Julia's Inquisition - Two elders, the full version! I want you all to see this.

by Julia Orwell 81 Replies latest jw friends

  • Julia Orwell
    Julia Orwell

    Sorry it's gonna be long winded. I've done my best to reconstruct from memory. My husband was next to me the whole time. Gaps in the script represent where I cannot remember what led into the next topic or to break it up visually.

    This is taken from my email to Gojira:

    Fast forward to now. I've put some scriptures and WT quotes on my facebook page for discussion, been dobbed in to the elders, and they arrived yesterday on the pretext of helping my husband because of that time he got drunk. My group overseer brought the preppy young elder from Melbourne, who'd come to serve our cong because 'the need was great', in other words, get us back into shape. Melbourne exports a lot of these types to the Gold Coast.

    I can't tell you the order, but I'll abridge some of what was said: G.Overseer: [lists about 7 things which are central to JW beliefs and trots out Matt 24:45] these things are what identifies us as JWs. If you no longer believe all of these things Sheree, then technically you are not a JW. What percentage of JW beliefs would you say you believe? Me: I don't know because I haven't sat down and totted them up. GO: Well, roughly. 10%? 20%? 50%? 90? Me: I do not wish to answer that. GO: Do you believe Jesus's prophecy at Matt 24:45? Me: Jesus created a contrast between two slaves, a good one and an evil one. Elders: [trundle out the proof that that the GB were chosen because of good motive etc] Me: Mormons come to my door who are every bit as sincere as the GB or anyone else for that matter. Both: [digress into all the reasons the Mormons don't have the truth] Me: I did not say they do. I just used them as an example. GO: so who else apart from us doesn't believe the trinity? Me: The Christadelphians, Russellites, Mormons, Unitarians... GO: Who else does preaching work? Me: The Mormons, Pentacostals, SDA, evangelicals... GO: But not door to door like we do. Me: In the 21st century there are so many effective ways of getting the message out, with technology- Preppy: [cuts me off] We're not talking about the 21st century! [then ensues a cat-and-mouse game of questions and answers about the preaching of 20 centuries ago] GO: Who else uses Jehovah's name? Me: The Christadelphians GO: So what makes the Christadelphians different to us? Me: They don't believe in Satan. GO: Then who do they say tempted Jesus [see here an attempt to blindside me/enter secondary arguments} Me: I would have to ask my Christadelphian auntie to get the answer to that, or the guy across the road. And on in went about how JWs are true, trotting out the usual evidence. Preppy: Do you believe Jesus has an appointed FDS? Me: I do not know. Preppy: If Jesus isn't using the GB, who then is he using? Me: I do not know Preppy: [outlines all the reasons the GB are Jesus' reps] Do you believe the GB is being used by Jesus? Me: I will not answer that. Preppy: You keep saying, "I do not know," which means you have doubts. [then proceeds to delve into what caused doubts] Me: [explains how I've had some time off from work and I decided to research the org's history and also different translations of the Bible and Greek texts] Preppy: Is that all you've been reading? Me: Yes [I wasn't gonna open the 'apostate website' can of worms]. Preppy:Do you believe there is a 'truth'? Me: Yes, I believe it is right here [put my hand on the Bible]. GO: Do you believe the Governing Body are Jesus's FDS? Me: I choose not to answer that. GO: Why do you choose not to answer? Me: I do not wish to incriminate myself. I told them at that point that I did not feel free to express doubts about the GB because of page 71 in the Shepherd the Flock book, which constitutes apostacy and I did not wish to have that label, which led to this: GO: Do you feel you have a right to read that? Me: Under Australian law, anyone in Australia has the right to access any legislation. I'd like to think God's organisation is holier and purer than the Australian government. GO: But do you think it's your right to that information? Me: I believe there should be transparency, and besides, there's nothing damaging in that book. Then preppy asked, What would happen at a university if you challenged the curriculum? Me: A university would welcome that. [he made a big mistake because I know these systems very well and gave him such a run-around because he has no clue about educational systems in Australia or anywhere] Preppy: Ok then, say you're working for an organisation, and they tell you to work 9-5. What would happen if you said you wanted to work 10-6 instead? Me: We would negotiate over it. Preppy: [frustrated] but if you were working at a bank... Me: I've never worked at a bank. The people I've worked for have always been negotiable. Preppy: [tells me banks don't negotiate and if I didn't work the set hours I'd be replaced] Me: are you saying Jehovah's gonna replace me? Preppy: [getting agitated and raising his voice] No that's not what we're saying at all! Take TAFE [technical education]. If you go to TAFE and don't believe what the curriculum says is true, would you pass? Me: [another huge mistake! I worked 5.5 years there] If you satisfied the competency, yes. Tafe is competency based. If you performed the task competently you would pass irrespective of whether or not you believed it. GO: [trots Korah's rebellion out with leading questions] Me: Korah went through the Red Sea, saw the pillar of fire and cloud, and had direct evidence that Jehovah was directing Moses. GO: [Spins Korah some more] Preppy [catches on and talks about the horrible deaths those people died] Me: Can I cite a more modern example? [cited Paul and how he dealt with doubters, and proceeded to ask if they are comparing me to Korah.] GO: No but...Korah thought he knew better. Me: I do not claim to know better. I have doubts. [and you know the rest of the Korah thing] Preppy: [asks when I got baptised. Was nearly 13 years ago]. What's changed in 13 years? Me: I got baptised at 19, and in 13 years I've had a hell of a time with all sorts of things, I've matured, I've travelled, I read, and I've had a lot more life experience. Preppy: What did you believe about the GB when you were 19? Me: Well to be honest I didn't think about them much at all. Were you raised in the truth? Preppy: Yes, all my family are in the truth. Me: Well mine aren't. I was raised an atheist, and by learning JW beliefs I was flying in the face of my parents, and I was having a horrible time. I was a teenager trying to make my way, and I said a lot of things to my parents that I would not have said if I knew then what I know now. You have no idea of the pressure I was under, and all I wanted to do was serve Jesus and Jehovah, and they gave me a shocking time. [my husband chimes in at this point] Sheree's parents are pretty full-on. I could see that the first time I met them. Me: And they mellowed a lot before you met them too. Back then, I was their little girl, whereas now they respect me as an adult, but back then they gave me hell, so the Governing Body was the last thing on my mind when I made my dedication. Preppy: So what makes you doubt it now? Me: Reality. GO: When you got baptised you answered the questions, so you knew what you were getting into. Preppy: Did you know at the time what you were getting into? Me: In some ways. I came from an atheist background and had now come to believe in God and Jesus, and that was what was important to me, but I can't say I really knew much about the Governing Body or how everything works. Preppy: Do you feel then that because you didn't know fully what you were getting involved with, your baptism should be considered void? Me: I wouldn't say that. Preppy: Then what has changed in 13 years? Me: In 13 years I did not have much time to think. For the first 5 years I was up against my parents, and you know that persecution always makes a belief stronger. And the last 6 years I've been through hell and been diagnosed with PTSD, major depression, anxiety, chronic fatigue sydrome and cognitive dissonance. I've been so busy trying to keep on top of work, the house, in and out of doctors and psychiatrists offices, while going to all the meetings and all that. I've had no time to think for literally years! And when I lost my job last year, for the first time in years I've been able to rest! I've been able to sit down, and think about my life, and get in touch with myself! That's why I began my Bible study project: because for the first time, I had the time. I've been able to explore my spirituality properly, probably for the first time. [and on in that vein] Preppy: [emphatically] So if you don't then believe all we teach, why do you still bother to come along? Why do you still wish to be identified as one of Jehovah's Witnesses? Why would you still invest in something you don't believe? Me: The reason I still wish to be identified as one of Jehovah's Witnesses is because I have so much invested. I have 15 years worth of friends, and my own husband. I love my husband dearly, and I know that if I were to disassociate I could lose him. I would lose all my friends as no JW would be allowed to speak to me. You ask me why I should invest? Because I have so much to lose. [note now that neither Preppy nor GO disagreed with me on this point or side track as they did on every other one I made]. They sort of summed up by suggesting I'm allowing my emotions to sway me into believing what I want to believe, and I told them I've been beseeching God in prayer and studying just like they said to. Preppy told me I might not like the answers I receive to my prayers. I did not tell him that I'm getting answers to my prayers, but they are ones he would not like. We spoke about other things throughout but I believe I've included most of the relevant stuff.
  • Julia Orwell
    Julia Orwell

    D'oh! The spaces didn't show up. But you'll understand the issues.

  • doofdaddy

    Something tells me they will go down the "keep the congregation clean" route and give you the flick. It may take another couple of meetings. On a side note I attended numerous Gold Coast congregations in my time which was finished before you got suckered (about 19996/7).

  • LostGeneration

    I admire your courage. Nothing too incriminating from a normal persons point of view. Unfortunately JWs aren't normal people, so you may find your refusal to answer some of their quesions as reasons to DF you. I hope it works out in your favor...

  • Witness My Fury
    Witness My Fury

    Something tells me they will be back, but at least you know the do or die questions to avoid all relate to your view of the FDS (GB). it goes without saying for anyone else then doubts about God, Jesus, the bible etc also count here.

    The thing to remember is to stick to not answering the loyalty questions EVER, this time next time the time after that, even when caught on the hop on the phone or in the street.

    I'm sure that at some point the goons will reports back that many are avoiding answering these sort of questions and then the process will be changed so that refusal to state XYZ = DFd.

  • Finkelstein

    The truth of the matter is that the WTS. Corporation fits quite well as being the evil slave for its doctrines are false doctrines

    and commercially adulterated with the intent to sell and proliferate its published literature..

    I rather be a true witness for Christ than be a subjective lying witness for the WTS. Corporation.

  • LoisLane looking for Superman
    LoisLane looking for Superman

    Wow, dear Julia, that was a lot to go through. You did a fantastic job, though. Really.

    When you talk about having Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, my daughter and I do too. I believe there are some people that actually thrive in the JW organizational dominating atmosphere BUT there are many that do not do well under their whip.

    You are so smart and articulate, and your husband must be so proud of you, sitting next to you, as you went toe to toe with these, cult minded men.

    I hope, now that this weekend is behind you, your symptoms will lighten up.

    I stayed in a bad situation too long. I am out of gas. But you have so much happy life ahead of you.

    I wish you blue skys and sunshiny days.

    Just Lois

  • clarity

    Oh Julia ...... what a brave heart you are! Well done.

    To stand up to their questions must have been exhausting!

    Especially because they habitually change the subject.


    I couldn't help thinking as I read of their cross examination

    & poor excuse for doctrine ... that there is no bloody way that

    I would ever go thru this kind of inquisition!


    Making my plans ... if they ever do get an opportunity to meet with me,

    the minute they try to take the control over me,

    it is over! I answer NO questions.


  • transhuman68

    It's great that you were able to go toe-to-toe with the elders, especially with all the knowledge you have, and if you had nothing to lose it would be a lot of fun. Be careful though- just because they have a 'rule book' doesn't mean they will stick to the rules- they could DF you for being too clever if they wanted to. Really, the very best outcome would be for you and your husband to either fade together or DA together- if it is just one of you it could make life awkward. Refusing to talk to the elders and just fading seems a good option to me: it is good to be able to talk to old friends from the KH- most of whom are good people, IMO.

  • Julia Orwell
    Julia Orwell

    Yeah I did tell hubby that if I'm dfd or da he will be forbidden to talk spiritual things with me and it would make our relationship awkward. We've only been married two years. It took me 30 years to find him and 40 for him to find me. I'm not letting that go.

    He said when he could see I was distraught, "What can I do to help you?" and I spoke about my doubts. He's a caring man, respects me. My worry is that he's going to have his head filled with so much stuff about how Satan misleads us and is misleading me and how he'll have to stay strong in 'the truth' as a good example to me...

    It would be easier to recant, but Ray Franz didn't do that, Martin Luther didn't do that, and Jesus didn't do that.

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