Differences Between JWs in the US and Europe

by BU2B 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • BU2B

    There are many cultural differences between the general population of the US and Europe, what about JWs? I have heard about such things as beards being allowed, movies that a JW cant watch in the US or would be frowned upon watching being ok, same with tv shows, and even the way they dress in public. Seems more laid back over there if this is true.

    Any truth to this? Are there any other differences between JWs in the US and Europe that you know of? Just curious.

  • Phizzy

    I have never visited the U.S, I will one day, you Yanks are not going to get away without a PhizzyAttack ! I do though live in the U.K, and have for all my long life.

    As a JW and a M.S I wore a beard for thirteen years, our Theocratic Min School overeer has worn one for the last ten, Bros with beards are seen on the platform at Circuit conventions, can't say I've seen one at a District Conv.

    I don't know who the hell would know what TV you were watching ? I dare say some sensitive souls would purse their lips like a bulldog licking piss off a thistle if they knew what some of the Bros watched, but from discussions I heard at the K.H nothing much was out of bounds.

    One Bro I know was questioned about 20 years ago because he was seen leaving a Cinema that was screening some dodgy film or other. The thing was the snitch had it all wrong, said Bro had been doing some work on the Managers house and was simply dropping the house keys in to the booking office for the guy, LOL

    I think here in the U.K we are more laid back about stuff, from what I have read on here ,JWN, and on the continent of Europe similar, with the Scandinavians particularly sporting more beards, and loving their mixed saunas !

  • Slavenomore

    Since America was founded essentially by the religious fanatics from England and northern Europe...the puritans annabaptists basic run of the mill zealots and millennialists...these folks were given a one way ticket and a boot in their arse to get here...because of that it can be a function of our culture to be more puritanical in view, perhaps explaining subtle differences with TnA.

    I lived in England as a kid, born there actually and visited quite often when I got here in 1979. My family was as non religious as can be. Taboos though amongst the older generation like my grandparents still abide in their social Peergroup... I visited Germany, italy and England later on as a witness. I didnt see much of a difference. At least in Germany I remember having a good time drinking with the friends. But then again we drank and partied here in Binghamton too. When I was in India as a witness(second trip) it was as if I hadn't left America. In fact on the Sunday I showed up at the KH I was asked to help a sister move! A bit of an adventure in Bombay. But still in all it was carrying couches and tvs downstairs and across town and then back up stairs. I didn't see any beards, or notice anything out of the ordinary, in fact it was anther nail in the coffin of my indoctrination...worldwide society BS. Just my 2 cents.


  • sspo

    No beards in Italy are allowed.

    The only difference with movies is that the US has a rating system, so JWs stay away from "R" rated movies.

    As far as i know they have no rating in Europe and so the JWs there are usually more liberal to what they watch.

  • tim hooper
    tim hooper

    UK witnesses hang out in pubs and social clubs more than one would expect.

  • sir82
    I have heard about such things as beards being allowed, movies that a JW cant watch in the US or would be frowned upon watching being ok, same with tv shows, and even the way they dress in public. Seems more laid back over there if this is true.

    In general, true.

    I've heard the farther north you go, the more beards are accepted. I.e., still pretty mch a no-no in Italy, but OK in Sweden, Finland, etc.

    The rating system for movies is pretty different - most Europeans are shocked that US JWs "aren't allowed" to watch (rated R in the US) movies that even JW teens over there see with no problem.

  • BluesBrother

    It can vary from congregation to congregation depending on the personality of the BOE and area by area....

    From what I read on this board, I do think though that things are more laid back over here.

    General counsel is heard about not watching sexy or violent films, but the application is generally left to the individual.

    Neat beards are more common these days, although the same counsel is given about dress for Conventions and Bethel visits.

    I have never been hounded to see if I am "apostate". I have had frank talks with several elders in my time but they let me be, even though I am known in the cong. and attend sometimes.

    I have been shocked to read of some Stateside J W wives actually leaving their husbands because they renounce the faith. I have never known that here

  • BluesBrother

    Deleted double post.....Why did that happen?

  • Brother of the Hawk
    Brother of the Hawk

    Have to use my hubby's post, but heck, I remember a Circuit overseer saying from the platform at an assembly that no JW should go see the Star Wars movies because they were so bloody & violent and it was rated PG!

    Even long side burns was a no-no and hubby couldn't be used.


  • 88JM

    "The friends" is not a term used by JWs in the U.K. - I've only heard JWs in the USA use that one.

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