WTB&TS in Germany Gets Tithes...

by prophecor 15 Replies latest watchtower scandals

  • prophecor


    ....directly from your wallet if you are one of Jehovah's Witnesses. It appears according to governmental regulations in Germany allow for the fleecing of its adhereants, directly thru levies and tithes, taken from thier members wallets via the Government, without having to ask, anymore.

    See section II, paragraphs 1,2 and 3 of this document. Website Found Here.


  • Gill


  • candidlynuts

    here are the paragraphs:

    Section II. Status of Religious Freedom

    Legal/Policy Framework

    The Basic Law (Constitution) provides for freedom of religion, and the Government generally respected this right in practice with some exceptions. The Federal Government sought to protect this right in full and did not tolerate its abuse either by governmental or private actors; however, discrimination against and unequal treatment of some minority religious groups remained a problem at the local level, in part because of the legal/constitutional structure of church-state relations. The structure for managing church-state relations, established in 1949, has been gradually adapting to the country's increasingly diverse religious composition.

    Religious organizations are not required to register with the state, and groups may organize themselves for private religious purposes without constraint. However, most religious organizations are registered and treated as nonprofit associations, which enjoy a degree of tax-exempt status. State-level authorities review registration submissions and routinely grant tax-exempt status. Their decisions are subject to judicial review. Organizations must provide evidence, through their own statutes, history, and activities, that they are a religion. Local tax offices occasionally conduct reviews of tax-exempt status.

    Religion and state are separate, although a special partnership exists between the state and those religious communities that have the status of a "corporation under public law." Any religious organization may request that it be granted "public law corporation" status, which, among other things, entitles it to name prison, hospital, and military chaplains and to levy a tithe (averaging 9 percent of income tax) on its members that the state collects. Public law corporations pay a fee to the Government for this tax service; not all avail themselves of it. The decision to grant public law corporation status is made at the state level based on certain requirements, including an assurance of permanence, the size of the organization, and an indication that the organization is not hostile to the constitutional order or fundamental rights. An estimated 180 religious groups have been granted public law corporation status, including the Evangelical and Catholic Churches, the Jewish community, Mormons, Seventh-day Adventists, Mennonites, Baptists, Methodists, Christian Scientists, and the Salvation Army. In June 2006, after a ten-year legal effort by the Jehovah's Witnesses organization, the State of Berlin granted the organization public corporation status, but other states had not done so.

    farther down in section 2:

    The city-state of Berlin accorded public corporation status to the Jehovah's Witnesses in June 2006, but it was not reported in some quarters until July 2006.

    i dont really understand what this means so i am posting the paragraphs and bumping this up.

    the gov't takes the money directly out of your check, does it go to the gov't or does it go to the watchtower?

  • bluesapphire

    Sounds to me like they take the taxes out of your check and then 9% of those taxes go to the religions.

    But how do they know which religion to give the 9% to? That's the question. I mean, what if the Watchtower is claiming as "publishers" anyone whose cards they have, wether they are active or not. Can you imagine if you're totally apostate in Berlin and the Watchtower is collecting taxes from you? What a hoot!

  • Mrs. Witness
    Mrs. Witness

    I think there is a misunderstanding. The way I read it, having the corp status allows the organization/church to have funds withheld from your paycheck if that is what they do...most Catholics tithe, so they might take advantage of the service...and the state would handle the administration of the money and send it to the organization/church. Seems like you would have to give permission for the withholding. Do JW's even believe in tihing?

  • Gopher

    I've sent a PM to GermanXJW regarding this subject. Maybe he can shed some light on it.

    Maybe this thread could be called "WTS in Germany COULD get tithes"

  • GermanXJW

    Hi there. Yes Gopher is right. In Germany, churches that are registered as a public body can use the state as a "collection agency". If (!) the church has a church tax it can be cashed by the state. But since the JW have no church tax (yet?) there is no cashing.

  • GermanXJW

    >But how do they know which religion to give the 9% to?

    In Germany, you have to register with financial department to which church you belong if the church does raise a church tax. You cannot choose, if you are Catholic, the Catholic church tax will be taken by the state and given to the church (with a small service fee for the state.

  • erandir

    Just another example of the WT and government being in bed together. Neutrality is only for the rank & file, it seems!

  • Gopher

    This was a key part of the story:

    In June 2006, after a ten-year legal effort by the Jehovah's Witnesses organization, the State of Berlin granted the organization public corporation status, but other states had not done so.

    Exactly what was the pressing need that caused the WTS to push for this status for TEN YEARS?

    From what I remember in the 80's the German WTS branch had a nice new overszed printing facility at Magdeburg Selters and the organization seemed to be doing well (as well as JW's do anywhere else).

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