Every year I like to bring up this letter for the "Newbies" on this forum.
I found it very true, and right to the point.
Thanks again, Gaila Noble.
An Open Letter To Jehovah's Witnesses
You may not remember, but I know you very well. I met you a long time ago when you came to my house with your smiling faces, your neat clothes, and your soft voices, and a Bible tucked neatly under your arm. You told me many beautiful stories of a "paradise earth," and a "righteous new system" which would be established shortly. You beguiled me; I listened and I let you teach me your form of Christ-dignity.
I loved you, I devoted most of my life to you, I was loyal and obedient, never realizing that one day I would come to disagree with everything you had to say. When I first met you and learned of the "paradise," little did I know that in order to get to that paradise, I would have to walk over the dead bodies of beloved family, cherished friends, and casual acquaintances, because they didn't want to be Jehovah's Witnesses. With your soft, sweet voices, and gentle manner, you convinced me that everything and everyone who did not agree with you was "evil." I came to believe that other churches were bad and of the devil, and so were their members. I became convinced that all the governments were wicked, including my own, and that I was not to support the country in which I lived. I believed you, I loved you, trusted you, and served you and never suspected that you were capable of deceiving me.
I loved you so much that I raised my precious children as Jehovah's Witnesses. I taught them that you were trustworthy, and true followers of God and Jesus. I trained them to believe your every word. How could I have known that in the future you would steal my own flesh and blood from my arms and prevent them from seeing me because I would come to disagree with you? I never noticed the fangs of oppression and tyranny that lurked behind those gentle smiles. I never knew that I would be expected to hand over my mind, soul, and spirit to you, and if I were to ever want them back, you would hold my children as hostages and no amount of begging and tears would release them from your grip because they had been raised to look at you as being God, rather than mere men.
When I came to you, I was young and pretty and impressionable, looking for a relationship with God, my Creator. But through slick words and empty speeches you convinced me that I was not really a child of God, that my duty was to the organization-that THEY would tell me what to do and how to think. Through years of domination and manipulation I began to accept the meager food that was being offered to me, and became willing to accept it as the true "spiritual" food from the Master, while all the time feeling the gnawing at my body. Finally, I discovered that I had been robbed of my joy, my love, my compassion, and my mercy, and it was replaced with legalistic doctrinal formula which provided me with fear, guilt, and anxiety to fill my hungry heart. When I said, "I want more than this," you slapped me with your soft little hand, which had now turned into an iron fist of oppression. Yes, you fooled me all along, your deception was because you had been fooled too, a long time ago, by others who had taken you captive to their dictatorial reign of terror. You convinced me that the words of men were the words of God because you really thought it was true. I believed you because you were gently, soft spoken, and carried the Bible tucked under your arm.
You told me that you had "freedom" and it was only later, when I tried to escape your brand of "freedom" that I discovered that the iron bars of the gate had been shut and I was at your mercy because, by this time, you had already gained control of my mind and my emotions. I cried and begged you to please let me go, and you said, with your firm, roaring voice, "not until I have stripped you naked" and you did. You stripped me of my dignity, my self-respect, my honor, and my FAMILY! You told all my family and friends that I was demonic, evil, an apostate, a spiritual fornicator, and good for nothing but total destruction by your angry God whom you had tried to pass off as a God of "love." They believed you, and they still believe you, because their eyes are blinded by the promise of "paradise" and they cannot "see" the Hell that surrounds them. The ever illusive "paradise" is held out to the gullible like a carrot in front of the nose of a rabbit, and causes them to sacrifice their family, friends, careers, education, hopes and dreams on the altar of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.
Now I'm older, now I'm wiser, but now it is too late- life is fast slipping away. Through my tears, I cry out for my beautiful daughter and grandchildren, but you grip them tighter and tighter and tell them that YOU will be their "mother." And so you are, and so you are! I begged to recapture my honor and my dignity, but you laughed with your bright, shining teeth, and said, "No way, you're on your own." Somehow those soft, pretty words weren't soft and pretty anymore, but words of slander, abuse, hatred, and hostility- and you said them in such a way that others would think that you were righteous and I was evil. You lied about me, but no one will believe you LIED because they trust you-that's because you are soft spoken, gentle, and carry a Bible tucked neatly under your arm.