This just in from Silent Lambs
In the article below two smiling accused murders walk free as a Jehovah’s Witnesses refuses to provide evidence of their crime. This appears to be a pattern with regard to how JWs deal with crime, note the following letter sent to two elders that inquired about a confession of several murders in 1992.
As the reader can see the fact that the person involved committed the murders before becoming baptized resulted in a directive to not report to authorities. In the story cited below as the accused murders were not baptized members of the congregation it would provide a basis for a member to remain neutral and not get involved in “worldly” affairs of the court. Is there a basis for this policy? The elders book “Pay Attention to Yourselves and All the Flock”, makes the following comment for unbaptized ones that commit murder or other crimes against non JW victims.
“As suggested by the Apostle Paul’s comments regarding Onesimus, a person who was guilty of illegal activities before coming to a knowledge of the truth is not required to settle these things with the authorities prior to baptism.” (The Watchtower, 9/15/1978, pp.30-31)
To clarify what the directive in the elders book means note the quote from the Watchtower article cited as a reference,
“However, in some instances the guilty individual does not know all the places or persons from whom he has stolen. Or the crime may be something that he has no way of reversing. He might have caused someone’s death. Conscience-stricken though he be, he cannot bring that life back—only Jehovah can. (John 5:28, 29) But even though he cannot reverse the past, he should throw himself on God’s mercy and seek forgiveness based on Jesus’ sacrifice. The Bible pointedly tells us that this is what thieves and extortioners did in the first century; they were ‘washed clean, sanctified and declared righteous in the name of Jesus Christ and with the spirit of our God.’—1 Cor. 6:9, 10; 1 Pet. 4:1-4.”
“It must be acknowledged that if someone with a criminal past who accepts Christianity does not get the matter legally straightened out before baptism, his past might later become public knowledge; he might even be apprehended and imprisoned. That development, besides giving him a bad public reputation, might seem to reflect unfavorably on the Christian congregation. But Jesus was criticized for eating with and accepting sinners and tax collectors to be his disciples. His response to that was that he came to save sinners; he came to heal the sick, not the healthy.—Matt. 9:10-13.”
So as the reader can see Jehovah’s Witnesses have a policy to welcome murders and cover their crimes as long as they were committed before they get baptized as a member in good standing. As the article above states, JWs feel it is following Christ example to protect murders from prosecution allowing them to eat with and accept as approved members, privately confessed criminals that request baptism. This offers a possible reason that the Jehovah’s Witness in the article refused to testify against the accused murderers below. If they were studying with Jehovah’s Witnesses or were a possible converts, it would be against the directives of the organization to bear witness against them. When they get baptized law breakers are given a fresh start with all crimes against humanity washed clean by baptism and protected by the policies of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
This little known fact allows for the organization to hide murders, child molesters, illegal aliens, thieves, rapists, and about any other criminal activity. Elders are routinely advised to cover up and protect such crimes by using “ecclesial privilege” as a basis to protect the freedom of criminals. The public and Jehovah’s Witnesses need to be aware of this policy as well as the importance of reporting any past or present criminal activity that you as an individual may be aware of regarding members of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Otherwise you could give an accused murderer a reason to smile as you can see in the picture below.
Silentlambs has noted the reports of several victims that reported their molester was protected as a member in good standing due to the fact they were baptized after they committed their molestation. A young person that molests several children as a member of the congregation as well as a paroled child molester, with “baptism”, can have a clean slate and even qualify as an elder. This provides yet another reason that the organization has been called a “pedophile paradise” by different ones as it shows yet another organizational loophole for child molesters to use in obtaining access to children.
My view differs somewhat from that of Silent Lambs. I see no reason that anyone should be barred from becoming a Christian or being forgiven their sins. Their standing – or not – with God is a private matter. Even in a religious community, there is no reason to think that repentance is impossible. However, other members must be protected, too. It is sheer folly to allow a convicted pedophile, for instance, to be alone with children with no supervision.
My concerns are with codified obstruction of justice, the theocratic war strategy that allows deceitfulness in court for the protection of the organization over help and justice for victims, and the lack of care or protection for children and others.
JWs – if you are experiencing or have knowledge of domestic abuse, rape, molestation, or other predatory and/or abusive behavior, please don’t be silent – let the police investigate. That’s their job. It’s not the job of the elders to mediate such matters. The status of such a person in the organization is a separate issue – two witnesses needed, whatever. But get help outside the congregation. Don’t let the organization tell you that “Jehovah will take care of it.” There are too many examples in the news for you not to take this seriously. Please.
Silent Lambs – Pages of Interest:
- JW Molesters In the News
- Documented Watchtowers Policies on Abuse
- Press Information
- Personal experiences and testimonies