by Venice 23 Replies latest watchtower scandals

  • LDH

    Let me give you the other side of the coin. The names have been changed to protect the not-so-innocent

    My brother's wife and her sister had been sexually abused and molested all during their teenage years. Whenever they met with the elders, the elders had BEGGED them to report him, they FLAT OUT REFUSED, but yet they wanted the elders to 'counsel' him--like they were capable of fixing him. Time goes on, my brother is disfellowshipped, his girlfriend was never baptised.

    Later on my brother married her, knowing her history, and it has been a nightmare for my family ever since. At one point, they were reported to the authorities by neighbors. The department of Children's Welfare came and took the children away and gave my parents custody. When my parents had to go to court to testify whether they knew anything that would endager the children, my father (an elder) answered truthfully that she had been sexually abused as a child and that they (my parents) didn't want the grandchildren around her family for that reason, since none of the girls ever saw fit to prosecute their father. My father mentioned he knew this in his role as a church elder, but the family was unwilling to prosecute, so he had nowhere to turn.

    That B-I-T-C-H stood up and accused my father of being a liar, that she was never molested, and stated that she was going to sue my parents (who have a rather sizeable estate, especially compared to her poor white trash family)for slander.

    That is just ONE example. My father gave me many more. What do you want them to do, people, when the VICTIMS refuse to prosecute or even CONFRONT the abuser. Did you know that even if someone is disfellowshipped for that offense, there is no proof that the crime was commited? Most victims don't press rape charges (embarrasment of family and/or cong). In these situations it is one word against another. The elders are SPIRITUAL POLICE. They can put their own family in danger if they report someone to the police. If that person denies what they said to the police (which you and I both know they would) the elders ARE NOT ALLOWED to disclose to the police anything that was said during any meeting. They can be personally sued. That is the criminal knowing their rights, my friends. Not the elders committing wrong.

    Yes, elders will anonymously report crimes of which they are aware. Because by law, their confession is PROTECTED, and may not be used.

    C'MON guys, there are nitwit elders, we all know one. But my dad has been an elder for 15 years and he would NEVER go along with counseling one not to report an incident to the police. On the contrary, he has encouraged it. Let's give the majority of these guys a break and not get caught up in the heat of the moment.

    And yes, there are victims, who do not deserve to be brushed under the rug. And this post is not meant to minimize any of those victims or cases.

    But in this country, just like a criminal has his rights and uses them, so too should the victim. That is the crux of the matter. If the victim would report the matter to police, who have all sorts of forensic tools/surveillance equip,that the elders don't have, there wouldn't be any of this. And I gotta tell ya, If I was raped, I'd be a-yellin' for the police, not my local elders.

  • claudia

    Lisa, I wish your parents lots of luck in dealing with these idiots!

  • waiting

    Hello Lisa,

    You are correct, when there's rape/incest - there will be signs either immediately, or later on - in almost all cases.

    Imo, Frenchy still summed up the problem with the WTBTS policy the best:

    The problem as I see it is not so much an official policy of ‘hiding’ pedophiles. You are quite correct that procedure dictates that the Society (in the USA I can’t say what the procedure is for other countries) be immediately informed of any such cases. The reason for this has to do with the legalities of specific states and nothing more. The cases are handled like any other Judicial case. And while I do not believe that an accusation alone (be it by adult or child) should be the grounds for condemning a person I do believe a different procedure is in order here.

    I think the problem has to do with the indoctrination of the publishers in the idea that all problems should be handled within the congregation. This, I believe, is fundamentally the problem with the situation. The parents are reluctant to go to the authorities without the blessing of the elders. The elders are for the most part unqualified to deal with such problems and will have a tendency to treat it just like a case of lying or fraud, or immorality. They have been conditioned to believe that they are qualified to handle any problem because they have God’s Word (as explained by the WTS, of course.) They are directed to 2 Tim. 3:16, and told that they are qualified to handle any situation and that God’s Word makes them ‘fully competent’ and ‘completely equipped for every good work’. They will look for tears and promises of doing better in the future, pat the evildoer on the back and let him go. In this case it just doesn’t work. I believe the publishers should be told that if and when this happens that they are to take this child to a qualified professional. Let the professional advise the parents as to whether they should notify the authorities. They should be instructed to follow the recommendations of that medical professional. In actuality the opposite happens because the Society engenders distrust in medical professionals while portraying itself as the very Word of God and in total control of the flock with God’s smile of approval.
    A sad fact of the matter is that a number elders are quite unwilling to share their authority even with the secular authorities. They have actually been convinced that they can invoke the Holy Spirit with a prayer before the meeting and that it will guide them unerringly.

    When children are victims, they tend to grow up and lash out -either to themselves or upon someone else. As for your family, they are living out the aftermath of the rapist. Doesn't make it right - but that does not make the WTBTS any less culpable.

    And you're right - there are good elders. Too bad my daughter and the other girl didn't have access to them. Sometimes you have to deal with what you've got.


  • thinkers wife
    thinkers wife

    So very sorry to hear this is happening.
    My father has been an elder off and on for years. So I have to agree there are good elders. But a lot of times the good ones get kicked around by the bad ones.
    And imho, many times the bad outweighs the good.
    Hopefully justice will win out in your families case. And I hope the bad don't make things tough for your dad.

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