Day 1 - Fessler vs. Watchtower – Opening Statements and Motions in Jehovah’s Witness Child Abuse Trial
Just wondering would the ARC take this case " Fessler V Watchtower" into consideration in their proceedings ? Does whatever happen in other parts of the world going to influence the Australian investigation? Would they be looking at how the Jehovahs Witness religion handles Child sexual abuse cases around the world ?
I think it would be excellent if they did ....but I just dont think so .
Maybe its just wishful thinking.
this just shows how dirty Watchtower can be. Never think they are there for you.
So, Watchtower is claiming that Stephanie lied to the elders. In that case the elders would have counselled her on lying and given a 'marking' talk. Further Watchtower would not claim privilege on lies. Methinks Watchtower is lying.
It will be great to question the elders about when or under what circumstances did they suddenly realize they were lied to.
Actually that is a good point jwleaks - in fact if she lied "wilfully" she should have been DF'd shouldn't she?
What do these guys (WT & Elders) say in their prayers at night?
Ooops! wrong thread.
Hecce: I feel sorry for the elders, it seems like they have been "thrown under the bus"
Even at the zenith point of my burning zeal for Jehovah and "his organization", I know I would have reported child abuse to the police; even if it meant being disfellowshiped. These man, though highly indoctrinated, are living the consequences of not standing up tall and doing the right thing.
It's actually "good" that they are saying that she lied.
That means they knew about it.
If you hear an "allegation" you are suppose to report it, let the police "investigate" it. Does the law say "If you think it is a lie, don't report it"?
If it is proven that she was molested, then "they knew about it" and 'the WT & elders should have reported it'.
If I get this right, they are saying that she lied. I assume that she denied having sex or improper contact with the other women.
So what was the private reproof about then? Wouldn't that private reproof be the proof that elders knew there was, in fact, abuse?
There is some confusion here if Watchtower could ever claim privilege because they show that Elders are layman. Privilege is given to ministers as defined by state law and not what the religion considers so. In PA the state law for who is a minister is defined as:
§ 5943. Confidential communications to clergymen.
No clergyman, priest, rabbi or minister of the gospel of any regularly established church or religious organization, except clergymen or ministers, who are self-ordained or who are members of religious organizations in which members other than the leader thereof are deemed clergymen or ministers, who while in the course of his duties has acquired information from any person secretly and in confidence shall be compelled, or allowed without consent of such person, to disclose that information in any legal proceeding, trial or investigation before any government unit.
Even though the congregation views them as layman individuals the law does not see it that way. Just like Watchtower views themselves as a congregational religion the law has repeatedly viewed them as a hierarchical religion.
The court rejected the privilege argument, not because the court doesn't consider the elders as ministers but for two other reasons. First, was the discussion a confession because the elders were the ones that initiated the conversation and that it was not a freely expressed confession by the penitent. Second, the elder that was deposed did not preserve for the record during the deposition that he is claiming the privilege, he would still have had to answer the question during the deposition, but it would preserve the right to raise the question of privilege before the court later on.
RO thanks for that clarification
in your estimation do you think the case against the wts has legs?