Is getting married in Church a DA'able offense? Ping anyone with BOE manual

by Abaddon 34 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Abaddon

    Having been fairly proud of my JW parent's behaviour (and to be honest, my handling of them) in the 13 years or so since I walked away I now find myself in a quandry.

    I basically arranged my departure from the cult in such a manner that I would neither be DA'd or DF'd, to avoid a situation where their family loyalty might be streached by their adherence to Organsiational law. Why should I play by their rules and write a letter leaving an imaginary religion? For other people that may well be the right thing, but for me, no.

    Now I intend to get married in a Roman Catholic church. I don't have to become a Catholic or take Mass or any such in order to do so. It's just a wedding service by a bloke in a frock.

    It is at this point (having moaned for years about me 'living in sin') that they announce that not only will they not go to the wedding, but that getting married in a church will result in me DA'ing myself.

    Quite frankly my first impluse is to tell them to go copulate themselves. However, I am the adult in the realtionship - they are the ones in a high control group. So, I want to do this nicely....

    Now, I know that attending a church service is a matter of conscience, not an out-and-out rule, and will be able to make them feel like something they don't have a profane or dirty enough vocabulary to describe if they persist in that threat.

    But, DA'ing oneself by getting married in a church? Huh? My dad gave me some photocopy that talked about JOINING a religious group being a DA'ing offense, and if that is all he has to go on, I can easily deal with his objections. But is there any clear direction in the literature that an "inactive" (LOL) person who gets married in a church is DA'ing themselves?

    If any of the Elders posting here or lurking here can point me in the right direction, I'd be most endebted.

    I am soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo pissed off about this... and if they play that way it is goodbye Mr-nice-Abaddon, hello Mr-Angel-of-the-Abyss.

  • minimus

    Years ago, I knew of a young JW that got married in a Catholic church. Everyone thought he was going to be df'd. He was not at all. The Society was called and they said it wasn't a df'ing offense.

  • undercover

    I'm not an expert on this but I'll weigh in anyway

    If you've been out for 13 years, unless the elders in your area really hold some grudges I don't think they're going to go after you. You're parents are making a fuss, only because they still see you regularly, but since you've shown that you no longer are part of the congregation for years and years, it doesn't make sense for the elders to do anything.

    Technically speaking, the action of getting married in a church is a DAing offense, but that doesn't mean that anyone will hunt you down, tell you that and then announce it at the hall.

    Back when I was still in a friend of mine drifted away from the "truth", moved away and we lost contact with each other. A couple of years later I heard she was getting a worldly guy in a church. The news eventually spread through the congregation and of course there were some people upset by it. Some went to the elders and insisted something be done. The elders said they weren't going to do anything. She was no longer part of our congregation, she lived elsewhere, she wasn't living as a JW anymore. There was no real point in making a case out of it.

  • blondie

    Is that a trick answer, min? He wouldn't be df'd but wouldn't he be da'ing himself? Most churchers require some kind of membership to be married in the church, at least a monetary donation of some kind.

    I know you can attend a church wedding as long as you don't particpate in the religious ceremonies with being df'd or da'ing yourself.


  • undercover

    Min, wasn't your family involved in a big squabble over who could and couldn't attend a wedding in a church? Weren't some people removed as servants for attending that wedding?

    It boils down to just how bad the elders want to make an example out of someone.

  • minimus

    It wasn't a church wedding. Just a Hotel wedding/reception. And yeah, heads rolled! Blondie, what took place was years ago and no disassociation occured. They treated him like prodigal son "brother". Maybe it's changed but I know of no one that ever had action upon them.

  • RubaDub

    Interesing question ...

    Being in the building itself is certainly not a DA/DF offense. Many JWs take tours of churchs and cathedrals. Even the society holds assemblies in places such as horseracing parks and other locations that are used for gambling.

    I think the main issue would involve the wedding celebration itself. If it in any way involved Catholic teachings or rituals, then you could be toast.

    If it were a very generic event, then I don't see how that would be a DA/DF offense. Even paying something for the use of the church could be defended by arguing that it is no different than going to a hospital for services that is operated by a church.

    But then, it really comes down to the elders view anyway.

    Rub a Dub

  • GoingGoingGone
  • blondie

    p. 94-95 (Elders Manual)

    If it is learned that a person has taken up association with another religious organization, the matter should be investigated, and if verified, a committee should be formed.

    If it is clearly established that the person has joined another religion and intends to remain with it, the elders would make a brief announcement to the congregation that such one has disassociated himself. (w86 10/15 p. 31) My comments and things are disappearing. Looks like they might investigate it officially, but have to prove you "joined" a religion. They might give a general marking talk. BOEs are a crap shoot, one will do something, another in the same town won't. Blondie
  • Lo-ru-hamah

    My father was an elder for over thirty years and I called him and asked what he would have done in this situation. He quoted a scripture for me, 1 Thes. 4:11 - "and make it your aim to live quietly and to mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we ordered you"

    He said that it is private family business and the elders have no need to interfere.

    Hope that might help you some.


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