UPDATE: Protest Rally for TUESDAY , October 19 at the Queen's Bench
This is an updated announcement from Lawrence Hughes: The court hearing has been moved over one day to Tuesday morning, October 19. The Protest Rally will start at 11:00am. The Press Conference is scheduled for 12:00 noon. I figure the Protest will end at about 1:00pm. Being there at noon hour is the important time period. You better dress warm. The forcast is chilly weather. There should be enough placards for everyone. There may be a Protest Rally on Monday because I have no way of knowing who plans on showing up and I may not be able to notify everyone before monday. Lawrence edited to update information at the request of Lawrence Hughes ~ Scully --------------------------------------------------------- from Lawrence Hughes: This monday at Queen's Bench Court House in Calgary , I will be appearing in court. There will be countless Watchtower Society lawyers there, trying to have the Civil Suit I filed against the Watchtower Society dismissed. I am organizing a Protest Rally for Monday , October 18 at the Queen's Bench to start at 11:00am. There is to be a Press Conference at 12:00noon. Would you be willing to support the Rally. Thanks. Last week I organized a Protest Rally in Georgetown , Ontario where the Watchtower Society Headquarters is located. CBC Newsworld was there, a movie producer and included is the newspaper article from the Georgetown Newspaper. That protest was a tremendous blow to the Watchtower. For decades the Watchtower has been working hard on their public image and in one day I , with the help of others exposed them for what they really are. You can read it for yourself. At the rally on monday, would you like the opportunity to tell your story to the media, the world ? My cell (403) 808 -2730 or email email@example.com . If you get a chance, let me know who is coming. Lawrence www.independentfreepress.com
Wednesday, October 13th, 2004 Alberta man brings protest to Georgetown LISA TALLYN, Staff Writer Toting signs emblazoned with "Stop Killing Children" and "Watch Tower Protects Pedophiles", approximately 20 people protested at the Jehovah's Witnesses Canadian headquarters in Georgetown Saturday afternoon.
Calgary resident Lawrence Hughes, a former Jehovah's Witness, organized the two-hour protest "to educate the public and protect children," he said.
Hughes fought hard and convinced the Alberta government in 2002 to force his 16-year-old daughter Bethany, who had acute myeloid leukemia, to undergo blood transfusions against her will and the will of her mother.
In August, Hughes launched a $1 million lawsuit against the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada that claims Jehovah's Witness members used the fear of damnation to convince Bethany not to have blood transfusions. It also claims that influence exerted by Jehovah's Witnesses on Bethany and her mother led to the girl's death in 2002.
Mark Ruge, director of public information at the Canadian headquarters for Jehovah's Witnesses on Hwy. 7, said yesterday the organization has not yet been served with Hughes' suit.
Hughes said he organized the protest for three reasons. The first one being the Watch Tower Society (WTS) refuses to report known pedophiles to police, he said.
"If a victim of sexual abuse reports the crime to the authorities, the WTS disfellowships the victim, has the victim shunned by the congregation members and has their legal department defend the known pedophile in court," said Hughes in a media release.
Ruge said Hughes "can say whatever he wants," but there was no truth to his claims.
"We're not those kind of people," said Ruge.
Hughes said they were also protesting because "the WTS forces members of the church to slave full time all their life in their factories and are not paid anything."
He added when the workers get old they are "thrown out onto the street without any money or belongings and are not even eligible to collect Canada Pension...a violation of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms."
Ruge called that claim, "outrageous."
"If this is slavery, boy, it's pretty nice," said Ruge.
He said they provide good working conditions at the Watch Tower Society and many Jehovah's Witnesses continue to work there when they are older.
He added they have a section in one of their residence buildings where the older people receive care and are well looked after.
Another reason for the protest according to Hughes is because "the WTS is responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of men, women and children," and has been giving out "bad medical advice to its members concerning vaccinations, organ transplants, blood transfusions and alternative medicine" for hundreds of years.
Ruge called those claims, "absurd" and "ridiculous."
http://www.northpeel.com/br/gi/news/story/2270645p-2631778c.html edited to correct date in thread title ~ Scully
Randy - thanks for the post. I sure wish I could be there to help the guy out. Boy, the WT spokesperson has no qualms lying does he? He sounds like a politician. Dirty rats.
I knew Mark and his wife very well. He is actually a rather outspoken guy and is one of the few guys at Bethel without his head up his rectum.
I didn't know he had gone into Public Affairs. He used to be in charge of the Kingdom Hall Desk, coordinating quick builds etc.
Based on the quotes provided in the article, Mark didn't lie. He did however use Theocratic warfare tho.
The CANADIAN branch has never used their lawyers to defend Pedophiles directly. However the lawyers have defended the Watchtower and elders regarding child abuse suits and thereby indirectly assisted pedophiles.
The Canadian Branch does have an Infirmary where they care for long time Bethelites and Missionaries. Many Bethelites also collect the Canadian Pension. Some have been asked to leave however when they have become sick, despite having served for 10-15 years there. Lawrence's claims in this regard (as published) were extreme and inaccurate.
Last comment, note Ruge did not call the claims regarding the number of deaths as a result of Watchtower policy, false just that they were outrageous.
It'll be interesting to see how Mark & Kathy Ruge deal with the media throughout the trial. He is going to be faced with a lot of 'faith-threatening' allegations. Not his faith in Jehovah but faith in the Organization he will be forced to defend. If he is the man I think he is, he may face his own crisis of conscience over this real soon when faced with the lies and hypocrisy of his beloved mother Organization.
Hughes said he organized the protest for three reasons. The first one being the Watch Tower Society (WTS) refuses to report known pedophiles to police,
Sorry ,but ive thought about this for ages now.There is no way on earth that the Witnesses i know or knew,would allow a known Paedophile to go un-reported and to be free to be around Kids.It wouldnot happen.That means the Elders too.Im not denying abuse happens.Clearly it has happened,but not to the extent some People say.
I was in the Religion 30 Years(from a very Young age) and never heard 1 case!!This is 1 time i must defend the religion.My Father and Mother would NOT be part of a Religion that regularly flouts the Law of the Land to protect Child abusers.Where are the real hard facts..and i dont mean some vague figure of "23,000"(or what ever it is )known child abusers in the organization.
Once again,im not saying abuse doesnt happen.Unfortunately it obviously does and i feel for anyone affected.Those responsible(the abusers and those who try to cover it up)should be severely punished!Its just another part of society,not some perfect religion,and im confident that no decent person allows these People to walk free amongst their kids!
I appreciate the link.I have looked on that site a few times before tho.That is why i say clearly it does happen.I just cannot comprehend the Numbers and figures being banded about.You know what its like in the JW,s..nothing is confidential at all!Everyone knows the reasons when someone gets d,fed etc,even the gossip machine never mentioned Child abuse in my time in.Also,being such a closed community,one gets to hear things from all over the Country.
maybe the problem is more endemic in north America?im just giving my own observations from a long time in a Religion that,tho im happy to be out of,never once gave me cause for concern regarding Paedophiles.
Sorry ,but ive thought about this for ages now.There is no way on earth that the Witnesses i know or knew,would allow a known Paedophile to go un-reported and to be free to be around Kids.It wouldnot happen.That means the Elders too
I thought the same for a while. But just recently I informed a sister in a congregation just north of Toronto that one of the 'fine examples' in her congregation was a pedophile. This sister is a professional with a degree behind her name. She is an independent women.
This guy was disfellowshipped for 6 months but the reason was kept quiet because this child rapist was so well respected in the congregation. He applied for re-instatement after 3 months but the elders thought it was a little soon. (grrrrrr)
I asked her why she didn't sound upset to only find out now about this. This sister commented, "Well the elders probably are watching him. No need to disrupt the congregation over it. I do find it a little hard to believe but he is so old now he isn't really a threat anymore."
He is in his early 70's. The most recent KNOWN case was from 15 years ago but he was df'ed 10 years ago and has been in good standing ever since. He is not serving in any official capacity, but he is a Watchtower Reader and says congregational prayers.
He is also active in the door to door ministry. He and his wife have babysat children from the Hall. Scary.
Her final reaction to the news, "Well thanks for telling me so I can watch my son."
There was no, 'Do the Police know? Has this been reported? Why the hell wasn't I warned, I've been out in service with this man along with my son?"
She has just shrugged it off. I was appalled at first by the reaction but after seeing this same situation over and over amongst the Witnesses these past few years, I guess I shouldn't be surprised.
By way of this being more of a North American problem, perhaps it might seem that way since the US has 1 million JW's versus the 100,000 in the UK. Canada has a similar number of JW's (reporting publishers) and on average we received about 1 call per week in the Legal Department (1989-93) regarding a new allegation of abuse involving a JW. Multiply that times 10 for an average for the States. Added up over a decade or two I can easily see 43,000 as being realistic.
That number originally released by Silent Lambs was for at least three countries, not just the US alone.
But one has to ask, how many children have to be abused each year before it is taken seriously by "God's Loving Christian Organization?" and they stop hiding pedophiles in States were the law doesn't require reporting. Shouldn't their consciences be stronger than worldly people's laws?
how many children have to be abused each year
Well, the answer to that question is: "1"
You see, we all once believed that the organization was the manifestation of God's holy spiritual organization on earth. The elders were appointed by holy spirit and were to be respected as God's representatives. We lived in a spiritual paradise.
So, it doesn't require 10,000 or 50,000 cases of child molestation to bring down the house of cards. The existance of a single case is enough when you claim divine backing.
THANKS FOR YOUR INFORMATION FLEAMAN.
I WILL TRY TO DELIVER YOUR MESSAGE TO MY TWO DAUGHTERS AND THEIR THREE COUSINS AND THE SEVERAL WOMEN WHO MADE ACCUSATIONS OR CLEARLY STATED THEY HAD BEEN ABUSED, BY THEIR ELDER RELATIVE.
I ALSO HAVE TO EXPLAIN WHY THIS MAN WITH SEVERAL ACCUSERS "NOT ONLY 2" WAS NOT DEALT WITH, AT THE ORDERS OF WBTS LEAGAL DESK.
I WILL ALSO HAVE TO EXPLAIN WHY IT TOOK ALMOST 12 YRS FOR THEM TO FINALLY ACT.
I WILL ALSO HAVE TO EXPLAIN WHY HIS OWN DAUGHTER FINALLY WENT TO THE ELDERS AND TOLD THEM, "THERE WERE SO MANY COMPLAINING SISTERS, THAT THERE MUST BE SOME TRUTH IN WHAT THEY ARE ACCUSING HIM OF".
I AM HAVING SOME TROUBLE, TRYING TO MAKE THIS ACCEPTABLE TO THEM.
I ALSO NEED SOME HELP EXPLAINING TO LOVE/NORRIS ATTORNEYS WHY THERE ARE ACCUSATIONS AGAINST HIM IN CALIFORNIA AND IDAHO.
CAN YOU BE OF HELP??
PS. I REALLY NEED TO KNOW WHY I GOT DISFELLOWSHIPPED FOR BEING SO ANGRY AT THE ELDERS INVOLVED.
Sorry to burst your bubble, but I'm aware of cases in Scotland where this occured.
Try reading of Alison Cousins, from Stevenson Congregation, for starters. That one went public, though they tried to cover it up beforehand, and went all out for damage control, afterwards: