Welcome to JWsurvey.org, the online voice for Jehovah’s Witnesses
of the past, present, and future.

JWsurvey.org is the proud home of the 2013 Global Survey of Jehovah’s Witnesses. If you are, or ever have been, a Jehovah’s Witness – please take this survey. Even if you were never actually baptized or have been away from the Witnesses for many years, we encourage you to have you say and share your opinions regarding the Watch Tower Society, and its leaders the Governing Body.

If you are a current or former Witness, you will know only too well that doubts are not permitted among the brothers, and the Governing Body expects and demands your unquestioned loyalty. If there is any teaching you are uncertain of, you must “wait on Jehovah,” which effectively means burying your doubts and pretending they never existed. Over time, these suppressed doubts accumulate until you are nothing more than a robot, going through the motions and doing what is expected of you – but never truly believing it 100%.

Jehovah’s Witnesses who have doubts are expected to “wait on Jehovah” by effectively burying them

If this describes your current situation, then please be assured that there are hundreds if not thousands like you who are at various stages of waking up to the reality of the JW faith. As you probably suspect already, there is more to this religion than meets the eye, and the Watchtower literature has not been telling you the full truth about the organization’s history.

The trouble is, even if you no longer agree with the Governing Body on a number of issues, you may feel (as many do) that you are bound to the organization against your will through the cruel practice of shunning. Though the Society argues that shunning is scriptural, it is actually anything but. Shunning was instituted by the Apostle Paul to keep congregations clean – not as an instrument for tearing families apart.

This and many other damaging practices are dealt with periodically on my blog, which I encourage you to check from time to time. I do my very best to keep Witnesses informed as to what is REALLY going on in the organization, rather than giving them the kind of carefully-manicured information you will find in JW.org articles and press releases.

Please enjoy using this site, and treat it as though it is yours. After all, here you are free to be yourself and exchange opinions about the organization with others. All we ask is that you do NOT try to use our website as a platform for evangelizing religious or atheistic views. This website is religiously-neutral and has been set up as an indoctrination-free sanctuary. We appreciate your help and cooperation in keeping it that way.

We hope you find the information on JWsurvey useful, and that our efforts can play some part in your spiritual journey. Remember: You are no longer the silent majority. Your opinion matters. Now make it count!

60 Responses to Welcome

  1. Mark Davis says:

    New to the site, look forward to reading more of your material.

  2. Randy G. says:

    Hi Cedars,

    Congratulations on your 2012 survey. You clearly have engaged in a labour of love and no doubt some financial expense as well. Just having an opportunity to voice concerns regardless of our current status and involvement with the faith can be cathartic. To what extent will the Governing Body read your report? Unless they directly responded one could never know. Nonetheless having a substantial package delivered by UPS as you’ve arranged no doubt has some impact — even if it was just thrown away.

    Consider too what current GB members might hear from the average member. No doubt much of it is praise and we-so-love-the-organization type of comments. Nice, but not really intellectually stimulating. Thus I would not be entirely surprised if some of those in leadership positions pay a fair amount of attention to dissenting voices, especially when expressed with respect and well articulated. I know when I served as an elder and Bill Bowen had setup silentlambs.org when the circuit overseer talked privately to the elders he said several things about Bill, whom he said he knew.

    On March 24, 2013 our ex-JW meetup groups (West Phoenix and Chandler) have organized a “Shun Run”. We did this last year too and 9 came out for the walk/run. Prior to this event I wrote to one specific individual at HQs, using the code from his letter to me (SDB:SSY). He doesn’t write back, but I too hope our concerns about shunning don’t fall on deaf ears. But even if they do, I still hope our Shun Run is of help.


  3. Steve says:

    I was curious, you are always pretty vocal about whats new. Did I miss a post as to why you are no longer afilated with AAWA?

    • Cedars says:

      Hi Steve. I would prefer not go into the exact reasons why I am no longer with AAWA, but you should know that I still support AAWA and hope it is successful in its objectives with or without me. It didn’t seem necessary to write an article about it on this website because I don’t consider it to be that big of a deal for my readers. I would rather continue to focus on what’s going on with Watchtower. I hope you understand. :)

  4. Steve says:

    Thanks for the reply. Of course I respect your wishes. But you will forgive me for suggesting that is a little hypocritical. Especially since aawa – while they accuse the watchtower for being a cult because of amoung other things information control – have encountered a number of issues, the facebook fiasco to one side – the racist comments in their (now mysteriously disapeared) newsletter. Their firstly insulting any posters that disagree with them, and then deleting and ip blocking anyone that posts something negative. (this i experienced first hand). As a respected commentator I had hoped you could shed some light, rather than allow another organisation to sweep its mistakes and errors under the carpet.

    • Cedars says:

      Hi Steve. I’m sorry you think I am a hypocrite simply because I won’t dish the dirt on a fledgling organization which, though imperfect, shares my aims and aspirations. If you really need me to point out the difference between AAWA and an organization that controls the lives of millions under the pretense that it is under God’s guidance, then you are more dependent on my reasoning ability than you perhaps should be. In any case, I respect your opinion and I am glad that you can respect mine. Cedars

  5. zahid says:

    I want you guys to join

  6. Arno says:

    I personally appreciates all the energy you are putting into this website, Cedars – in particular the 2013 survey. I would love to participate in this survey, but, for the time being, elects to wait and see if there will be an amended survey in the months to come, wherein the above suggestions by various participants/commenters have been included.

    I’m very glad to have chanced upon this website tonight whilst doing some “research” (googling) the topic “Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses”. A fantastic and laudable task you’ve taken upon yourself…and a great site indeed.

    Count me in :)

  7. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    “forgive me for suggesting that is a little hypocritical”

    “but you should know that I still support AAWA” ~ Well, would some feel that way because I decline to actively join an openly opposing organization to the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society and yet strive to be amiable and cooperative with it? I sometimes get that sense…
    I see it as practical and neighborly as well as trying to utilize what tools are available to me…
    I have assessed and reassessed my circumstance and I am quite comfortable with my position…

  8. Anonymous says:

    I’m at a point in my life where I shun all organizations. I am thankful for people like Cedars willing to expose the inconsistencies within organized religion. However unfortunately groups of people once they band together often go rogue and deviate highly off course. I have found that a journey to enlightenment is often best done alone.

  9. leo says:

    after studying the the Bible cover to cover with JWs for 10 years and then leaving i got my degree in Religious Studies.Pulling major doctrines from books like the Revelation is troublesome…many doctrines are Catholic holdovers.my question is , If Jesus prayed all night and chose the 12…and one was a thief….WHERE ARE ALL THE UNACCOUNTED BILLIONS ?

  10. KtotheRAD "Konrad" says:

    leo said:

    On August 25, 2013 at 8:58 pm

    “after studying the the Bible cover to cover with JWs for 10 years and then leaving i got my degree in Religious Studies.Pulling major doctrines from books like the Revelation is troublesome…many doctrines are Catholic holdovers.my question is , If Jesus prayed all night and chose the 12…and one was a thief….WHERE ARE ALL THE UNACCOUNTED BILLIONS ?”

    I’ve asked this for a good long time and even inquired of US Federal agencies but I appear to have always been a voice in the wind. I have always had a profound concern about the removal of assets to offshore locales and conversion or any number of hiding of assets scenarios to avoid having to pay these massive damage claims that were foreseen when the Society paid out the near half Billion back in the mid 90′s and after that in the early 00′s and who knows what else? They apparently can avoid paying tax on the earned income from the Hedge Funds in the US at least but do they report the money at all? What other taxable “for profit” income is generated under tax free 401 (C)(3) status? The decisions were made and casually amended to empower themselves in very loose, general and abstract terms in the annual meetings of 1999-2003:



  11. LMC says:

    OK I am having difficulty with this point. JW’s say that the UN will turn on “false religion” however with recent events in Egypt (uprisings ousted president ect) it has been reported on news sources that Christians are being killed in Egypt and other countries. Also in history we see that Christians have at some point been killed, persecuted ect over the centuries. My question is how can Jehovah “put it into the hearts of the UN (political, military, wild beast whatever-has this changed over the years?)” to turn on “false religion” when it is already happening and has happened throughout history? Any thoughts?

  12. former sister says:

    I am curious as to the J.W. Selling all their property in New York and moving to a more secluded area?

  13. Roger M. Woodbury says:

    My wife is a JW recently returned after a lengthy absence from active participation. I have been attending meetings with her, and for seven months studied the Bible with a JW elder from the local Kingdom Hall. I ceased studying when it became apparent that the “study” was less about the Bible than about selling me on the idea of becoming a JW which was never an option. I continue studying not only the Bible, but the organization itself and have learned quite a bit about the organization that is disquieting to me.

    I find the secrecy of the organization and the way it operates to be disturbing. It seems to me that if the faith of the organizational leadership was as strong as it should be, then there should be no fear of dissent within the congregations.

    Most discouraging of all is the apparent prevalence of child sexual abuse and pedophilia that exists within the congregations and the fact that the organization seems to be unable or unwilling to do much about it. There is supposedly a listing held in secret in the organization’s headquarters of a pedophiles and sexual abusers that numbers in excess of 24,000. If the statistics hold for this organization that psychologists and sociologists maintain for the general population, this number is not more than 5% of the actual number within the organization itself. In an organization of seven million or so world wide, this would make the percentage of pedophile/child sexual abusers to be considerably higher than the general population. While it is true that the illness is not discussed at all directly in the Bible, the Society’s unwillingness to deal effectively with the problem lays itself open to precisely the kinds of persecutions that it predicts will roll down hill on top of it during the tribulation. I do not believe that “self-inflicted” tribulations are scriptural.

    As far as the JW’s selling off property in Brooklin is concerned, I suspect one great motivating factor for relocation and real estate sales is the award and settlement figures for civil litigation involving child sexual abuse which currently is passing $50 million. While some of the jury awards may well be overturned on appeal, the number of settlements out of court are substantial and involve substantial amounts of money. Could the awards and exposures be sufficient to financially destabilize the organization? Who knows, but certainly if the organization loses $50 million or more, its financial condition will be severely impacted and attractive and valuable real estate in Brooklin would seem to have less value to them.

    It seems likely that if the Jehovah’s Witnesses were to modernize their operational structure just a bit and allow women to participate in the operation of the organization on the same basis as men, and if in fact there were four women on the governing body, it seems likely that the incidence of child sexual abuse and pedophilia would disappear from the congregation entirely.

  14. Christian Sparlock Freedom says:

    Great article. Your efforts are appreciated .
    Great cartoon also .

  15. Free Thinker/Non-JW says:

    Hi Cedars,
    As an outsider looking in, I find the watchtower phenomenon and their followers fascinating.
    For many years, I have worked in close proximity to several jw’s, and they have always been polite, and non-proselytizing at the work-place. However, there has always been a “separatist” underlying current among them, in addition to the secretive behavior regarding their lives outside of work. This, among other things, has led my curiosity to try to learn more about them.
    Your website is replete with useful information, and I plan to use it as one of many research tools.
    Thanks for the time and effort you put into educating others, regarding the history and the doctrines, of this very interesting segment of human culture.

  16. JB says:

    Hello, I discovered this site a short while ago,
    I must say I’m totally impressed by the depth of knowledge of both the moderators and many commentors, among whom, probably many spent long years within the
    organization. I appreciate the well-documented and open minded approach, although I must say that at times, some blog entries and comments make me feel like they’re made just for the sake of “keeping the momentum” critisizing, while I truly believe there are quite a few troublesome
    topics very rightly critisized here already.

    I myself have mixed feelings about the organization, and refrain from reaching to conclusions for many reasons. Still, I think, if it’s not for its Governing Body,an organization with its members who honestly search for truth, ready to put their own lives in line for what they believe as truth, deserves respect … I saw all the negative sides mentioned here and elsewhere within the organization, but I have also seen wonderful, honest, open minded, intelligent people. They are the reason for me not to dismiss it so easily …

    I intend to hang around in the most constructive manner as possible, I can see that I’m by no means more clever and knowledgeable than anyone here, I guess I’ll question everything, both the organization and any critisism against it, in case I can’t find a solid basis for those … I think the reason many people became a JW (and then left) was finding and living the truth. I think this aim remains as the sole objective, above anything, including our ego’s. At least, I’d like this to be this way for myself.

  17. kb2013 says:

    Thank you for creating this informative website.

    I was brought up as a JW and started taking it seriously for last 10 years. However, there were times where I had witnessed things that just didn’t seem right. (Gossiping, Favouritism, Hypocrisy etc. ) I discussed my feelings with a few people. The feedback that I got was along the lines of, “Just ignore it”, “Pray about it”, “We need to continue putting up with one another”.

    The final straw was the distribution of the new Bibles. In the UK, the privileged few (elders, their wives, pioneers, brothers and sisters who have been baptised members for over 30 years) were invited to the annual meeting and given a new bible. The rest of the rank and file members had to wait. (We finally got ours a couple of weeks ago).

    At the next meeting, a pioneer brother jokingly said, “The new bibles are only for…” then he stopped in mid-sentence, laughed and then said, “no I can’t say that, I’m only joking!” However, it didn’t seem like a joke. There was a sense of “them and us”. The new bibles were used in the meetings straight away, even though the majority of the members did not have a new bible. It would’ve probably made a bit more sense to release the new bibles at the district conventions, so that everyone received a copy at the same time.

    Then I visited this website and read about the failed prophecies (e.g. 1975), the racist history of the WTBTS, mind control techniques etc. My eyes have been opened ever since.

    I am not angry but more disappointed about the time I have invested in this organisation. However, this experience has helped me to gain an understanding of how organisations employ mind control techniques and how best not to get involved. I am working on my fade out of this organisation.

    Thank you Cedars and others for the hardwork you all have put into creating this website. I hope that more current JWs will visit this website and start thinking for themselves.

  18. Julia says:

    Hi Cedar

    I’m from Poland and I’m a former Jehovah’s witness. We have website about JW in our country too. We discuss there on the belives of JWs.
    Many of us have parents in this religion. Therefore, I understand how you feel.
    I wish you luck, many of the articles on your website and the agreement of the parents.
    I greet.

  19. Ian says:

    On one hand, the property in Dumbo is an unnecessary expense when it comes down to it, and I’m surprised they held onto it for this long. On the other hand, the price tag was a little low as well as the sale happening relatively quickly coinciding with the lawsuits the recent lawsuits does leave question. Just an observation.

  20. Duds says:

    Hi Cedar,
    I’m one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I don’t associate with the WTS. They can’t dis-fellowship me since I was never baptized into that organization. I enjoyed reading your experience. Also I like the articles on your site.

  21. Eddie says:

    Hi, Cedar
    Your site is very well put together and I share your understanding. I’m an agnostic, I don’t agree with all written in the Bible. 2000 years went by with no divine intervention on human affairs, suddenly about 130 years ago a lunatic gets a heavenly call to announce a false date 1914?
    For sure the GB is not “spirit directed” and the WT is just another religious cult, one of many that abound in Christendom. I was disfellowshipped once, suffered the shunning process, reinstated then silently faded away.

  22. Brendan Tannam says:

    I guess it is becoming clear that AAWA is just another egotistical organisation modelled on the Watchtower.

  23. Appreciative says:

    Hi Cedars.

    My husband devoted a good decade of his life–almost every free minute–to researching Watchtower and writing long articles about his findings, to debating with JW apologists, etc. Back then (from the early 90s to mid-2000s), there were only a handful of people doing what you’re doing. He felt compelled to do the work. But now he no longer has to because of the tremendous efforts you and others are making. Your site is fabulous. I left back in the early 80s, when there was practically no information like this available. What a difference now for people who have doubts and who want to leave. The resources available to them are staggering. I think your site is among the very best. Thank you for your continued hard work so that people like my husband can turn their attention to other matters.

  24. Holy Conolli says:

    To Duds

    You are right they cannot DF you but they can Call you “bad association” and basically do the same thing. They now can even classify non-witnesses that are associated or affiliated with the WT as “approved publishers” or “disapproved publishers” They always come up with another way to gain more control over everyone. I remember some years back when I was newly baptized an Elder of that time told my wife that we should not be hanging around my “WORLDLY” parents to much bc they had made it clear by their actions that they were “enemies Of the Kingdom” by not becoming KW’s and not attending the meetings? I was very upset at the time bc they were basically telling me not to hang around my NON JW family. If that isn’t total control over your life and cult like I don’t know what is!

  25. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli,
    Thanks for your comments,Its sad the WTS has got so far out of touch with decency. When is your family got to be looked on as bad association? I can understand if the family were very vile, however, that’s not usually the case with most worldly families. I don’t have any family relatives living close by, but when I meet with them,it is still great to associate with them even though they don’t share what I believe.In fact it often leads to some interesting discussions. The WTS has to look at it policies and reconsider their teachings. Many of the teachings are boarding on being Pharisaical, and need adjusting or eliminating all together to show a more loving approach, to those outside their organization, and to their families inside, who have been unjustly separated from their families due to contrary understanding of WTS material.
    may you continue to have peace

  26. Holy Conolli says:

    Hi Duds

    In my experience let’s say that a family may be studying in the congregation and they have some kids that are teenagers etc. and just doing normal teenage stuff like playing sports, dancing, gong to movies, maybe hanging out late sometimes etc In a mixed company of girls and boys. If after a while they do not start going door-door or if they are not “progressing” in the JW cong it wouldn’t be long before they starting pressuring them to go out in service, stop hanging out, no dancing, little if any sports playing etc. If they did not tow the WT line they would become “bad associations” and they could be “marked” in the congregation which basically means they are not to be associated with except on a very limited level and that is ONLY if they are going to meetings and doing the JW thing. I know many who that happened to. The thing is the JW’s do not give their youth anything to do except for going door-door and maybe some kid of Watchtower farm work. They take away everything that normal teenagers do like sports, dancing, music, College, groups Clubs, party’s, and they do not replace it with anything. Young people need an out let and going door-door just doesn’t cut it! I mean at least the Mormons have sports, clubs, chaperoned dances, school activities, preparing them for college, Many kinds of activities to occupy young folks with clean things to do. But the JW’s have nothing to offer.

    They re the religion of NO FUN! Then if anyone does have fun they wan to stop it. Several years ago I used to organize Friday night Softball games under the lights at a baseball field in town. So many young kids came out to play and have fun and after we would go have Pizza etc until maybe 11-12 midnight. After several months of this on a regular basis the JW Elders and the CO stepped in to stop it bc they said the young people were to tired to go out in Field service on Saturday morning and it ws taking away from their “spirituality”? So they made a big thing about it and basically squashed it. They even had the nerve to give a talk from the platform on “needs” of the congregation and said we were getting to Competitive and we should play softball without keeping score? What kind of CRAZY mind is that? So they stopped it but NEVER offered an alternative except go OUT IN FOEDL Service!

    No wonder so many young people are leaving that religion. JW’s the Religion of No fun!

    Do you currently consider yourself a JW dud? Do you go door-door still?

  27. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    I agree with you, it’s disappointing to say the least that WTS views on association and recreational activities are really appalling.Most of the young ones in the congregation are really there because of their parents,and most will only stay in the congregation because they don’t want to be shunned by their family.If that treat didn’t exist I’d imagine many would leave tomorrow. Why not let them enjoy themselves while their young, and when they get to that time in their life they want to change, it will be for all the right reasons, and not because their forced to do so.

    Holy, I still believe Jehovah to be the true God and hence for that reason I am one of Jehovah’s witnesses. I don’t believe, however, the WTS and the GB are Jehovah’s only God’s representatives. Today, they have an elevated view of themselves and are failing their members, and the people of the world. With their unhealthy view of themselves, they have for example continued to tell lies, regarding the date of 607B.C.E. for the destruction of Jerusalem.They have known at least since 1978 that 587 B.C.E. is the correct date for Jerusalem’s destruction.Their pride is stopping them from being humble and admitting their error. In the mean time they continue to mislead,misquote scholars,lie,and deceive to backup their flawed theology. Shortly, they will have to face up to that fact, they will probably reveal it as new light and some will be fooled into believing it.
    I still believe many of the other truths that they teach. However they are not the owner of those truths, Jesus and his Father are,and beside other religions also teach them.
    My faith in Jesus and Jehovah has strengthen, since I began to study for my self. When something is difficult, I refer to how others (even the wts) understand but only then to compare and check.
    May you have peace

  28. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    I wrote an earlier post explaining where I stood with my beliefs but I think it may have gone astray in cyber-land. Hope you get it. It may be going thru quarantine.
    Cheers Duds

  29. Holy Conolli says:


    I missed your previous comment but I found it afte some looking. Sorry I missed it earlier. Thanks for sharing.

  30. Holy Conolli says:

    I admire you for hanging in there despite the fact that you recognize many of the things you mention. I also found out about 587 BCE as being the correct year on my own. Since that is correct it throws their number 1 teaching of 1914 and all the things associated with it out the door! So that means Jesus was not crowned King in that year. It means he did not “return” that year, it means the cleansing of the spiritual temple did not occur in 1918-1919 etc,it means Satan was not thrown down to the earth, it means the last days did not start in that year etc. My wife is still an active JW and I am not sure what she thinks with all these radical changes and attitude of GoV Body etc I think she is just numb to it and goes along with whatever they say. I also Believe in Jehovah and in Jesus Christ but not anymore through an organization or a Church. Especially the WT as the one and ONLY rep on earth! The facts just don’t add up. They have never, ever been correct on one thing that they predicted? Their record on prophecy is dismal at best. I am impressed that you can still attend meetings in view of what you express? If you can and it makes you feel right more power to you and I respect that and I am sure you have your reasons for doing it. For me I just could not advocate it any longer. Sure I had friends in the Cong that I miss but I have made other friends as well. I think anyone that was a serious JW like you and myself for a number of years still carry’s the effects of being a JW for long time especially if you have family still in it.

    I have weighed the evidence and it just doesn’t add up what they teach anymore. I talk with a JW friend in Europe and he is afraid to express himself to much but the whole 1914 thing he doesn’t believe anymore but is afraid of being df’d by telling others so he just kind of is fading away. I could not in my heart preach anymore bc I knew it was a continual changing religious philosophy that is at BEST inconsistent and contradicts teachings of just a few years ago. I think the Gov body is worried and they really not sure of what to do anymore? As mentioned I still believe in Jehovah and Christ but our salvation is not dependent on being a JW or hours in FS or association with the WT.

  31. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    I see my lost post turned up this morning, moderator must have approved.
    No, I don’t go to their meeting I haven’t gone for years, my wife and son have been d/f and I guess they would treat me the same even though I’ve never been d/f. They can d/f you from an organization but not from God, and because I was baptized before they bought in, the being baptized into an org. question, I believe they can’t d/f me. I made a dedication to serve Jehovah and Jesus not an org.
    I cannot see Jehovah or Jesus backing any of the dates presented by society they have been wrong on every one of them including 1914. When I said I still believe many of the truths, I meant the basic for example, the soul,hell not being a fiery torment, Jehovah and Jesus being separate persons but the rest, apart from most of the morals, I don’t agree with.
    You have got it right, our salvation is not depended on hour in f/s or being a member of the WTS. but in recognizing Jesus as our Savior. I couldn’t go preaching d-d knowing that the society is completely wrong about 607 and 1914, and many other things as well, it would be hypocritical.
    They claim to adhere to strick Bible chronology, but they don’t, and even change the Bible to suit their own theology.
    For example Dan 2:1 say ‘in the second year of the kingship of Nebuchadnezzar…dreamed dreams”
    Now the Bible chronology says “in the second year of the kingship” but because this dosn’t fit with their theological assumption, that Daniel could not have been in Babylon in King Nebs. second year, change this to mean the second year after Jerusalem’s destruction in 607 B.C.E. A complete change of Bible Chronology. Check WT2007 w07 9/1 p.17-20 par.10 also si pp 138-142. Jehovah and Jesus got it wrong according to WTS and GB.(so much for their accurate Bible chronology when quoting 607 dating).
    Daniel was in Babylon in the second year of K/Nebs. kingship, the Bible says so, why should we disbelieve it. If the society were to get their understanding right about the destruction of Jerusalem and the chronology surrounding that time, there be no valid reason for changing it. The main reason for not wanting to do that, is that it destroys their 1914 doctrine. Because Jehovah gives Jerusalem and Judah into the hands of the Babylonian Empire before the royal line of David is over thrown. Dan2:36-39 and Jer.27:4-7. therefore, the so called 70 years must apply when Babylon became a world Empire or when Jehovah chose K/Neb to be his servant, and not after Jerusalem’s destruction.
    How does your wife feel about your new understandings?
    Its hard to break old habits, it took me a while to change even though I could see obvious things that were wrong, however, I was trained to turn a blind eye and trust in the org. I just faded away until my interest was revitalize by reading the book “The Gentile Times Reconsidered” by Carl Olof Jonsson now an ex witness, great book though he has a PDF of it on his site. It proves beyond the shadow of doubt that 587 B.C.E. is when Jerusalem destroyed.
    May peace go with you

  32. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    I think another one of my post has gone the long way round.
    Have to check tomorrow if it turns up.
    Cheers in the meantime

  33. JB says:

    Hi Duds,

    What you wrote here is pretty much my stand too. I was disfellowshipped long ago and when I wanted to find my “spiritual way” back lately, I reconsidered the religion I was born in, but soon I saw all these discrepencies and problems with it, and it brought some bitter memories back.

    I’m much better outside and like you mentioned, although I still have beliefs and some key points are the same, studying on my own with an open mind seems much more beneficial and there is definitely a very health freedom about it.

  34. JB says:

    sorry I meant “healthy freedom about it”.

  35. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    It has been a real pleasure sharing these few thoughts with you.Its been a real comfort for me knowing that others, like yourself, feel the same way as I do.
    Were you bought up as a witness or was it another org. that you went back to find your spiritual way?
    I’m also glad your doing your own reading its much more meaningful, your not tided down to some watchtower influence.
    Yeah and I like that healthy freedom too!
    Cheers and peace

  36. Excelsior says:

    Duds and Holy Conolli,

    Well done, folks! I would always advise anyone who still believes to read the Bible only. If you need some further information, try seeking sources that are not tied to any faith in particular.

    There has been a scramble to claim Jesus of Nazareth for 2000 odd years. Everyone has an opinion, and some of those people are convinced that only they have the truth.

    I still retain a great deal of respect for Jesus’ core message. I try to apply some Christian principles in my life.

    His message of mercy and compassion is timeless, and we all can benefit from contemplating his teachings.

    Have you chaps looked at JW Struggle? There is a splendid man called Eric on that site that shares your sincere belief in God and his Son. He has written some very fine articles that I have enjoyed reading. He is a good man. I recommend checking out his site, that he shares with some other fine folks. I think they will help to comfort you.

    Peace be with you


  37. Holy Conolli says:

    Hi Duds

    Thanks for sharing. I was not raised a JW. I was like 10 years old when I started studying. There was a lot of talk and scare tactics about 1975 at the time and how we need to get baptized and quit school and college and just preach etc. So I got baptized and next year got married and had 3 kids. Lot’s of struggles over the years , some good and some bad but tried my very best to be a great example of a Christian and do everything I could to support the JW’s etc. Always though in the back of my mind there were things that just never seemed right on teachings and policy they promoted and pushed. Also always seemed like the WT org was not very forgiving or very loving towards the Rank and file although in word they would say they were? Always ready to dish out punishment and policy but never ready to forgive. They told the publishers to forgive one another and to be open minded but they were not that way themselves. The love that they preached wasn’t in reality there? I remember when I was like 22 years old I was preaching in a very expensive educated neighborhood near a prominent University and I expressed my sincere doubts about how Jesus could have returned in 1914 “invisibly” despite scriptures that say the opposite and how the tribes of the earth were not Beating themselves in grief at that event as the Bible says they would do? I was sincere and just wanted answers? I wasn’t challenging anyone at that time.
    They always saw any questions as a challenge to their authority? It should not be like that.

    So some of the JW’s were very disturbed at my thoughts and reasoning and told me to ask the CO at that time. They refused to discuss it. It was like they buried their head in the sand. Those thoughts lingered with me for years on that and many other teachings. Like Most good JW’s I buried it and went about being a good publisher and an elder for nearly 13 years. Supported the WT in every way possible. I remember in the 1990′s I just cold not do it anymore. The information and instructions coming from the Gov body just kept changing from one year to the next. Scriptural understanding was flip flopping all over the place, the 1914 changes in teaching was what I was saying 33 years earlier. The excuses they were making for being wrong all those years were intolerable to me to sit and accept anymore. Their was no humility on their part only telling everyone to listen, Obey and don’t question us bc we are God’s representatives. Plus I had seen SO MUCH OVER the years that I just had to remove myself from a unhealthy mental and spiritual situation the best I could without causing to much controversy in my family. My kids are grown now and sometimes I wonder what life would have been if I had raised them A “normal” life? You never know where life takes you so I am not full of regrets in that sense and my kids turned out pretty good and only 1 considers themselves a JW now but they reached those conclusions on their own. The Wife is still active and will not discuss another point of view but that is fine. She knows where I stand and she knows what I am saying is truthful but her entire life and social life is tied to the WT Org. A man has to live with himself before he can live with others.

  38. Holy Conolli says:

    Duds and excelsior

    Sorry guys…I made a Mistake about my age! I typed in the wrong number and did not double ck! I typed in that was 10 years Old when I started studying. I typed in 10 years old and then said I got married the next year!! Lol I meant to type in I was 19 when I started studying and 20 when I got married. Lol

  39. Duds says:

    Hi JB
    You have the same initials as my sons. Yes both sons. Thanks for your comments.I thought I was talking to Holy Conolli when I was reading your comments and I may have replied to you as such. Sorry to you both. But my comments were sincere I appreciate you both.
    Cheers and peace

  40. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    I really didn’t think you were 10 years old and than married at 11, I took that as the time your family started to study, and after a time of being pressured you got baptized than got married. Amazing, what one can read into something, that’s not there. Being 10 I automatically thought you were saying your family started studying.
    Thanks again for sharing

  41. Duds says:

    Hi Excelsior
    Thanks for you kind thoughts, I think the more we read the Bible on our own, the more we seem drawn to each other. Pondering Jesus ways and thoughts seems to makes us more conscious of our own weakness and faults, that we want to help others know of his redeeming qualities.

    Yeah, I have checked out the JW Struggle site and your right, there are many good articles, been written in a non condemning way which helps remove that dissent ex-witness may feel for being mistreated by the WTS.
    May you continue to have peace

  42. JB says:

    Thank you so much Duds, it’s great to see there are like minded folks.

  43. Holy Conolli says:

    I have heard about his book and he is not the only scholar that brings it out. I think the WT must know that 607 BCE is not accurate but they keep trying to keep the Cong together. If and when they change that they will have a lot of explain to do. But if you are wrong you are wrong so why not admit it and just deal with it.

    I think it would throw so may JW’s into mental distress they are afraid to do it. Also, if they are so wrong on this it begs the question that how many more of their teachings are they wrong with? Since this is their main teaching of all their prophetic sayings and so much is tied to this teaching it would change their entire approach to everything they have ever stood for.It could even be their downfall and cause them to dissolve as a religion? I am not saying it would but it very well could happen.

  44. cheryl massey says:


    • cheryl massey says:


  45. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    Yeah,I’m looking forward to the day they admit, they were wrong about 607B.C.E. That will mean all the dates’ they ever spoke about, have proved false. Its possible, that a big split might come among them. If they admit it, it won’t be because it was the light getting brighter. Many,brothers and others have for years, exposed this error. Many, unjustly d/f for it.
    Will they be humble enough to honestly, confess this and apologize to all? I’m not sure they could, when you look at all the changes that will have to take place. Reinstating all wrongly d/f.brothers and sisters. Change every book explaining 607/1914/1919. introduce new doctrines to replace the 1919 cleansing and inspection,and many many more as well. That’s a lot of explaining to do ,and who is going to believe them?
    That is going to take a lot of faith!
    Keep going my brother don’t let this day, stop you from looking to the day, Jesus cleans up all this mess.
    peace and love Duds

  46. Holy Conolli says:

    Thnks Duds. I doubt very much that if they do admit it is an erroneous date that they will go back and change everything or admit BIG TIME failure. It is not something they do. However, things can change as we all know and it is possible. If they do change it and admit they were wrong then what would that do to the organization as a whole? What would the publishers do? Who would stay and who would leave and it would create an entirely different religious doctrine? It might be like even some today who still hold to Russell’s teachings? I see them on TV from time -time or read something about them? They still believe Russell was the F&D slave even after all these years? also, it could be like when Rutherford took over. It caused a Big Split 50/50 or more left the WT of those days?

    does it really matter anymore since they are wrong?

  47. Holy Conolli says:

    If they ever do admit these wrong teachings then will they still be JW’s or will they merge with another theological idea or religion? In reality they are not much different from the former “World Wide Church of God” run by the late Herbert Armstrong. When he died there was a Big Split as some wanted to stay w his teachings and others abandoned his teachings and went with traditional Christianity. They split into so MANY different sects and groups that they are not even recognizable anymore. Some kept the same name of the church as before but the teachings are completely different. They even came out and apologized for “persecuting” other Christian denominations for decade. Herbert Armstrong was very similar to the WT Gov Body in stating that all other Churches and teachings were false and they would be destroyed at the 2nd coming/Armageddon which was always imminent. He and the WT taught similar teachings and doctrines although he was a Sabbatarian and kept the Mosaic dietary law. The point is he was very controlling. They shunned and DF’d people.If anyone left the Church the family could not speak with them. He had total control over the Church.It was a cults.So if the JW’s come out with major doctrine l changes it may very well dissolve what we currently have known as Jehovah’s Witnesses over the last 60+ years.

  48. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    Glad to hear from you again, I studied with the Worldwide Church of God before I became a witness. Very familiar doctrines, though their belief that God was recreating Himself in saving mankind was kind of weird. I could never accept that. It wasn’t long after that I began studying with the witnesses to convert them, lols, ended up being one, but now divorced from the WTS. That was around the time when Garner Ted Armstrong got sprung cheating on his wife. Now you hardly hear of them, Garner Ted has a TV program and someone is carrying on with Herberts teachings. I think there are some other brake away groups as well.
    There is also many break-a ways from the wts around the globe, all with some message of truth. But when the wts finally comes clean, it will most likely be too late to save face. I think there is going to be one big mess up.There will be few, if none at all, who will put trust in them again.May they all seek a good relational-ship with their Savior Jesus Christ and exercise faith in Him as the Way the Truth, and the Life.
    Peace to you my friend,

  49. Holy Conolli says:

    That is interesting that you studied with the WWC of God? I have only know a few of those folks over the years.
    In your opinion were they more of a cult and more Controlling than the WT is?

    As a child growing up my Mother who was not a JW nor was I raised one always said to me, ” If you are wrong”..you are wrong, just admit it and correct it and move on. That thought always stuck with me in my JW years as a young man and as a older adult. It always bothered me that the WT WOULD NEVER admit their errors or wrong policies. Although they were HELL BENT on the publishers to repent or immediately get DF’d they would never do it for themselves. As time went on it became more clear that they were more concerned about “SAVING FACE” than correcting or admitting their error. also they were so quick to condemn Christendom or any religion that differed from them and even calling others false prophets who made erroneous predictions on the end of the World etc. but in their case it was always” Oh Some were Over anxious” or at times bc we desired the fulfillment of God’s promises some may have Overreacted? It was never them or never WE JUST ARE WRONG it was always the blame game to others.Even the LATE HAROLD CAMPING who made a BIG STIR for his May 23rd 2011 “JUDGEMENT DAY” prophecy all over the world thru Billboards, radio programs, preachers on the street at least came out after nothing happened and apologized? He was very DOGMATIC that he was right and would not be wrong and used some weird numerology that he thought was some bible code to come up with dates etc for the 2nd coming of Christ..yet he admitted his error on prophecy and apologized. The WT has never ever done that? Those who live in Glass houses should not throw Rocks?

  50. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    Herbert W. Armstrong was a very authoritative, powerful speaker. He was very persuasive he had great ability to use the Bible to fit his theology. I was very easily influenced in those days, every thing he spoke about seem to be backed up by the Bible, that impressed me, and I fell for his teachings. Many of the doctrines were familiar to the WTS which made it pretty easy for me to become a witness. The turning point in rejecting the WWCoG was Ps110.1-2. Their teaching that God was recreating Himself didn’t go well with this scripture. It was like Jehovah saying to Jehovah sit at My own right hand, which to me was absurd. How could Jehovah say such a thing? It made more sense that he was talking to Jesus who later became David’s Lord and whom Jehovah exalted and made Him Lord and King after His resurrection 33CE. From that time on I dedicated my life to serve Jehovah and His appointed King Jesus Christ. I still am dedicated to them. I was never baptized into an organization. The WTS may like to dis-fellowship me, but they haven’t, and it wont matter if they do in my absence. I will always be known as one of Jehovah’s Christian Witnesses they can’t take that away from me. They have no inherent claim to the name, its there for all Christians. Their non scriptural doctrine to shun others is null and void to all, who still believe Jesus is God’s son, and is now the ruling as King.
    Have Peace

  51. Holy Conolli says:


    You make some interesting points I must say. I agree with the fact that we are not baptized into an Organization.
    That is not what Christianity is about at all. We all must have FREDDOM IN CHRIST not an Organization.Sometimes when I really think about t and all the disruption that these religions have caused among honest hearted ones I conclude that belonging to almost any religion and claiming that Doctrine is just nonsense.

    The bible never talked about that at all. Remember Paul was disputing that very thing when he said we are not from Paul or Cephas but we are one in Christ? So the same thing here…we can not be baptized into an organization or be a Catholic or a Baptist or the WWCOG or JW’s? We are Christians if we believe. The Bible message is simple. Man has made it difficult.God created us and all the Universe. Jehovah is over everything. Man sinned and lost his way, Man needs a Savior, the Savior is the Lord Jesus Christ.Jesus is God’s gift to man. It is a free gift that we need to accept. If we do we will receive Eternal Life. Jesus will rule over mankind in his Kingdom.

  52. Duds says:

    Hi holy Conolli
    I’m with you,that’s exactly how I feel too.Freedom in Christ!
    Love that scripture you quoted about Paul saying,” I belong to Cephas another to Paul” yes, we are all one in Christ, we all belong to Him. There is no organizational ownership. That’s not saying we can’t be organized, but it something we all do together, willingly and without compulsion, under the loving leadership of Christ.
    have peace

  53. Holy Conolli says:


    Also, when we are organized to do something Spiritual or to preach or whatever we still need to have freedom to make our own decisions based on a God Given mind and conscience.Christianity was not a dictator ship ruled by a few harsh men watching every move. BTW, I am going to San Diego tomorrow for some business and I have decided I am going to go by Beth Sarim where Rutherford built the house that he grant deeded over to King David and the other Prophets that he said would be resurrected before Armageddon? The WT does not like to talk about that and if they do they try to claim he was there for “health” reasons? Oh yes, with his Luxury mansion and luxury Cars back in 1929 the year of the great Depression? I am going to take some photos of it. At one time it was a 100 acre estate. Now homes are built around it. That was a pretty wacky Idea and Doctrine he taught among many others.

  54. Duds says:

    Hi Holy Conolli
    Yes, the Judge lived a life of luxury, while he had the poor preach his books and teachings from door to door. All under the guise Armageddon was about to happen. The society did a good job of covering it up.
    According to them, and their latest teachings on the FDS, He is the one, Jehovah and Jesus must have chosen as his servant in 1919. He must have represented the small band of loyal Bible Students.
    “(They were pleased with a small band of loyal Bible Students who showed that their heart was with Jehovah and his Word)” wt13 pp12

    They don’t say that outright. However there was no GB than, so who else, was there to fill the role of FDS? Only the judge. He came to power in 1916 after the death of Russell and continued for many years there after. He had to be that composite FDS all by himself until the GB was formed many years later. Very confusing! I guess they can live with that but I can’t.

    How did the trip go? What was house like?
    Cheers Duds

  55. elderwannabe says:

    You are worse then what you say jws are. You say your site is religiously neutral? My guess is that you have a personal peeve against the witness and you want to dupe the easily persuaded too. There is nothing good about the witness? Were you at one time a jw? What do you have to offer?

  56. Duds says:

    Hi Elderwannabe

    I don’t know if your addressing it to me personally or to all on this site, or just to Cedars.
    I assume from your handle you are a JW or XJW. I am still one of Jehovahs’ Christians Witnesses, but I don’t agree with the WTS.

    My peeve is, that they promote themselves as an organisation of truth, but their prophesies, and many other teachings, show them to be otherwise. 607 B.C.E, 1914/1919 for example, and there teaching on the FDS and this generation. A quick look over the info on jwfacts will reveal that.

    Many on this site have been hurt by the the WTS stance on shunning, and d/f for simply just holding a different view on some scriptures.

    While I think its too late for WTS reform, I hope many others will see the errors of the WTS and escape its grip. This site as I see it, holds out as a haven where like minded gather to encourage and share their experiences.

    By reading Cedars blogs and other notable links on this site I think you will see there is a lot to offer.

    Have peace Duds

  57. Duds says:

    Hi elderwannabe

    I posted an earlier note but its disappeared.I don’t know if your addressing me or all on the site.

    If its me then thanks for the the thought that, I maybe worse then the jws., I don’t intend to be.

    Would you prefer that ‘the easily persuaded’ to remain duped or learn the truth?

    I’d like them see the errors of WTS so they can escape its grips. Yes, I’m one of Jehovahs’ Witnesses who has been hurt by the lies and falsehoods that the WTS teach.
    And Id like to help others learn those truths which expose the WTS so they can be free of manipulation.

    May you have peace

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