Has anyone heard of the elders being called independent agents. Spoke to a brother in the Legal department and he called them that.

by life is to short 58 Replies latest jw friends

  • snowbird

    How long before the WT exhausts its supply of legerdemain, loopholes, semantics, and downright chicanery?

    How long?


  • BluesBrother
    my husband was deleted but because I am too outspoken and my husband does not have me in control as his wife.

    Count that as a compliment LITS

    They said the same thing about mine, I was not deleted over it but things were sticky for a while , We ended up moving

  • BluesBrother

    Further thoughts on this. When I was an elder I am sure that we were told, perhaps verbally, that we were appointed to serve as agents of the WTS and therefore must be loyal to it...I have not seen that in print.

    In view of the following though, how can the elders be said to be independant agents?

    WT 2001 1/15 p15

    "Today, therefore, the Governing Body appoints qualified brothers at the branches to represent it in making appointments of elders and ministerial servants. Care is taken that those acting representatively on behalf of the Governing Body clearly understand and follow the Scriptural guidelines for making such appointments. Hence, it is under the direction of the Governing Body that qualified men are appointed to serve in the congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide."....

    "Theocratic appointments come from Jehovah through his Son and God’s visible earthly channel, “the faithful and discreet slave” and its Governing Body. (Matthew 24:45-47) The whole process of such recommendation and appointment is directed, or guided, by holy spirit. This is the case because the qualifications are set out in God’s Word, which is inspired by holy spirit, and the individual appointed gives evidence of producing the fruitage of that spirit. Therefore, the appointments are to be viewed as being made by holy spirit. Just as overseers and ministerial servants were appointed theocratically in the first century, the same is true today................"

  • Yan Bibiyan
    Yan Bibiyan


    This brings to memory the DocBob's letter and, in my opinion, the efficacy of using their own legal arrangement against them.

    To recap, in the letter, it is clearly defined that any action and a result thereof (in a JC setting in that instance), if taken on behalf of the local congregation, remains a local matter. If any other higher entity is involved (like Mother), the action becomes on behalf of that entity. That apparently doesn't sit well with the Borg and from what members have reported, resulted in no action...


  • Elder-Patrol

    Legally speaking, congregation elders have ALWAYS been "independent agents", and not just among JWs. For centuries, both "congregational" (everyone votes for new elders) and "presbyterian" (elders vote for new elders) style of organization marked an important distinction from Catholicism.

    Ironically, the legal theory behind lawsuit damages is that they tend to make others (including congregation elders) more aware of how they can and should behave. The fact that so few elders are successfully sued means either that they are well trained or well behaved or both. That meets the needs of larger society, even if it saddens litigious folks.

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    Lifeistooshort told us the WT spokesman said, "the elder have the flock book to go by."

    Gee, and who publishes the FLOCK book?

    The fact is that the elders are being left out to dry by Brooklyn. On one hand, elders are told they MUST call Brooklyn in cases involving pedophilia, and yet the Brooklyn HQ has the audacity to say these elders are "independent agents!"

    They haven't been independent agents since JF Rutherford abolished the elected elder arrangement and installed a system in which all elders were appointed by Brooklyn - all "company men" who would do whatever Brooklyn told them to do.

    It is unfortunately that although this deviousness and duplicity would not be tolerated in any criminal or civil case, because the WTB&TS is protected by the concept of "freedom of religion" they are not required to be consistent in their statements. They can tell the court that black is black and then in the next sentence say that black is white, and since that is a "religious view," it is accepted without challenge.

    Elders are giving up their vaunted positions as "shining ones" because of their own sense of self-preservation. Let a few of these "independent"agent" elders lose their homes or get sent to prison and watch the ripple effect as even more realize that to the Brooklyn HQ of the WTB&TS, they are expendable pawns.

  • elderelite


    yes. I spent YEARS doing relief work with the RBC and In cases where the branch repairs your house you are expected to sign over the funds that you get as a resullt of insurance.

  • wasblind

    " @ladylee,

    yes. I spent YEARS doing relief work with the RBC and In cases where the branch repairs your house you are expected to sign over the funds that you get as a resullt of insurance. "

    I had no clue.

  • JeffT

    As usual the WTBS is trying to have their cake and eat it. They speak for God, except when they screw up, then its human error. Elders can't sneeze without clearing it with somebody higher up the food chain, but they are completely independent. One of these days the society is going to choke on that piece of cake.

  • cognizant dissident
    cognizant dissident

    They may be independent agents but that doesn't necessarily relieve the WTBTS from legal liability from their actions.

    For example, in Canada, where I work for a realty, all our realtors are licensed, independent, self-employed, agents, payed on commission. However, they still represent the realty company and the brokerage is still liable for everything they do and must cover errors and ommissions coverage for the agents as well as itself. The realty was also fined by the licensing body for the actions of one of the realtors, that was not approved by the realty. Didn't matter. The law of agency, holds the agency responsible for the agents behaviour, independent or not.

    At least in Canada, that's the case. The independence factor is more one of independence from an employment hours and tax status, than one of independence from legal liability.

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