Are we witnessing the beginning of the end for Watchtower?
Are we witnessing the beginning of the end for Watchtower?

For many current and former Jehovah’s Witnesses who find themselves victimized by Watchtower’s cruel cult-like practices, the prospect of witnessing the end of the organization seems too good to be true.

Especially when you have spent many years being sold false promises of extraordinary future events, it’s understandable that you would be wary of getting your hopes up over something as significant as the downfall of the organization that misled you.

I obviously won’t make you any promises, because I have learned to be extremely cautious of wishful thinking in all its forms. But when I look at what is going on with Watchtower, I see an organization falling from grace at a rate faster than I could have ever reasonably envisaged.

The latest evidence of the organization’s free-fall comes in the shape of a letter to all elders in the United States branch territory, dated July 8, 2015. You can read about Watchtower’s new “master plan” yourself, but essentially it adds a further caveat to their smash-and-grab, stealth-tithing maneuvers from last year. (Thanks go to JWleaks.org for first making this letter available.)*

The new letter essentially says to publishers (or doesn’t say to publishers, because it’s an elders-only letter): “Not only are we going to make you promise to send us money every month for maintaining a kingdom hall that isn’t owned by you in any meaningful sense, we are also warning you that we might sell your kingdom hall, pocket the proceeds, and send you to go share someone else’s kingdom hall while STILL taking your money for the kingdom hall we’ve just sold.”

Rather than write an exhaustive summary of the letter, and re-hash points I have already made on this matter from previous articles, I thought I would take a different approach by adding this latest development to my list of 10 reasons why I believe Watchtower COULD be about to implode. Here goes…

1. Jehovah’s Witnesses are becoming a toxic brand

toxic-brand

The internet is more hostile than ever regarding Jehovah’s Witnesses. As the world becomes more aware of the cult phenomenon (thanks in part to the success of documentaries like HBO’s “Going Clear” film about Scientology) journalists are becoming less squeamish when it comes to highlighting the cult-attributes of the organization in newspaper articles and news broadcasts.

Ex-Witnesses have already turned YouTube into a no-go zone for believing Witnesses, and continue to explore ingenious strategies for reaching out to those under Watchtower’s spell. Even non-Witness blogs like Hemant Mehta’s Friendly Atheist are now rallying to the ex-JW cause and becoming increasingly vocal about the organization’s harmful practices. All this means it is harder than ever for Witnesses to find new converts, and easier than ever for Witnesses to wake up.

2. Less “spiritual food” is being printed

spiritual-food

The wafer-thin magazines on the literature carts testify to a huge drop in printed output of 39% for monthly magazine printing since 2005. If God’s one true organization is flourishing, why has it so drastically scaled down on its “spiritual food?” The simple truth is, printing is expensive. VERY expensive. A good gauge of prosperity for any printing organization is its printed output. If a printing company has a problem, it will print less stuff. That is exactly what we have already been seeing for some time with Watchtower.

3. Globally, the organization is in retreat

retreat

Watchtower has been shutting down branches at a rate never before seen, with branch numbers plummeting from 118 in 2009 to just 90 as of last year. The organization used to pride itself on its global footprint, and would herald the dedication of new branches as evidence of God’s backing for the global preaching work. Now Watchtower is in open retreat, using single branches to run the affairs of multiple countries. RTOs, or “Remote Translation Offices” (think of an RTO as a Bethel-lite), are seen as a way of keeping some kind of presence in far-flung territories, but the glory days of Watchtower’s relentless global expansion are fast disappearing in the rear view mirror.

4. The begging has started

begging

For the first time in the organization’s history, the Governing Body openly admitted to a shortfall in needed funds in the May 2015 JW Broadcasting episode. This unprecedented move was made despite Watchtower making 1 Billion from selling off its Brooklyn portfolio ($375 million in one transaction alone), which could indicate the Brooklyn proceeds have already been spent. After all, when there is zero accounting transparency, we have no way of knowing how indebted the organization is. No amount of revenue from property sales will be much use to Watchtower if it is all getting sucked into a bottomless pit of accumulated debt.

5. The stealth tithing has started

tithing

Expect an organization in financial peril to desperately claw around for ways of bringing in more cash from available assets. In Watchtower’s case, they are prevented from demanding money from individual members, because this would be classed as “tithing” – a practice associated with false religion that the organization has condemned since its inception. What Watchtower CAN do is tithe, not individuals, but congregations. This is precisely what the new “Local Design/Construction” arrangement has achieved.

Last year elders were forced to promise a fixed amount to be donated to Watchtower every month from their congregation account, based on (1) what the congregation was already sending for paying off a building/renovation loan, or (2) anonymous slips of paper passed around so that publishers could indicate what they could afford to pledge. Congregations were even told to send any surplus funds squirreled away for a rainy day to Watchtower, leaving just $5,000 plus three months’ worth of regular operating expenses.

Amazingly, the majority of Witnesses continue to be oblivious to what amounts to a smash-and-grab, and are instead under the assumption that Watchtower has mercifully forgiven all kingdom hall building loans.

6. Kingdom hall ‘mergers’ are in store

fuel-in-car

As already mentioned, Watchtower has instructed all United States elders as of July 8, 2015 to be ready for their congregation to be re-assigned to a different kingdom hall if the organization’s new “master plan” deems this necessary. The letter marks the green light for the downsizing we are already seeing at branch level to be soon rolled out at congregation level, and is again clear evidence that Watchtower is desperate to claw in money wherever it can and become a smaller, more financially nimble organization.

The end game would be kingdom hall multiplexes in city-center locations shared by five or more congregations – a far cry from the parochial feel older Witnesses will be accustomed to.

As delightful as it is to think of such a huge regression in the local presence of the organization, you can’t help but feel bad for all those long-standing Witnesses who have donated thousands over the years under the false assumption that they were responsible for their local kingdom hall’s upkeep. Soon, for all their kindness and generosity, such ones may face lengthy and costly car journeys to intimidating, soulless, inconvenient city-center locations allocated to them by Watchtower.

7. Personnel are being jettisoned

kicked-out

Last year district overseers received the unwelcome news that their positions no longer existed, and they were surplus to requirements. Though some will have been demoted down to circuit overseer rank, the majority will have been jettisoned by the organization to fend for themselves – an entire strata of the organization’s hierarchy dissolved, and deemed no longer serviceable or cost-effective.

In a similarly unceremonious manner, workers at branch offices subject to closure by Watchtower have been cast adrift, with years or even decades of loyal service apparently counting for very little in the organization’s quest to make ends meet. The recently-emerged story of a Wallkill bethelite who was virtually thrown out on the street due to “cutbacks” suggests that the organization’s top brass have no qualms when it comes to wielding the axe. Bethelites in Watchtower’s heartland would do well to watch their backs and plan for the worst as the organization looks to slash spending wherever it can.

8. The secret weapons have failed

secret-weapon

Despite all the fanfare and hype, JW.org has been unable to attract internet-savvy non-Witnesses – its main target audience. It is, quite literally, preaching to the converted. The 2015 Yearbook boasted that JW.org received 850,000,000+ total visits in the first two years from Aug 27, 2012 to Aug 31, 2014. This figure sounds impressive until you factor in the number of Jehovah’s Witnesses – 8 million. Assuming every active Witness visits their own website at least once per week, you arrive at only a slightly lower figure of 832,000,000 visits over the two years (8,000,000 x 52 x 2).

And despite succeeding in making the organization more visible, there has been no notable increase in baptisms in the two years since the literature carts (or “metropolitan witnessing”) program was launched. After all, getting literature into someone’s hands won’t stop them going on the internet and fact-checking when they get home. And that’s assuming anyone is interested in approaching the carts to begin with. In this Guardian article, the reporter watched some carts in a busy part of London for an hour, and the only person who approached the Witnesses did so because they needed directions.

9. The child abuse floodgates have opened

flood

As was predicted at the time, there has been a relentless stream of child abuse lawsuits filed against Watchtower since the 2012 Candace Conti verdict. In 2013, a year on from the Conti judgment, lawyer Irwin Zalkin told me he had no less than 11 lawsuits on his books. Though many such lawsuits end up being settled, the success of the Jose Lopez case and the recent victory in London’s High Court have shown that if child abuse victims are willing to dig their heels in and stay the course they can have, not only compensation, but justice served.

All of this doesn’t bode well for an organization already under fire for its cult-like shunning practices and death-dealing prohibitions on blood transfusions. And apart from the atrocious reputation, with well-informed journalists like Trey Bundy spelling out the problems of organizational mishandling in the media, the money for paying off multi-million judgments and out-of-court settlements has to come from somewhere.

Even if the Governing Body sent a long-overdue letter out tomorrow FINALLY telling elders to report all child abuse accusations straight to the police, Watchtower would still have to answer to the backlog of lawsuits from victims who suffered while the two-witness rule was (is) still in place. Such victims may well have only a finite window of opportunity to get ANY money out of Watchtower at all.

10. Watchtower doesn’t have a PR strategy

head-in-sand

You’re an international, faith-based non-profit organization with a toxic brand both on the internet and in the media. Fewer people from wealthy, developed countries with internet are joining you, and thus donations are dwindling. For all the evangelizing and promotional work of your members, a few clicks on Google can completely dismantle your organization’s message. To make matters worse, you have mounting legal costs and settlements to pay for out of an ever-diminishing revenue stream. What you urgently need is a good PR strategy to make it easier to bring in fresh converts (and their donations) – but even here Watchtower is almost comically inept.

The organization’s PR strategy is essentially two-fold: (1) bury your head in the sand and hope your opposers eventually get bored and go away, or (2) refute the claims made by your opposers using outright lies (*cough* Rick Fenton). Both of these methods may help the likes of Tony Morris get to sleep at night in the short-term, but ultimately they are self-defeating. To neutral observers, silence is incriminating when damning allegations are on the table – especially related to harming children. And when you flat out lie about your damaging policies and teachings, you only give critics like me more rope to hang you with.

The only workable strategy Watchtower can pursue at this stage is one of reform, but past experience shows that any form of “compromise” is seen by the Governing Body as capitulation to Satan’s hordes. In short, Watchtower is sinking because its deluded leaders are their own worst enemies.

What does the future hold?

I do not for one moment suggest that we will see an end to Jehovah’s Witnesses as a religion in our lifetimes. The fact that there continues to be such a thing as the bible students, who still cling to Charles Taze Russell and his discredited, outlandish teachings, tells us that religions have amazing survival abilities even when members are deprived of their leadership. Faith, after all, is a product of people’s minds. When enough people believe the same unsubstantiated thing you have a religion, regardless of whether there is a person or organization to lead it.

But while religions are virtually indestructible, corporations are not. Non-profit organizations like Watchtower are just as capable of getting into debt as any other business. And when your bank manager starts bankruptcy proceedings against you because you can no longer service your debts, it’s game over.

The organization's glory days are already behind it
The organization’s glory days are already behind it

Those who suggest Watchtower is too big and successful to go down need only look at the fact that it has already been shrinking since it reached its zenith (in terms of branches and printing operations) some time between 2005 and 2010. Add to that the desperate clawing for cash over the five years since then, and you have the omens of an organizational collapse.

The winds of change have completely overtaken Watchtower in the internet age, and the Governing Body find themselves in a whole different ball game to their predecessors. If things are really as bad as I suspect, Watchtower needs to drastically downscale its operations to, say, a handful of branches and zero printing. In other words, it needs to become like its noisy neighbor Scientology, which despite having only 50,000-or-so members (and an even worse reputation) still has an impressive portfolio of valuable property scattered across the globe and minimal overheads compared to Watchtower.

But any downsizing of that magnitude would send Watchtower into an even more vicious spiral, in which it would start hemorrhaging even the most diehard members. After all, when you have spent decades pointing to your success as evidence of divine backing, how do you explain any sudden, sharp decline?

If Watchtower were to go bankrupt, it could always try claiming that the Great Tribulation has begun and Satan’s minions (their creditors) have started overtly attacking God’s people, but this simply will not wash with more intelligent Witnesses. Whatever is left of the organization (perhaps re-branded to ditch the Watchtower name entirely while retaining the Governing Body at the helm) would have a huge exodus on its hands.

It is precisely because of all the pride at stake that, in my mind, a sudden implosion seems increasingly plausible. Unlike ordinary commercial organizations who have the flexibility to change their size and scope according to the prevailing conditions, “God’s organization” can only be seen by its members to be going in an upwards trajectory for its grandiose claims of divine direction to have any credence. Any noticeable regression would rightly be interpreted as evidence of God’s favor being absent. Thus any problems would be allowed to accumulate behind closed doors until they reach a critical mass.

Of course I could be wrong, but if that is so then Watchtower is doing an awful lot of begging and downsizing for no particular reason, and with far too much to lose by doing so. It could well be that some incredible developments are ahead as Watchtower’s predicament further deteriorates, and the Governing Body slowly discovers that Jehovah isn’t coming to the rescue after all. I had better get on with writing my book while there is still an organization to write about.

 

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Translations: Spanish | French | Hungarian

Further reading…

165 thoughts on “Is Watchtower imploding? 10 reasons why the end could be nigh

  • July 19, 2015 at 2:19 am
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    I am sorry to bother You. But according to the Bible “all that have happend before is happening to us, to whom the last days has come.”
    Jesus came to the fleshly Israel, an what did he find? Pharisees and a priesthood that had left his Father Jehovahs spirit. He banned them BUT he never said they were not israelites.

    Exactly the same is happening today. Similar to Jesus’ earthly period the so called “governing body” is saying “we have got the temple” – ourselves. But when he comes back Christ will ban these false leaders as wolves fallen from the biblical truth together with false brides that never has been called or anointed.

    Therefore the Bible is talking about a spiritual earthquake shaking the spiritually Israel to sort out the sons of Zadok. Zadok’s spiritually sons is waiting for Jehovas and Christs signal to take over the world wide leading under Christ and build up a new holy headquarter after Armageddon – “the holy gift”.

    Before this is realised the profecy of the anointing of Salomo is coming up. The false Adonja tried to get rid of Salomo. But short before Adonja was to be anointed, followed by the majority of the people, they all were filled with fear and stormed over to Salomo. This is gonna happen again.

    Remember also another profecy. In the time of king Saul, there were TWO anointed kings – Saul and David. Same today. There is two classes of anointed ones. The old class that is condemned by Jehovah, and the coming up sons of Zadok that is qiuetly waiting for their time. So what seems to be the collapse of those who call them “Israel”, is in fact the fulfillment of the profecies. No thrue israelite will feel sad when the profecies is realised.

    To quote the chinese: Time is coming…

    • September 28, 2015 at 11:44 am
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      The hell are you talking about?

      • October 14, 2015 at 8:23 am
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        That’s exactly what I was thinking lol

    • September 30, 2015 at 7:35 pm
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      The “time” has been coming for over 2000 years. Time to pack up the B.S., and just live your life.

    • February 24, 2016 at 10:11 am
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      Suddenly there are “two anointed classes”? There isn´t even 1 in the Christian world.

    • July 14, 2016 at 9:49 pm
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      To QUOTE the BIBLE Luke21:8 Jesus answered, “See to it that you are not deceived. For many will come in My name, claiming, ‘I am He,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them.

    • July 15, 2016 at 11:01 am
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      This sounds as if a 10 year old wrote it given the spelling errors and lack of syntax. This is one we can surely ignore and chalk up to ignorance.

  • July 19, 2015 at 2:42 am
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    Thank you for a superb article, Cedars. You’ve said it all, and so well. I know many “friends” who still attend meetings for the love of their families. The great silent revenge is they have stopped contributing completely.
    They also write 1or 2 hours in their monthly report so as not to be considered inactive. How sad to have to resort
    to those strategies in order to conserve ones family and friends! (The number is legion).

    • July 19, 2015 at 3:20 am
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      Really…is it that many?
      Im not alone then
      Thank You

      • July 20, 2015 at 11:20 am
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        I was baptized at 13, was contacted at 25 by Jon Mitchell, a friend at Brooklyn Bethel, regarding the shake up involving Raymond Franz and others (didn’t listen), and finally, at 50 and unhappy, I read Crisis of Conscience and In Search of Christian Freedom (became inactive).

        That was 10 years ago. I just read “Exiting the JW Cult: A Healing Handbook for Current and Former Jehovah’s Witnesses” by Bonnie Zieman. I can’t recommend it highly enough. I wish I had this info when I was young enough to make a real life outside JW.org. But whatever time I have left can be better. All’s well that ends well.

        • July 22, 2015 at 7:43 am
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          One of the things us older folks can do is comfort the df’d ones online who come to these forums. Perhaps we can make a difference in the awful suicide rates of the df’d. If they just hold-on, they will find new friends and even “family” here on the web.

          • July 22, 2015 at 9:52 am
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            Lou Cee,

            What a lovely and kindly idea. One of the things that makes human beings so amazing is our ability to show compassion to others, even though we have never met them.

            We have all found solace and respect here, and on other sites on the web.

            It makes me happy to think that there are so many ex Jehovah’s Witnesses who really want to help current and ex JWs to find a way to live a full and happy life after the cult.

            Peace be with you, Excelsior!

          • September 23, 2015 at 2:20 pm
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            That’s a beautiful thing to say, Lou Cee. How kind!

        • December 22, 2016 at 11:09 pm
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          I was baptized at 15. An Elder took me to the Kingdom Hall alone and had a long talk with me (I didn’t realize at the time how utterly inappropriate that was.) First he told he told me I dressed too provocatively and it made him uncomfortable…I’m sure it did. Then he informed me that I “needed” to get baptized because I was making my family look bad. When you’re 15 and your entire family are witnesses, you cave. I remember being physically sick the day I was baptized. I knew in that moment that I was lying to the people I loved the most. 38 years later it still makes me uncomfortable. I tried for so long and finally, about 10 years I stopped fighting it and stopped attending meetings. I’ve lost a lot of my family and obviously it’s still an emotional issue for me but I have finally started to find myself. If they would have left me alone I might still be there but they push and push and push. I finally had a long talk with Jehovah and told him I would do what he wanted me to do. He guides my steps daily but so far it hasn’t been back to the organization. Funny, as I’m writing this I can hear all the arguments and justifications my family would make for why they believe I am wrong and they are right. It’s something that is deeply engrained in my psyche and probably always will be. I appreciate the love for God they instilled in me and I thank him daily for all the gifts and blessings he has placed in my life. I also pray that my loved ones who are still practicing will open their hearts and minds one day to the real truth.

    • July 19, 2015 at 11:01 pm
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      Yep, me too!

    • September 20, 2015 at 8:27 am
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      What? Only 1 or 2 hours?
      That’s very unambitious! :-)

    • October 20, 2015 at 7:46 am
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      I myself go to meetings and basically go through the motions every week for my families sake. My Parents have truly been the best parent anyone could ever ask for and i cant picture ever hurting them in that way so i go to meeting and ocasionally go out in service but honestly dont know how much longer i can keep this up.

      • April 7, 2016 at 2:13 am
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        Sam,

        Consider it paying your taxes or dues in order to have a happy family life.

        That’s how I consider it in order to remain sane. Just remember never to verbally comment about the lies and hypocrisy of the WT as you will be df in a New York second.

        • October 2, 2016 at 2:57 pm
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          Huh? I am confused? Dont we all know that thing called dfing…..???? lol

  • July 19, 2015 at 3:41 am
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    When you read between the lines of that letter to the elders, you can see the Society is losing ground but true believers will see that it’s a smart move to close down Kingdom Halls where attendance is low and drive to distant Kingdom Halls.

    What the rank and file don’t see is that the Society will get the money from these fire sales and sock it away in their off-shore accounts where nobody can get their hands on it or they will reinvest it in more and more property.

    What I also foresee, is faders and old people dropping out when they have to start driving long distances to their new Kingdom Halls and having to pay for the gas and getting home so late. I think it will be a good excuse for the faders and doubters and old people and people with young children to stop going and with fewer and fewer people attending, it will be more and more discouraging for those attending and then as the old ones die off and the younger set going on the internet and seeing the “truth” for what it really is, I see it dying off in maybe 20-30 years. By that time, the Governing Body will be all dead but the Watchtower corporations will be the richest organizations on the earth with the sale of all their Kingdom Halls and assembly halls and branches.

    • July 20, 2015 at 4:11 am
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      Personally I don’t see the WT dying off or imploding quite so fast. They are Masters at Manipulation and they have so Much $$ in their accounts and only a few know how much that rally is. Their doctrines are ever changing and the R&F
      just seem to go along w anything they tell them to do. I Wish they would implode bc they deserve it but just think of all the JW’s who would go into shock of that happened? I think they will re-create themselves like they are now doing and somehow
      become more mainstream. It happened to other doomsday religions like the Herbert Armstrong,and others after he died. However the WT is a little different bc they are larger as a religion and very wealthy. The WT is built on the 1914 Teaching and 2520 years prophecy. We all know that is bogus now and certainly the GB knows it also, if that doesn’t bring down the Ivory Tower than perhaps they will continue to have a presence. Anything can happen that is for sure and I would like to see it come down but their will be a lot of damaged JW’s wandering around and I don’t like to see them crushed as they will be.I am sure if and when it happens their could even be some suicides and other crazy things.

  • July 19, 2015 at 5:34 am
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    Superb article!

  • July 19, 2015 at 6:20 am
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    I can’t help but wonder if the WT has gotten themselves into a bit of a quandary, possibly having indebted themselves to an elusive, mafia-like, behind-the-scenes loan shark?? They may have been asked to ante up and thus the humiliating grovel to the congregants to dig deep into their pockets for the obligatory tithe. I agree this sounds outlandish, but not so much when considering elite establishments like Chase Manhattan, J.P. Morgan, or other well-to-do “benefactors” who “donate” stocks (or is that just a legally acceptable front/loophole?) I find it unlikely that these institutions or individuals don’t have something in it for themselves. Might be crazy, but what with WT isn’t? Just thinking outloud….

  • July 19, 2015 at 7:56 am
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    Mike Morris, suggests, “A general decline in Christianity” as a
    factor in the orgs, problems, and I agree with that.

    An MIT study in the USA, indicated an 18% decline in religious
    affiliation between 1990 and 2010, that equates to 25 million
    people. The main element it concluded was internet availability.

    There are many other components, including “Sport.” Here in
    Britain, football ( soccer ) is akin to religion for many fans.
    To quote former Liverpool F,C manager, Bill Shankly,
    “Some people say, football is a matter of life or death, I’m very
    disappointed with that attitude , It is much, much more than that.”

    Fans have their own chants and anthems, some fans even requesting
    their ashes be scattered on their beloved teams pitches.

    So an abundance of info, like never before, better education,
    increased quality of life, and many distractions from religion
    all contribute to its decline. The JW org, will be badly affected
    by these changes, and will not be able to stem the tide, it’s
    unsupportable claims of God’s backing will be exposed.

  • July 19, 2015 at 8:04 am
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    dear i dont know what to do ive just come from a dead meeting all those little lost sheep with nothing of substance to say for themselves and i attended fs meeting afterward 2 elds 1 real pio not the pretend young who never support anyone but themselves see it for what it is and have hope in time you will see the path you need to be on meanwhile people like lloyd and others help you realise you are not going mad i too in 50s and frittered away my life but i hope and still believe in our creator and ihope the smashing instrument comes first to those who declare they have Gods authority the rot really has set in and the house will fail just dont let you and your family get caught in the crossfire and this site has helped me so much im truly grateful that like minded people exist and are willing to be kind

    • July 21, 2015 at 12:45 am
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      Ruthlee, this is really hard to read. After a couple of words I gave up. I don’t want to be snotty, but with punctuation marks and maybe a paragraph here and there it is easier for the eyes to follow your words.

      Thus giving them the attention they deserve :)

      • July 24, 2015 at 3:10 pm
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        I just had to say that I think this was the most polite and appropriate corrective comment I have ever read. Thank you for being a good person on the Internet. You’ve made my day and inspired me to respond to people in a similar manner. :)

      • September 20, 2015 at 3:11 pm
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        oops just read this today, have tried to improve my spanglish grammer ha ha !another little anecdote from my archive . I did not complete more than 1 year in any school as my family moved around so my spelling and grammar leave a lot to be desired. sorry

        • September 22, 2015 at 5:43 am
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          Oh Ruthlee,
          you’re so lovely.Its encouraging to see the the pleasant interaction between the comments.

  • July 19, 2015 at 11:24 am
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    “If Watchtower were to go bankrupt…..”, Lloyd dixit, ….I would not hesitate for a second to celebrate this happy event with champagne.

    • July 28, 2015 at 6:33 am
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      This will not hapen. the jwsurvey.org web site is only a new tactic of satan the devil, who transform himself as an angel of light.

      Continue to wait… All of you will see that god’s people will live on earth forrever.

      • September 7, 2015 at 7:49 pm
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        Good evening baby:

        This may not apply to you, however, the facts dont lie. As Angus Stewart an Australian lawyer commented WT Corp is captive with its members.
        However, some die hards JWs really don’t get it.
        Question’s to consider from with in:

        1). Look up any non-profit Corp and you can locate monies donated and amount spent. Theres web site watch dogs and they track this information. You can look up Scottish Rite and they receive over $300. Million annual and sreach WT Corp you will never find any disclosure information total money donated or spent.

        2). Why did WT Corp in 1984 sued the city Jerseys, to get the zoning changed for religious use. When they purchased the Stanley theatre. Then claim it was Jehovah that did this.

        3). Why has WT Corp given a big push on money crabbing, better know as extortion or money laundering. I’ve never seen anything like this, Im a born in, this move from WT Corp is astonishing and shameless.

        4). Why has WT Corp decided to sell off all Jehovah’s property in Brooklyn (60 property’s) over $1 billion dollars in profit, selling kingdom halls and assembly halls world wide. Once you dedicate a building to Jehovah, WT Corp your no longer the deed holder, explain that to Jehovah. WT Corp is stealing money from Jehovah. Since the 7 men no longer believe there the only communication with Jehovah. I quote G.Jackson during his trail of child abuse in Australia, in Aug, 2015.

        5). WT Corp is in a big hurry to whitewash their history. They believe they do not need to give credit to anyone person as Charles Russell. WT Corp is trying to separate from Russell, if you due, then you separate the only remaining year WT is holding on to 1914.
        You separate or divorce from Russell, you also say bye-bye to 1914. No 1914, no Jesus Christ presence – no kingship. A lie from WT.

        6). WT Corp has flip-flop so many doctrines this makes anybodys head spin. Jesus Christ never flip-flop on doctrine, why does WT Corp?
        If it communicates with Jehovah, you would think God has its dog manure together. You would think right?

        7). Why did WT Corp, change the wording questions during baptism, from holy spirit, to gods directed organization.?

        8). Why does WT Corp dumb down its members through fear, and mind control? Example, ‘You must follow the directions of the WT Corp even if it makes no sense – time to swallow a pill or drink the posion kool-aid.?

        9) WT Corp believes they offer salvation, you must remain obedience to them, you can not question them on anything and they are the guardians-of-divine-scripture – translation G-O-D-s.
        Jesus Christ offered salvation through Faith, believe in his resurrection by the third day, and he died for all of our sins and crimes. Believe in the kingdom of the heavens, this is in contrast to WT Corp beliefs.

        10). In summary, WT Corp is Not the true religion, is Not the sole communication with God.
        Read the book of Malachi chapters 1-4, WT Corp will have a day in court, – in Jehovah’s hall of justice.
        Not even your dream team of paid lawyers will be of any value or protection.

        This will be the true day of Liberation, freedom and justice to All Christians, who believe in Jesus Christ and his father Jehovah.
        Salvation is at hand!
        Salvation is at hand!
        Salvation is at hand!
        The 7 men will have there day in J-court.

        Jwsurvey.org is Not the tool of the devil. He has not signed up or donated any money, at least not yet. Only reporting with clarity and illuminating aka new light, no pun intended.

        The expression ‘girls gone wild’, well, this applies to WT Corp, WT Corp has gone wild.

        Remember the scriptures don’t flip-flop, and easy to understand, read the four gospels and you get my point. Yes, I believe there will be survivors from the big A, in fact many from different faiths and Not only JWs. Hope to see you there and all from this web site.

        Will we see the 7 men from WT Corp be part of the rapture? You decide. Actions speak louder than words.

        Peace out,

      • September 14, 2015 at 3:25 am
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        Whatever you need to keep telling yourself…

        • September 14, 2015 at 3:26 am
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          .. to make it through those meetings…

      • September 14, 2015 at 10:41 am
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        They really need to quit blaming Satan for everything. Even he is probably getting sick of it. He didn’t have anything to do with starting the JW religion and fooling all the people, oh… what a minuite…

        • February 24, 2016 at 10:57 am
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          Suddenly there are “two anointed classes”? There isn´t even 1 in the Christian world.

  • July 19, 2015 at 1:52 pm
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    Hi Cedar,
    Thank you for this information. However neither my friend or I could open the letter to the elders. Is there some other way to view it?
    Thanks in advance,
    Pam

    • July 19, 2015 at 2:09 pm
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      Hi Pam! I’ve just checked again and the link above does work.

      Be sure to click the blue rectangular box that says: “Click here to start download from sendspace.”

      Thanks.

    • July 19, 2015 at 7:06 pm
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      How I opened the elders letter linked in this article:

      Go to site linked in article. Click the download link. There should be a pop-up box asking how you want the file: save it? or open it? Select “open”.

      But here’s the trick: it requires a file reader such as Adobe/Acrobat Reader. Perhaps that is what is gumming up the works on your end? Or maybe a firewall/permissions setting?

  • July 20, 2015 at 12:09 am
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    Looks like Watchtower had the link to the elder’s letter removed from the JW leaks site server. The URL is null.

  • July 20, 2015 at 1:56 am
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    Or…downsizing CAN be explained to the flock as a sign that we are sooo deep into the last days, all religions are under attack, even this one now. So soon Jehovah must act, because now Satan has turned his wrath onto His organization. Any negative happenings can be explained away like so!!

    • July 22, 2015 at 6:44 am
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      Or, perhaps they will claim that the “sorting work” is nearly over. (face palm)

    • July 29, 2015 at 10:27 am
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      That’s exactly how this will go down. Any perceivable decline will be explained as Satan attacking the organization and the imminent beginning of the great tribulation.

      The logical flaw, of course, is that they have been saying this since before 1914. Satan has apparently been actively attacking the organization every second of every day for 101 years, even during times of massive growth. Both growth and decline are explained by attacks from Satan.

      So practical thought here would ask: either Satan is a blundering fool who just can’t seem to get things done (not supported by scriptural descriptions of Lucifer/Satan) or there are serious flaws with Watchtower teachings.

    • March 12, 2016 at 1:17 am
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      All religions are under attack? Why would Christendom be under attack? Quit trying to bring others into this joke.Misery loves company. Only the watchtower is under attack. They are under more attack because of their sex desire for little children.One can go no lower than this. And the blame for it goes right back to Brooklyn and the elders that carry out this nonsense.I hope these children that were molested sues the hell out of Brooklyn and every elder in the world.These power loving roosters are in trouble now. The chickens have come home to roost. No brighter light will help you on this one- I would even say the light is getting darker.In fact it is becoming black.

  • July 20, 2015 at 4:06 am
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    Hi Lloyd,

    Thanks for this sobering article…
    But, about these facts:
    1) the huge building process in Warwick ( the new JW worldwide headquarters)
    2) the crucial need of more and more Kingdom Halls?

    Looking forward to hearing from you the soonest,

    Kind Regards

    • July 20, 2015 at 5:47 am
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      Hi alain

      The building project in Warwick is a property flip. They are building their new headquarters at a fraction of the cost of what they are making from selling Brooklyn, so it’s a money-making exercise rather than a statement that the organization is financially stable.

      As to the stated need for kingdom halls, for this to be a “crucial” need, you would need to see a corresponding surge in the numbers of those baptized. Instead the growth figure has been hovering around the 2% mark for the last five years, indicating growth is stagnant and any perceived need for new halls has been there for many years.

      Lloyd

  • July 20, 2015 at 6:40 am
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    Cedars
    You’re spot on with so much you have to say about the Watchtower Society… my own experience… but to disavow the existence of the maker of all things because the messenger has become apostate itself…? No condemnation here at all. Just a suggestion for a little rethink. Is it possible that God has become ticked off and decided to do something about the falsehood in the Society?
    Yours… Rae

    • July 20, 2015 at 6:46 am
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      Rather than being based on my experience with the organization, my reasons for no longer being religious are due to the lack of evidence for a theistic God, but thank you for your concern.

      • July 20, 2015 at 7:32 am
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        Me too Lloyd
        Im certainly not replacing all I have rejected with another ideology…
        Evidence points in one direction only…
        I refuse to ignore my powers of reasoning any longer…
        Please never stop writing or doing your videos…
        They have been an enormous help to me…
        Helping me free my mind.

      • July 29, 2015 at 10:35 am
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        This is where, with great respect, I would disagree with Cedars. But I can understand his point of view.

  • July 20, 2015 at 7:10 am
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    Has anyone else noticed the use of the phrase “master plan” in paragraph two of the letter. How many dictatorial powers have used that phrase and come to nothing.If it goes wrong they can always blame the “master plan”.Imagine now Vincent Price laughing manically in the background.

  • July 21, 2015 at 12:56 am
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    Probably (hopefully?) most elders won’t get fooled into thinking that WT is soo thriving that they don’t know where to put all the new sheep in (ha ha).

    A sobering thought for me is: IF this letter would get to be known to the rest of the congregation, would they draw the false conclusion that this move is made because of exploding growth?
    Oooh the organisation needs money to build more kingdom halls but it is still not enough! We also need to move closer together! Oh all the growth. Jehova must surely pour his blessing over the congregations…..

    Isn’t that probable that JW people will just distort the facts to soothe their perception?

  • July 21, 2015 at 7:47 am
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    What an incisive article. Thank you, Lloyd.

    • July 28, 2015 at 6:35 am
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      This will not hapen. the jwsurvey.org web site is only a new tactic of satan the devil, who transform himself as an angel of light.

      Continue to wait… All of you will see that god’s people will live on earth forrever.

      • July 29, 2015 at 10:50 am
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        I’m not sure where to even begin with this. I’ll just say this: You seem sincere and I applaud that. I would just encourage you to really examine that sincerity with prayer and meditation to ensure it is well placed. There are numerous logical and spiritual flaws to JW teachings. Something I knew but shoved into the back of my head when I did my own Pioneer work. If I continued to use the literature I used when Pioneering then in the ministry today, I would be disfellowshipped. And I am still young. That’s how much things have changed, far exceeding the context and message of Isaiah’s ‘new light.’

        All sincere hearts are loved by God. Just please examine that sincerity to ensure you haven’t been led astray.

  • July 21, 2015 at 9:53 am
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    Over half of the 10 items listed as evidence that the Watchtower is headed for collapse are related to financial problems. Item 9, “The child abuse floodgates have opened”, appears to have the power to eventually destroy the Watchtower.

    My attempts to obtain a realistic total of all Watchtower child abuse settlements has been unsuccessful. There are a number of confidential settlements, for which there are no amounts stated, as well as many multi-million dollar judgments listed as being appealed by the Watchtower legal department.

    Regarding a recent California child abuse case: “In the Lopez trial, the Watchtower refused to provide its list of perpetrators, in violation of an order upheld by the California Supreme Court. It also refused to provide the longest-serving member of the Governing Body, Gerrit Lösch, who was subpoenaed.” The judge awarded a $13.5 million default verdict which the Watchtower cannot appeal. However, the Watchtower is currently appealing the amount of the judgment.

    https://www.revealnews.org/article/jehovahs-witnesses-use-1st-amendment-to-hide-child-sex-abuse-claims/

    Candace Conti was awarded $28 million, but the punitive damage award was reversed, leaving only $2.8 million in compensatory damages. There is no record of the Watchtower having paid Conti any amount at this time.

    In any event, the number of child abuse cases is growing, the Watchtower’s delay tactics are becoming ineffective and the bills will eventually come due. The Watchtower will need a lot more than its children’s ice cream money to cover the child abuse judgments.

  • July 21, 2015 at 10:39 am
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    Over half of the 10 items listed as evidence that the Watchtower is headed for collapse are related to financial problems. Item 9, “The child abuse floodgates have opened”, appears to have the power to eventually destroy the Watchtower.

    My attempts to obtain a realistic total of all Watchtower child abuse settlements has been unsuccessful. There are a number of confidential settlements, for which there are no amounts stated, as well as many multi-million dollar judgments listed as being appealed by the Watchtower legal department.

    Regarding a recent California child abuse case: “In the Lopez trial, the Watchtower refused to provide its list of perpetrators, in violation of an order upheld by the California Supreme Court. It also refused to provide the longest-serving member of the Governing Body, Gerrit Lösch, who was subpoenaed.” The judge awarded a $13.5 million default verdict which the Watchtower cannot appeal. However, the Watchtower is currently appealing the amount of the judgment.

    https://www.revealnews.org/article/jehovahs-witnesses-use-1st-amendment-to-hide-child-sex-abuse-claims/

    Candace Conti was awarded $28 million, but the punitive damage award was reversed, leaving only $2.8 million in compensatory damages. There is no record of the Watchtower having paid Conti any amount at this time.

    In any event, the number of child abuse cases is growing, the Watchtower’s delay tactics are becoming ineffective and the bills will eventually come due. The Watchtower will need a lot more than its children’s ice cream money to cover the child abuse judgments.

  • July 23, 2015 at 4:29 pm
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    I’m curious about this desperate need for Kingdom Halls. They say they give money or money is needed for these halls. But I’ve seen them close down halls of older ones in Pennsylvania only to make them travel farther. It’s not like they gave the money back. They kept it. We live in the poorest area of Pennsylvania and still have to pay for our Kingdom Hall. So who is getting this donated money. Even the poorest areas and Kingdom Halls are self supported by their own donations and have to pay their own bills and loans from the society. So when they say there is an urgent need for Kingdom Halls. Where is this need? They act like they just give the money to those in need. But it generally is a loan. Even in a foreign 3rd world county. They don’t build an $800,000 Kingdom Hall. They build a cheap ass brick hut. That cost next to nothing and even those people have some funds to contribute. In fact, if they did not have funds on their own they can’t build a hall. So who is getting money to build a hall when it’s all loaned and not given. They have these people thinking it’s given to them for free to build. But again, I live in the poorest part of PA and not one of these halls gets the free money. In fact they all do this new tithing! They pay even when the loan is paid off. And again to re-state. They are an extremely poor area.

    • July 24, 2015 at 9:00 am
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      @RK . Your comment is Spot on . You are SO Right.!! Even the poor JWs are expected to fund their own halls . So WHY Aren’t we JWs given a PROPER ACCOUNTING SHEET to show where OUR DONATIONS are Going . I suspect millions of dollars of our Donations are paying those CHILD ABUSE Victims which would be VERY EMBARRASSING to print out on a balance sheet!!
      I suspect also the Governing a Body WASTED Millions on BAD INVESTMENTS in Stocks & Shares & Hedge Funds which We are allowed to invest in as JWs which is LAUGHABLE as the Stock Market is the BIGGEST CASINO in the World.!!
      I know if each Individual JW knew the VAST DONATIONS that had been Squandered then they would stop donating tomorrow & the Watchtower would collapse that’s why the GB doesn’t print Balance Sheets except at an individual congregation level!
      REMEMBER these Donations are HARD EARNED money from many Poor Brothers Who Have PAID their TAXES & are STRUGGLING to Survive or its ICE CREAM MONEY from millions of JW CHILDREN!!!
      DISGUSTING & OBSCENE!!!!

    • August 28, 2015 at 5:25 am
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      Don’t overlook the art of churning property the WT has perfected. You sell off a property to be used by a bank or professional offices, that cost just a small percentage of the sales price followed by building more (which by design are meant to be easily convertable to business use) selling older halls or spare halls through combining congregations. At the same time, you are putting out a message that is either an outright lie or an exaggeration, claiming the need is so very great, we have to build 13,000 new halls, 100s of translation centers etc, so please give all you can. A Kool-Aid drinker loves this stuff, who isn’t thrilled to know that your organization.is growing so fast they can’t keep up with the demand for new halls. That idea gives you confidence that you are “in the truth” since so many are discovering God’s only organization before your very eyes.
      The biggest hint of trouble I sensed was in begging members to dispose of their items of value and donate the funds. Even beyond making kids feel guilty for having a little change in their pockets for candy or ice cream, to pressure adults to sell watches, stocks and bonds, jewelry that may have tremendous sentimental value screams desperation. You can only do this every 10-20 years and given the income level of most folks, they may only have a couple of items that are dear to them. I would wish to be a fly on the wall so it might be possible to see the real truth, to see how deeply offerings have dropped or expenses, including legal expenses have risen.

  • July 24, 2015 at 11:53 pm
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    I left in October 2014, finally, after trying to convince myself the last 20 years it was me, not them. Nope, it is them. Thank you for all you do Cedars, you put into words so eloquently the things that need to be said. For all the ‘growth’ they talk about I didn’t see any in my local area, not since the 80’s. The local congregations here are mostly ‘old timers’ who are getting quite elderly. My father was an elder during my teenage years and I heard hushed talk and whispers of accusations about abuse here and there, nothing I can prove or have any facts on, but I have a feeling once it starts really coming undone, it will be a massive exodus out of the organization, if it hasn’t started already I would be shocked. The fear tactics they use make it difficult for us to reach out to each other in any meaningful way for fear of being labeled an apostate. What a terrifying and lonely existence to never be able to speak your mind or ask a question, to have to hide yourself in fear 24/7. I really think many are just lingering on the fringe out of fear of losing everyone they have ever known, I did. Until I saw behind the curtain, noticed all the rabbit holes that lead to lies, corruption, and disgusting behaviour. I cannot be associated with such an organization anymore. In a way I am grateful, I know the truth, and it has definitely set me free…

    • July 25, 2015 at 4:23 am
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      I haven’t gone to a meeting for a little over a year and yesterday I ran into a “friend” from the Kingdom Hall at the grocery store and she hugged me and asked me where have I been, practically crying about it and I told her that I’d never go to the Kingdom Hall again and that I am the happiest that I have been in the last 50 years and she said that is what Satan wants you to think and I said no, that I am the happiest that I have been in 50 years and I told her that the JW religion was the worst religion I could have chosen etc. and she could see horns popping right out of the top of my head and she couldn’t run away from me fast enough.

      I forget how I was when I was first waking up. I might have done the same thing 2 years ago but once I have gotten fully awake, it is so clear to me now. I must remember what it was like for me 2 years ago but in a way, I’d love it if she went to the elders and turned me in for apostasy. They are afraid of me. My husband said that it’s because they don’t know how to handle me. But I do think they don’t want to disfellowship me. I sure wished there was a way to discuss with them in an intelligent manner without them thinking that I am the Devil now. It is so clear to me how they are under mind control. I was too and now it is so hard for me to see how under mind control I was all those years.

    • July 28, 2015 at 6:57 am
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      I Am not an english speaking. But listen to me please.
      is there a true God or not?
      I am convinced that if you tell Jehovah your God in whom you have always trusted it will help you to find solace, and you will understand why jehovah let these things happened within the congregation. These also came in ancient israel, however, Israel remain God’s people until the intervention of God himself.
      I know that you have faith in Jehovah

      do not let the actions of others make you lose faith in Jehovah.

      • August 10, 2015 at 12:30 pm
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        I couldn’t agree more.

        Actually, I see what is happening with JWs as fulfillment of prophecy.

        – False parousia (check)
        – Ruled over by ‘command upon command’ (check)
        – etc etc ad infinitum

      • April 24, 2016 at 7:42 pm
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        Honey you dont need to stop beleiving in god if you dont want to. No one is saying go atheist. Just keep in mind that you are in a very controlling religion. The wt is a man made organization; extremely flawed.

    • April 7, 2016 at 2:36 am
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      Gone for good,

      Before you leave please think about this:

      1. Where did you learn God’s name?
      Wait…..the name Jehovah was coined by a Catholic monk in the 13th century never mind.

      2. Where else do you go to?
      Wait…that was Jesus and not a corporation that Peter referred to. Never mind.

      3. Where else will you find a spiritual paradise?
      Wait… The WT has the highest rate of mental illness and emotional problems due to the constant coercion and fear of being shunned…..Never mind

      4. Who else preaches the Good News?
      Wait….the message in the Gospels and the book of acts is TOTALLY different from what the WT corporation preaches……Never mind.

      5. Where else will you get the equivalent of a 4 year college education by reading 1 year of the WT publications?
      Wait….um maybe this one is right

  • July 26, 2015 at 6:31 am
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    I just attended a Governing Body talk at yesterday’s assembly in Amherst MA. The attendants are busy walking around with “Keep Moving” signs, the friends are all seated with the noticeable absence of teens, the parking lot is guarded in each location by 2 attendants patrolling for folks like me who distribute letters on vehicles. I asked the media desk as I was leaving if the Governing Body would resign over the crimes of child abuse cover-up, they responded that I was mistaken. So there is no ability to have a reasoned discussion, even if your a servant. Cults=Control. As those of us demonized as Apostates experience, the Governing Body always controls the message. The followers by and large are trusting folks like we were, which makes the structure so abusive.

    • July 27, 2015 at 2:33 am
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      There is at present a Royal Commission going on in Australia about JW’s. They have found 1006 pedophiles on the books since 1950 but not one has been reported to police. Interesting to see how it all goes as it has been reported on the National news and is all over the papers here. Wow.

  • July 27, 2015 at 8:22 am
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    Meredith,J.
    Thanks for bringing the Aussie news reports to our attention.
    It was stated, “Victims had to confront their attackers and
    were made to feel as if, “They” had sinned. That is truly
    abhorrent !

    Elders who participate in these “Sharia type, secretive courts”,
    and cause more harm by their ignorant rulings, share in the
    guilt of the perpetrator.

    Maybe elders and R & F, JWs, will now start to realise,
    that they are not the elite, exclusive, org, they have been
    primed to believe in, with no accountability to the rest of
    mankind.

  • July 28, 2015 at 6:52 am
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    Baby,

    You have my sympathy. Please, I implore you to research what the WTBTS really is. Get out and be free. The WTBTS will not inherit any paradise. God and Jesus have no influence or need for the WTBTS. Please, Baby, think of the little children who have been abused, think of the women who have been forced to stay with abusive partners, think of all those who have suffered from the unchristian shunning policy.

    We are here to help you free yourself. We want to help you.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

    • July 28, 2015 at 7:05 am
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      I Am not an english speaking. But listen to me
      Child abuse are crimes that hurt anyone.
      I understand why jehovah let these things happened within the congregation. These also came in ancient israel, however, Israel remain God’s people until the intervention of God himself.
      I know that you have faith in Jehovah

      do not let the actions of others make you lose faith in Jehovah.

      • July 28, 2015 at 11:18 pm
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        BABY In THOUGHT & BABY in REASONING!!! These Elders are meant to be Appointed by Holy Spirit but MANY of These Elders are Guilty of CHILD ABUSE! Why would Jehovah do this & going along with your stupid reasoning Jehovah destroyed the whole Nation of Israel in 607 ? Bc & in 70 A.D. Because of their Criimes So according to your reasoning Jehovah will have to DESTROY the 7 MEN Pharasiacal Governing Body & all of The Organisation!! When People Like BABY make Excuses for 7 MEN who USE WOMEN & CHILDREN to PROMOTE a Publishing Empire with Luxurious Lakeside Headquarters at Warwick when Jesus had nowhere to lay his head & Apostle Paul worked as a Tentmaker so as not to put a BURDEN on the Brothers , MAKES ME SICK with ANGER!!

      • July 29, 2015 at 8:23 am
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        BABY,

        Thank you for your kind concern about me leaving Jehovah over the child abuse issue.

        I thought I would share some scriptures with you that, among a host of other things, have convinced me that it is the Jehovah’s Witnesses who have left Jehovah.

        The first one is in Deuteronomy 22:25-27. Here, God requires only ONE witness, the victim, to condemn the evil rapist to death. The reason God provided this provision, was that the victim cried out, but there was no one to hear her.

        Tell me, BABY, do child abuse victims in the Jehovah’s Witnesses receive the trust that God showed to rape victims in Israel? No, they do not. Why? Because the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ governing body choose to look at Deuteronomy 19:15 instead. This applied, in context, to boundary disputes and the like, not sexual assault. Why do the governing body choose to place a burden of proof more severe than God on children?

        The next scripture is Romans 13. The superior authorities are placed by God to investigate and prosecute all crimes, are they not, BABY?

        Is child abuse a crime? Is rape a crime? Is domestic violence a crime? Is battery in the form of excessive corporal punishment a crime? These are all crimes, BABY.

        Christians are obliged to report these crimes to the police, who represent the superior authorities. Am I wrong, BABY?

        Why do the governing body oppose God and Jesus by refusing to report crimes to the superior authorities, BABY?

        I must confess that I am an atheist. I find the laws in Deuteronomy barbaric and not fit for civilised society. However, they still acknowledge the difference between a boundary dispute and sexual assault.

        Why is it that the governing body cannot, BABY?

        I mean no disrespect to your sincere Christian beliefs, BABY. I quote these scriptures to help you understand that the governing body of the WTBTS are NOT following the bible with their policies.

        I sincerely urge you to do your own independent research, BABY. 1Thessalonians 5:21

        Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • July 29, 2015 at 10:16 am
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    Some few generations back, Newly baptized JWs in the U.S. and Europe had secular educations and a fairly stable paycheck. They could afford donations (or paying for literature at that time).

    Fast forward to 2015, and you have two generations of witnesses that have very little advanced secular education. They are discouraged from getting a higher education and instead going into Pioneer work. Without an education, these JWs are struggling to survive in the modern world. Ultimately, this means they live from paycheck to paycheck and can’t afford the sums of money being asked for by the society. They have already sacrificed the ability to make a living, now they need to sacrifice food and medicine to meet the demands.

    This will be the ultimate decline. A slow attrition created by its own teachings. When new generations of JWs are poor, affording the $MM projects will become impossible.

  • August 31, 2015 at 10:50 am
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    Awake finally after 55 years. Asked for… help but always got a shoulder shrug.

    Offered evidence to a judicial committee, a CO, and finally to the branch… only to be, denied, rebuffed, and told to get over it.

    Thx for your forum.

  • September 15, 2015 at 5:31 am
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    This is such an interesting article. I was raised as a JW. I’m Now 42 and left when I was 18. It has ruined my life having that upbringing. It used fear and blackmail to keep you a member. I’ve always had my suspicions that the JW was false and a cult. It instills predudice into all its followers, and preys on the week and needy to try to convert. I hope for all my family’s sake that are still members that they see the light and realise it’s a terrible organisation to be apart of and maybe one day we can all be a close family again rather than a divided one.

  • September 20, 2015 at 8:33 am
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    Good article.
    Thanks.
    Although I wish it was possible, I do not think the JW ideology will ever disappear.
    After all, we still have communism and fascism in various, mutating forms.

    • September 20, 2015 at 8:40 pm
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      Becoming a large religious organization is much different from a for profit corporation in that if the growth slows, stops or shrinks it cannot regroup by downsizing, and marketing new products. Watchtower’s product is its message and convincing people they have the truth. They have only one product they can’t change ( at least drastically ). They’ve played out the markets of the more developed and richer countries such as the U.S. And Europe. It’s harder to convince people who by their culture are less religiously inclined. Watchtower’s main stream of converts are now in developing countries whose populace are not as financially endowed, so revenues must be in decline. As time progresses and people the world become more educated it will be increasingly harder for Watchtower to sell their product, one that has its intellectual roots in the 19th century. As time progresses and the predictions made by Watchtower still do not materialize people will leave the religion unless they make major shifts in their teachings. They have to capitulate to what people want which means in order to survive the controlling body has to become less dictatorial. But by so doing means the end of the current Watchtower structure. Unless the end of the world comes per their predictions, the end of Watchtower is inevitable. No one can continue to proclaim the imminent end of the world for ever without the end ever coming forever. The message becomes more and more rediculous and as Abraham Lincoln once said, you cannot fool all the people all the time. Watchtower has painted themselves into a corner they can’t walk out of. If they sold stock like a for profit corporation they’d be a very bad long term investment.

      On the flip side, if they do fail/ collapse Watchtower adherents might splinter into various smaller independent groups that could last longer , like the Bible Students had done after CT Russell died. Bible students it must be noted never had the belief system nor the critical mass to grow. So they have been in de line since their separation from Watchtower in circa 1930. All of the original generation contemporary to Russell have passed away. The subsequent generation, their children, are nearing the end with those still alive in their 80s or 90s. Bible Students made / make few new converts with members being largely children of Bible Students now three or four generations past Russell. It’s been a slow gradual death for Bible Students and mainly the religion has clung to life mainly due to their fanaticism and the dedicated imposition of doctrine from parent to child. But that can last only for so long. Eventually , gradually, the religious ferver that arose in the early 19th century’s Great Awakening millennialist hysterics will finally die its last death throes. Who would have thought that the doomsday expectations William Miller began nearly 200 years ago would have continued for so long and into a modern society that has not only witnessed the success of the scientific revolution, but into a society that has largely reaped such major life changing benefits from that revolution . As the shining truth of science continues into the future to benefit human society with such blessings as health, longevity , ease of living and the Internet , the archaic doctrines of a fanatical religion will erode away into to oblivion… To become a curious footnote in future history books. Yes Watchtower is not going to disappear in the next year or maybe even decade, but it’s final hour is inevitable as long as it’s prediction of the Great Tribulation fails. It can’t last. It’s doom is sealed in its beliefs, and unless they have some means of their own to make their prediction of Armaggedon come true, they will be destined to disappear . As for the Bible Students? They might not have more than a few decades more at best. Each generation further removed from the founder is less emotionally bound to his teachings. Already factions who 40 years ago refused to associate with each other have found it necessary to compromise and join forces in order to mitigate the rapid decline in their numbers over recent decades. A similar decline could be in store for Jehovah’s Witnesses the longer Armaggedon delays it’s coming!

  • September 24, 2015 at 10:46 am
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    I was raised in the Jehovah’s Witnesses organizations since I was 4. My parents were immigrants who could barely speak English and were living in little Italy in the Bronx, with my father working three jobs and us hardly ever seeing him. The day two witnesses knocked on our door was the day everything went downhill. Without knowing anyone in new York other than a few relatives. my parents clung to these individuals and a friendship was forged and they embraced the doctrines and teaches of this organization. I was the good son. I followed everything with the ultimate goal even from the tender age of 7 to go to bethel. I had the ability to speak to a congregation of 300+ members and quickly memorized the books of the bible, and was unafraid to go door to door pushing the religious propaganda and for a time it was good. then puberty hit, I was changing and was noticing girl and things that I was not allowed to do as a member of the church. MY father was a Ministerial servant and drinking heavily. there were rumors and whispers in the family and in arguments before he became a ministerial servant that he was cheating on mom. as a small boy in the clutches of the religion and with no choice otherwise, I never questioned anything.

    at 11 years old I was subjected to sexual abuse and molestation which I hid for several years. despite that I didn’t think anyone would believe me, a puissant little kid who knew nothing of life and who dared accuse a prominent member of the Congregation. I dismissed it and continued on my crooked path – doubting and torn with my conscience and my teachings – not to mention how embarrassed I would be if word got out among my friends. My sexual Identity would come in question (I am Straight by the way). It horrified me.

    if you do not know who the person by now then it still horrifies me to say that it was my father. by the time I turned 18 I was away from home living in upstate New York graduating from High School. and through this time that one secret ate at me. I was hoping my father (who had develop cancer) would one day reveal what he did for several years. He would frequently try to fight me and at times wanted to pull a knife on me. I was too big, too strong and unafraid. His intimidation never worked.

    HE was that I was doing things on my own time and no longer went to the meetings. He had no control over me.

    One day it all came to a head. I had a argument with dear ol’ dad and I divulged my secret to a friend (someone I thought was my best friend) under the solemn promise he made me that he would not tell anyone – he told the elders and the shit hit the fan. they brough my father to my so called “Best friend’s” apartment and questioned my father. my father insisted that he had no recollection of what happened. made me look like a liar and I was branded so by all the elders. with no proof and only the dates I could recall my mother only cried but she never confirmed nor denied the events. I was devastated. every week I would be approached my elders like Hector Hernandez or Rogelio Sinche telling me to forgive my father and to forget (YEs I am revealing their names because now at the age of 40 I think that I will not close my mouth for anyone). There is one elder who I spoke with 15 years ago and made me cry on the phone – I asked him if the organization was aware of what happened – to which he answered yes… he then told me that their instruction were to do as they saw appropriate.
    this explains them telling me at the time that an announcement would be made at the kingdom hall that due to my father’s illness, that he would step down as an elder. and at the same time I was censored. It tore me apart.

    On that phone call, Elder Minor Osorio, apologized to me and told me that they had no idea what they were doing and he regrets how things happened.

    I was overwhelmed with grief and pain and felt a bit of closure. Someone had finally understood. I had bouts with depression suicide, and stayed at a psychiatrict unit.

    then the time came for me to decide what to do next. I moved away to Louisiana for 12 years. I did something I had not done before, I engaged my life as a wordly person and joined the world. I experienced life as I should have. I made so many friends. then the day came when my father was on his death bed. My mother, called me to let me know,and after yelling at her and accusing her of harboring a monster – I decided to fly up to new York and be there. on the day and hour he drew his last breaths I told everyone was in the room to leave and began to cry. It was an Act.

    They thought he was dead because I told him I no longer felt a pulse and my mom did not want me to perform cpr.

    I waited for them to leave and I leaned over his ear. His eyes where not open. I told him the following;

    If it’s true that you can still hear even to your last moments I want you to know. MY last name is changed and I will deny you succession. You are a miserable son of a bitch and a monster and I will be back to piss on your grave. I came back to witness your death and now I have closure.

    This is a bitter confession of what I did to a degenerate on his deathbed – and a F#@k you to an organization that destroyed my family, robbed me of dignity and destroyed my sanity. I am afraid for the rest of my family but rejoice that my youngest sister has opened her eyes and is living her life.

    these are the last days of the Watchtower… I will be there when it finally goes belly up.

    thanks for you all for reading this and if you don’t post it… I apologize in advance for the graphic and negative content..

    • October 5, 2015 at 9:24 pm
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      I am really touched by reading your experience. You are not alone in your suffering such unjust abominations. It is said that absolute power, corrupts absolutely. When people trust men as if they are God, that’s a lot of power over individuals. In the case of the WT, that’s a lot of corruption.
      I would just like to tell you, that I wish healing and peace to take root, and prosper in your heart and life. Like so many victims of the proud WT beast, you did nothing to deserve what happened to you, not only by your abuser, but by the despicable practice of callous “elders”, daring to pose as God’s shepherds.

  • October 1, 2015 at 12:18 pm
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    Well my mind is now at ease-Indeed the chickens have come home to roost. These7 old men will probablay do what the crooks did in the old cowboy movies, and that was to0 get to town and clean the safe out and flee. But the main player would always catch them in hot pursuit. Perhaps time has caught up with a bunch of greedy gold diggers. Sure they will flee with the money but their empire has fallen. Out of business shamed to face your opposers etc. They do what all cults do and that is get all they can on telling lies to weak minded people. I was also a weak minded man. I believed that crap for 32 years. Ten years ago I fled and never looked back. Sometimes I just thought it would never happen. I only have lost one daughter in this cult. She just don’t believe anything I tell her. There must be something that hits your brain that makes you close to all advice. A mental lapse. Or whatever. But I am so happy to see this happen. God does work in mysterious ways. Whoever though molestation would bring a giant down? But if you look at it, hasn’t sex always brought a man down?

  • October 4, 2015 at 11:59 am
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    Jeovists know their onions. If God leading their governing body you wishes for cataclysm remains such..if not well jesus and god will ask you what you have done continue making profit dear

  • October 4, 2015 at 11:21 pm
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    Having walked away in ’93, and been active in xJW forums on a regular basis from about ’96 to ’07, I have seen the fall of the Tower speculated on a bit. The whole UN library card thing comes to mind.

    The main issue is that the ‘rank and file’ are very often members for reasons that have little to do with doctrinal accuracy or organisation purity, at least not after the first few years.

    As a cult, the isolation that being a JW imposes on you means the level of membership inertia and the cost of withdrawal is far far higher than if you just stop going to the local Presbyterian/Roman Catholic church, or whatever.

    This sets up the rich and fertile ground for the cognitive dissonance that keeps people in for decades after, on some level, they know it if not ‘THE truth’.

    And all of this new stuff? It does not change the membership inertia or the cost of withdrawal. It just requires dialing up the cognitive dissonance a bit. This will help some get out as everyone has a level above which we suffer melt-down and cognitive dissonance doesn’t work any longer. I know; it’s why I left, just a general ‘not-being-able-to-do-this-shit-anymore’ rather than x doctrine or y organisational change.

    But as JWs by definition can cope with levels of cognitive dissonace that would make many peoples’ eyeball explode clean out of their head, no flood, sadly, just a continuing trickle.

    What will happen is what happens to ‘new’ religions. Ironically enough, they evolve or die out. I think that rather than dying out JWs will become more and more mainstream. The ‘cost of membership’, in terms of ways of making your life harder will reduce.

    Meeting attendance is already easier in terms of time commitment than when it was five hours a week. Field service is now reduced to standing around next to a literature stand. The main issue that the GB face is how to withdraw from the blood position without causing a crisis.

    Funnily enough, the way they can most easily go mainstream is by stopping shunning. But it was a trick that worked keeping dissent out for decades and the GB are too old and ignorant of the modern world to understand that trick doesn’t work anymore.

    By doing this they would effectively move many doctrines to a matter of conscience with no consequences for not following them, and be just like a ‘normal’ religion in that respect.

    • June 11, 2016 at 9:36 pm
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      One change that may be on the way, albeit a small one, is allowing beards. It’s often the nit pic, Pharisaic rules that annoy people into starting the awakening process. Beards are virtually everywhere now. Even most public high school kids are allowed full facial hair. The elderly and insulted GB mindset is completely out of touch, but circumstances will force them to change.

  • October 14, 2015 at 9:01 am
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    Every time I read about WTBS shenanigans it makes me want to write to congregation and disassociate myself!
    I haven’t been to a meeting for over 3 years. The elders know that I smoke cigarettes but haven’t come after me. My husband stopped going for a few months but my eldest son snitched to elders that his dad smokes too. The elders came to see my husband and ‘guilt tripped’ him into going back. My 2 older children are still very active ( pioneers and building committee volunteers etc) my younger 2 children stopped going when I did.
    This year I plan to celebrate Christmas by putting up a Christmas tree. I know if I disassociate myself my older children will blame me. If I just get on with my life and get disfellowshipped I feel that the society will look bad for punishing me for moving on with my life. A person should be able to leave the religion without losing their family.
    I hope that my jw family members wake up and leave the organisation. Maybe I should start telling them what the jws are REALLY all about but I don’t think they would listen. At the moment I have to tell myself that my being happier outside of the religion will show them that life doesn’t have to be lived as a jw to find real happiness.
    I would love to see the whole thing come tumbling down. My son has just been told that the services of him and his wife are no longer required as volunteers on builds. He said the organisation is ‘letting go’ of a large proportion of volunteers including those among special pioneer ranks. They are also recalling a lot of volunteers from abroad. He said the reasons given were so these volunteers could ‘get their lives back’ in their own congregations. Engage in field service etc they think it makes sense! But why now?? The society has used volunteers as free labour for donkeys years! Makes me wonder what’s REALLY going on!…

  • February 27, 2016 at 4:44 pm
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    My prediction is that the definition of “all the inhabited earth” will change, so that the shrinking footprint is explained.

    I think if you could predict the theological changes before they happen (I knew that the generation doctrine simply had to change – but not how) more active members would wake up.

    Until then we’ll have to content ourselves with the conversions we prevent.

    Good luck,

    Adrian

  • April 30, 2016 at 9:36 am
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    Very well written and informative article, well done

  • May 1, 2016 at 6:46 pm
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    I read the entire essay that you wrote and I must say that the 8,000,000 members that the JW’s and the WTBTS are claiming is a gross exaggeration on their part. The WTBTS don’t want to admit that their membership has been dwindling since the pedophile scandals that have been revolving since the 2002 Dateline NBC expose. It might been 8,000,000+ years before the pedophile scandals, but in the wake of the scandals, their membership numbers have dropped and they’re not admitting that because that would result in them admitting the worst of their problems as dwindling memberships for any religion is the overall main problem apart from the money issues. I see this every day in all the EX-JW Facebook group and even in Yahoo groups dedicated to EX-JW’s and helping them see that this religious organization isn’t all that they’re cracked up nor claim to be. This shows that their membership is dwindling and will continue to dwindle as more and more of their followers are beginning to see the real light of the borg and are leaving little by little. It’s not just the born-in’s whose parents force them into the religion and are forced to make the religion their life before they are old enough to think for themselves. It is also those who abandoned the church’s of their youth, such as myself, that have woken up and are leaving. I was a victim of theirs as I followed them for only two brief years in my life from the period of 1992-1994 when I was a young man in my early 20’s. I swallowed everything that they taught me hook, line and sinker. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I was inadvertently letting them emotionally manipulate me so they could sell me on anything and they knew, once under their spell, they knew I would believe everything that they taught me. Therefore, they knew that they could brainwash me into thinking that they were the only way to the true God and his son Jesus Christ. What woke me up was all the false accusations that were hurled at me and all the repeated relentless criticisms hurled at me by my last study conductor who never gave me a chance to work on one thing at a time. Therefore, I had so many burdens on my shoulders and my own mental health was getting severely deteriorated that I wasn’t able to function properly mentally and for a while to a certain extant, physically. All their repeated saying to me that the end was going to happen soon and that I had to act and stay in their fold in order to be spared from “The wrath of God” that would come and destroy all the non-JW’s and all the other evil people and all the world’s religious institutions would be destroyed alongside them all. I dropped out of the borg after two years in 1994 and ever since then, nothing has happened and I realized that I was foolish to jump on their bandwagon rather than give the church that I was a part of another shot and see if it would work out for me.

    Today, I am an activist to help many of those who want to break free from the borg and find a meaningful life outside of this terrible and destructive religion where many of their youths are forced to serve the organization just to please a group of old men who call themselves “God’s Channel” for all of his people on Earth, when in reality, they are simply old men who are only imperfect humans and have their own faults as much as all other humans, including practicing JW’s, who don’t realize that they are just doing what they can just to please that group of old imperfect men who actually make themselves a co-mediator between God and men, when in reality, every Christian in the world knows that there is only “one mediator” between God and man and that is Jesus Christ and nowhere in the scriptures say that there is another mediator of sorts.(This is not an imposition of religious beliefs. I am a Christian who is simply sharing what the scriptures actually say and no other man-made doctrine or otherwise. I apologize in advance for any offence that I make by stating this) I hope that one day, like me, many more will wake up to the hard reality about what this terrible and destructive religion is really all about and what it’s really like, and start leaving in droves. It wouldn’t surprise me if this rapid exodus starts happening tomorrow, or next week, next month or next year and will continue to dwindle in the years ahead. I am still in the healing process from all the borg’s man-made doctrines and unenforceable rules, but I hope to one day be totally healed and start living life the way I want to live it. Thanks for all the wonderful people who have helped me along in the years in the wake of me leaving the JW’s behind as I wouldn’t be where I am at now if it weren’t for them. Thanks again all of you, including the people who write for this particular blog site. Thanks again from the bottom of my heart.

  • May 3, 2016 at 12:47 pm
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    My heart really goes out to you and I can only hope that one day when it’s not too late you can realize what you really are doing because I don’t know where you’re getting your information from but you are 100% Incorrect and everything that you are stating for it is definitely not doing the lean or going down just the opposite it is going forward 100% And like in the days of Noah there will come the day when you will need to knock on the door and the door will be closed I really feel for you and it’s a Pity that you have turned whatever it is that made you turn away turn into anger and hate towards the JW people for they are God’s people and it is not a cult we all have free will and because of it we can choose what we want to follow and as for me and my house we will definitely serve Jehovah. no one believed in the days of Noah that the flood would come but it did it will happen again I’m so sorry I really really am sorry for you because you definitely will have to reckon because there is nothing worse than sinning against the spirit

  • July 15, 2016 at 1:58 pm
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    This is encouraging. I really want to be here when they crumble completely. I hope it happens soon.

  • August 14, 2016 at 9:13 am
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    Hahaha. Love it! I can’t tell you how happy I am to see the real truth being revealed! Even when I was a witness, I heard a few elders talking about getting stressed over how many changes and deductions there are. I’ve been out since March 2016. Even though it may never fully vanish, I can definitely see it headed down a long dirty broken path. It’s so sad that innocent beautiful individuals surrender their lives over to the hands of watchtower, and when the crap hits the fan, they’ll realize what watchtower is. There are bethelites who have served for many years just being thrown out into the cold with a little kiss and hug and a “good luck.”
    It was hard enough trying to auxiliary pioneer while working, but these people have nothing to start with except “the love of the brothers.”
    Can’t wait until Babylon the great falls and it’s 8 million plus followers see it for what it is. Naked and disgusting.

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