Watchtower appeals in Montana.

by lastmanstanding 40 Replies latest watchtower child-abuse

  • lastmanstanding

    I won’t steal Barb’s thunder, but has anyone had a chance to peruse the appeal that Watchtower launched yesterday?

    Watchtower’s main argument is that stuff was said in confidence with confidentiality surrounding that confidence and they are confident that clergy confidentiality which is in confidence is confidential.

    In short, it ‘was a secret and should stay a secret.’


    And Watchtower claims that this verdict “violates the constitution of the USA”.

    I wish the jury could tack on another $50m and include Watchtower lawyers are to be hanged.

    I just had to say something. I am aghast.

  • stillin

    It's a confidence game. Evidently.

  • LV101

    Those losers will try any angle they can and probably standard protocol -- hope it's not overturned/overruled/whatever

  • blondie

    How can it be clergy confidentiality, i.e. the Catholic church penitent privilege long established is determined by:

    1. Confession to only one person, a priest

    2. No told to anyone else

    In the WTS procedures, the individual meets with 2 to 3 (sometimes more) elders. Thus the confidentiality starts out with more than one person acting as clergy that hears what the person has to say.

    Then, these 3 elders make up a written report and send it to the WTS headquarters, and even more people know about it.

    Plus, the WTS says they have no clergy and says a clergy class is contrary to bible principles.

    10. The clergy-laity distinction

    “All you are brothers,” said Jesus to his followers. (Matthew 23:8) The early Christians, including the Bible writers, had no clergy class. This Biblical pattern is the one that Jehovah’s Witnesses follow.

    2 As time went by, things changed. A class developed, known as the clergy, who reserved for themselves the privilege of preaching. (Acts 20:30) The clergy were a small minority of those calling themselves Christians. The great majority became known as the laity. While the laity have been taught that they have certain obligations, including the making of contributions for the upkeep of the clergy, most have become little more than passive listeners in the matter of preaching.

    3, 4. (a) How do individuals in Christendom become ministers? (b) Who is considered a minister in Christendom, and why are things different among Jehovah’s Witnesses?

    3 The clergy claim to be ministers (from minister, a Latin translation of di·aʹko·nos, “servant”).* For this, they graduate from colleges or seminaries and are ordained. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia says: “‘Ordain’ and ‘ordination’ ordinarily refer to special status accorded ministers or priests through officially sanctioned rites, with associated emphasis on authority to proclaim the Word or to administer sacraments, or to do both.” Who ordains the ministers? The New Encyclopædia Britannica says: “In churches that have retained the historic episcopate, the ordaining minister is always a bishop. In Presbyterian churches, ordination is conferred by ministers of the presbytery.”

    4 Hence, in the churches of Christendom, the privilege of being a minister has been severely restricted. Yet, this is not the case among Jehovah’s Witnesses. Why not? Because it was not that way in the first-century Christian congregation.

    Interestingly, Jehovah’s Witnesses have for years followed the direction of the Founder of Christianity that “all you are brothers,” and have no clergy class among them.

    How Are Jehovah’s Witnesses Different?

    Many people are amazed when they learn how different Jehovah’s Witnesses are from all the other religions that claim to follow Christ. The following are some of the things that make Jehovah’s Witnesses unique:


    ● They have no clergy class.

    In fact, you will not be able to find the phrase "clergy-penitent" in the WTS publications.

  • zeb

    In the course of the ARC the wt claimed clergy privilege but the justice said "you claim also not to have 'clergy'- you cant have it both ways".... but they will try anything.

  • Diogenesister

    The trouble is they may actually score on this one since it’s been established in other cases that some confidential client privilege doesn’t necessarily remain with one person. For example a lawyer may discuss his clients in confidence with colleagues. This doesn’t lift the confidential nature of attorney client privilege according to the Berry case.

    Also, they accept that some religions may use “confidential communication” as opposed to confession. Just because one religion offers councilling as opposed to confession doesn’t mean it should not be considered in the same manner or it would be privileging one religion over another.

    Awful, I know, but that’s what I’m given to understand.

  • Diogenesister

    Blondie I hope the Montana lawyers have that Watchtower piece you posted.

  • blondie

    I think Barbara Anderson or other ex-jws are keeping the lawyers informed. She has brought many non-jw lawyers into the inner sanctum of the WTS.

  • lastmanstanding

    Good comments all. I’m sure Barb is prepping to post soon.

  • Corney

    Appellant's (Watchtower's) opening brief:

    It can also be found here: (search by party name - "Nunez" or "Watchtower")

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