In Germany, the Watchtower logo must be removed from all kingdom halls

by processor 84 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • cameo-d

    I don't think WT is being singled out. I think there is a movement now in response to religious displays of any kind. I think we are beginning to see it come to fruition not just because of icons being removed and certain religious garb being banned, but also in the "inter-faith" movements.

    Jan. 2009

    Parents win fight to remove class crucifix
    Graham Keeley ("The Times", January 16, 2009)

    Barcelona, Spain - The ongoing row between the Catholic Church and the Spanish Government has erupted again after a judge banned the crucifix from a primary school.

    The ruling came after parents won a three-year legal battle with the local authorities over a crucifix in Macias Picavea school in Valladolid, northern Spain.

    The Valladolid Cultural Association for Lay Schools argued that crucifixes infringed the 1978 Constitution, which establishes Spain as a non-denominational state but recognises individual religious rights.

    Judge Alejandro Valentín Sastre ruled that “the presence of religious symbols such as a crucifix is an element of aggression which infringes rights and freedoms”.

    The courtroom victory came late last year and has reignited a debate about the place of religious symbols in what was once one of Europe's most devoutly Catholic countries. Ten years of one of the fastest rising rates of immigration on the Continent has increased the number of Muslims, Protestants and other religions in Spain.

    And amid discontentment with the right-wing stance of Catholic hierarchy in Spain, many people are leaving the Church.

    Fernando Pastor, 47, whose six-year-old daughter attends the school, led the secular campaign. “What stunned me was not so much that the cross was nailed to a wall but that it was at the head of a public educational activity which was not confessional,” Mr Pastor said.

    The Episcopal Conference, the ruling body of the Roman Catholic Church, condemned the ruling. Archbishop Carlos Amigo, the Cardinal of Seville, said: “The most important thing is to educate the children to respect religious symbols of all types.”

    The Catholic Confederation of School Parents said that the ruling was symptomatic of a “campaign of rabid secularism against religious symbols”.

    The crucifix has been banned in several places in the name of separation of Church and State and pluralism. Many religions and philosophies, such as some branches of Protestantism, Islam, Judaism and Secularism are thought to have a particular distaste for crucifixes. Accusations range from anti-pluralism to calling it idolatry, even though Catholic Christians and others who used the crucifix in religious rites do not worship the image itself.

    In 2005, a mother accused her daughter's school of discriminating against Christians after the teenager was suspended for refusing to take off a crucifix necklace. [4]

    British Airways has faced legal action and calls for a boycott by Christians after it ruled an employee could not display a crucifix the size of a five pence piece on her necklace. [5] A British prison ordered a multi-faith chapel to remove all crucifixes, presumably in order to not offend Muslims. [6]

    In Spain, a local judge to order all crucifixes removed from public schools in order to settle a decades-old row over whether crucifixes should be displayed in public buildings in a non-confessional state. [7]

    A 2008 Quebec government report recommended that the crucifix of the National Assembly be removed in order to achieve greater pluralism, but the local Liberal party refused to. [8]

  • processor

    German user "wasistwahrheit" found out that the new regulation is actually "new light", for this was the previous teaching:

    *** g76 11/22 p. 28 Does Christianity Have a Visible Symbol? ***

    The Bible, however, sets forth no visible symbol for Christianity. Christians today, therefore, must be on guard not to adopt such a symbol. For example, watchtower-like designs appear on some buildings and Kingdom Halls of Jehovah’s Witnesses. There is nothing wrong with these in themselves. Possibly they may help persons to identify property owned by Jehovah’s Witnesses. However, at no time should anyone look upon such things with reverence, as if they were a visible sign of Christianity.

    By the way:

    Watchtower and the Watchtower logo are registered trademarks of Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania.
  • garybuss

    This is the Kingdom Hall in Sioux Falls at 2020 S Norton. It was built
    in the mid 50's. The building was built by Witnesses to look like a
    Watchtower. It was later remodeled with a new facade and later still
    sold to the Charles Mead group.


  • parakeet

    Provided by processor: " For example, watchtower-like designs appear on some buildings and Kingdom Halls of Jehovah’s Witnesses. There is nothing wrong with these in themselves. Possibly they may help persons to identify property owned by Jehovah’s Witnesses. However, at no time should anyone look upon such things with reverence, as if they were a visible sign of Christianity."

    Since the WTS claims JWs are the only true Christian religion, how can any dub looking at a watchtower on a kingdom hall NOT view it as a visible sign of Christianity, i.e. Dubism?

    Sorry, gb, the cat's out of the bag. You may as well run with it and maybe make some extra money at the same time. Watchtower pendants, Watchtower rosaries (count a bead everytime you hear the word "Jehovah"), Watchtower T-shirts for dub picnics (oh, forgot -- they're forbidden now), Watchtower neckties for fs, Watchtower playhouses for little dubbies to play with in the backyard. Yes, I see a real moneymaker here.

  • orangefatcat

    It doesn't make sense, have you any idea how many of the oldest churches in Europe and Germany have

    Watchtowers on their churches.? I can't see it being for that reason. There must be a different reason.

    Witnesses are probably making nuisances of themselves and maybe it was the WTS told them

    to remove them from the halls because the symbol belongs exclusively to the WTS.


  • JWdaughter

    SA COLTON SAIDP: "I really think it shows how un-Christian the congregations appear from the outside. People driving by usually identify a Christian church with a cross, but the Kingdom Halls use a Watchtower logo - the first indication that there's trouble within (and very true)."

    I think you are right! Think with all the different groups around, the Jews have their indication, the Muslims have theirs, there are some disctinctive Buddhist buildings around here also. You even usually can recognize an orthodox church because of their decorative choices. What is a watchtower(?) but a way to make people wonder what the hell kind of religion it is? What god do they believe in? What cult is it? Plenty of churches don't have a cross outside, but one knows it is a Christian church because of the name. Jehovah's Witnesses don't really make it clear from the start that they are (supposedly) christians, and the name and insignia just muddies that already nasty puddle they call religion.

    And making sure they don't come across as a Nazi church could matter.(Another poster stated it) Esp. in Germany where they might make that connection.

  • processor

    Any news on this? Does anyone have the April issue of the US Kingdom Ministry by now?

  • compound complex
    compound complex

    I cannot recall the African country [or countries], circa 1970, that had a political party using a watchtower logo, but The Watchtower we produced for that country had no watchtower on its cover, and that purposefully.


  • dozy

    I know a few creative brickies who put a Watchtower logo on quickbuild halls. Not RBC approved.

    The emphasis on "Watchtower" and liberal use of the symbol has always struck me as being somewhat idolotrous and I know causes disquiet to some sincere high-up JWs. Increasingly the WTS seems to be trying to distance the "corporate" arm from JWs in general and using the expression "the Society" is frowned upon. The legal documents in the California paedophile case describe the WTS lawyers efforts in trying to claim that the WTS had nothing to do the congregations concerned , other than as a supplier of literature and occasional pastoral advice - an argument somewhat difficult to sustain if Watchtower logos are plastered all over the Kingdom Halls!

    An obvious change would be to reincorporate the bulk of the WTS , perhaps under the title "Christian cong of Jehovah's Witnesses" or similar. The WTS could act as the holding arm for the assets , cash , investments and (primarily) property. A similar system operates in the UK , with IBSA as the asset holding entity , with the WTS of Britain as a "trading" organisation. This ringfences the bulk of the WTS assets from any legal claims.

    Such a change would serve 2 purposes - legal protection and a perception of removing any suggestion of idolotry. If the WTS can tie it in with any Daniel prophecy (eg 2300 days etc - as it has done in the past) , then so much the better.

  • Will Power
    Will Power

    Maybe corporate knows that there will eventually be a lawsuit on the other side of the Atlantic, like there was in California, and they are preparing their distance & severed ties. Wasn't it little KH insurance policies that connected Brooklyn $$$ to California?


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