Operation: e-Shunning – AAWA goes after Watchtower over its destructive practice
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Many thousands of Witness families have been torn apart by Watchtower’s insistence on the shunning of relatives

Over the last few weeks volunteers of the newly formed AAWA (recently renamed as Advocates for Awareness of Watchtower Abuses) have been combining their efforts with one common goal – to draw attention to the archaic shunning of family members, which continues to be encouraged by the Watch Tower Society despite their repeated denials to the media.

“Operation: e-Shunning” – due for launch on May 1st – aims to highlight the January 15 2013 Watchtower – specifically the parts where the magazine discusses the shunning of relatives. Many Witnesses who have read the study article entitled “Let Nothing Distance You From Jehovah” (which was considered back in March) will have perhaps breezed past certain instructions related to how disfellowshipped family members should be treated by those who are loyal to the organization.

However, just because most of us Witnesses have gradually become desensitized to some of the more damaging rhetoric in Watchtower literature, does not mean it is any less worthy of serious scrutiny – particularly if it can lead to families being torn apart.

The Society’s latest instructions warn Witnesses to not even email family members who are no longer in the faith, as you can see for yourself in the following quote…

“Do not look for excuses to associate with a disfellowshipped family member, for example, through e-mail.” (Jan 15 2013 Watchtower, page 16)

As has been repeatedly stressed on this website, the shunning of family members has no basis in scripture. The instructions given by Paul in 1 Cor 5:11,12 call for the shunning of “anyone called a brother” who is remorselessly engaged in wrongdoing. The context clearly shows this to be a measure intended to keep the congregation clean by ensuring that willful sinners do not intermingle freely with worshippers at Christian gatherings.

By counselling that Christians should “not even [be] eating with such a man,” the inference is given that association with wrongdoers even outside of Christian gatherings is to be avoided. There is no reason why this should also be applied to relatives. On close consideration, family members (who would eat together frequently) are clearly not the focus of these instructions.

Christ’s parable of the prodigal son contradicts Watchtower’s insistence that errant teenagers should be shunned by their parents

When further reflecting on Christ’s parable of the prodigal son, who was embraced by his father despite returning home purely because he ran out of food and money, we soon begin to see the principle of shunning in its proper context. It was never intended as a tool to break families apart. Rather, the Bible encourages those in positions of oversight to exercise mercy in the way judicial matters are handled, and underlines the importance of maintaining the family bond. (Matthew 9:13; 1 Tim 5:8)

With so many families affected by the Society’s harsh interpretation of scripture, it would be unsurprising if at least a few Witnesses were hanging on to some shred of contact with their relatives through email. However, even this meagre lifeline has now been snatched away from any Witnesses who feel compelled to prove their obedience to the organization. AAWA’s latest video demonstrates the true impact that such a cruel and heartless approach has on ordinary people…

An Ambitious Movement

AAWA is still wet behind the ears having been launched to the public only less than a month ago. However, it is heartwarming to see the number of people who are selflessly volunteering to further AAWA’s cause. So far, 198 people have volunteered to help out in AAWA’s 11 teams, each of which handle various aspects of AAWA’s work.

It remains to be seen what will become of Operation: e-Shunning. It was initially intended as something of a test run – a warning shot across the bows to see what we could achieve together. Could it become something more? Might it grab the attention of the mainstream media? Only time will tell. Even if the world fails to take notice, e-Shunning will surely succeed in highlighting to at least some individuals how unmerciful Watchtower’s shunning policies are, and why they are in desperate need of overhaul.

 

 

 

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41 Responses to Operation: e-Shunning – AAWA goes after Watchtower over its destructive practice

  1. Sharon says:

    I think they ought to be sued (per Candace), and the court proceedings be advertised, advertised, advertised!

  2. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    Ready to be involved in creating Awareness on Watchtower Abuses using all possible means!!

  3. susanna says:

    I cannot think of a better way for the Watchtower Corp to become the beneficiary of any ones ” Will,” at death , with d/f family members ,no longer being family.
    Can you ???
    They are programmed to believe if they are loyal to Jehovah, then all they own belongs to Him. The Jehovah they are serving thru the “governing body is very materialistic.” Sick isnt it !!
    Seems the WT have all their bases covered..

  4. DB says:

    Good luck with the new org Cedars! Glad you’re taking constructive criticism onboard; an attitude of honesty and openness will really help get your message across for the future to JW’s, ex-JW’s and non-JW’s alike.

  5. Santi says:

    2 Thessalonians 3:14
    And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.

    2 Thessalonians 3:15
    Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.

    NOT AS AN ENEMY …………………………..AS A BROTHER ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡

    Sincerely
    Santi

  6. Nina says:

    Excellent video. .Shunning is the GB’s most effective tool for manipulating JWs into subjection…
    The GB is not only cruel but also heartless….nothing like Jesus Christ.

  7. Chris says:

    Any way to ge this article in spanish? Im not a JW but my inlaws are this practise is NOT biblical. Good job once again Cedars. Love your articles. Just wish you would wrtire more often

  8. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    I hope you do not count Jehovah himself as enemy after committing HEINOUS crimes like RAPE. He raped David’s wives and you know how many? “I will take your wives under your own eyes and give them to your fellowman, and he will certainly lie down with your wives under the eyes of this sun. Whereas you yourself acted in secret, I, for my part, shall do this thing in front of all Israel and in front of the sun.’” (2 Sam 12:11-12)!!

    Do you know what followed this event; Read 2 Sam 20:3 “Eventually David came to his house at Jerusalem. Then the king took the ten women, the concubines whom he had left behind to take care of the house, and he put them in a house of confinement, but he kept on supplying food to them. And with them he did not have any relations, but they continued shut up closely until the day of their dying, in a widowhood with a living [husband]”.

    I hope you understand what I mean in response to your comments!!! Is Paul the apostle GREATER THAN JEHOVAH???

  9. Oubliette says:

    Great article! I really appreciated the video too. Coerced, institutional shunning as practiced by JWs IS a form of emotional abuse and psychological violence that must be stopped. However, it’s a little unclear just what “Operation: e-shunning” is and how it is being or will be implemented.

  10. enlightened says:

    My husband and I are very pleased with the new chosen name for the group. We would like to help in any way we can. We live in Nova Scotia, Canada. Hubby served in 3 different positions of eldership, he is 3rd generation JW. We pioneered, I was in the Wt. for 30 years. Our oldest JW daughter and 5 in their family have told us we are out of their life, since Apr. 15, 2012. Very sad. Total of 45 family members shun us for the last 25 years.

    • Les Hoy says:

      Enlightened, Pro 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 3:6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
      I am a born again believer whom has fallen in Love with a JW, we are attempting to Marry and it will be a very difficult time, But i have hope.
      It is good that someone like yourselves with experience has joined this site. God bless you.

  11. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    However I may have already expressed my personal position on organized activism and opposition, I would like to say this in regard to the Disfellowshipping matter:

    Any true Witness of Jehovah who intends to maintain integrity cannot continue to “associate” with the Society or Governing Body by means of receiving or reading the Watchtower according to their very own perception and interpretation of the rules of Disfellowshipping.
    This alone merely by the fact that they have as late as recently publicly lied about Disfellowshipping itself and are known liars and criminals!
    How’s that for a conundrum?

  12. Balcacer says:

    Superior project!
    If you need some help in Spanish, count me in.

  13. Balcacer says:

    Chris
    Any way to ge this article in spanish? Im not a JW but my inlaws are this practise is NOT biblical. Good job once again Cedars. Love your articles. Just wish you would wrtire more often

    Yesterday I tried to leave a comment but by some technical problems , couldn’t. Especially to help in the Spanish version

  14. Richard E.Kelly says:

    Balcacer, can you send me a personal email at aawamedia@gmail.com and I will help make this a reality.

  15. davidsf says:

    Is there a difference between being disfellowshipped vs. disassociated?

  16. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    davidsf,
    No difference at all, they are treated the same. JWs are liars; Let me give you some evidences:

    1) In the Watchtower Study Edition of 15 July 2011 on page 15 you can read the [Footnotes] as this: “Apostasy” is a standing away from true worship, a falling away, defection, rebellion, abandonment. (Read this for yourself from http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2011524 and try to understand what it means: Once a JW; the only one way to escape being “apostate” is to remain in the organization or leave it with signs of coming back).
    2) Look up in the Elders’ Secret Book “Shepherding” especially chapter 10 MATTERS RELATED TO DISFELLOWSHIPPED AND DISASSOCIATED ONES you will find no difference.

    You can download the book through http://jwleaks.org/boe-letters/

    I can give you a lot of information if you wish, the truth is DISFELLOWSHIPPED = DISASSOCIATED.

  17. Ms Brenda says:

    I have an occult nest door to us.. Its like a compound. They built a huge house for the “higher ups to meet and we here curdling screams sometimes coming from that house at night.

    They do not care how disturbing their parties are all summer long. A lot of drinking I might add…how does their elders feel about that? I could go on and on but I have to go to work..I would like to help anyway I can.. My husband and I worry about the children.

  18. Julia Orwell says:

    Bring it on, Cedars! Sorry I haven’t been here much, been busy with work etc, but glad I dropped by to see what’s happening.

    I personally have never been shunned (no doubt I will be soon though) but I see what a horrible thing it is, and how unChristian it is. More awareness will make ‘interested’ people stop and think.
    Cheers to you and your friends, Cedars.

    • enlightened says:

      Why do you fear you will soon be “shunned”? Do you have members of your family still inside the borg?

  19. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    Julia Orwell,
    Take your courage in both your hands!! Think of:

    1) “We do not need to let our eye feel sorry for those who receive God’s adverse judgment or feel compassion for them.” (See w07 7/1 p. 13 par. 4 Highlights From the Book of Ezekiel—I).

    2) “Apostasy” is a standing away from true worship, a falling away, defection, rebellion, abandonment. (See w11 7/15 p. 15 footnote)!

    If you think carefully of those Watch Tower’s words, you will find the “organization” is a “spiritual prison” not a “spiritual paradise”. IT CALLS FOR COURAGE TO LEAVE “The Truth [that] Brings “Not Peace, But a Sword” (Matthew10:32-38)” (See District convention 2013 programme that you can download from http://www.jw.org/en/publications/).

    My dear, Jehovah’s Witnesses “TRUTH” Brings “Not Peace, But a Sword” in a very sophisticated and complex system they have created, leave the “HYPOCRITES”!!

  20. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    To: Julia and onlookers, the Society and Governing Body has counted on the social nature of people to exploit and abuse for their own profit and benefit, pain and suffering for a substantial period of time. Anyone who disputes that is a fool or living in a world of denial or working in the interest of them or any and all three.
    The need to keep people, Jehovah’s Witness inside that organization from being properly informed of the goings on both inside that organization and without was and is paramount by any display of a false facade of self imposed power or means of control, subterfuge and chicanery. That is becoming ever clearer or “Brighter and brighter” (- :
    The concept that Jesus stated in the scriptures of “The blind leading the blind” is what they depend upon or in the physical domain would and could be applied to the ants as “The ant mill” but turns out just as deadly for all parties:

    http://www.wordnik.com/words/ant%20mill

  21. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    “The Truth [that] Brings “Not Peace, But a Sword” (Matthew10:32-38)” ~ That’s a sword of Righteousness…people would leave their families willingly as did the apostles and that families would be divided not unlawfully by cruelty and brutality of the crimes and abuse imposed upon them according to unscriptural rules and laws by a cult religion but by choices they made as to whom they would serve willingly! The operative being “willingly”…That was the scriptural context Jesus had in mind and that the Society is once again twisting and exploiting to manipulate people’s minds in light of the turmoil that they, themselves have created and can no longer control! This is what people need to wake up to be shown…if they don’t hopefully see it already!

  22. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    “The Truth [that] Brings “Not Peace, But a Sword” (Matthew10:32-38)”. Believe me, they will twist these words to justify their ABUSES of the Society (WTS).
    Take time to read this:

    *** w86 11/1 p. 26 Family Problems Solved by Bible Counsel ***
    “WIVES [choose] to be divorced, children to be disinherited, . . . rather than be unfaithful to Christ,” wrote Arnobius, a professed Christian of the fourth century. Yes, even then, bitter religious opposition by unbelievers split up families. Jesus stated that those who had “greater affection” for family members than for him would not be worthy of him. Hence, there would be “a sword” causing division in some households, because of the believer’s showing less love for his family, “yes, and even his own soul.” (Matthew 10:34-37; Luke 14:26) Such divisions in families continue to our day.

    What do you think of that?

    • Les Hoy says:

      Hakizimana,
      of course correct understanding of scripture has to be revealed by The Holy Spirit to us……. But bear in mind that the nature of man is prone to fall into legalism because of the flesh. We should not become as pharisees and not make our family members enemies. Math 5:13.

  23. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Hakizimana Jean de Dieu May 8, 2013 at 10:48 pm wrote:

    “The Truth [that] Brings “Not Peace, But a Sword” (Matthew10:32-38)”. Believe me, they will twist these words to justify their ABUSES of the Society (WTS).
    Take time to read this:
    *** w86 11/1 p. 26 Family Problems Solved by Bible Counsel ***
    “WIVES [choose] to be divorced, children to be disinherited, . . . rather than be unfaithful to Christ,” wrote Arnobius, a professed Christian of the fourth century. Yes, even then, bitter religious opposition by unbelievers split up families. Jesus stated that those who had “greater affection” for family members than for him would not be worthy of him. Hence, there would be “a sword” causing division in some households, because of the believer’s showing less love for his family, “yes, and even his own soul.” (Matthew 10:34-37; Luke 14:26) Such divisions in families continue to our day.
    What do you think of that?”

    What do I think? Well, I’m no source or scholar but the fact is and I do see it that there is absolutely no mention of any intrusion in “The fourth Century” of an apostate organization or it’s unlawful or unscriptural set of laws and rules or what impact that may or may not have had on things or any specifics regarding this particular case or this man’s circumstances which are randomly cited as alleged case evidence.

    I referred to this:
    “Jesus stated that those who had “greater affection” for family members than for him would not be worthy of him. Hence, there would be “a sword” causing division in some households, because of the believer’s showing less love for his family, “yes, and even his own soul.” ”
    And again, these are choices that people would make just as the apostles did by example. Not under violence and abusive coercion and criminal abusive conditions as imposed by this organization.

    This is typical Watchtower propaganda…which will be consumed in the guise of spiritual (junk) food!
    The Fourth century mind you? Well after the Society itself… has claimed for years that apostasy had set in to the Christian Congregation but now they are grasping at straws, citing cases from that time for some manner of reference and evidence?
    They must have looked pretty hard before going back to scrape the “Barrel Bottoms!”
    The desperation gets ever more apparent!

  24. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    WTS is a cruel cult. Read the following in *** jr chap. 5 p. 56 par. 4 What Friends Will You Choose? ***
    In some ways your situation is like Jeremiah’s. No doubt you have contact with neighbors, workmates, or schoolmates who in a sense are associates or companions. But will you take matters further, cultivating friendships with them even though they have shown that they are not interested in hearing or following God’s direction? Jeremiah could not shun Zedekiah altogether; he was still the king, even when refusing to follow God’s counsel.

    It seems they would SHUN every body if they were able to!! Cruel cult!!!

  25. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    Read this, too. JWs would SHUN everybody if they were able to!!
    *** jr chap. 5 p. 57 par. 4 What Friends Will You Choose? ***
    You cannot avoid all contact with people who are not serving God—those at work, at school, or in your neighborhood. (1 Cor. 5:9, 10) You realize, however, that if you choose such ones as friends, you might well compromise your friendship with God.

  26. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Well, when one looks at the case of Congressman Leo Ryan and others who were killed by Jim Jones and his cult in Guyana…(Read the Senate Report below):

    http://jonestown.sdsu.edu/AboutJonestown/PrimarySources/HouseReportText.html

    The matter was only planned and carried out to deadly execution when the cult leader(s) were finally doomed with facing reality and justice for their criminal behaviour. This is my great concern at present with the Watchtower Society and those held at the various branches.
    Jim Jones is just one case of the cult mindset of “scorched earth” and taking as many as possible with them. David Koresh and so many others attest also. We see such bizarre and and increasingly deviant writings and behaviour from the Society that we should expect almost anything!

    While I assure everyone that The United States is far, far too cowardly to ever hold these brutal bastards accountable for anything (Have we seen anything yet? Ever?) we see Australia taking the lead and hopefully Germany by it’s nature and history of intolerance to nonsense as well as France and other European countries will hopefully follow suit in not allowing such abhorrent scam “religious” abuses and criminal syndication to continue. They have shown such limited but aggressive action in the past when dealing with Scientology and others but were understandingly hoodwinked for quite a while by these slicksters even if many of us got their number the hard way!

  27. Les Hoy says:

    Hi Chris, just to say i have fallen in Love with a JW and it is very difficult as we are trying to Marry. But God is able and i acknowledge Him in all my ways.
    I am a born again believer.
    Les

  28. Alden says:

    I found the daily text very interesting today, which stated we should NEVER give up on our unbelieving relatives! How does that harmonize with shunning?

  29. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Well,

    Here is a fine and perfect but public example of the Watchtower Society getting caught in the cookie jar using Disfellowsipping as a tool for their financial advantage and abusing others:

    Money, power and greed!

    http://www.watchtowernews.org/tacomapark.htm
    http://www.pfo.org/freepark.htm
    http://www.thenewstribune.com/2013/07/02/2662305/jehovahs-witnesses-returning-for.html?storylink=rss_xml

  30. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Watchtower greed at the Tacoma convention manifested itself once again and resulted in Disfellowshipping abuse:

    http://www.watchtowernews.org/tacomapark.htm

    This time they were caught with their hand in the cookie jar!

  31. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Here is another detailed report:

    http://www.pfo.org/freepark.htm

    Desperation causes impaired judgement!

  32. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    Here is the original Tacoma Convention media article that paints such a Rosey image…notice how I (My real name is Kurt Hennig) and Cedars and others respond in the comments:

    http://www.thenewstribune.com/2013/07/02/2662305/jehovahs-witnesses-returning-for.html?storylink=rss_xml

    Thanks Cedars!

  33. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    And we thought Tacoma got a fluffy buildup? (Just before a parking lot money scam scandal)

    Just look at Mobile Alabama! That’s the Bible belt you know?

    They must just love these Child Raping, weak and sick beating, exploiters, thieves and liars!

    http://www.al.com/living/index.ssf/2013/07/33_baptisms_at_the_mitchell_ce.html

    I wonder how many Disfellowshippings will result from this convention?

  34. Grace says:

    I just found this letter online & wow, what a well written letter to the GB from Brenda Lee. The GB should have read this & hung their sorry heads in shame.

    http://www.outofthecocoon.net/pdf/LetterToGoverningBody.pdf

  35. Grace says:

    Hi Charles, no I don’t know what the outcome of that letter was. Whether they responded or not. How could they really.

    It’s been almost 12 months of fading for me & I’m still finding things that I would never have looked at before.

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