The story of my life (part 7- Bethel, the end)

by onacruse 42 Replies latest jw friends

  • hillbilly

    Craig... I remember a few of your fellow Bethelites coming home during the 70's. I could tell that they had seen some bad crap while there but just couldnt speak of it.

    You are a couple of years older than me. Knowing the guys I knew firmed my resolve to AVOID Bethel. I was regarded well enough to have been a shoe in had I applied.


  • stillajwexelder

    bloody hell!!!!!!!!!!

  • Leolaia
    Didn't they use to insist that all JWs are ministers and for this reason must be exempted from the military (a totally incomprehensible argument in France, btw)?

    Narkissos...No, not at the time that onacruse is writing about (early 1970s); they didn't change the definition of "minister" until 1980 or so. In fact, there was an article in the mid-70s specifically denying this view (especially as it concerns military service).

  • skinnyboy

    keep it coming man, this is great. I knew a few people who left for Bethel, they came back as the most arrogant SOB's but there was a air of denial about them too, man i hate the Dubs!!! Nothing would give me more satisfaction than seeing a person go that step further and destroy the Borg from within, reckon we could form a strike team?

  • jgnat

    Craig, how misused you were. There was no recognition of your ability. A terrible waste of your potential.

    I understand that final straw. Here you are in this supposedly massive brotherhood, "all equal", yet you and your fellow janitors carried the brunt of the menial work. There is something noble about stained jeans. They spell "he has worked hard today". Somehow, by insisting you step out of your overalls twenty times a day they demeaned your role even farther.

  • heathen

    One thing I wanted to ask was , how come you didn't write home or call home and ask them to send you some clothes ? I think the WTBTS should have helped you there anyway but surely your gung ho parents would be willing to send some clothes or food for you . I can't believe at one time I entertained the thought of checking out bethel but after my experiences and now reading others I know there is no way in hell I would take that kind of crap . Thank heavens for the web and all the people willing to tell their experiences .

  • zagor
    They dutifully notified the military authorities that I was no longer a full-time minister:

    You've gotta be kiddin me... They went out of their way to report you to authorities, what kind of monsters are they. Makes you wonder how come they never report pedophiles.

  • onacruse

    Thank you all for your kind words, and understanding. I had to take a few days break; the roller-coaster ride is just beginning.


    One thing I wanted to ask was , how come you didn't write home or call home and ask them to send you some clothes ? I think the WTBTS should have helped you there anyway but surely your gung ho parents would be willing to send some clothes or food for you.

    I did ask my folks for a little money, now and then...but they didn't have much to give. And, to be honest, I was so embarrassed that I mostly just did my best to try and muddle on through, waiting for the next $14 allowance.

    Usually what Bethelites would do is walk around in the congregations to which they were assigned, with their "hand stretched out behind their backs," and take "donations" from the brothers and sisters (who usually felt so blessed to have a Bethelite in their midst that--well, it was automatic). Others did G-jobs (as they were called).

    I didn't intend this story to be about the specifics of Bethel life (the daily routine, etc.) But, as an additional answer to your question, I will share this one unique experience, which touches not only on how it was possible to make extra money, but also on the nature of Bethel life:

    As I said, I worked in the janitorial department. Well, one of our obvious daily duties was to do the rounds and empty all the trash bins. In the course of doing that, we would accumulate an incredible quantity of glass bottles and metal cans--the vast majority (and I do mean the vast majority) of which were containers for alcoholic beverages. In fact, we collected so many of these that the fellow in charge of the trash room got this notion one day: how about if we just get ourselves some 55-gallon metal drums, crush all these containers, and send them down the street (via a WTS truck, driven by a confidant [who, of course, got a "cut]) and sell this stuff for scrap value?

    Wow!!! What a great idea. And so, each week, we'd send down enough stuff (it had to be on a Saturday afternoon, of course--after work hours, when nobody would notice that the truck was gone) to get $40-50; we're talking about anywhere from 6-12 55-gallon drums, filled to the top, every week.

    That is, every week for a couple of months, until the Home Overseer found out about it. Thenceforth, the proceeds from this operation went directly into the WTS coffers, along with a few admonitions to the parties involved that proceeding with this operation absent official approval was not acceptable behavior.

    Not one word was said about the problem this showed about many Bethelites being cash-strapped, nor even about the far bigger problem with alcohol abuse at Bethel that this all represented...a problem that I was introduced to at Bethel, and which I was to bring home with me, and which, with variable degrees of success in trying to deal with it, has continued to haunt me to this day.

    However, that being said, I'm ready to continue.

  • heathen

    Jezzzzzzzzzzzzzzzuuuuuuuusssssssssssssss H caaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhriiiiiiiiiiiiiissssssssstttttttt How petty can you be .They virtually have slave labor but they complain about some chump change you find in the garbage ? But then people can make money on the side anyway ? I do remember some posts on how people were making money such as the building crews ,that was not considered WT money . Yikes . I hope you recollect as much as you can because this is the stuff I come here to read . I'm sick of hearing the WTBTS side of how selfless and loving they are only to hear members scream foul .

  • Cygnus
    I don't think evil is to strong of word for their actions.

    I'd add "wicked." Absolute wickedness. I'm never ceased to be amazed at the level of wicked behavior acted out by God's organization. JWism and its policies and practicies are in reality a small pimple on the ass of the world but to those affected it's fearsome, and to those who become educated to it, it's loathsome.

    Cygnus, of the shakes head in disgust at the evils perpetuated by JWs and humans in general class

Share this