Montana Supreme Court will hear the $35M case tomorrow

by Corney 56 Replies latest watchtower child-abuse

  • smiddy3

    No wonder people say "the law is an Ass" it leaves so many loop-holes for lawyers to get around and weave their way around it.

  • JC323

    It really isnt a loophole. A loophole is when the goverment in its legislature writing doesnt explicitly say something and lawyers discover it and then use it. Here the legislature specifically and purposefully included these exceptions.



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  • JC323

    So just as everyone here complains that JWs wont listen to reason because it comes from "apostates" even though it is factual information. The same applies to "apologists" even though it is factual information and reasoned arguments.

  • StephaneLaliberte

    I listened to the video yesterday and I must say... looks like the court is scared of impeding over religious freedom. Yes, religious freedom is very important, but to the extent that they can deliberately keep silent about pedophiles? Really?

    To me, the clergy rule works only in the context of how it is applied by the Catholics. A pedophile goes to see a priest in the secret of confession and gets advices from the priest who will not retaliate and won’t share the story with anyone, including other priests. This procedure is meant to provide spiritual guidance to someone that, otherwise, would have none. Without this guaranty of absolute secrecy, the sinner/criminal will never confess and will loose on the opportunity of receiving valuable advices. It’s similar to a shrink. In fact, most priest actually go through university studies, crossing over into psychology, specifically for this purpose.

    Jehovah's Witnesses is not about this concept. People who confess to an elder will land in a judicial committee. Along the way, details of the confession will be shared with various stakeholders. In this context, what is the incentive for a criminal/sinner to confess? Considering he will have religious consequences, why not add legal as well? This scenario should not be protected. However, the court seems to be afraid of defining the limits of the proper scenarios and I would not be surprised to find that this will go nowhere.

    If the JWs win this particular battle, politicians will need to pass laws that are more precise.

  • JC323
    SL: ok so you have no problem with the secrecy of the catholic confessional in child abuse. But now let me throw this wrench into it. There is a new catholic policy that if a priest confesses to another priest in the confession, that it must be reported to the archdiocese. The catholic church still says that in that case the confessional is still sacrosanct and that they will not report to the police. So would that fall under sub section b or c of the montana law.
  • Vidiot
    JC323 - "The same applies to 'apologists' even though it is factual information and reasoned arguments."


    I don't recall ever meeting any "apologists" who were in the habit of actually using factual information and reasoned arguments.

    Plenty who used verbal sneakery and semantic pretzel-twisting, though.

  • StephaneLaliberte
    JC323: here is a new catholic policy that if a priest confesses to another priest in the confession, that it must be reported to the archdiocese.

    Yeah, that sucks... if they are to report to anyone else, including the archdiocese, then why not the police as well?

  • Phizzy

    I may be reading too much in to the word "penitent" but presumably it is used by the R.C church, and therefore in Law in many places, to highlight the fact that the one who has sought confession, by that act of seeking, has shown that he is repentant.

    J.W org does not make this assumption, it forms a J.C. to establish whether the person truly is a Penitent or not. In that circumstance they could claim anything divulged AFTER the proceedings had decided the person was repentant could be held secret, but the first approach to an Elder, and the decision process by the J.C. surely cannot be deemed as worthy of being kept secret, at those stages they did not know they were dealing with a Penitent.

  • peacefulpete

    It still does not cover situations where the parents or child report being the victim. That is not the clergy Penitent situation being protected by these laws, if not specifically then in spirit. Silence in these cases is simply the church protecting itself and potentially the offender.

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