WTBTS Submissions to Royal Commission on abuse: The response document in FULL
gotta admit this made me laugh
the "Dr Applewhite's report is therefore rejected" is what the RC put in their document.
Just re-reading the WTBTS response to the RC submission and wanted to add these thoughts.
There appears to be no Term of Reference that requires the Commission to investigate the “shunning” of adults.
In the submission the RC does not limit 'shunning' to adults, yet the WTBTS limits it's discussion to adult shunning and concludes that it has no bearing on the matter. Children are baptized from a very young age.
Like organisations in the secular arena, the procedures and practices of Jehovah’s Witnesses have been improved and changed over the last 27 years in an endeavour to better respond to and alleviate the impact of child sexual abuse.
They need to explain how their procedures and practices have improved and proof of this. They won't because they will first need to admit how their practices were wrong. They are not being helpful to the Commission by avoiding this.
If the Commission’s views are to be respected around the world, as they undoubtedly will and should be, it is of the utmost importance that those reading the Commission’s report and recommendations understand that its approach to the universal problem of child sexual abuse is free of any perception that the findings and recommendations it makes are antithetical to the religious beliefs and practices of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
The word antithetical means direct or unequivocal opposition
So much for neutrality. They are trying to influence the commission here by suggesting that they will not have respect by World standards if they oppose the practices and beliefs instituted by the WTBTS in handling Child Abuse.
A major role of the RC is investigating and assessing the responses from organizations and it would prove pointless if they didn't include in their findings the shortcomings of institutions/organizations..
The faith is not an agency or instrumentality of government entrusted with the responsibility for the supervision and care of children.
No, instead, they have apparently been selected by Jesus by appointing the FDS and as those taking the lead, have a christian responsibility to care for children. A minor point that they choose to ignore in their submission. If they do not make these things clear to the Commission then they are not fully co-operating and clearly do not intend these higher authorities to provide assistance with helping them to improve.
Further, congregation members are free to report such matters to the secular authorities and many have done so, as is apparent from information provided to the Commission.
The evidence that so few cases were reported shows that some feel that they are not free at all, rather that there is a reluctance to report.
This is up to Page 74.
There is a lot that was said about the two witness rule but a new thought came to me.
The vast majority of JWs are disfellowshipped because they have been found not to have sufficiently repented.
The general procedure is that the Elders first investigate a matter and if they feel there is sufficient evidence they will hold a JC with 3 Elders. Why 3 elders? They use the same principle of 2 or more witnesses, so that 'where there are two or more witnesses any wrongdoing can be firmly established.
However, from there the Elders determine whether the person is repentant or not. In most cases this is a judgmental decision as there is little or no physical evidence that can be presented. Repentance is a spiritual condition and cannot be physically witnessed. The repentance does not take place in front of the Elders, it is a private matter between God and the individual.
Although there are two or more witnesses (Elders) at the JC in the instance of repentance there is not and cannot be two physical witnesses. So in regards to this cumulative sin they choose to apply this witness rule in a completely different way.
If they applied the same logic to determining whether a person is guilty of the sin of not repenting to the original sin then two physical witnesses are not required. All that is required is the same elders making a personal judgement as to whether the original sin took place or not and just as the matter of repentance can be established in this way, so can the original sin.