Thanks for that story about American Football. This sort of thing goes on all the time, and young naive people are particularly vulnerable, as you know. In fact something like that happened to me when I was a kid growing up in the UK.
For most of the 20th century, American Foorball was virtually unknown over here, being seen as another example of those 'crazy Americans'. You might get some brief highlights of the Superbowl on a sports programme, but the rules were never explained and so you literally had no idea what was going on. To a young sports obsessed kid like me it seemed unfathomable.
That all began to change in 1982. Suddenly, the UK had a new TV channel, Channel 4 (4 TV stations- wow!).
One of the programmes on their schedule was a new weekly NFL highlights show, with the rules properly explained and ex players as occasional guests. Now we could begin to understand all that was going on. And I was quickly hooked. American Football became another sport to talk about at the KH.
But there was a dark cloud looming on the horizon. Our congregation had a Gilead graduate and his wife parachuted in, and this elder from Kansas clearly had an issue with American Football. He took me to one side on a few occasions telling me that it was wrong to watch the sport because it was so violent and that the brothers had been warned not to watch it.
When you're 10 years old, you ain't gonna argue with a Gilead graduate. So I had to carry on watching the NFL for a long time with a sense of secret shame.
It makes me sad when I look back that elders with authority can force their personal views on young and vulnerable ones in the congregation.