
  44. Paedophile gay couple sexually abused a Russian boy for years
  45. Woman sues Jehovah’s Witnesses for alleged abuse
  46. Child Sexual Abuse within the Dutch Catholic Church
  47. Child Sexual Abuse : Spread the Word!!!
  48. Sex, Celibacy, and Priesthood: A Bishop’s Provocative Inquisition
  49. Catholic Clergy Sexual Abuse? They are Unsaved! By Minister Marlene
  50. Acquitted Priest resumes Ministry after sexual abuse charges
  51. Diary of a Seducing Spirit: Part 2 Creepy Church Abuse 1
  52. Diary of a Seducing Spirit: Part 2 Creepy Church Abuse 2
  53. New lawsuit accuses Philadelphia church of sexual abuse
  54. 1 in 3 sexually abused in Westminster
  55. Over 800 complaints to Austrian Catholic Church sexual abuse commission and Abuse confession
  56. Belgium launches legal action against the Vatican for sexual abuse by paedophile priests
  57. Clergy sexual abuse victims ask Redemptorists to drop defense of defrocked priest AND
  58. No change in abuse policy: US Bishops’ head and Retiring Bishop proud of his strong stance on sexual abuse
  59. Papal Commission demands accountability for abuse in Catholic Church
  60. Vatican named in lawsuit alleging sexual abuse
  61. Vatican to set up clergy sexual abuse help centre
  62. Victims of sexual abuse by priests barred from meeting pope
  63. I’m anti-Catholic says Byrne after sexual abuse by priest
  64. Top Catholic pins sexual abuse on married men
  65. Senator names and shames priest accused of sexual abuse
  66. German priest admits 280 counts of sexual abuse
  67. Dutch Bishops Apologize for Sexual Abuse
  68. Vatican protesters evicted by police and Catholic Diocese spends $1M on priest sexual abuse cases
  69. Priest faces court over child sexual abuse allegations
  70. Vatican sex crimes prosecutor warns bishops and Sexual abuse silence “deadly” for Church: Vatican official
  71. “Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence In The House of God” Documentary Blames Vatican For Poor Handling Of Catholic Sexual Abuse Case
  72. Bura na Mano Holi Hai?
  73. Say No to Eve-teasing!
  74. Will the Church Help Child Sexual Abuse Survivors with Mental Illness?
  75. Zhang Muyi a 24-year-old pop star in China is Child Sexual Abuse Grooming a Child from Canada with millions of approving followers
  76. R&B Divas LA Reunion’s Reveal on Domestic and Sexual Violence
  77. The Bible and Child Sexual Abuse
  78. The Bible and Child Sexual Abuse II
  79. UN denounces Vatican over child abuse and demands immediate actionphedopile-1-300x199
  80. United Nations wants the Vatican to hand over details of child sexual abuse cases
  81. No privileges for bishops on abuse: Pope
  82. The Anti-Pope to meet with sex abuse victims at the Vatican
  83. Francis: I ask forgiveness for damage caused by abusers
  84. The abuse survivor who reminds me that we are suppopsed to be a light to the world
  85. More than 150 allegations of sexual abuse have been made against BBC employees
  86. Sexual Abuse Scandal at Horace Mann Schoolsauditerrorists
  87. Saudis sexually exploit teenage Syrian girls: Report

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  • Little Tidbit #3: My Excuses (rebeccafellrath.com)
    Our excuses are endless.“I got drunk, because there was alcohol at the restaurant.” “I lusted because that woman’s shirt was too revealing.” “I gossiped because I was on Facebook.” “I said those things, because of the bad music they play at work.”
  • Watching Porn At Church (leadingfamilydevotions.com)
    our bodies are now the temple of God. Inside of them resides the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit desires for them to be set apart from defilement. Can you imagine bringing your iPad into the Jerusalem temple (assuming they had wifi) and pulling up a pornographic video to watch during the worship service? Of course you can not. That would be wrong wouldn’t it. But it is the same way with our bodies now. Our bodies are the temple of God’s Spirit. If we bring such garbage into the temple of our body, we are polluting and defiling God’s sanctuary. What a horrible effect this sin has caused in our society. Flee such perversion!
  • Season of Rape: Why we defile small girls – Pastor, others (vanguardngr.com)
    Child defilement is becoming a source of concern in Benin-City, Edo State capital. It is even more worrisome when the act is carried out by supposedly men of God.In the last few weeks, no fewer than five children have, allegedly, been defiled in Benin-City by men old enough to be their fathers. On Thursday,  Edo State Police Command paraded 32 suspected criminals, amongst them, three accused of defiling children. The suspects include  a pastor with the Deeper Life Bible Church, Abudu, Edo State, Eze Fidelis, who was said to have had carnal knowledge of two girls: Joy, 9, and Anthonia,11.
  • Teacher arrested in Ibadan for defiling pupils (whatsupibadan.com)
    A teacher at the Calvary Heritage Kiddies Castle, Oluyole Estate, Ibadan, Olayinka Oluwadare Folarin has been arrested by the Oyo State Police Command for defiling three pupils under his care. Folarin is a teacher at the Heritage Home, a non-governmental organization where orphans and vulnerable children are catered for. His victims, who have been subjected to sexual trauma on a weekly basis since 2013 are said to be between 10 and 11 years old and they are primary five pupils. Two of the victims are orphans in the home where they have been living since they were two years old. Folarin allegedly began the escapade last year on a weekly basis inside the school toilet with a threat to kill the pupils should they tell anyone. For easy access, the father of four was alleged to have been applying lubricant gel on the girls. He was said to have been sacked from his previous school on account of the same behaviour. The secret act of the teacher came to the open when a group of male pupils found one of the teenage girls crying after being sexually abused by the teacher.
  • Islam’s Halal Sexual Practices (banislamofficial.com)
    it is utmost important to study what sexual practices were carried out by him in his life so that all Muslims can practice those sunnas and follow his footsteps.
    +
    A Muslim man can have sexual pleasure with a little girl as young as a baby. But he should not penetrate her vaginally, however he can sodomize her.
  • Islamic Dogs of War – The Use Of Gang-Rape to Subjugate Infidels and Those that Resist (trevorloudon.com)
    As a young child, standing by my father, watching the nightly news, I innocently asked what the word ‘rape’ meant. I never received an answer and rightly so. It was not something that you discussed – it was too evil, too horrific. Today, rape is a commonplace epidemic growing across Europe and the world — the perpetrators are primarily radical Islamists. Committed by power freaks and evil incarnate who are not spoken of because it is politically incorrect to do so. So, we tell our women to be quiet… to obey… to cover themselves and hide, rather than fight the depraved animals who degrade, torture, abuse and murder them in the name of Allah.
  • Abu Ghraib prison eulogy – Satire (younglbadult.wordpress.com)
    Ah Abu Graib, the suspended garden of democrazy ! A great work of art, where photographing beautiful atrocities were so much fun.Remember the smile of Mrs England pointing her finger to a male sexual organ ? ( couldn’t remember what species ).
  • The Wedding Night in Islam With Hadith Explanation (ohack.in)
    Our Beloved Prophet muhammad(pbuh) has clearly explain the sahaba about how to make an wedding night in islam,As Follower of islam we need to do same as what prophet muhammad(pbuh) has did, Many of them think’s that it is usual way as what other’s did(By watching Tv,hearing From Friend’s,Learning through Book’s).
    +

    Ramadan, Hadith Regarding Fasting
    In ramadan Who ever fast should abstain from sexual activity from dawn to duck and also immoral behaviour like Anger,Abuse.

  • Muslims Allowed to Rape Captive Women (paulmarcelrene.wordpress.com)
    Also (prohibited are) women already married, except those whom your right hands possess: Thus hath God ordained (Prohibitions) against you: Except for these, all others are lawful, provided ye seek (them in marriage) with gifts from your property, – desiring chastity, not lust, seeing that ye derive benefit from them, give them their dowers (at least) as prescribed; but if, after a dower is prescribed, agree Mutually (to vary it), there is no blame on you, and God is All-knowing, All-wise. S. 4:24 Y. Ali The above passage emphatically allows for the raping of women that are taken captive, even if these captives happened to be married!
  • The Paths of Deceptions-The Infiltrated Paths! (ministry786.wordpress.com)
    Over 1400 years ago when the Quran was revealed; it was mentioned in Chapter 4 verse 119 that Satan will order people to change their looks that Allah (God Almighty) has created. Today you can notice that on a daily basis either on the roads or in TV! May Allah SWT guide those who are following the footsteps of Satan & may He guide us & increase our faith
    Quran Chapter 4, verses 117 They call upon instead of Him none but female [deities], and they [actually] call upon none but a rebellious Satan.
    +
    The adultery of the eye is the lustful look and the adultery of the ears is listening to voluptuous (song or talk) and the adultery of the tongue is licentious speech and the adultery of the hand is the lustful grip (embrace) and the adultery of the feet is to walk (to the place) where he intends to commit adultery and the heart yearns and desires which he may or may not put into effect.

Belonging to or being judged by

What to be and where to belong

Many Christians may have lots of questions about why we are created so and so, what we do have to do, how we have to behave and form our selves.  Jehovah’s Witnesses also can become confronted with such questions which can bring them into many doubts. They also can become frustrated.

Jehovah's witnesses from door to door

Jehovah’s witnesses from door to door (Photo credit: ideacreamanuelaPps)

Strangely in our world today we may find people who are excluded by the community of Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW), but who are still feeling 100% pro-Jehovah’s Witnesses. This despite the fact that the organisation has removed them from the congregation, and despite the believer his or her belief that the organisation happens to be in error for doing so!

What we do find strange by many ex-Jehovah Witnesses is that they either go totally against the Faith in One God or that they go totally against the non-trinitarian idea and go to an other organisational church. Many of them keep thinking you need A Organisation, others came to come to see clear and do find it is not as such the church of men but the church of God they have to look for.

Witnesses for Jehovah

A few believe that there is no other religious organization on earth today that is so completely committed to doing the work Jesus asked of his followers, and following in his footsteps, worshipping the God of the Bible, in the way that he prescribes, doing their utmost to be continually teaching and living by the truth of his word, and not simply the often-vacillating moral and secular opinions of men. They stay blinded that there are no other serious Bible Students who try to do the task Jesus had ordered his followers to do. This mainly because they limit their idea about preaching to having to go on the streets and to knock at the door or ringing the bell.

We do agree that the Jehovah Witnesses organisation is a powerful organisation, very well structured, and because having enough money and interested people, able to bring the tasks together, organise editions and meetings, much better than many others. They have very beautiful good publications to help people willing to learn about the Word and Work of Jehovah God. Though sometimes they seem to forget that it is “God’s word is alive, and exerts power,” (Hebrews 4:12) and that it is God’s Hand which hovers over the world bringing all sorts of people active in the Word of God. The Jehovah Witnesses  and the excluded ones who still hope to be part of the Jehovah Witnesses (JW) overlook that there are also other witnesses for Jehovah active in the whole world. We consider ourselves some of them.

When all in union or being united

The congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses mistakenly consider them as the only people who are truly united by their religion “in the same mind and in the same line of thought” as Jesus Christ, not just locally, but everywhere around the globe. The JW rightly consider that if all people on earth were Jehovah’s Witnesses, there would be no wars, no violent conflicts. But we also could say in case all Christians would follow the teachings of the one they say they take as their master, than also there would be already less fighting and less problems in the world. In case all people would be real Christians, and not just name Christians, really following the commandments of God, than also there would be no wars, no violent conflicts. The same simply cannot be said of the myriad of other religions on earth today, because there are so many divisions and many having non-Scriptural teachings. Taryn Viv having been a JW, and still feeling like one, seems to know one of the problems of the people in the organisation. She writes:

To their credit, Jehovah’s Witnesses are sincerely diligent when it comes to applying Bible counsel to themselves, and to the congregation. Faithfully doing so has proven to have tremendously positive results, which only makes sense. If the Bible really is, as it claims, the word of our creator, his wisdom certainly must surpass ours, and as it is summed up at Isaiah 48:17, “I, Jehovah, am your God, the One teaching you to benefit yourself.”

Fallible or infallible organisation

Diagram Representing Organisational Structure ...

Diagram Representing Organisational Structure of Jehovah’s Witnesses (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to us some Witnesses give the impression their organisation is infallible and only brings the Words of God. They have given the Watchtower and tract Society (Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania + Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York + Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses) with their so called ‘Faithful Slave’ the same position as many Christians do give the Pope of the Vatican. It is that Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses based in Brooklyn, New York which is the ruling council of Jehovah’s Witnesses. They may formulate the policy and doctrines everybody has to follow. Strangely enough the members of the Governing Body say they are followers of Christ rather than religious leaders, but take the position of dictatorial leaders, whose rules and ideas everybody has to follow.
When the Society’s second president, J.F. Rutherford, encountered opposition from directors in 1917, he dismissed them; in 1925 he overruled the Watch Tower Society’s editorial committee — selected by Charles Taze Russell to have editorial control of The Watch Tower after his death—when it opposed publication of an article that altered doctrines on Bible chronology related to 1914. In 1931, the editorial committee was dissolved and until January 1976, the president of the Governing Body exercised complete control of doctrines, publications and activity of the Watch Tower Society and the religious denominations with which it was connected — some of the Bible Students Movment and Jehovah’s Witnesses.

The ones to tell what is right or wrong

Though not one man is infallible and knows everything. Even Jesus did not know when he would return to the earth. But the organisation claims that they can tell all people what is right and wrong, and that they are the only ones who can bring people to God. For sure they will help a lot of people to find the Only One God and to come to see the difference between the man made gods and the Only One God, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah. We should know that we as human beings have all our limitations and cannot expect perfection of one another in this system of things, nor can we expect it of the organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses, nor those appointed to positions of responsibility, in spite of the tremendous good that Jehovah clearly is using the JW, Bible Students, Christadelphians and other non-trinitarian Christians who freely  and sincerely, contribute to the work of God.

Transgender – Being and feeling in a body

As a transgender woman for many, many years, the writer was quite frankly a bit shocked that, within weeks of her first surfacing the truth of her situation openly with a brother whom she considered a long-time friend, the congregation elders had decided this was a “judicial matter,” and scheduled a meeting to essentially determine whether she would be “repentant,” or would need to be removed from the congregation. Strangely enough you could wonder how it did happen they did not know earlier.
Such people with a gender problem, which we encounter much more today (also have a look at the articles on Stepping toes) are not only in trouble with their own situation, having to suffer from major depressive illness for some years and as a result having very little contact with their own family, do not have it always easy  to mix with others and to enjoy friendly contacts and group meetings in Christian groups.

Exclusion because of gender choice

Dr. Camille Cabral, a transgender activist at a demonstration for transgender people in Paris, October 1, 2005

Because Taryn Viv cannot, and will not dress and present herself as the “man” she had come to realize she never truly was in the first place, she has been removed from the congregation. This is somewhat shocking which we often have to hear about the JW, who exclude followers and have their family members and friends of the faith-group charged not to meet the excluded person any more.

When we do know that everybody is created in the likeness of God, and that we do bear the image of God, you may wonder if those who do not feel at ease in their body are really doing something against the Will of God ,when they let science help them to become the person they, in first instance feel to be?

For sure, those who would knowingly and wilfully practice such things that Jehovah condemns as seriously harmful, unloving and wrong, could not rightly still be considered a follower of Christ. Those who practice fornication, theft, murder, and do not regret what they have wrong, even when baptised, can not be any more be considered a person being part of the Body of Christ. We do agree that in many Christian denominations there are a lot of people who believe we do not have to work any more once we are ‘reborn’. They think once baptised that they would enter in heaven because they are saved by Christ. But Faith without works is death.

Looks, judging and counselling

In case people of the congregation see that there is something wrong they should bring this into discussion. Faithful brothers and sisters should be counselled then to avoid any association with such a person, even to the point of just sitting down to a meal with them, where others could see the association with that person. But we do not find it right that natural brothers and sisters and parents are not allowed to speak or associate with their brother or sister or child.

According to us they should be the first ones to bring the other to get to see what he or she did wrong, but than there have to have been something wrong. Therefore we as Christians should examine everything very careful and be attentive before we judge some one else. We also should be aware that by the ages many traditions came into our life as well as ideas how we should be or what would be accepted as normal or acceptable in our community.
For example the JW always like to go around in business suits and do not find it appropriate to wear casual clothing in service. Their way of dress is also not always conform the dress in the country they preach. As such, in West Europe everybody straight ahead recognises the JW because of their Americanised out of date dressing. But that has nothing to do with commandments of God, where no where in Scriptures is written that a dress for a girl has to have a length of so many centimetres beneath the knees or up to the ankles.

Exclusions of persons

Christians should be very careful with exclusions of persons from their community and should also try to do every effort to get the person back on the right track. They never may forget that the rules of exclusion are about someone who has not shown any repentance, remorse or regret for such serious wrongs, and that the purpose of such “disfellowshipping,” as Jehovah’s Witnesses call the practice is twofold.

  • First, it may move the person to reconsider the seriousness of what they have been doing and to turn around, thereby restoring a good relationship, first and foremost, with Jehovah God, but also with their spiritual family, who are urged to “kindly forgive and comfort” them. (2 Corinthians 2:7)

  • A second key reason is that, in the event they should remain unrepentant, “a little leaven ferments the whole lump.” (1 Corinthians 5:6)

Wisdom of scriptural admonition evident

The writer of the article A Matter of Judgement recognises that the wisdom of the scriptural admonition is evident, and can be clearly seen by counterexample. No doubt we’ve all heard of some widely publicized cases of unthinkably horrid offences committed by members of various religions. (Child molestation, for example, comes to mind. Murder is another, such as the bombings of abortion clinics, for example.) When those engaging in such acts, even repeatedly, can yet remain affiliated with others of their “faith,” as though even such gross wrongs are tolerable, or beyond judgement, what does it say to the world at large about that faith?

“Faith without works is dead.” (James 2:26)

More believers should hear the call of those who came onto this world in an other body than there mind tells them.

For now, though, I’ll conclude by saying I am grateful to be attending meetings regularly at the Kingdom hall again, and despite being considered “disfellowshipped” I find them spiritually strengthening and encouraging.
These days I am glad to say I can be more sociable again, and although it saddens me that I cannot now freely associate with many of my friends, brothers and sisters in the congregation, I find I am being given precious opportunities to speak about the good news of God’s Word with others I come into contact with.

Far from letting my circumstances cause me to be negative, many an acquaintance has told me they have come away after a conversation with a better view of both the Bible and Jehovah’s Witnesses than they had before.

It pleases me know that I can still plant seeds of truth. I would encourage anyone in my sort of situation to do the same. Jehovah is a rewarder of those loyal to him, and so although the appointed elders may still expect to see me doing things that I cannot do, I know that Jehovah is pleased to see me doing what I can.

We only can hope that those who found their way to Jehovah the Only One God, by the help of the marvellous work of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, when they leave that organisation will continue in the Faith and in the Truth, loving God and all His creation, the good and the bad people also.

English: Moordown: Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s W...

Moordown: Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses Tucked away in Elmes Road, otherwise a residential back street of Moordown. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Please do find:

  1. Taryn Viv a Wrongful Imprisonment ~ Faithful reflections of a transgender Jehovah’s Witness
  2. A Matter of Judgement
  3. Food for thought, that’s all.
  4. Failing to Answer the Most Vital Question About “Becoming Jehovah’s Friend”
  5. Jehovah’s Witnesses Shun Family Members for Selfish Reasons
  6. Focus on Jehovah’s Witnesses
  7. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  8. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  9. Followers with deepening
  10. The business of this life
  11. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  12. Determine the drive
  13. Does the method of preaching from house to house have its basis in the Scriptures?
  14. Blogging for Jesus…
  15. Creator and Blogger God 4 Expounding voice
  16. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
  17. Bringing Good News into the world
  18. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  19. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #5 Prayer #2 Witnessing
  20. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #5 Prayer #3 Callers upon God
  21. A Voice to be heard
  22. Breathing to teach
  23. Church sent into the world
  24. Church enemy of faith
  25. Breaking up with a cult
  26. Dependence
  27. Feeling-good, search for happiness and the church
  28. Casual Christians
  29. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  30. Uncovering the Foundations of Faith
  31. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  32. Testify of the things heard
  33. How should we preach?
  34. When discouraged facing opposition
  35. Reasons to come to gether
  36. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  37. Manifests for believers #5 Christian Union
  38. Witnessing at LaGuardia Airport
  39. Bible for you and for life – TheBible4Life Committee explain what is planned for the national preaching effort next year.
  40. Good or bad preacher
  41. Holland Week of billing
  42. Trying to get the youth inspired
  43. Jew refering to be religious or to be a people
  44. Christian fundamentalism as dangerous as Muslim fundamentalism
  45. Faith and works
  46. Repentance and conversion are not milestones which we pass on the way of life and never see again
  47. God receives us on the basis of our faith
  48. God loving people justified
  49. Creation and the Bible

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  • Jehovah’s Way: At the First Sign of Their Religious Doubt, Freeze Out Your Own Flesh and Blood (patheos.com)
    The elder Gonzalez is a Jehovah’s Witness. After his son expressed doubts about the movement, its Watchtower Governing Body promptly ordered the father to shun Rick and Lucas.
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses Hateful practice of unbiblical shunning (christiansparlock.wordpress.com)

    “The result of ‘shunning’ is extreme anxiety, depression, self hatred, increased blood pressure, loss of appetite, self injury and suicidal thoughts and attempts. This is not only painful but excruciating.” – Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

  • The Redemption (and Apostasy) of a Devout Jehovah’s Witness (patheos.com)
    James Zimmerman grew up as the kind of Jehovah’s Witness who might have knocked on your door. Devout and fervent, he knew what the consequences were for apostates. And yet he found a way to break free.

    His new memoir detailing his upbringing — and how his questioning of the faith eventually led him away from it — is called Deliverance at Hand!: The Redemption of a Devout Jehovah’s Witness (Freethought House, 2013):

  • Jail for Jehovah’s Witness elder who molested girls (manchestereveningnews.co.uk)
    A Jehovah’s Witness elder who was exposed as a paedophile on Facebook has been jailed.

    Jonathan Rose was branded a hypocrite as he was locked up for molesting two little girls he met through the church.
    +
    The family of Rose’s first accuser say they were encouraged to cover up their allegation. He was cleared of groping the then teenage girl in 1995 trial, but she would go on to be a witness in the latest court case. Her family say they were hounded out of the Jehovah’s Witnesses when they expressed concerns.

  • What Does The Bible Really Teach? – Chapter 18 Review (watchtowerinvestigated.co.uk)
    You are not baptised in the name of the father, son and holy spirit you are baptised into the organisation. In fact the last question they is “Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses in association with God’s spirit-directed organization?”
    +
    Gods law are not burdensome, but let me list some things that the watchtower burden with when you are baptised:-• Fill out a report card every month detailing how much ministry you have done (or not as the case may be).
    • You Must go to all the meetings.
    • You Must go on the field service.
    • You Must not have a blood transfusion even if your life depended on it.
    • You Must not get involved in any holidays, Christmas, Birthday, Mothers Day, Fathers Day…the list goes on.
    • You Must cut off love ones if they reject the religion…
    • The list goes on…
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses call on Christians to safeguard their consciences (modernghana.com)
    Jehovah’s Witnesses at the weekend held a special assembly day programme with a call on Christians to safeguard their consciences to aid them walk with God and follow Jesus’ footsteps.

    The aim of the programme was to help the delegates to work towards acquiring a bible-trained and holy spirit-led conscience, which together with the bible, could serve as a reliable guide in deepening their relationship with God.

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