interesting EX-CO AMA ( Ask Me Anything) over on exjwreddit

by Diogenesister 57 Replies latest jw experiences

  • Chook

    I'll give the guy credit for at least admitting he was hard on some in Congs due to theocratic procedure. As an ex Jw bishop he is still confined to a life of a lie because of not coming out due to family members still in cult . He is telling us what we already knew , but it is good to reassure ourselves that we were sucker punched by the smoothest talking religious sales speech in history.

    If he gets a linching from head office, he should return the favour by writing a book . That situation that he got angry when someone asked about vaccines is the number one question I have for the elders. Who is held responsible for a child's death and what part did God play in the death.

    I had a Jw just today tell me that God will resurrect those who died from conscience matters such as vaccines and I say who would replace their family roles. I said to the Jw that some were granted separation from their spouses because of oral sex , I asked who pays for the damage to the fatherless children.

    I hope our fellow CO can muster the same enthusiasm he had for WT corp to promote anti jw views.

  • Giordano

    I think it is interesting that he didn't 'wake up' until he was insulted by the injustice of his fellow Elders as well as the DO. After....... by his own candid comments............ having dealt it out more times then he can remember.

    His answers were frank and to the point leading me to wonder why did it take so long to understand this wasn't the truth?

    I think of all the positions............... being a company manager with a quota list in their back pocket is a position that can do the most harm in an organization like the WTBTS .

    You certainly can see that this position........... Circuit Overseer......... is one of the most disparaged and disliked positions in the JW structure.

    They are neither competent, nor insightful enough to deal with the complexities. They are simply company men who have quotas to fill and troops to either rebuke or encourage at their whim.

    It is interesting that as far as the Society is concerned there is no longer any advanced position like being a DO that can be filled. The circuit is the dead end.

    The Society has always been reckless with their followers health, education and normal human needs.

  • konceptual99

    Interesting point about the CO route being a dead end. Nowadays all they can hope for is to be used for schools then inevitably farmed back out to the congregation in their late 50s, early 60s to toil as a pioneer with hardly a thank you, let alone a nice golden handshake.

    Spending one's life in Jehovah's service is hardly the glittering alternative to a worldly career that it was once made out to be.

  • ScenicViewer
    ...the smoothest talking religious sales speech in history.

    That is the perfect description of the Watchtower religion.

  • darkspilver

    More AMA Answers....

    You mention that fornication and adultery were rather common in the country you served in. Why do you think that is?

    We had missionaries in my assignment from USA, Canada, Sweden, Finland, Spain and Mexico. EVERYONE wanted to know the same thing, including me! Why so much fornication and adultery? Especially compared with the congregations in the countries we originated from. One, the Catholic Church makes it expensive and hard to get married in there, and most of the country is Catholic. So people live in common-law marriages instead. A great percentage of the country are couples who live together but are not married. That erodes the idea you have to get married to have sex. Second, there is an old saying that goes around there that every man needs seven women to stay strong. The uneducated believe that, however crazy that is. Another reason is that it's a male-dominated society. I had to give advice literally hundreds of times to sisters who worked in the bigger cities who were being reprimanded at work because their skirts are too long. Yes that's right. Too long. Their male bosses pressured them to wear shorter skirts because they needed to look "feminine" to draw customers and clients. Women there have few rights. Sexual harassment lawsuits are almost unheard of.

    Plus there isn't a lot of recreation, they are mostly poor. They can't afford to go out to dinner or to the movies or hiking or traveling. So they look for fun where they can. The special pioneers have a difficult time of it in those rural areas. No TV. Sometimes no electricity. Nothing to do but preach. The local guys and girls are friendly and so they sit around talking and one thing leads to another. Sometimes special pioneers get pregnant by their bible studies. On the surface it doesn't seem like fornication is everywhere but once you examine congregation records it seems everyone has had sexual experiences.

    Does this lax attitude carry over into anything else? Such as: less zeal for meetings/service, overuse of alcohol, more willing to browse apostate material on the internet when available

    The lax attitude towards sex yes carries over into alcohol use. A lot of elders have been removed for alcoholism. As far as the ministry is concerned, the opposite is true. They are way more zealous. The preaching work is easier in the sense that way more people want to talk, most at least listen out of politeness, and also due to the lack of recreation, almost everyone goes in service on the weekends.

    From a JW perspective, how competent were the local elders in Central America compared to the US?

    Competent elders? The elders there are less educated. So their talks mostly consist of reading the outlines. The accounts are usually a mess. The congregations are disorganized. The elders are usually friendly and nice people, but they are in a cult so they disfellowship and break up families, it's hard to term an elder competent unless you define competence as following the Society's direction. For a circuit Assembly I always had a hard time finding good speakers.

    In recent years, in the country you served, if you know, has there been an increase in those waking up from the org? Or at least an increase in internet usage?

    No way have more woken up from the country I was in. I am Facebook friends with hundreds of them and they are stuck in the organization mentality of we have the truth and that's it. Plus there aren't a lot of websites in their language that could help them. The only thing that could help them is if more missionaries in that country woke up. The gossip would get around. I am trying my best to get my Facebook JW friends to at least think a little.

    What do you think the likelihood is that any very high ups (GB helpers, Branch Committee members) will wake up?

    I do think a higher up will wake up. As the years go by and Armageddon doesn't come, and the meetings get more crazy, I think more people on general will wake up, and that includes the higher ups. The difficulty lies in that the higher ups feel a responsibility to "keep the faith and set a good example."

    I was raised a Jehovah's Witness from the age of 10 I became the p/overseer at the age of 32 and just like you I became disillusioned with the 1995 change of the generation . I gave talks at circuit assemblies, conventions, sat on many judicial committee and special committees. I was media spokesperson for a country in the UK - Wales. I witnessed many circuit overseers come and go but I always felt that they were genuine people. I am now disfellowshipped for adultery of course. The only thing that I miss about the JWs is giving lectures and talks - I used to get a big kick out of that - so my question to you, do you feel the same way?

    I loved to give talks and teach pioneer schools and Kingdom ministry school. As a CO, we often got to make up our own outlines. I loved that.

    When will the WT be forced to change 144k from a literal to a figurative number? I've read "insider" rumors that this was planned - and I consider it the one thing that might shake my power elder couple parents awake. They HAVE to be running out of explanations for memorial partaker fluctuations soon.

    Circuit Overseers often write to the Branch office regarding policy and procedure. I know I did. But as far as doctrine is concerned, I never heard about any new light before it was announced.

    In normal circumstances the heads of corporations are somewhat tuned in to the needs and wants of the people. My experience as a JW is that the Society never consults regarding doctrine. So if you heard a rumor that a change in doctrine regarding the 144,000 is "planned" my opinion is that is false.

    That being said, the GB will have to address that issue. And if and when they do, most JW's will just follow whatever they say. "Oh the 144,000 is not literal now! What wonderful light from the GB!"

    If you want to help your parents, use Socratic questions. "What If..." questions. Draw them out.

    "If the Society changes the 144,000 doctrine and says it's now a figurative number like Christendom says, what would you do?"

    "IF" questions really make people think.

    How many people did you convert during your years as a missionary/CO? How do you feel about it now knowing TTATT?

    None that I know of.

    I had 8-13 Bible Studies in my first 3 years in my assignment. None of them were baptized while I was studying with them. I kept getting moved around from congregation to congregation every few months due to the lack of elders. Then I became a CO and I had no studies due to being in a different congregation each week.

    But yes, I feel terrible about how I supported a corrupt organization. There are very few foreigners in the country I was in so a missionary Circuit Overseer is a big deal. I had a lot of clout and influence. I wish I could go back and change that and wake people up. I am trying to do so on Facebook, I have hundreds of friends from that country but it's not easy.

    I was never an elder, but the son and grandson of elders. There were always feuds and factions among the elders. When the new CO came to town, there seemed like a running of the bulls (sort of like when the convention doors open at 8AM) to meet the new CO and air their side of whatever longstanding grievance there was. What was your perception of this when you came to a new circuit?

    Oh yes. I served in 4 different circuits. As soon as I got into a new Circuit elders would start calling me about the big issues in that circuit. Big families and big problems. I recommended deletions of elders then I found out I was wrong then had to delete the elder i thought was right at first. Business dealings, verbally abusive elders, drunkenness, flirtatious elders, lazy elders you name it.

    Have you thought of writing a book to add to the collection? One like Franz's one. A genuine insight of the inner working of missionaries and COs?

    Interesting idea. I never thought about it.

  • Chook

    You need a name for a book that catchy " JW Bishop reveals all ! "

  • Diogenesister
    Steve The former COs wall metaphor is compelling - especially how an individual may notice a crack here and a crack there in the wall - but no one else worries - instead they say, "Look at how big and strong the wall is."
    A fantastic metaphor that captures the loneliness of those who are disturbed by the state of the wall - but no one else is worried.

    Absolutely Steve 2 it struck me too. He's obviously a poet/author in his alternate nonjw universe! I also loved him saying he could be a grandpa but has little kids because he was" late to the party" but he made it in the end, talking about having a wife and kids. Me too!

    I was intrigued that it shook him that a little admin mistake could slip through (with the 17 yr old elder) and where was the holy spirit - yet what about all the witnesses who died in the KH in a Filipino typhoon??? That's so typical for all of us, we often miss the big stuff yet the things that affect us the most, no matter how small, often wake US in the end.

    ThanksDark Spliver for posting, I wondered if non reddit users could see the post.

  • Diogenesister
    You need a name for a book that catchy " JW Bishop reveals all ! "

    Chook LoL

  • OneEyedJoe
    I was intrigued that it shook him that a little admin mistake could slip through (with the 17 yr old elder) and where was the holy spirit - yet what about all the witnesses who died in the KH in a Filipino typhoon??? That's so typical for all of us, we often miss the big stuff yet the things that affect us the most, no matter how small, often wake US in the end.

    I think this is so common (for instance, I've seen many here, including myself, mention the beard issue as instrumental in their awakening) because our emotions are too late to the party to prevent us from thinking things through. Start to think about where was god when a bunch of JWs died and your emotions immediately kick in due to the loss of life - how dare you even think that their death might be meaningless!?!? But when you think about something small, that doesn't have any obvious implications, where there's no obvious victim, then you can really think it through and if/when your emotions start to get involved you're too far down the road to turn back.

  • darkspilver
    Diogenesister: I also loved him saying he could be a grandpa but has little kids because he was" late to the party" but he made it in the end, talking about having a wife and kids. Me too!

    haha - I was wondering how old he is....

    He said: I was a true believer. Regular pioneering at 16, missionary at 24... I am a graduate of the Ministerial Training School back when the school was new and they sent some graduates out as missionaries. I was assigned to Central America. I was a field missionary (140 hours per month) for three years then I was sent into the circuit work. This was during the years 1990-2001.

    On the assumption (which I have no reason to doubt) that he only became a 'missionary' once he had graduated from MTS (and not before) - then the age/timeline I work out - give a year either way - is:

    1966 = born
    1982 = 16-years-old (regular pioneer)
    1990 = 24-years-old (MTS graduate missionary)
    1993 = 27-years-old (Circuit Overseer)
    2001 = 35-years-old (returned to SoCal USA)
    2017 = 51-years-old (now)

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