JW.org Childrens Page: Expanding My Circle Of Friends
"Cameron's a good person. He may even study one day."
That checklist they suggest should have the following points to look for in a good friend:
"Ability to think for oneself" (critical thinking skills)
"A person who does not expect you to have the same legislated religious thoughts"
"A friend who will not sell you out to the elders if you dare question the religion of your birth"
This is designed for young teeagers right ? or young pre-teens .maybe its just me but I cant see kids getting enthused about this.
And if they are pushed by parents or Elders it would soon fizzle out.
Find friends in unexpected places ? If that doesnt shout out cult,cult ,cult ,I dont know what does.
Unexpected? Why not just find friends in school or hobby clubs like everyone else? Oh yeah, because if they dont worship your God they're automatically a bad association.
This isn't a new thing...I remember growing up in the 80s and 90s kids were often encouraged to befriend adults (often specifically the older folks) in the congregation. To me this always felt like it was sorta along the same lines as the whole "we don't need birthdays/christmas because we get presents all year and it's always a surprise!" in this case its more "there's no lack of people to befriend, we can make friends with all these old people!" Kids in the cult will often (especially these days as things thin out) feel socially restricted and I think this is an attempt to get them to replace friends of their own age with cultists.
It is definitely curious advice to give right now when you look at all the child abuse issues they're having, though.
Just the thought of the rubberface clown and the rest of those GB stooges sitting around a table talking this disturbing shit up....... what a sick mess.
Justice McLellan from the ARC recently addressed a significant problem that religious organizations face in this aspect -
Faith based institutions also provide access to children. That access is available in an environment in which a child’s spiritual development occurs and is nurtured by adults. Children are brought up to respect, and to accept, the instruction of adults. It is how children learn, both about themselves and society. The child will always be vulnerable to the abusing adult. Where the adult is perceived by the child to be a manifestation of spiritual good, in some cases especially chosen by God, and able to instruct the child about the mysteries of life, death, belief in God, and good and evil an extra level of vulnerability may be present.
The Commissioners have heard many times from survivors who as children were told that if they tell anyone about the abuse they will be punished by God and may go to hell. Both physical punishment of the child and alienation from God are threats of which we repeatedly hear. Sometimes the child was told that the abuse afflicted upon them is God’s will.
Remarkably some have been told it is the way God wants them to learn about sex. The calculated exploitation of a child’s innocence is difficult to comprehend. The power afforded to the adult by the institution is corrupted and used to abuse the child.
The special attention which an abusing priest, pastor or religious person may have paid to the abused child is commonly welcomed by the child’s parent. This will also be true of a child’s sporting coach, lay teacher or dance instructor. That attention may engender a sense in the developing child that they are special. When the nurturing of a child’s spiritual development becomes entangled with affection and misplaced adoration of the abuser, both the risk to the child and the impact of the abuse when it occurs increases. The loss of a spiritual life for a survivor is common, although not universal. For many survivors this loss compounds the burdens they must carry for the rest of their lives.
A pubescent or post-pubescent child seeking to understand their own identity and place in the world, including their sexual identity, is vulnerable to the affections and special treatment of the adult leading ultimately to disillusionment and, for many, lifelong destructive consequences.