Before we review Jehovah Witnesses organization let's have a look in cults general how they work and what are the signs that you have joined the cult. I think it's very important to read about this & educate yourself, because Jehovah Witnesses is exactly mind controlling cult. I will provide excellent post posted by ex-cult member:
Once you have already joined a cult, it is—for all intents and purposes—too late. Your critical thinking and intellectual sovereignty (which you scarcely had enough of to begin with) will evaporate quickly. Repetitive indoctrination cannot begin until they are pushed aside, so initial recruitment efforts target your critical thinking and intellectual sovereignty.
It usually takes only a few months of recruitment efforts before a new recruit has already capitulated or snapped. If you did not research what cults really are and how they really operate before getting involved, then you chose to risk becoming a slave.
You cannot count on your capacity to see the warning signs after you are already involved. By that time, your critical thinking and intellectual sovereignty are already being numbed. These are the faculties that you would have needed in order to see the warning signs and save yourself.
And you will already have been given stories to “explain away” the reprehensible and dishonest tactics that are being practiced upon you. The stories given to you by the cult are already becoming powerful, and will soon, if they have not already, become more powerful than your own independent judgment. This is what cults do. You cannot count on your own judgment anymore, once you have already been exposed for some time, because you have allowed it to be eroded.
And in that pivotal early phase, with some critical thinking capacity and intellectual sovereignty still intact, you may proudly decide to “give it a try” and see for yourself, completely unaware of the danger. By not seeking to discover the danger in advance, you are carelessly playing with fire, because your critical thinking capacity and intellectual sovereignty will be gone before you know it.
So educate yourself before exposure, and certainly before joining an organization, before they have a chance to feed you foolish stories that “justify” their crime being perpetrated upon you. It only takes a few hours of accurate self-education to protect yourself from all cults, because they all use the same mind control tactics.
Some of the initial cues might include love bombing, a sense of coming home, a sense of having found your true “family”, feeling you finally belong, a sense of us-versus-the-world separation, and a compelling but hopelessly complicated, unintuitive, or against-your-nature (but unchallengeable) ideology.
All cults have a powerful dogmatic ideology, though it is not always a religious one. All cults are fundamentalist (though not all fundamentalist organizations are cults), and you should be avoiding even fundamentalism—cults are much worse. Discover what fundamentalism is, and avoid it, and that will give you a layer of insulating protection against cults.
Watch for signs of people suddenly snapping in conversion in favor of the organization’s ideology. Snapping can be made into a public spectacle for marketing purposes. The marketing efforts of some organizations (including Landmark Education) depend upon showcasing the snapping phenomenon.
The organization will see it as “personal advancement” when someone snaps, and applaud it, possibly even encourage the audience to shed misguided tears of joy over it, but if you knew what was really happening when people snap, you would shudder in horror—as I do. If anyone snaps, and you are a new recruit who has not yet done so, then you probably will, too. Beware: By the time you snap, you will be theirs.
Snapping or sudden conversion often happens when you are faced with such a hopelessly complicated, unintuitive, or against-your-nature (but unchallengeable) ideology that—after significant effort—you finally give up trying to decode or rationally assimilate it, and throw up your hands, trusting that someone else understands, and you’ll just go along with it because you figure someone else understands, and you’re not smart enough, or they’re more qualified than you to decide what to believe.
But that is a lie! No one is. That is the essence of intellectual sovereignty—that only you get to decide for yourself, whether or not you can justify your reasons to anyone.
Snapping is the end of critical thinking and intellectual sovereignty. Snapping is capitulation and resignation. It is freely opening the gates of one’s mind to allow every sort of deception and filth to enter. It means surrendering one’s free will and accepting mental shackles. It is the beginning of slavery. It is the renunciation of personal identity in favor of group identity. It is the moment at which the real personality is eclipsed by the cult pseudo-personality. Snapping is the ultimate self-insult, and will injure your soul. Then repetitive indoctrination can take root easily, and may continue for decades afterward.
Snapping is not always overtly visible, however.
I remember the moment I snapped and caved in to Jehovah’s Witnesses. I was eight years old. I was attending an intense one-hour Tuesday-night “bible study” (part of an unending series, one book after another), in the home of a congregation elder, in a trailer park along the shoreline of East Grand Traverse Bay in Acme, Michigan.
It wasn’t really a bible study. It was a study of a book written by the Jehovah’s Witnesses supposedly about the bible. It was the 1963 “Babylon” book, a red book, about two inches thick, one of many books that explores in detail Witness theories about the meaning of bible prophecies.
I have a very high IQ, and spent thousands of hours trying over the years. But these theories are so convoluted and complex that no one can really understand them without twisting their minds to adapt to the illogic. Becoming a cult member usually involves having to twist your mind in such a way.
The theories aren’t meant to be understood. They are meant to induce capitulation, because they’re impossibly illogical, yet presented as if they were logical, so the participants either have to admit they’re too stupid to understand, walk out in disgust, or capitulate.
There is no other option. If you challenge or debate the ideas (that legitimately should be challenged and debated), you are labeled a “son of the devil”, and punished. Dissent is not tolerated in totalitarian systems. Cults are totalitarian.
As we were reading along, it dawned on me that I would never understand, so I gave up trying. I quietly snapped, and no one but me even knew it. So don’t count on being able to see visible signs of snapping in others, but do watch for such ideologies and subtle signs of these possibly-hidden dynamics.
I never did understand the convoluted theories, even years later, even though I eventually advanced in their organization far enough to become a “Bethelite” (a volunteer worker at their world headquarters complex in New York). I just went along with ideas that made no sense.
Going along with things that make no sense because everyone is doing it is an ugly human behavior (and is not limited to cult mind). It is the diametric opposite of critical thinking. Do you value yours?
You might think I’m uncongenial today; but I’m not. I just won’t go along with popular nonsense of any kind anymore, including that which is abundantly found in mainstream culture.
Such books by the Witnesses are meant to terminate intellectual sovereignty and critical thinking, and advance the monolithic, unchallengeable authority of the “Governing Body”, which is what the Witnesses call their top level of leadership. All cults use similar methods.
In retrospect, I remember that day I snapped as the darkest day of my life, the end of my real life, when I lost my birthright of a free mind and an original creative intact soul, and the beginning of three decades of mental slavery and repetitive indoctrination, which took me many years of active recovery effort to overcome, after my eventual escape from the cult.
I will never again relinquish my intellectual sovereignty or critical thinking. Now that I understand how cults work, I cannot, because their tricks cannot work on me anymore.
We can save ourselves and our loved ones from this dark fate only by accurately identifying in advance what cults really are, and how they really operate, so that we can see the danger coming, and dodge in the moment of exposure.
You must know the danger of cults for the same reason you must know the danger of grizzly bears. We cannot reliably save ourselves without knowing in advance. All of us are in “bear country”, because—sooner or later—everyone has a moment of weakness, and that is when a cult recruiter could hook you.
Do not allow your minor children to be exposed. Prepare them for the day they eventually will be exposed. Later is too late, almost every time. Do not carelessly play with fire. Even though you may live in a world that normalizes doing so, it is unnecessary and foolish.
Critical thinking and intellectual sovereignty are much more important than you think. You only really find out how important they are by losing them.
Now when we are informed how mind controlling cults work, let's have look at Jehovah Witnesses. Jehovah Witnesses is extremist & dangerous cult. Members of this cult are extremely loyal to the leaders (governing body), they will do anything these men tell them to do (they teach you that obeying them is the same as obeying God), even letting their own loved ones die (blood transfusion) and turning their backs on their own children per their strict “ treat them as if they are dead” approach (shunning) to the ones that want to leave the cult. These are major factors why this organization is so dangerous and responsible of broken families and deaths. They remind us wolves disguised as sheep to mislead and ruin people’s lives, eat their individuality and make them shallow programmed minions of cult. So who they are and how their system works?
They are a money making company, manipulating humans through their religious beliefs.
Short summary how this organization works:
Slightly change other Christian rules in order to make your religion a new one, and say that yours is the true one, the others are false.
Aiming for the poor, because riches are very hard to manipulate (there is a reason why they are riches).
Make the followers chosen ones. (Yuppy, God has chosen meeee!!!).
Promise them heaven, make them lambs (lambs are passive creatures, that’s why they don’t make lions or tigers).
Give them rules to follow. They take it serious, because the chosen ones job must be hard and important, even if the rules are completely dumb ones.
Order them to collect followers. (More followers, more money).
Ask donation from the followers. (We got the money, it is time to drink).
Unfortunately people who are prone for manipulation and don’t have strong independent sovereign mind fall for their traps easily. They usually pray upon on such people, people who are depressed, lonely, not very well educated. That’s why this cult is prospering in developing countries if you look in statistics. They discourage high education, individual thinking, questioning and doubts to their organization. They demand absolute loyalty to organization, which makes it totalitarian cult.
"Avoid independent thinking...questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization." (Watchtower, Jan. 15, 1983 pg. 22)
"Fight against independent thinking." (Watchtower, Jan. 15, 1983 pg. 27 )”
Of course when you’re running cult you don’t want people with high education and smart people, because such people are hard to control, deceive & keep them in the bubble of lies, especially if you discourage independent thinking and require absolute loyalty, that makes it very hard for people to open their eyes and see their lies. Unfortunately, people who are in this cult can’t see this because their intellectual sovereign is dead already. They are like programmed robots. It’s like a seed in the soil, which makes it’s roots deep inside and is hard to take out. Minions of this cult are like zombies infected by virus. Their main goal is to spread their virus (convert people) as much as possible. Of course zombies don’t know that they are zombies. Members of this organization think they are doing God’s work and are on right path while rest people are on wrong - Satan’s path.
Now what they believe?
They believe Armageddon (end of the world) is nearby the corner, our days are numbered and God is going to punish everyone who isn’t in their organization by killing everyone and only chosen ones (themselves) will survive and they will be living happily with wild animals like tigers and lions who will become vegetarians. They also believe that all good dead people will be resurrected. They use their own version of bible which is called “New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures”, which is altered version of Bible. Although they claim they are truth Christians, they do not recognize cross (they claim Christ wasn’t crucified on cross, but on a pole), they do not recognize saints, icons, trinity, church, they don’t recognize Jesus as a God, but just a prophet and they claim he is Michael archangel, they do not celebrate birthdays, even Christmas, saying they are pagan holidays. They limit freedom of their own members so much, that they can’t even have sex without marriage and after marriage only traditional (vaginal) sex. This means no oral, anal sex. These people predicted end of the world several times, but of course it didn’t happen, then they changed it, saying they didn’t specify date, laying blatantly. Origins of this cult starts from 1870s, since that they are awaiting for end of the world, which should be near at the corner and yet it didn't happen. Another issue I have with this cult is "two witness rule". Jehovah's Witnesses' congregational judicial policies require the testimony of two material witnesses to establish a perpetrator's serious sin in the absence of confession. The organization considers this policy to be a protection against malicious accusations of sexual assault. This means that if a person is alleged to have abused a child (or an adult) and he* denies the accusation and the only witness to the crime is the victim, there will be no disciplinary action taken by the ‘elders’ within the congregation. The elders will inform the religion’s branch office, and they’ll make note of the accusation. If ever a second victim comes forward accusing the same person, the ‘two witness’ criterion is met and disciplinary action within the congregation can be taken.
They discourage their members to have a contact with normal (non-JW) people, who they call them "worldly" people. Their goal is to isolate people from society. They also don't salute country flag, don't participate in army or war, don't have any patriotic feelings for county, making them useless if something happens and enemy enters in country during war. They do not accept blood transfusion, which means if person needs blood he will die rather than accept blood transfusion. Imagine such scenario: Your mother is JW, she needs blood transfusion or she dies. She will refuse and you need to watch how she dies, because some men in Brooklyn (their main office is there) decided so. Or let's imagine scenario when you were grown up in this cult, but when you grew up you realized it's false and want to leave the organization. What happens then? They shun you and even your mother, father, siblings, they treat you like a dead. This is the punishment for leaving this cult. All these things make them extremist dangerous organization.
Now let's have a look at 10 signs you're probably in a cult written by ex-cult member:
Cults aren’t as easy to spot as you might think. Most cults don’t wear robes or live in communes. In fact, most cult members don’t even realize they’re in a cult.
During my 25 years as an unwitting cult member, I would often watch documentaries and read about other cults. As I researched, I noticed 10 specific patterns that helped me recognize that I myself was in a cult:
1. The leader is the ultimate authority
If you’re not allowed to criticize your leader, even if the criticism is true, you’re probably in a cult.
Cults begin with a charismatic leader who claims some supreme knowledge. They may call themselves a prophet, messiah, messenger, or an enlightened teacher. They can also be CEOs, military officials, politicians, and self-help gurus.
Cult leaders convince members to forfeit their critical thinking ability in return for a sense of belonging, authority, and purpose. To members, it doesn’t matter what the evidence or logic may suggest, the leader is always right, and their misdeeds are always justified. Criticism of the leader is forbidden.
2. The group suppresses skepticism
If you’re only allowed to study your organization through approved sources, you’re probably in a cult.
Cults view critical thinking as an infectious disease and every effort is made to suppress it. Doubting members are encouraged to isolate themselves from outside influences and focus solely on the doctrine of the cult.
Criticism is forbidden. People who contradict the group are viewed as persecutors and are often given labels like “anti,” “apostate,” or “suppressive person.” Members are discouraged from consuming any material that is critical of the group.
3. The group delegitimizes former members
If you can’t think of a legitimate reason for leaving your group, you’re probably in a cult.
Because the cult considers itself the ultimate authority on truth, it can’t imagine anybody leaving it with their integrity intact. Thus, it has to perpetuate a false narrative that former members were deceived, proud, immoral, or lazy.
If former members speak out, they are dismissed as bitter, angry, dishonest or evil. Cults often impose some kind of shunning to shame former members and prevent them from infecting other members with the truth.
4. The group is paranoid about the outside world
If your group insists the end of the world is near, you’re probably in a cult.
Cults position themselves as the sole refuge from an evil outside world that is intent on their destruction. Cults thrive on conspiracy theories, catastrophic thinking, and persecution complexes.
In an effort to draw in more paying members, cults are often very aggressive in their recruitment efforts which are usually justified as “saving” people from the evil world. Those who reject the cult’s message are unelect, prideful, evil, or stupid.
5. The group relies on shame cycles
If you need your group in order to feel worthy, loved, or sufficient, you’re probably in a cult.
Cult leaders trap members in shame cycles by imposing abnormally strict codes of conduct (usually prescriptions about diet, appearance, sex, relationships, media), guilting members for their shortcomings, and then positioning themselves as the unique remedy to the feelings of guilt which they themselves created.
Cult members are made to believe they are insufficient or unworthy on their own and that the only way to become worthy is to confess their shortcomings to the group or leader. The leader then becomes the meditiator of worthiness and the foundation of the member’s self esteem.
Leaders who can make followers feel bad about anything can use shame to manipulate followers into doing anything, even if it’s against their own self-interest or better judgment.
6. The leader is above the law
If you’re held to a different moral standard, specifically in regard to sex, you’re probably in a cult.
A prevalent idea among cult leaders is that they are above the law, be it human or divine. This idea allows them to exploit their followers economically and sexually without repercussions.
When confronted, they do not confess, but create justifications for their impropriety. Sexual grooming of members is common. Loyal cult members will perform any amount of “mental gymnastics” to justify or ignore the leader’s behavior.
7. The group uses “thought reform” methods
If your serious questions are answered with cliches, you’re probably in a cult.
Indoctrination or “brainwashing” is the process through which a cult slowly breaks down a person’s sense of identity and ability to think rationally. Behaviors like excessive fasting, prayer, hypnosis, scripture reading, chanting, meditation, or drug usage can all be used to increase a person’s vulnerability to the leader’s suggestions.
The hallmark of indoctrination is the use of thought-terminating cliches. Platitudes like “follow the leader” or “doubt your doubts” are regurgitated over and over so that members don’t have to critically analyze complex issues.
8. The group is elitist
If your group is the solution for all the world’s problems, you’re probably in a cult.
Cults see themselves as the enlightened, chosen, and elect organization tasked with radically transforming individual lives and the entire world.
This elitism creates greater sense of group unity and responsibility centered on a united purpose. However, this sense of responsibility is often manipulated by cult leaders who coerce members into risky financial behavior, sexual favors, free manual labor, or heightened recruitment efforts in order to “further the cause.”
9. There is no financial transparency
If you’re not allowed to know what the group does with their money, you’re probably in a cult.
A group that refuses to disclose its finances is a huge red flag. Ethical organizations have nothing to hide. Cult leaders tend to live opulently while their followers are required to make financial sacrifices. Members are often encouraged to pay their offerings even if it means putting their families at risk.
10. The group performs secret rites
If there are secret teachings or ceremonies you didn’t discover until after you joined, you’re probably in a cult.
Cults use secret rituals as rites of passage that solidify a member’s loyalty to the group. Initiation into these rites usually only comes after a member has undergone certain tests or made adequate financial contributions.
Often, cult initiations are confusing, bizarre, or even offensive. This mental dissonance between their sense of confusion and their loyalty to the “inner circle” convinces the initiate to double their efforts in order to properly appreciate the proceedings. This only further entrenches them in a shame cycle, making them even more susceptible to manipulation.
At the end, I will provide one story of many thousand stories related to JW subject. I would suggest to JW members especially to read this story, who blindly defend their organization and maybe once in a life face the reality and see real face of their organization. This story tells us exactly why this cult is dangerous:
JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES WANTED OUR BABY TO DIE!
The Inside Story of a Former Third Generation Jehovah's Witness
To the average person, the name "Jehovah's Witnesses" brings to mind a group of neatly dressed people going from door to door in the neighborhood, selling the Watchtower magazine, or perhaps a book. However, when I think of Jehovah's Witnesses, I recall a lifetime of bondage to a cult which I served for the first 28 years of my life. My grandfather,son of a Baptist minister, became a part of the Watchtower Society in the early 1900s.
I was taught that Jehovah's Witnesses were the only true religion. It is a religion governed from Watchtower headquarters in Brooklyn, New York. The controlling council or "Governing body" is comprised of a handful of elderly men who control the lives of over six million people. Jehovah's Witnesses are taught that everything written by Watchtower leaders is from God Himself and is never to be questioned. They believe that the Governing body receives what they call, "new light" from angelic beings which explain their unique Bible teachings. This angelic information, is passed on to the rank and file in printed form through Watchtower printed materials. They believe the Watchtower organization is the sole agency on the earth God is using. So, according to them, apart from the Watchtower organization, people have no hope. Jehovah's Witnesses believe they alone have what they call "the truth." They also believe they alone are the only true Christians, which means, they alone will be saved. All others are considered part of "Babylon the Great-the world empire of false religion." All church members and others will be slaughtered by Jehovah God at the battle of Armageddon.(See more: 101 Strange Teachings & Practices of Jehovah's Witnesses)
I began full-time Watchtower service in 1971 after dropping out of High School with the encouragement of Watchtower leaders. They had predicted the end of the world to occur in 1975. During this era, thousands of Jehovah's Witnesses cashed in insurance policies, abandoned careers, and sold their possessions to spend the "short time remaining" in the ministry work before the end of the world. As a missionary worker or "Pioneer," I went from door to door trying to convince people that they must become Jehovah's Witnesses to please God and perhaps receive salvation.
I use the word "perhaps" because all Jehovah's Witnesses are not sure of their salvation. The Watchtower's way of salvation is based upon works, rather than the saving grace of Jesus Christ, which through faith we freely receive.
This works system of selling Watchtower books from door to door and other deeds, puts the individual Jehovah's Witness in a position to be saved if he is faithful to the organization and does all he is told to. Faithfulness to the organization also involves adhering to a host of rules and regulations, which Watchtower elders enforce with great zeal.
Violation of any rules as set forth by the Watchtower Society's governing body could result in punishment and restrictions, depending upon the offense. Elders have the power to take away salvation, restrict prayer life, to interrupt family communication or anything they deem necessary will bring a wayward Witness to repentance.
Each Jehovah's Witness must fill out monthly reports recording time spent in their proselytizing work to the elders. Elders put the information into a personal file. There are files kept on each member of the congregation. Secret files are also kept which also contain sensitive information regarding any major sins or infractions of rules and personal habits of individuals. These secret files related to a Witness' private life are transferred to master files at the New York City headquarters. These files are never destroyed.
View Scanned documents: Secret forms used to document members "sins" and portion of "Presiding Overseers Report" to Watchtower headquarters
Since I had been living in this system all my life, I knew what was expected of me. I had to follow the rules and laws to gain salvation. I had been going from door to door since I was a small child, so I adapted to full-time service easily.
I continued such service for a number of years, but with little satisfaction. The burden of keeping up with the monthly quotas of 100 hours of time, as well as sales of a minimum of 100 magazines and 40 books, started to discourage me. All of this work is voluntary and there are no salaries paid. Witnesses must find employment that will support this work.
In 1973, I was invited to go to the World Headquarters in Brooklyn to be part of the vast staff of workers who produce the literature. In a personal letter from the president of The Watchtower Society, Nathan H. Knorr, he stated: "Additionally, you are going to get a wonderful four-year advanced theocratic training which is far better than any secular education you can get."
View Scanned Copy of Letter from Watchtower President N. H. Knorr
With much anticipation I boarded a plane for New York City. While on the plane I recalled all my friends' envy, in that I was going to be living with the Governing body members, and how grand it would be to be at the hub of all the activity of the work around the world. My friends gave me going-away parties and gifts, commending my proud parents on raising me in the organization so well that they could see their son go to such a place.
Paul and Pat Blizard in front of Watchtower Headquarters "Bethel" 124 Columbia Heights, Brooklyn, New York (1976) Paul's home for three years
Soon after arriving in New York, the illusion wore off as I was assigned to work in the factory. Hard labor and learning the ways of the organization from the inside out was the "education" I obtained at Watchtower headquarters. Space does not permit details of what I experienced while spending long hours working in the book bindery. There I operated equipment for "God's organization." I recall the mental stress of a profusion of rules and regulations. The master plan of the Watchtower leaders controlled where we went, what we did, and how we did it.
After spending three years at headquarters, with no money to start out in the world (our pay was $14.00 (U.S.) per month), I learned the harsh reality of trying to make a living with no training or skills. Jehovah's Witnesses are strongly discouraged from attending college. I married a good Jehovah's Witness girl, and we set out together trying to please God the best way we knew how. That is, we were good Jehovah's Witnesses and followed all the rules and laws. My wife had been a missionary for eight years. Pat had been sent to different parts of the United States in her work, under the direction of the Watchtower Society.
After I returned home with a fairly "clean file" from the New York office, the local elders were using me quite extensively in teaching from the platform. Most Jehovah's Witnesses agree that anyone who has spent any time at headquarters is special and worthy of greater responsibilities in the local congregation.
As I gained status in the congregation, I was being exposed to and trained in some of the undercover work of the local elders. It was exciting slinking around in the darkness, spying on members of the congregation who were suspected of wrongdoing. I also was given access to the congregation files, which revealed the inside information of all in the congregation. I was being used in the same kind of covert operations I had seen control the workers at headquarters.
Through all this I could not receive any satisfaction and peace. The pressure of trying to serve a God who is vengeful and full of wrath is more than I can describe. The organization always painted a picture of Jehovah as a God ready to "pour out vengeance." All I knew of God was what I read in the Watchtower. Yes, we did read the Bible, but were told that if we did so apart from the Watchtower books to interpret it, we were destined to fall into apostasy and ultimately be destroyed by God.
A friend introduced me to a book that was written by a former Jehovah's Witness called "Thirty Years a Watchtower Slave." I knew that my duty as a good Witness was to turn in my friend to the elders, for we were forbidden to read any anti-Witness material.
But in defiance, I read the book. It disturbed me greatly, for the author was a former worker at headquarters, and I could relate to many of the things he was saying. Many things that I had tried to erase from my memory were surfacing again, and questions of the Watchtower's authority left me very unsettled. The author mentioned that he had found the truth by studying the Bible apart from Watchtower publications.
All this time I believe God was leading us to study His Word alone apart from books. Even though we had our own New World Translation of the Bible (translated by the Watchtower Society and refuted by Hebrew and Greek scholars as being a biased, twisted version of the Bible), we bought a New American Standard Bible.
My wife and I secretly studied our new Bible long hours into the night, discovering that many of the major doctrines that we had been willing to die for were false. I shared with my father some of the things I had discovered. Being an elder, my father saw that I was questioning some of their main teachings, and he reported my wife and I to the elders, to stand trial for apostasy.
After a lengthy, tearful hearing, we repented of doubting the Watchtower Society and were allowed to remain as Jehovah's Witnesses, but I was stripped of all my responsibilities in the congregation. I was to be watched for a period of time before serving in any capacity in the congregation again. All this information was noted on our files.
A job transfer to another town was a welcome relief. We looked forward to entering another congregation and getting a fresh start. But soon the disappointment came when we remembered that the details of our trial was in our files and would follow us wherever we went for the rest of our lives!
Of course, the elders in the new congregation had our files soon after we started to attend the meetings. They told us they would be watching us for a while to see if these apostate ideas of ours would resurface. They warned us they would excommunicate us if we tried to share such ideas with anyone in the congregation. We vowed loyalty to the organization, and said we would not read or speak about anything that would be different from the Watchtower's position on Scripture.
Two years passed. Being under the elders' scrutiny left us very empty. Nothing, not even our children who had brought us so much joy, made our lives fulfilling. We had a need for something, but what it was we did not know. We would drink to excess often, searching for some kind of joy, but only emptiness resulted.
Having two boys, we longed for a girl to be born and hoped that having a little girl would complete the happiness missing from our family. On Aug. 10, 1980, Jenny Leigh Blizard was born. We were so excited but tragedy struck. At five weeks old, Jenny received a small cut on a finger which would not stop bleeding. Local doctors found that Jenny's blood simply would not clot.
They sent us to San Antonio, Texas, for treatment of Jenny's condition. She was admitted to Santa Rosa Medical Center's special care nursery, looking for the treatment that would make Jenny well. Doctors worked feverishly trying to reach a diagnosis.
Finally, a team of doctors informed us that Jenny needed an emergency blood transfusion to save her life. This was a difficult problem for us because Watchtower law does not permit any Jehovah's Witness to take blood in any form. Jehovah's Witnesses carry cards stating that under no circumstances will they take a transfusion, even if it means death.
Sample of card carried by every Jehovah's Witnesses:
Sample of card carried by children of Jehovah's Witnesses with parents permission for them to die!
Sample of older blood card
New "Advance Directives" card
We sent the doctors out of the room and told them that we would give them our answer soon. My wife and I prayed and cried out to God for answers. I remember thinking; "Oh Jehovah, how can you ask me to make such a decision - a yes or no whether Jenny lives or dies! What kind of God are you!" Finally my wife and I called the doctors back into the room, and we informed them that we had to obey God's law and we would have to let Jenny die.
The hospital officials contacted the Texas Child Welfare Dept. and a suit was filed against us for child abuse and neglect. A court order was issued to ensure that Jenny would receive the blood she needed to save her life. The Sheriff's Department of Bexar County issued us citations and warned the hospital staff not to allow us to remove Jenny from the hospital. They knew full well that Jehovah's Witnesses have a long history of sneaking patients out of hospitals to avoid blood transfusions at all costs.
My wife and I were secretly relieved that Jenny would get the care she needed to save her life. We felt we had done all we could in trying to stop them from giving her the blood. We never thought the courts would intervene.
Reporters of two San Antonio newspapers, "The San Antonio Express/News" and "The San Antonio Light," learned about Jenny and exposed the story, though we refused to talk to the reporters. In retrospect, I commend their work.
In the meantime, friends contacted the local elders, who promptly came to visit us. They were relieved to find out that there was still time to plan a way to kidnap Jenny out of the hospital before blood could be administered.
I explained to them that the matter was out of my hands and that I was under court order not to remove Jenny. That did not matter to them. Their main concern was to get her out.
I knew that Jenny would shortly die if I removed her from the machines that were keeping her alive, and I would be charged with murder. I explained this to the elders. They replied, "That's the chance you have to take! You cannot allow them to give your child blood!"
Without further discussion, I asked them to leave, stating that we could not allow our child to die in this way. "If this is the God I serve, I am through with Him."
The elders left the hospital angry that we would not submit to their demands "I hope," one elder even said, "she gets hepatitis from that blood, just to prove that it's bad!"
When we finally returned home with Jenny, the Witnesses had received word that even though we had protested the transfusion, We "allowed" her to take it. This made us outcasts in their eyes. They did not excommunicate us because their law calling for expulsion would have applied only if we had freely given permission for the transfusion.
This is when we feel God stepped in. Local Christians came to our home and helped us out with food and helpful aid. The living testimony of these people affected my wife and I so much that we decided to start again studying the Bible.
Those months of intense secret study of the Bible led us to conclude we had lived a lie. We had been in bondage to a system of interpretation of scripture which squelched any free thinking. On the issues and doctrinal points that I had so much trouble, the Bible was clear. I read the Bible in context, without the aid of books or magazines to instruct us.
The result of this study was that we found all we needed for Salvation was faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We also found that He is a God of love.
One night, my wife and I held hands and gave our lives to the Lord Jesus Christ. Suddenly, we felt a release in our spirit, a release that brought freedom, liberty, and salvation. We were, as Jesus said: "born again." I had never had a feeling like it in all the thousands of hours I had spent striving to please God as a good Jehovah's Witness. We knew that we were changed. We were a "new creation." As the Apostle John said: "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God." (I John 5:13)
Of course, we were promptly disfellowshipped from the Jehovah's Witness religion. Under the rules of our excommunication, we cannot have contact with any of our family and life long friends in the organization. Our own parents and family members will not be allowed to go to our funerals. According to the Watchtower law, we are to be regarded as dead. Any Witnesses caught talking to us are subject to judicial action, including disfellowshipping.
In conclusion, I must say that we are not dead, but very much alive. Yes, we are dead to a former way of life, but alive in Jesus Christ, full of the Holy Spirit and power, saved by the blood of the Lamb!
Jenny's condition was more serious than what a transfusion could permanently correct. The transfusions given to her as an infant did prolong her life, but on March 3, 1987, our six- year-old Jenny went home to be with the Lord. On Jenny's memorial stone it is inscribed: "God's special messenger." We believe she truly was. Through her illness and brief life, we came to recognize the deception of the Watchtower Society, profess and receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and share this redemptive knowledge with Jehovah's Witnesses around the world.
In addition, during the final 39 days of Jenny's life, in Dallas' Children's Medical Center, My wife and I spent much of our time praying and testifying for Christ with families of other serious and terminally ill children at the hospital.
Finally, some details of Jenny's funeral attest to the evil nature of the Watchtower Society and the control it holds over its members. At Jenny's funeral, the first four pews were reserved for family members. The remaining rows of pews were open to church family and local townspeople. The latter were packed. People from all over came to share in the grief of the loss of this small child. However, the pews set aside for Jenny's family were occupied by only four people -- Myself, my wife Pat, and Jenny's two brothers. No other family members attended the funeral. They were ordered not to by Watchtower leaders. The callousness shown by the Watchtower Society in forbidding relatives from attending the service is deplorable.
In 2007 my father passed away. Not one family member called to let me know of his death.
Our prayer is through our testimony those caught in religious bondage will wake up to the freedom found only in the person of Jesus Christ.
Let me encourage anybody who is thinking of the "losses" if they abandon the Watchtower to follow Jesus Christ. There is a price to pay, there is a cost. Yes, your Jehovah's Witness friends will not speak to you, perhaps even your own family will leave you as orphans. However, if you give your life to Jesus Christ, you will have a heavenly Father who will supply all your needs and then some! Psalm 27:10 says "For my father and my mother have forsaken me, But the LORD will take me up." Since we left the Watchtower, we have made hundreds of wonderful friends and have a church family who love us. You are in for blessings you cannot even imagine. One Bible text which has become special to us recently is, Job 42:10: "The LORD restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the LORD increased all that Job had twofold." Yes the loss of a child is devestating, however we have received a twofold blessing. In December of 2002 we adopted twin orphan girls from Russia. Our new daughters are truly gifts from God. Trust in God, believe in Him, and let Him take care of the details!
This cult manipulates minds, forbids individual and critical thinking, forbids questioning the organization, discourages high education, shuns members leaving them isolated from family and friends causing many to suffer with depression and resort to suicide, allows sexual abuse by keeping over 120,000 names of pedophiles at their headquarters (as seen on BBC panorama), not informing the police and allowing these criminals to carry on as normal. They do not allow blood transfusions, which in some scenarios it leads to death. This is not just a typical religion this a dangerous, brainwashing cult that needs to be stopped. By banning it a lot less people will join and many that are in it will leave it.
The Ban Jehovah's Witnesses petition to Goverments of the world was written by Jaba Chutlashvili and is in the category Religion at GoPetition.