by DannyHaszard 36 Replies latest watchtower medical

  • kid-A

    Unfortunately I dont have a scanner, perhaps someone else saved the article may be able to. Regardless, here is a link to the online version, but they dont have the powerful pictures that were in the print version:

  • skeeter1

    Here's to Lawrence & Marshall

  • jst2laws


    Thanks for the update. I admire your hard work as I do the dedication of Mr. Hughes. Hughes wins just by gaining the right to take them to court.


  • toreador

    Good work,Keep us posted!

  • purplesofa

    comment from JW about this case

    I've been following this particular story as I find it heart
    breaking, on so many different levels.

    This man Lawrence Hughes obviously loved his daughter, she being his
    daughter obviously loved him. He was the spiritual head of their
    family and educated her in his belief system. He inculcated her with
    a good understanding of what the scriptures say. She grew in
    understanding and accepted his beliefs as her own.

    One might argue that a child of 16, Bethany would not have the
    comprehension necessary to make decisions that would affect the
    outcome of her life.

    Yet, I myself bore a child at 16 - I chose to follow through with
    the pregnancy, I chose to raise the child, and my son, now 16
    himself, comments on how difficult a decision that must have been to

    I am as comfortable with my decision now at 32, as I was at 16. I
    have a slight suspicion, had Bethany survived, she too would have
    been comfortable with the choice she made. Otherwise she wouldn't
    have been prepared to see it through to the end as she did.

    Bethany obviously knew that upholding biblical standards was the
    best decision for her. She placed absolute faith in the
    resurrection hope promised at Acts 24:15, she also took very
    seriously the instruction to abstain from blood found at Acts 15:
    20, 28, 29

    In the end, the greatest thing she suffered was watching her father
    falter and try to justify his own leanings, knowing full well how
    this affected his relationship with Jehovah.

    I am not Bethany, but speaking from a daughter's standpoint, I would
    be more heartbroken over the latter, than over the prospect of
    dying. I pray someday her father will consider this, and stop
    making a mockery out of his daughter's stand.
  • DannyHaszard

    Judge tosses out parts of Jehovah's Witness case
    Globe and Mail, Canada - 13 minutes ago
    Calgary -- An Alberta court has dismissed large parts of a $975,000 lawsuit that accuses Jehovah's Witness members of contributing to the death of a Calgary ... Canada in Brief

    Judge tosses out parts of Jehovah's Witness case

    PATRICK BRETHOUR Calgary -- An Alberta court has dismissed large parts of a $975,000 lawsuit that accuses Jehovah's Witness members of contributing to the death of a Calgary teen who refused blood transfusions. Lawrence Hughes had sued several parties in the death of his 17-year-old daughter, Bethany, from leukemia in 2002, including his ex-wife, the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada, its lawyers and its members. But a judge struck down most of the claims, except for those brought by Mr. Hughes, who is the administrator of his daughter's estate, on her behalf. A lawyer for Arliss Hughes, the girl's mother, said the claim against her was withdrawn before last week's hearing. Mr. Hughes said in a written statement that he plans to appeal the decision. Staff contacts Letter to editor online form

  • greendawn

    The more the merrier, the more ppl that sue the WTS the better as psychological pressure will increase on them and they will come to think less and less that they can harm others with impunity.

    They can do without the publicity that comes with every case in court.

  • jgnat

    The Star article Blood ban tests faith Even as Jehovah's Witnesses reassess teachings legal challenges

    may force change Feb. 25, 2006. 01:00 AM RICHARD OSTLING ASSOCIATED PRESS

    NEW YORK—Jehovah's Witnesses are renowned for teaching that Jesus Christ is not God and that the world as we know it will soon end.

    But another unusual belief causes even more entanglements — namely, that God forbids blood transfusions even when patients' lives are at stake.

    The doctrine's importance was underscored last month when elders lead more than 98,000 congregations worldwide reciting a new five-page blood directive from their headquarters. There are about 155,000 Jehovah's Witnesses in Canada, according to the 2001 census.

    The tightly disciplined sect believes the Bible forbids transfusions, though specifics have gradually been eased over the years.

    Raymond Franz, a defector from the all-powerful Governing Body that sets policies for the faith, thinks leaders hesitate to go further fearing total elimination of the ban would expose the organization to millions of dollars in legal liability over past medical cases.

    The Witnesses have opposed transfusions of whole blood since 1945.

    A later pronouncement also barred transfusions of blood's "primary components," meaning red cells, white cells, platelets and plasma.

    An announcement in 2000 in the official Watchtower magazine, however, said that because of ambiguity in the Bible, individuals are free to decide about therapies using the biological compounds that make up those four blood components, such as gamma globulin and clotting factors that counteract hemophilia.

    The new directive could create confusion about these compounds, known as blood "fractions."

    Without noting the 2000 change, the new directive tells parents to consider this: "Can any doctor or hospital give complete assurance that blood or blood fractions will not be used in treatment of a minor?"

    Aside from the new directive, a footnote in the Witnesses standard brochure, How Can Blood Save Your Life?, mentions the 2000 article on fractions — but then omits its contents.

    By coincidence, the new directive follows some heavy criticism of the blood transfusion policy from lawyer Kerry Louderback-Wood of Fort Myers, Fla., writing in the Journal of Church and State, published by Baylor University.

    Louderback-Wood, who was raised a Witness but now has no religious affiliation, accuses her former faith of giving "inaccurate and possibly dishonest arguments" to believers facing crucial, serious medical decisions.

    Louderback-Wood complains that many Witnesses and physicians aren't given clear instruction about their faith's blood transfusion policy, particularly on the subject of fractions.

    She's no disinterested bystander. The lawyer says her mother died from severe anemia in 2004 because local elders didn't realize hemoglobin is permitted.

    Louderback-Wood learned that hemoglobin was allowed from the website of Associated Jehovah's Witnesses for Reform on Blood, which was founded in 1997 by dissenting local elders, eight of whom served on hospital liaison committees that advise Witnesses and physicians.

    The founder of Associated Jehovah's Witnesses, speaking on condition of anonymity to protect his standing in a faith that does not tolerate dissent, says liaison committee members know about the revised teachings, but most Witnesses automatically refuse all forms of blood without consulting the committees.

    Physicians are often ill-informed about Witness beliefs, he says.

    Louderback-Wood thinks the faith is subject to legal liability for misinforming adherents, which to her knowledge is an untested theory in U.S. courts.

    Related issues arise in a court case in Alberta, however, related to the death of teenage leukemia patient Bethany Hughes.

    Witnesses headquarters refused an Associated Press request to interview an expert on blood beliefs. Instead, General Counsel Philip Brumley issued a prepared statement rejecting Louderback-Wood's "analysis and conclusions" in general.

    "Any argument challenging the validity of this religious belief inappropriately trespasses into profoundly theological and doctrinal matters," Brumley stated.

    The Watchtower's 1945 ban said "all worshippers of Jehovah who seek eternal life in his new world" must obey.

    Such edicts are regarded as divine law, since the Governing Body uniquely directs true believers. Violators risk ostracism by family and friends.

    A subsequent Watchtower pronouncement forbade storage of a patient's own blood for later transfusion. In all, Associated Jehovah's Witnesses lists 20 shifts and refinements in blood-related rules over the years.

    At the core of their blood beliefs, Witnesses cite Acts 15:29, where Jesus' apostles agreed that gentile converts should "keep abstaining from things sacrificed to idols and from blood." The Witnesses also cite parts of Genesis and Leviticus.

    Judaism and Christianity have always understood these scriptures to ban blood-eating for nourishment. This underlies Judaism's kosher procedures to extract blood from meat, which Witnesses do not follow. Christianity eventually decided the rule was temporary.

    Experts assume that Raymond Franz's late uncle, Frederick Franz, who served anonymously as the Witnesses chief theologian, decided those passages cover blood transfusions. But Raymond Franz raises questions about the blood policy in his book In Search of Christian Freedom. Among them:

  • Why forbid a patient's own stored blood yet permit components derived from large amounts of donated and stored blood?

  • Why allow organ transplants, which introduce far more foreign white blood cells than transfusions?

  • The Witnesses forbid plasma, which is mostly water, but allow the components in it that provide therapy.

    So what's the point of banning plasma?

    Advances in bloodless surgery have reduced many of the medical dangers for Witnesses, but Associated Jehovah's Witnesses maintains that the blood policy is a life-threatening problem elsewhere.

    Louderback-Wood says she'll be contented if her protest saves one child's life.

  • jgnat

    Absolutely, Louderback-Wood's work can be used for a case like this, and might have been an influence in allowing this lawsuit to go forward. Probably health professionals and the courts have been generous in accommodating the Jehovah's Witness beliefs on blood, in the interest of preserving their religious freedom. But now it is clear that the organization does not even fully inform it's members of what is acceptable or not, and this negligence leads to needless deaths.

    The courts now see that individual members may not be fully informed of their options by the religious body they trust. How can an uninformed person make an informed choice? It is therefore appropriate to remove Bethany's mother from the suit, as she was likely as deceived as anyone else in the congregation.

  • DannyHaszard

    untitled.jpg Canadian television Hughes can't sue Jehovah's Witness church Open this result in new window - Feb 28 3:41 PM A lawsuit filed by Lawrence Hughes against the lawyers of the Jehovah's Witness church over the death of his 17-year-old daughter will go ahead, even though a Court of Queen's bench has ruled he can't sue the church itself. Hughes can't sue Jehovah's Witness church POSTED AT 4:34 PM Tuesday, February 28 A lawsuit filed by Lawrence Hughes against the lawyers of the Jehovah's Witness church over the death of his 17-year-old daughter will go ahead, even though a Court of Queen's Bench has ruled he can't sue the church itself. Bethany Hughes died of leukemia in 2002 after refusing blood transfusions for religious reasons. Lawrence Hughes blamed the Jehovah's Witness church (The Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada) for preventing his daughter from getting a transfusion. Hughes calls the judge's ruling a major victory, since he will still be indirectly suing the church through its lawyers. However, Hughes plans on appealing the ruling so the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada can remain a defendant in the case. "I am just seeking justice for Bethany," said Hughes. When contacted for comment, the lawyer representing the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada said it is Hughes's right to appeal. No court date has been set for the appeal Contact page and email address canadianpicket.jpg

  • Share this