Monday, July 28, 2008

An Entire Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses Left the "Truth"

The Associated Press
February 10, 1986, Monday, PM cycle HEADLINE:
Local Church Wins Fight With National Office
DATELINE: BONHAM, Texas
Members of a Jehovah's Witness congregation have declared victory in their legal fight with the denomination's national organization over ownership of a local church.
Justice of the Peace Don Jones ruled that leaders of the national group, the Watchtower Society, unlawfully changed locks andtook over the church.
The denomination, known for its door-to-door evangelism, has filed an an appeal of the ruling. The dispute centered on ownership of the Kingdom Hall and began last summer when Ralph Deal sent 14 letters to the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society in New York asking for answers to particular theological questions.
Deal testified that when he persisted with his questions, the Watchtower Society sent a committee to Bonham on July 14 to choose new officers for the church. The group changed locks on the church after the new officers were chosen.
Deal, along with Tony Jones, Wesley Ruddell and Tommy Johnson, were notified by letter that they had been "disfellowshipped"_ or dismissed for disciplinary reasons _ from the church. They filed suit to retain possession of Kingdom Hall.
The title to the property is filed with the county under "Trustees of the Bonham Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses."
After Friday's ruling, lawyer David Mercot, representing the local church, said he thinks other individuals and congregations dissatisfied with the Watchtower Society will be encouraged to stand up.
"For 40 years or more, the Watchtower Society acted like the local congregations were their pawns while in public denying any hierarchy," Mercot said.
The suit was filed because the local members were "rousted" from the church, Ruddell said. "We were intimidated to do exactly asthey said."
Jehovah's Witnesses was founded by Charles T. Russell in 1884. The denomination is distinguished by its belief that only 144,000 people will go to heaven.
Critics say defections from the denomination began after the world failed to end in 1975 as leaders had predicted. Other dates cited by church leaders included 1914, 1920, 1925 and 1938.
Official spokesmen for the denomination have declined to answer questions about the case.

6 comments:

kimmy jo said...

Good for them!

Yes!

This organization and all it's propaganda and lies and blood guilt will fall apart. It is WORSE than any other religious organization because it does it all in God's name and misleads so many.

Anonymous said...

Then if what JWs teach isn't the truth, what is? It sure isn't catholics or christians or other religions. What is the truth? Since apparently you seem to know it.

Ronde said...

Old news.

But not relevant.

That article is so full of lies.

It mentions nothing about 'an entire congregation'.

And how did the 'local church' win?
It appears that they lost.

kimmy jo said...

JW's teach the Bible with interpretation by the Watchtower just as the Mormon's teach the Bible with the Book of Mormon.
All religion has it's own rhetoric.

anonymous,
Are you defending the Watchtower org. now? Where do you stand?

enigmatic said...

Then if what JWs teach isn't the truth, what is? It sure isn't catholics or christians or other religions. What is the truth? Since apparently you seem to know it.
------------------
That is a very good question. All too often it seems to me, members that leave the org dive immediately into the arms of some other hypocritical religious parlor trick without taking the time to process the lessons they have learned.

One of the side effects of org thinking is the strong belief that their is a 'Truth', they just have to find it, kind of like the holy grail. It often does not dawn on them that christian religions are virtually the same concept with a few subtle differences. If they were to take one more step back in their perspective they would be able to see the whole religious picture and the common theme that runs through christianity, islam, the savior god religions of the first century (See Dionysus), etc..

"Truth" is often just a set of beliefs that one holds onto with such conviction that they will not seriously consider other alternatives. It is very subjective, as can be seen by the many individuals from different different religious paths who feel so strongly that they have the "truth" that they are willing to kill themselves and those of other faiths that do not have it.

When one is willing to take one rational step further and consider the implications that there is no "Truth", now you are willing to investigate the full compliment of potential worldviews. Doing this allows you to get to a much higher line of thought then being mired in arguing over the meaning of words uttered by dead men long ago and trying to find a way to force fit modern day events with old superstitions and tales.

When you fit the data to the model of no religious "truth", there is a much better fit. The divisions and quibbling among religions makes much more sense. It then becomes laughable to see what is done in the name of religious "truth". If you have the courage to truly think independently, give it a shot, you might be surprised at what you find.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

The problem with people is they're keen to obtain complete certainty about things when, in fact, the pure fact about life is nothing is certain. Religion will give you certainty, but that doesn't make it right; in fact that almost certainly means it's wrong. I wish more people would come to this realisation.

Unless they're born into it, people become part of a religion because it reinforces their viewpoint on an issue. If they're feeling insecure and angry with the world, the shot of confidence that a religion telling them they're the only favoured people on the planet must be enormous. If they've got racist tendencies and the religion (whether actively or passively) supports racism, then their attitude becomes 'divinely mandated': that's their 'truth'. Truth is therefore subjective.

We humans appear to be very good at constructing fantastical realities; and this religion (and its staunch, unthinking adherents & defenders) are merely living in a delusion.

On the original post, I think this congregation absolutely did the right thing. They had questions, didn't receive satisfactory answers, weren't content to 'wait on the governing body', and showed that they were capable of rational, logical independent thought. Goodness knows we need more of that in this increasingly religiously charged atmosphere..