When will Watchtower learn? – Karen Morgan speaks out on her abuser’s 14 year sentence
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Sewell victim Karen Morgan has appeared on BBC television bravely describing her ordeal

Sewell victim Karen Morgan has appeared on BBC television bravely describing her ordeal

Mark Sewell, the disgraced former elder convicted of a string of sex abuse offenses, including 5 counts of indecent assault against two young girls and the rape of a woman, has now been sentenced to 14 years having shown “not a thread of remorse.”

His crimes were committed during the time he was serving as an elder between the years of 1987 and 1995. Like most Jehovah’s Witness elders he was respected in his congregation, and he used this respect to inflict great damage on people’s lives.

News of the sentencing has prompted the Charity Commission to open an operational compliance case on Sewell’s congregation. The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) has also weighed in by issuing a press release expressing gratitude for the “brave victims who worked courageously to get Sewell behind bars.”

One such victim has bravely stepped forward and waived her anonymity by giving a series of media interviews.

Mark Sewell capitalized on the opportunities  and trust afforded him by his position

Mark Sewell capitalized on the opportunities and trust afforded him by his position

Karen Morgan is the perpetrator’s niece who he took advantage of sexually, bribing her with alcohol. She has recounted how, tragically, her congregation did nothing simply because Sewell refused to confess.

Karen told the BBC: “Those group of elders who sat me as a child in front of a guy who’d been abusing me for years, and expected me to talk about it in front of him, and hear him calling me a liar… I think that probably has had the most effect on the rest of my life, because what Mark did to me I’ve had to try to deal with, but I’ve also had to try and deal with how the whole thing was handled… and I want answers for that.”

“I blame them for what continued to happen to me because no-one dealt with it,” she added.

(The full BBC report can be found on this link.)

Karen was sadly forced to attend three church meetings with her abuser in attendance. Sewell even organized an interrogation before other elders where he tried to get her to confess to lying. Astonishingly, it seems Sewell had an entire congregation in his back pocket, and was using it to cloak his appetite for sexual crime.

My heart goes out to all the brave victims who have been put through such an unthinkable ordeal. Their horror stories should rightly shatter the image the Watchtower portrays of their elder arrangement. Mark Sewell is a perfect example of how bad it can truly get when power is handed to someone of an evil, manipulative disposition.

But why was he given that power in the first place? And why was he allowed to hold on to it for so long?

Still waiting on Jehovah

“Wait on Jehovah” were three words I often heard growing up as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. For instance, when it was known that an elder had been overstepping his power, we were told to let “Jehovah” take care of things, and wait on him.

In the meantime the elder was to be considered innocent of any alleged wrongdoing, and talking about it with others, including outsiders, was considered taboo or “gossiping.” Unfortunately, this way of doing things meant that if the elder was engaging in some form of abuse, the victims would have to endure considerable suffering while their community did nothing but watch.

Elders are given a special privilege in the congregation, and this is evidenced by a 2013 Watchtower article telling parents with disfellowshipped children:

“Also, do not blame others. Respect Jehovah’s arrangement for discipline. Take your stand against the Devil—not against shepherds who act to protect the congregation.” – Watchtower, Jan 15, 2013, p. 16 par. 18.

Elders are granted an enormous amount of power over the lives of others. They have spiritual guardianship over their congregations and are respected as shepherds. They are called upon to judge whether wrongdoers under their care are repentant, and they wield the power to sever such ones from their friends and family, all in the name of “keeping the congregation clean.”

Naturally, any position of power, whether inside or outside a religion, will attract people who wish to exploit it. What measures, then, does the Watchtower take to address this problem?

Jim McCabe, a Watchtower spokesman, once told the media: “our problem is that there are some bad men that sneak into organizations. They snuck into our organization, they snuck into other organizations. When we discover who they are we take the action that we can take as a religious organization.”

As you can see, when Watchtower leadership is shown to be entangled in extreme wrongdoing, they have no problems equating themselves with the rest of the world’s organizations.

McCabe paints his organization as the victim of outside forces beyond their control. Yet, when they speak to their membership through their publications they deliver an entirely different message – one where their leadership is “appointed by holy spirit” and can be trusted as if the guiding hand of God directs them.

Never is the congregation warned that any elder could at any time be a “Mark Sewell,” who has “snuck into” God’s organization and assumed one of their positions of power.

Leadership appointed by holy spirit?

Sewell’s atrocities, and how he got away with them for so long, are part of a larger pattern that many throughout the decades have been desperately trying to highlight.

Unfortunately, Watchtower’s propaganda machine has successfully concealed this pattern of abuse from their membership. Astoundingly, many witnesses are completely unaware of the seriousness of their organization’s predicament. They simply operate on the “wait on Jehovah” mantra, and explain all negativity away with the idea of “human imperfection.” Are the gross sexual crimes committed by Sewell, and others in the organization, simply a case of human imperfection?

According to Jehovah’s Witnesses, God’s “Holy Spirit” is perfect, but operates through imperfect people. The glaring question is how can a monster like Mark Sewell pass through this alleged supernatural recruitment process of appointment unscathed?

How can an omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent God be circumvented by the criminal mind of a single human being? The extreme suffering that Sewell has caused could have been avoided by simply intervening at the beginning of the process, something a perfect supernatural entity should be capable of doing.

By claiming that the leadership is appointed supernaturally, Watchtower is creating a false sense of security for their entire membership with devastating results. This is especially the case with children who naturally look up to spiritual shepherds, thus providing an opportunity for predators. This was what happened in the case of Mark Sewell, and there are undoubtedly more predators still lurking in the religion yet to be identified.

Interestingly, the governing body has recently handed over responsibility of appointing elders to circuit overseers, effectively further distancing themselves from liability in this extremely flawed recruitment process.

Tip of the iceberg

Sexual crimes are altogether horrific, but I don’t believe they should overshadow the many other forms of abuse that religious leadership is capable of inflicting on their “flocks.”

Jehovah’s Witnesses, and all of the world’s religions, need to come to terms with the fact that their problem is much more than just “bad men” sneaking into their organizations. The Mark Sewell case is symptomatic of a much larger problem which includes a wide spectrum of spiritual, physical and sexual abuse. This abuse is enabled by an imperfect system much more than imperfect operators.

Imagine, hypothetically, that the court found Sewell innocent and all allegations against him entirely fraudulent. We can be sure that Jehovah’s Witnesses, either locally or further afield, would use the story to reaffirm their faith that the Watchtower is God’s organization on earth. But since the case didn’t turn out in the Watchtower’s favor, it will not be reported on, and Watchtower will allow the story to fade in the memories of those who know about it with the passage of time. It will simply be another historical blemish to whitewash years later.

Their mode of operation is confirmation bias – that’s how propaganda machines work. They make sure all positive information is artificially inflated and anything negative is swept under the rug.

If you asked a random Jehovah’s Witness about the Mark Sewell case, they’d probably reply, “Mark who?” and would likely demand some type of proof that his former elder colleagues were indeed “spiritually corrupt and morally bankrupt.” Such circumstances simply don’t fit with the way Watchtower wishes to portray its elders, and this lies at the core of the problem.

It’s frightening to note that people like Mark Sewell had the power to disfellowship people in their congregations for something as simple as refusing to quit smoking cigarettes, all the while engaging in sexual crimes against the ones he swore to protect.

Sadly, Jehovah’s Witnesses continue to believe that they have an exclusive relationship with God despite conclusive evidence that their claims are no more valid than those of other religions. Perhaps one day that bitter realization will dawn on the leadership, and they’ll make the necessary changes and offer modern policies that protect their communities against predators; especially for the sake of their young ones.

In the meantime, how long will they “wait on Jehovah” to protect them against predators who seek to exploit them? How many lives, like that of Karen Morgan, need to be severely damaged in order for Jehovah’s Witnesses to wake up and do what needs to be done?

According to Rick Simons, who represented Candace Conti in yet another Watchtower sex abuse scandal, “Watchtower’s going to need more than one lesson, the Catholic Church sure did, and they’re going to get more than one lesson!” As more abuse scandals pile up for Watchtower, his words continue to be proven a devastating reality.

 

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72 Responses to When will Watchtower learn? – Karen Morgan speaks out on her abuser’s 14 year sentence

  1. maxmama says:

    I wish they would televise the jw’s cult like they do flds, amish, etc.

  2. Knightowl says:

    It’s not just a can of worms it’s Pandora’s box that has been opened.
    There is the “law” that governs the land and any organization or “printing business” that flouts that law by harbouring deviants, making judgement psychological or criminal ,based on a “I am sorry” is criminally negligent.
    Any individual who is made aware of any such deviancy and fails to act within that law should be made culpable and criminally liable with at least a one year gaol sentence or two years community service (that’s not knocking on doors either litter collections on waste ground, railway sidings etc)

  3. Les Hoy says:

    … “wait on Jehovah”
    well Jehovah has already spoken !!!

    He wants justice and the sword to be yielded by the authorities.
    According to Paul, government is “ordained by God” (Romans 13:2) to promote justice, restrain evil, and protect the people under its care (Romans 13:3-4).
    In order for government to accomplish its responsibilities, it “bears the sword” (Romans 13:4), levies taxes and tribute (Romans 13:6), and lays a just claim to its people’s support (Romans 13:5,7).

  4. Excelsior says:

    Les Hoy,

    Excellent comment, sir! Yes, the GB forget that they are subject to the God approved superior authorities. There is no doubt of this at all.

    They also forget that they are supposed to be a slave class! I cannot recall anywhere or at any time a slave telling other people what to do!! Slaves are told what to do by their masters. Jesus is the one they should be obeying and he loved and cared for children. He would never want them to suffer at the hands of disgusting paedophiles.

    The WTBTS make me so angry and they make me want to vomit. Their hypocrisy and lack of compassion make them completely unfit to run a charitable organisation.

    I hope that one day they will have to face justice in the courts. I hope that they receive in full measure what justice decrees.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  5. Les Hoy says:

    @ Excelsior thankyou.
    … i would like to say i am not against Jw’s and i have never been one ….. but i do have a deeply loved who is trapped at this moment in this dangerous organisation run by the GB, seven ordinary men.

    I might add i would be against my own church leadership were this to happen and i would not be able to say my own congregation is clean …. only God knows who the wheat and chaff are.

    It breaks my heart to hear of the sufferings of Karen and Knightowl and many others at the hands of another Spirit, it is sickening!

    Jesus as the Great Shepherd has taught us to care for ALL the flock, He left the 99 to go after the 1 who was lost.
    Jesus said …. And whoever receives one such child in My name receives Me; but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. Math 18.
    I hope Sewell truly repents and calls out to The Lord to be saved before it’s too late. However for now Justice had to be done according to what scripture clearly shows us!

    Keep up with your good posts my friend.

  6. Les Hoy says:

    He is always a liar. When he offers you freedom, listen for the sound of the chains. R.C.Sproul jr

  7. Ted says:

    Karen, You spoke well in the interview, you impressed me as
    a strong determined person who will not let low life’s ruin
    your future happiness, you said you hoped bringing things
    into the open would help others, Well I can promise you it
    already has, There are thousands of us who have wasted
    large chunks of our life in this evil cult but have now seen
    through their nasty controlling methods, And wer’e all with
    you.

    I think one thing to try and avoid is bitterness, Otherwise
    the Bstds, have beat us up twice, Ray Franz set a good
    example in that regard, The Watchtower’s response was
    typical propaganda, Leaving out damaging information
    saying Sewell was expelled twenty years ago and failing to
    mention he was still able to associate unexposed.

  8. Ron says:

    I have seen to much over many years, of strange weird behaviour by elders in my past 26 years within the Cult to have no shadow of a doubt that this is truly the tip of the iceberg. Even my own region a span of a 30 mile radius has brought out many elders who have abused. The revulsion I have had for this so called (Spirit appointed) man system for decades, has led me many times to be classed as rebellious. Even now I still suspect certain ones, but can never prove it. I would like to think that the more cases come forward, the more the spotlight is shone on the JW’s a thoroughly vile organisation I am glad to be away from.

  9. JJ says:

    Great article! So well written.
    That was a great point that there is more abuse than just sexual abuse.
    I have left the JW’s and when I did, my mother was, of course, horrified for my eternal salvation. But I reminded her of her life-long hatred of the ‘Elders’ and she had to agree. Although there have been nice guys here and there, in general the elders have been a constant source of oppression. Absolutely it attracts jerks that love the power and authority it gives to them.
    In my area of Ontario, Canada, back in the late ’80’s, we had one elder who was also the P.O. of his hall and he got caught having sex with a dog while in the door-to-door ministry! (You can’t make this stuff up!). The owner of the dog had the presence of mind to grab his camera and take pictures. Now, this elder was obvious screwed up but the question remains; how did the Divine Selection Process get fooled again?!?

  10. Excelsior says:

    Yes, JJ, how can an organisation have so, so many of these perverts and still claim that they are appointed by Holy Spirit.

    To borrow a phrase off of Mr Cedars, you can’t have it both ways.

    It’s simple logic. Fact – there are many paedophiles and other perverts who are elders, and they continue with their disgusting behaviour until they are exposed by the brave stand of the victims, supported by the superior authorities.

    Now, if it is a known fact that many elders have been convicted of vile crimes, then how can it be that God’s Holy Spirit has selected these individuals? Is God a huge fan of paedophiles? Does he want children to be abused? Of course not!!

    So the logical answer to this conundrum is that elders in the WTBTS are NOT selected by Holy Spirit.

    I am an atheist. I don’t believe in God. These men are selected because they can parrot the WTBTS and answer in the right way. These men are selected by men with no supernatural assistance whatsoever.

    For you dear folks who have a sincere belief in God, then there is still no problem. It is evident from the facts that elders are NOT appointed by Holy Spirit. They are appointed in good faith from a human being’s best efforts to know the one appointed.

    The moral here is never to allow anyone else to define our morality and never trust anyone in authority who does not have reasonable and proportionate child protection policies.

    The WTBTS has a duty of care for it’s followers. It must provide a fit for purpose child protection policy and assist the authorities immediately a charge of abuse is levelled. It must inform the congregation of the presence of a paedophile in their midst. The WTBTS does none of these things, and so is morally obscene.

    Karen, I and all of us here want to help you in your selfless and noble cause. Thank you for your spirit of decency and your courage. Because of your bravery and selflessness, many children will be saved from the vile abuse that you have suffered. Things will change, I’m sure of it.

    James, you have written an excellent article. Thank you for your moral stand on this issue, and your desire to help all victims of these inhumane, vile people.

    This is the beginning of the end for the WTBTS. Their despicable child protection policy is becoming known to the wider community and they are universally repelled by it.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  11. StarTrekAngel says:

    Not only the current policies do nothing to protect children, but has anyone at the WTBTS thought that may be these policies are attracting pedophiles to the organization as they see they it as a potential safe haven?

  12. Queen Elsa says:

    Just in…but old news to those that follow…
    http://www.nbcnews.com/video/nightly-news/21919076#55589706

  13. Hakizimana Jean de Dieu says:

    “When will Watchtower learn?”
    I am pessimistic,they will never learn as Jehovah says (Hosea 4:7, 8) . . .the more they sinned against me. I will change their glory into disgrace.  8 They feed on the sin of my people, And they are greedy for their error.

    They will “feed on the sin of my people” and will never have it enough!!!!

  14. Knightowl says:

    Let’s hope that the UK does introduce the law of mandatory reporting that applies to organizations that are dictated to by a “national” body.
    The time is fast approaching.

  15. anonymous says:

    Those people can go home with a “clean” conscience even though they did something they know is disrespectful in “God’s House” with the same “clean conscience” when they let one of their children die from refusing a blood transfusion because “God-Governing Body” told them that they should do it.

  16. anonymous says:

    Hi John. I mean my last comment here to go under partying. Can you delete it as it doesn’t apply? Thanks

  17. Art Fern says:

    ExMan, I wasn’t aware of the fact that you and I share the same disbeliefs. I normally wildly agree with your comments, now I’m “get” the reason why. Its funny my morals are just the same, I didn’t begin to take up the activities that were forbidden in my parents belief system. To become a wild, unrestrained character seems to be a certainty in the minds of those who regard you are mentally disturbed. What I did lose was my judgementalism, looking at others as them and my fellow congregates as we.

  18. Ocma says:

    Their excuse of ‘some bad men creep in to the congregation’ has always bugged me too. As mentioned in the article, the elders, M.S’s etc, are supposedly appointed by holy spirit. How does the ”true god” of the ”one true religion” allow this? – The JW religion really is just a sham. It annoys me greatly that so many JW’s will read about this and feel persecuted, and think that the victims are just lying.
    Well done to the victims who are speaking up xx

  19. Nancy says:

    I recently had a conversation with my active JW mother. I asked her if she was aware of all the of sexual abuse cases being brought against the organization, especially the Candace Conti case. She has not heard any of it. Not one bit, not one story, not one hint of a story. My jaw hit the ground. I am trying to put together an email containing links to various stories but I want to only use mainstream news sources since she won’t look at any anti-JW sites. If anyone has any links to share, please do. It would be greatly appreciated. She said she would read what I send her so I am going to make the best of it. 🙂

  20. Imacountrygirl says:

    Karen, Your story is an inspiration to me! You and the other sisters have far more courage than I did.

    Thank you for giving a voice, and a face, to the truth about child sexual abuse in the Watchtower organization and their deliberate cover up and protection of the abuser.

    The more of us that stand up to the organization about their cover up of abuse, sexual and physical, the sooner they will be forced to admit the truth.

    With love and full support!!

  21. JBob says:

    It’s a common mistaken interpretation of the phrase “wait on J*”. Sit by, take no action, etc as “waiting” but the translations where this phrase is rendered at Psalm 27:14 (“Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.”) It gets “patiently” thrown in there by tons of sincere Christians, but the Hebrew term has an “anticipatory” interpretation–waiting with a sense of urgency–hoping. Thus, “hope in the Lord”.

    Judges 3:20-23, “I have a message from God for you.” Hah!! Right to the breadbasket. People prayed for relief–hoped, and someone took action.

    Numbers 25, Phinehas takes action. This one was used in the 1980’s Purge/Witchhunt to justify casting out scores of JW’s who dared to read the Bible in groups or expressed a contrary opinion about the GB. But, on closer review, no waiting–hoping, yes–on Jehovah–hah!! right to the tender parts, just like a lawsuit or criminal charge filed to bring justice against a pedophiliac “protected” administrator. A sharp boot to the tenders, if not a sword.

    The point is, J* uses agents/men/women, and if your eyes see it, hear it, and you take action, who can say J* isn’t using you to do housecleaning? If you fail to take action, how do you say this is not grieving the Spirit ? (Eph 4:30) Forgiveness is part of this whole process, but also compassion for each other, and letting a serial offender repeat harm to another is not compassion.

  22. Margaret says:

    Jesus never went soft on crime!

  23. Debbie Smith says:

    Hello Nancy

    “Letter to All Bodies of Elders” dated October 1, 2012, on the official government website of the Parliament of Victoria, Australia. http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/
    On the site search “Watchtower”; then select “#2. Submissions”; then scroll alphabetically to “Watchtower, Appendix 1”. Pay particular attention to paragraphs 15 and 22, 23 and 24. Maybe this will help you Mom see that Watchtower is shielding abusers and even allowing some as “elders”.

    • Gareth says:

      Adding some info (just in case): the “shielding abusers” part is caused by adhering to the two-witness rule in case there is no confession. In this case, also other parents aren’t notified. They are only notified when the abuser is classified as a “predator”, but this classification is only allowed by the branch office. (But how are they able to perform this classification as they don’t know the person, much less the day-to-day conduct? They will have to rely on reports from local elders anyway) Further, who says these elders are going to notice this predatory behavior? Some field service gatherings will be conducted by ministerial servants (no elder present); and they are not fully informed. Also, child abusers might be easy-going (see the Jonathan Rose case) making things even more difficult (for both the victim(s) and protecting others without being allowed to inform/warn them).

  24. anonymous says:

    Adding to the last comment. If the molester doesn’t admit to his “crime” and there aren’t 2 witnesses to the crime, the elders will discourage the victim from reporting the crime to the police and may even threaten the victim with disfellowshipping if the victim reports the crime to the police. The elders will tell the victim that if they take a Witness, who is still in good standing to court, that it is the VICTIM who is bringing reproach on Jehovah’s name and this action will ruin the reputation of Jehovah’s organization. This is what makes it a molester’s paradise. Added to this will be the admonition to the victim to “forgive” because if they can’t forgive the “sin” as the elders put it, then Jehovah won’t forgive them of their “sins”. I wonder how many there are of victims who would report the crime (not sin) of molestation if they were allowed to freely, without being giving a guilt trip for doing so by the elders?

  25. Joseph says:

    Horrible things happen but that does not diminish the good of other jws. You’re making it sound like all elders are corrupt when in reality people lie when they are appointed to be elders and such. This Mark Sewell will get everything he deserves but that’s no reason to put down all elders or jws ad a whole.

  26. Excelsior says:

    Joseph,

    EVERY Elder has a copy of the “Shepherding the Flock of God” book that no one who isn’t an Elder is allowed to see.

    In this repulsive tome, it sets out the child protection policy ,such as it is, for all Elders to follow. It tells Elders to telephone the Bethel and leave it with them. Many times, there is nothing done to help the victim or other potential victims.

    So, you are partially correct. I agree with you that the rank and file Jehovah’s Witnesses have no idea that child abuse is dealt with so badly. However, EVERY Elder should know, because they have a personal copy of the “Shepherding..” book.

    What if the abuse happens in Ireland? The Elders are expected to telephone Bethel in North London and leave it with them. Do you think this provides adequate protection to children? There are many countries in the world that do not even have a Bethel in their own country! How on earth are the folks at these Bethels supposed to come to a proper decision? Why don’t they telephone the police straight away?

    Indeed Mr Sewell is getting “everything he deserves” but this is with NO HELP WHATSOEVER from Bethel or most particularly the local body of Elders. This august body decided to shred relevant evidence and follow the guidance of Bethel which resulted in no justice at all for the victims. They also tried to avoid testifying.

    Do you think that this brings glory to God? Do you think that the two witness rule should apply to child abuse cases?

    I will be very interested in your response.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  27. Excelsior says:

    anonymous,

    The “Shephering” book does not state that parents who choose to telephone the police will be punished. It specifically states that there will be no punishment. That is good, and I applaud that. However, it does not say for the Elders to ENCOURAGE the parents to go to the police!

    Their book is both subtle and sinister.

    The point about Bethel deciding who is a “predator” is correct. How can a group of men many miles away from the scene of the crimes decide something like that? Even if they are sincere people, they have no basis for such a decision.

    Historically, there are cases where parents who go to the police are either disfellowshipped, or threatened with it. The subtle yet sinister passage in the “Shepherding” book tries to address this. It is by no means good enough. It still leads to many victims never being given justice and paedophiles allowed to abuse again and again.

    It must stop. It will stop.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  28. anonymous says:

    Hi Excelsior. I know they’d never put in the Shepherding book that a victim would be punished for going to the police. At least the Governing Body isn’t quite that stupid.

    But anyone wanting to go to the police about being molested or attacked by another person in the congregation, who is still in good standing will be given a guilt trip unless that molester either confesses or there are 2 witnesses to establish guilt so that the molester will be disfellowshipped ahead of time before the victim goes to the police so then it’d be okay for the victim to go the police since then the molester would be found guilty and no longer in good standing in the congregation.

    The victim and his or her family will be the ones that will be ruining the reputation of Jehovah. That is the way it will be presented to the victim by the elders unless there is a way to establish to the elders that there was a crime. If the elders don’t have any witnesses to the crime, then the victim will be told to “leave it in Jehovah’s hands”.

    It has always been a policy of the organization that a witness does not take a fellow witness to court who is in good standing in the congregation and until the molester is found guilty of the crime in the eyes of the congregation, that person is still in good standing in the congregation. This is because taking a fellow witness to court, brings “reproach” on Jehovah’s name.

    It is very important to report a rape to police immediately because of the physical evidence such as semen or other physical evidence. It is very important that the girl would not bathe etc. and the semen would be good enough to establish guilt as the 2nd witness but the elders don’t encourage the victim to report it immediately and won’t be telling the girl not to bathe etc. if they report to the elders right away. The elders would be instructed to get in touch with the Branch etc. and in the meantime, vital evidence is lost.

    There are many things a victim should do in the case of rape, but you will never see that advice in the Society’s publications. There is a good reason for that. The Society is especially interested in protecting it’s reputation. What if the witness girl does go to the police and it’s only her word that she was attacked and no semen? Then it’s her word against the attacker unless there was another witness. In that case she and her family may face judicial punishment from the congregation. So the bottom line is that if a Witness girl is attacked, she’d better have another witness or semen and needs to report to the police immediately and forget about telling the elders. If not and the attacker denies the attack, nobody in the congregation will take her side. She will have to go to meetings and see her attacker being treated well and all the time she is knowing what he did to her. Nobody should have to go through that.

    If elders have evidence of an attack or molestation and they cover it up in order to protect the reputation of the organization, then I’d like to see them all thrown in jail. That is where they all belong. Sewell and the elders all belong in jail.

  29. anonymous says:

    and to add to my last comment: Child molesters know how to “groom” their victims so it may not occur to the victim until they are a lot older that they then realize that they had been molested as a child by that kind of person. Many times, the child was “groomed” in such a way that the child felt as if they maybe did something wrong to encourage the molestation and so don’t come forward because they feel “guilty” about what happened. The Watchtower encourages that kind of thinking by putting their publications for young people for them not to dress provocatively or flirting (10 year old children this is for) as it says in the Young People Ask book on page 229. This book also encourages the victim to feel guilty for the crime by not taking “precautions”. In that article, there is not one mention that the rape victim should go to the police and report the crime but only to talk to the elders. It doesn’t even call rape a crime in that article but calls it a sin and a “lack of natural affection” and “being taken advantage of sexually”

  30. Excelsior says:

    anonymous,

    Here! Here!

    I would add that there are other kinds of evidence that will present themselves physically, and that professionals will be able to discern if a victim has been molested even after much time has passed because of the psychological trauma that such a disgusting crime creates.

    I am disgusted by the WTBTS’ unloving, unChristian and sexist policies. Thank goodness that not all men are such sexist b*******, or there would not be any people around at all!!

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  31. PureStrongheart says:

    OMG…I don’t know where else to post, so I just commented here on the latest child abuse story.
    JW.org just posted an article, “Jehovah’s Witnesses Educate Parents and Children to Protect Against Sexual Predators,” listing every magazine article, book, and any other reference to child abuse going back thirty years.
    What a slap in the face! 🙁 It means little if, when the abuse is brought to light, the internal policies continue to be applied.