The May episode of JW Broadcasting features Stephen Lett asking JWs to cover a shortfall in funds
The May episode of JW Broadcasting features Stephen Lett asking JWs to cover a shortfall in funds

The May 2015 episode of JW Broadcasting was billed by its host, Governing Body member Stephen Lett, as being a “historic” one. It ended up being just that, but for none of the reasons given.

Lett opened the program by drawing attention to the fact that all seven Governing Body members have now hosted JW Broadcasting (tv.jw.org), and hailed the fact that approval has now been given to end the project’s trial period and roll it out on a permanent basis in multiple languages.

If this amounts to a “historic” development, then either Lett is shaky on what “historic” means, or anything new that happens anywhere to anyone can have the same superlative applied.

What WAS historic about the program was that it featured, for the first time, a Governing Body member admitting to the organization being in a financially precarious situation, with Lett revealing a shortfall between projected income and expenditure for the forthcoming fiscal period.

This website has long pointed to a number of omens that not all is well for Watchtower financially – chief among these being the slashing of branch offices and a whopping 39% reduction in monthly magazine printing. But this is the first time, at least to my knowledge, that the organization has come clean about being in financial difficulties – albeit with a notable lack of transparency about the actual figures involved.

Unsurprisingly, Lett used the opportunity to urge Witnesses to donate, and rather comically set about doing this by trying to distance the organization from others who “coerce” their followers to give money…

The above video is my own montage of Lett’s pleas for donations. To watch the full, 1-hour 36-minute unedited program, please click here.

From lack of transparency to blatant deception

As with the previous seven JW Broadcasting episodes, I will be making a full YouTube rebuttal to Lett’s performance in the next week or so. But I wanted to take this opportunity to point out the complete lack of transparency regarding funds in this episode, and highlight at least two areas in which Lett has been blatantly deceitful.

If you are going to divulge a shortfall in funds, particularly with the aim of leveraging more donations (or “valuable things”) from a pool of supporters who are already lagging in this regard, the least you can do is treat them like adults and give some hard numbers. Nowhere in Lett’s rather patronizing, condescending comments is a single figure cited regarding the projected amounts of income and expenditure, and the shortfall between the two. Everything is left to the imagination (or, more accurately, gullibility) of the viewer.

Then you have the flat-out lies regarding the new donation arrangement for kingdom hall construction, and the amount of money involved in the move to Warwick.

When Lett first mentioned feedback from Circuit Overseers regarding the new donation arrangement, the first thought that whizzed through my head was: “Thank goodness! The publishers have seen straight through the stealth-tithing scam and have been giving Circuit Overseers a piece of their mind.”

But according to Lett, rather than there being any dissatisfaction with the new arrangement, the cause of concern for Circuit Overseers is merely that there is a misconception among publishers that Watchtower is flush with money because it has “cancelled” the loans and mortgages of congregations who owe the organization for new kingdom halls.

Cue facepalm, and heavy sigh of despair…

As already reported by this website, a full unabridged reading of the letters to elders dated March 29 and May 12, 2014 reveals that Watchtower has not stopped congregations from sending in money under the new arrangement. Rather, it has insisted that at least the same amount of money be sent through each month for congregations who were already paying off debts, and that congregations without debts should start sending in money each month as though they were in debt!

Extract from the 3-page postscript to the March 29 letter to elders, NOT to be read out to ordinary publishers
Extract from the 3-page postscript to the March 29 letter to elders, NOT to be read out to ordinary publishers

 

And ALL congregations, whether previously indebted or not, have been ordered to send in any surplus of funds, leaving only $5,000 plus three months’ worth of operating costs in the local coffers. So rather than saving money for congregations, Watchtower is demanding more from them as a result of the recent changes.

Part of the 3-page postscript to the March 29 letter insisting that surplus congregations funds should be sent to Watchtower
Part of the 3-page postscript to the March 29 letter insisting that surplus congregations funds should be sent to Watchtower

 

Extract from the May 12 letter to elders, clarifying the amount of funds that can be held on congregation accounts without being sent to Watchtower
Extract from the May 12 letter to elders, clarifying the amount of funds that can be held on congregation accounts without being sent to Watchtower

 

And keep in mind that if Watchtower ever goes bust (an increasingly likely scenario) the kingdom halls will go straight down in flames with it under this new arrangement (being no longer financially independent), and none of the money invested in kingdom hall construction by local brothers will find its way back into their pockets.

In the twisted world of Watchtower, a Witness should pay for his or her local kingdom hall as though it is their responsibility, even though the kingdom hall is an asset ultimately belonging to Watchtower and Watchtower can (and will) get all the proceeds from selling it.

But you wouldn’t suspect any of this dreadful scam from Lett, who draws comparisons between the ‘generosity’ of Watchtower’s new stealth-tithing arrangement and the dropping of charges for literature in 1990 – a move which, by the way, arose only because Watchtower’s non-profit status was under threat.

This all represents a blatant deception on Lett’s part, relying entirely on the majority of viewers being blissfully ignorant of the letters to elders that were circulated last year, and the full scope of the new donation/tithing arrangement.

But if this weren’t enough, we then have what I think is the most bald-faced lie I have ever seen a Governing Body member utter into a camera…

The first thing to remember is that Watchtower has operated quite successfully for many years before the move to Warwick was proposed, so any attempt to fob the viewer off with some half-baked story that the proceeds of one unnamed “significant” Brooklyn property would offset only a few weeks of normal operating costs can be immediately dismissed.

Even if Watchtower were to sell one of its Brooklyn properties for only one dollar, that is a still a dollar they wouldn’t have had available to them in any of the years prior to the Warwick move being discussed – years when Watchtower had up to 116 branch offices in operation (in 2010) compared to only 90 today.

This leaves us with the breathtaking subterfuge of Lett’s suggestion that the sale of the Brooklyn property portfolio “is basically only financing the construction of World Headquarters in Warwick and the purchase of other properties that are needed to facilitate the move from Brooklyn in the future.”

Like many cults, Watchtower is less than open when it comes to divulging how much money it spends on various projects to those it holds responsible for picking up the tab. This means that information on what Watchtower is spending on the Warwick move is hard to come by at best, but there are two figures that give some indication of the amounts of cash involved.

Four separate neutral sources, namely The Brooklyn Paper, The Observer, The Real Deal and the New York Post all cite an estimated figure of $11.5 million for the building costs of the new Warwick headquarters. I am presently trying to verify the source of this estimate, but considering the complex is being built with mostly volunteer labor, such a low figure isn’t completely out of the question.

It has also been reported elsewhere that the Tuxedo complex, perhaps the most well-known facility for supporting the work at Warwick, cost Watchtower a mere $3.2 million.

Obviously there are a lot of other numbers we are missing for other properties and planning/development expenses (due entirely to Watchtower’s lack of transparency rather than any attempts to mislead or deceive on the part of anyone else), but even if we multiply the above two figures by 10 for the sake of argument, we are left with less than $150 million.

Contrast that with the 1 Billion Watchtower is making for the entire Brooklyn portfolio, with an eye-watering $375 million coming through for one transaction alone, and the depth of Lett’s deception should quickly become apparent.

The move from Brooklyn to Warwick IS an enormous money-spinner for the organization, commonly known as a property “flip,” and in no way can it be thought of as a like-for-like switch according to Lett’s blatant, bald-faced misrepresentation.

Nobody else to blame

If Watchtower is low on funds, which I am thrilled to hear confirmation of straight from the horse’s mouth (in more than one sense), it is NOT the fault of any misunderstanding on the part of ordinary Witnesses. If anything, most Witnesses woefully underestimate the breathtaking amount of money Watchtower has pocketed from selling off Brooklyn, thanks in no small measure to the Governing Body’s total, deliberate and ongoing financial information black-out.

There is only one direction in which the finger of blame should be pointed respecting the Governing Body’s monetary woes, and that is towards them. If the Governing Body is spending more money than they are receiving from the kindness and generosity of Witnesses, who are already hard-pressed as a result of the insane and immoral prohibition on higher education, then by no stretch of the imagination can they be thought of as either faithful or discreet.

Let’s just hope that, for many Witnesses watching this most recent parade of self-congratulation, exaggeration, lies and bluster, with Stephen Lett as the latest floundering, pompous ringmaster to hog the limelight in this grotesque JW Broadcasting circus sham, the penny has finally dropped.

 

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Further reading…

Related video…

548 thoughts on “Stephen Lett admits income/expenditure shortfall as he reminds Witnesses to donate “valuable things”

  • May 19, 2015 at 2:39 pm
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    The Governing Body really are bathing in their own glory….It would be really difficult for them now to……Admit they were wrong on so many things and to give up their glamorous lifestyles.The rank and file JW’S really do worship them and look forward to them sitting in their exalted positions in their so called Paradise.

  • May 19, 2015 at 3:03 pm
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    Here in Australia, a lot of bro’s & Sis’s don’t have superannuation & the government is increasing the retirement age for the pension so they have to keep working with nothing to fall back on. The GB members don’t need to worry about that because they’re set up for retirement while the money keeps pouring in.

  • May 19, 2015 at 4:13 pm
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    Cedars,

    Enjoyed your Lett rebuttal…pretty much nailed every facet of this cheap display of ‘money grabbing’ tv evangelists on air plea for more mullah.

    I think clean shaven is the right look!

    • May 19, 2015 at 7:41 pm
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      @Cedars .. BRILLIANT Broadcasting8 video Rebuttal to Stephen LETTS begging for money. Lloyd I noticed you had over 84 thousand view your first rebuttal of The First GB Broadcast over 7 months ago which was also done by Stephen LETTS. I hope more JWs who are having increasing doubts about the Organisation as Each time a member of the Governing Body OPEN THEIR STUPID MOUTHS it MUST make the Rank & File JW feel Uneasy at how more & more the Organisation is Looking like Any other NUTTY RELIGION that Comes out of the ‘GOOD OLD USA’????? Your Clip at the end of All the WEIRDO CULTS that BEG for MONEY Show me that their are an AMAZING NUMBER of GULLIBLE & STUPID People Live in USA to Believe these Begging Ministers of these HUNDREDS of CULTS . I MEAN How can anyone believe this shouting for ‘Give me a 1000 Dollars each to buy my Plane’!!! IS AMERICA FULL of CRAZY PEOPLE????

      • May 19, 2015 at 7:51 pm
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        @ Cedars(Lloyd) . I think your YOUTUBE channel is helping a LOT of JWs wake up which is good, But DARE I SAY this???.. Oh , Why Not…That I think this Website is for the MORE INTELLECTUAL Person who Comments here & has more IN DEPTH ANALYSIS of the Organisation… Hmmm … This point could prove controversial but What the Heck!!!

  • May 19, 2015 at 10:04 pm
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    When my congregation from 25 years ago saved and borrowed and worked so hard to build our kingdom hall, I remember in the back of my brain thinking, that means it belongs to us. To my surprise, a few months a later it was ‘dedicated’ to Jehovah. Little did I realise that from that day forward it would become the property of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society to do with it as they pleased. Now, it all makes sense. They are an organisation amassing incredible wealth from their poor hardworking and blind people. Wake up people before they rob you of everything you’ve got with their brain washing and lies. And I was probably one of their most fervent souls. That doesn’t count for anything if you are being fooled. I left 12 years ago but I still feel a responsibility to wake these ones up to get out too.

    • May 19, 2015 at 11:10 pm
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      @Meredith J. I really liked your comment when you said ‘ I was one of their most fervent souls & you want to WAKE OTHERS UP’ . I think most of us who comment here want to do the same !!
      What I found particularly DISTASTEFUL was the USE of CHILDREN in Putting Money in the Contribution boxes. So trying to INDOCTRINATE at an early age & then the young girl or teenager with the CREDIT CARD hitting the DONATE button on the JW Website!! This is Getting to be SO BLATANT & DISGUSTING when many JWs are struggling to pay their mortgage or rent because they DIDNT get a good Education & when you look at the LUXURIOUS BUILDINGs at WARWICK,PATTERSON & WALKILL it MAKES you SICK !!!!
      I downsized to live in a Flat ,Why can’t the GB make their LIFE SIMPLE like Jesus & Paul!!!

  • May 20, 2015 at 12:31 am
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    @ Cedars . Like you I found the Manipulation of Prayer to God Disgusting as if Jehovah woke this Biker& Drug taking Partygoer up so he could attend a Convention like in the last GB broadcast the Engineer who Prayed to Jehovah about finding a LEAK!!! Oh PLEASE GIVE ME STRENGTH!!! So Jehovah is ALLOWING JWs to Die in Disasters around the World & 1500 out of 4500 DIED of TORTURE & STARVATION in Nazi Germany who I am sure prayed for help & Jehovah DOES Nothing to Stop JW Children Dying from CANCERS & Maybe Life Saving Blood Transfusions,BUT he is HELPING An ENGINEER FIND a LEAK!!!!!
    THIS Is UTTER DRIVEL & INSANITY!!!

    • May 8, 2016 at 6:12 pm
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      I have a big problem with this too. My husband and I have our own business and thusly could afford to live in a gigantic house. Recently we lost a huge client and have been struggling to stay afloat. When she found out that we signed a new client she revealed that she had been praying that we could stay in our embarrassingly large house and he delivered. It offends me, the idea that jehovah would help my family stay in a huge house but doesn’t protect his servants from real calamity. Taking just one second to think about the absurdity of it is all it takes for it all to start unraveling.

  • May 20, 2015 at 2:36 am
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    I eagerly watched your rebuttal video Lloyd. It is ironic
    That a very popular televangelist from our town , was airing loads from Africa who were very receptive to their
    Message. Dear people in Africa do not think I am in any way saying anything about you in a negative thought, but
    Really just pointing out how these religionists promote propaganda. For all I know they could have been handing
    Out chicken wings and recorded all the interest. Napkins
    anyone???

  • May 20, 2015 at 2:41 am
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    also to Anonymous…

    Sounds like we come from the same ilk. I am just a couple years younger than you, but definitely the same
    Genre. I agree with you on most everything. Keep your
    Posts up.

  • May 20, 2015 at 2:58 am
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    A while back, somebody was commenting here that in poor areas of the world, that those people have access to computers, almost as much as people in areas where people have a lot more money. Lloyd said that the biggest growth was in poor areas where they don’t have access to computers like we do.

    If people are poor, they can’t with a click of the mouse, find out about all the lies from the Society. All it takes is 5 minutes on the computer to find out the real truth about the truth if you are connected to the internet.

    In that latest broadcast, that one brother was talking about their travels in Africa and at one point, he said that those people are so generous that they will donate money to the Society when they don’t even know how they will survive the next day. He said that is where their is so much growth.

    At the beginning of the talk, Lett was using what the apostle Paul was saying that the one with a lot wasn’t to have too much and the one who had little should not have too little and that is why the Society decided to tell the brothers and sisters that is why they “cancelled” the mortgage payments but then he went on to say that even people in poor areas contribute for their Kingdom Halls and for the upkeep of those Kingdom Halls. So, if you listen to his talk, if those people in those poor countries are contributing towards their halls, then why does he keep saying that the reason people in richer areas should contribute to help out those in poor areas is to pay for the Kingdom Halls in poor areas? It is to make the rank and file think that their contributions are going to those people in poor countries like Africa but as he said in his talk that even those poor people are contributing towards the building of their Kingdom Halls. So, are those people contributing towards their halls or not? We all know it doesn’t cost 5 million dollars to build a Kingdom Hall in Africa like it does in New York City.

    I believe the bulk of the money is for supporting all the Bethelites and all their real estate holdings and not to the building of Kingdom Halls in Africa or South America.

    When they show all the areal views of the branch offices, regional translating buildings, the new Bethels, Warwick, Brooklyn, Walkil, Fishkil, Chelmsford and on and on, it staggers my mind how much pressure the Society puts on all the Witnesses to support all of that in the guise that it’s all to preach to the ends of the earth so that God can bring Armageddon and those Witnesses will have a clean conscience that they did all they could so that those people’s deaths won’t be on their conscience. That is the guilt trip the Society is laying on all the faithful Witnesses who believe every word in the Watchtower and coming out of the Governing Body’s mouths.

    At least with all those tv evangelists that Lloyd showed at the end of his video, who are always begging for money even one thousand dollars, the only thing those people are asked to buy are their new planes and tv time and fancy life styles of those people in those tv shows. The Witnesses are asked to support tens of thousands of Bethelites and their homes and the building of more and more buildings to house those people and farms to raise their food and people to clean their rooms and print their literature, fix their automobiles, buy all their insurances, their clothes, their planes, their lawyers, their car repairs, their dentists, their doctors, their trucks, the construction equipment all over the world, their new tv studios and luxury apartment complexes and on and on. It is mind blowing all the pressure that is put on the rank and file to support all those people and their buildings and new construction work and all in the backs of poor people who were not allowed to better themselves with a decent education.

    All Lett has to do is put out the call for more money and if each of those 8 million JW’s gave just $10 more in the next year than they did the year before, that is $80 million more dollars in their coffers and to most people $10 more in the next year is less than a meal at McDonalds. The Society knows full well, that with 8 million loyal Witnesses who “believe” all their bulls***t, that they will be swimming in money once again.

    If you are new to this site and you are studying with the Jehovah’s Witnesses, whatever you do, don’t get baptized without doing some research. Once you get baptized, you have signed your life away to the devil.

  • May 20, 2015 at 3:10 am
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    Oh yes, one more thought….The use of children is so
    Manipulative. My grandson recently made a commercial
    For a product and it took lots of retakes to get it right
    So how does that work with the jw.org. Thing.
    Did Lett get his begging correct on the first take????
    I doubt it from what I hear. Plus… The big plus you cannot take retakes in public talks. Is it just me????
    this is why I. Am EXHAUSTED…

  • May 20, 2015 at 3:27 am
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    With my limited education, … I still managed with my
    Husband to enjoy a hard earned successful business
    In the supply/service trade. However, from the time I
    Was young, opportunities were there for me that we’re denied to me because of the end being just on the horizon. Do I feel anger???? Yes. Do I want to give
    my money to Lett???? Hecks no because I gave in spades.
    And I mean NO. I will give to the charities I choose to.

  • May 20, 2015 at 5:36 am
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    As a naive youngster, I was brainwashed by “JW.BORG”‘s fairy tales. As I grew older, I stupidly continued to believe or half-believe the lies. This, of course, made me lackadaisical in preparing for my own future, which made things more difficult down the line.
    That is why I do not miss my former associates and “friends” in the WT “Borg”. I’m 100% glad to be OUT. It opened up so many opportunities. I never pine for the “old days”. It reminds me of a line from a song, I believe the title is Midnight Blue: “I forgave you, Couldn’t save you, Drove you from my mind…”

    • May 20, 2015 at 7:45 am
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      @Anonymous . You make a LOT of Valid points in your last comment ! If every JW Thought like you & Analysed like you there would be No-one Left in the Organisation!! The Trouble is many Either Don’t Think & Leave their Brain at the Kingdom Hall Doors or JWs ARE SCARED Big Time of LOSING FAMILY & FRIENDS which I suspect is the case!
      That is Why the GB ARE EVIL when they Recommend SHUNNING FAMILY!!

  • May 20, 2015 at 8:42 am
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    So God’s anointed channel of truth is saying that the sale of the New York properties is just covering the construction of the new bethel. Can you believe that? How such liars can call themselves Christians? As long as ignorance exist these charlatans will continue to exploit people in the name of fantasies.

  • May 20, 2015 at 9:43 am
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    Pickled Brain – I didn’t know you were hiding here! You are so vehemently against all things JW – why do you keep up the pretense? Not being mean, just asking. My immediate family and I “faded away” about 3 years ago – at the huge price of semi-shunning from pretty much all our “friends” and most of our family. But it was worth it, and it gives everyone something to think about, since we’ve been “in the truth” since our childhood.

  • May 20, 2015 at 10:39 am
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    @Saurus, it’s hard to break away when your spouse wants to stay. When you reveal an apostate label, many a JW spouse will cut you off emotionally. Their loyalty is to WT first. So unless the “apostate” is prepared for divorce, keeping it secret may be the best choice.

    • May 20, 2015 at 10:55 am
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      THANK YOU SIMON KESTREL!! You understand the Dilemma Completely.I am trying to SAVE MY MARRIAGE & Family by Subtle Means . If I was Single I would Confront the Elders& secretly tape it & put it on the Internet!!

  • May 20, 2015 at 11:25 am
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    “God works in Mysterious ways” some say, and it’s a useful
    statement to deflect unanswerable questions. However there
    is a glaring inconsistency in the way God is dealing with his
    “Present day people” compared with those of the past

    In the forty year wilderness trek, they had miraculous manna
    for breakfast and dined on quail in the evening, shoes never wore
    out, and no shortage of water, a couple of taps on a rock with
    Moses staff and water came gushing out. All evidence that God
    is with us, said Moses.

    Moving on to the Christian Era, more miraculous evidence,
    identifying those whom God was backing. Five loaves and
    two fishes morphed into enough food to feed 5,000 people.
    ( I wonder why the disciples were reduced to eating ears of corn
    when they were hungry. )? God even supplied money to pay
    Caesars tax, all Peter had to do was catch a fish and there in the
    fish’s mouth was the exact amount. etc, etc.

    But now in this “Time of the. End” when God’s plan for mankind
    is supposed to be reaching its grand climax. There’s a notable
    absence of any definite evidence to identify his people, you just
    have to accept unsubstantiated verbal claims.

    The WTS, has turned the system on its head. Instead of God
    providing for the people, God now needs the help of the people
    just to fulfil his plans for next year, So why is God so shy now?
    after manifesting himself so overtly in the past?

    “God moves in mysterious ways” comes in handy here.

  • May 20, 2015 at 12:21 pm
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    @Pickled Brain, Don’t lose hope of your wife seeing through
    the “Untruth”. My wife kept going for nearly a year after I left,
    eventually she reached the same conclusions as me.

    One of the elders gave her the “Pernicious” advice, to leave me
    saying I would shipwreck her faith, but she reminded him that
    she had taken marriage vows. We’re still together, this year will
    be our 61st, anniversary

    I enjoy your reports from the Watchtower Study and the inside
    info, but hope things work out so you can make your exit.

  • May 20, 2015 at 12:50 pm
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    Correction. To a previous post, money in fish’s mouth
    was for temple tax not Caesars .

    • May 20, 2015 at 2:12 pm
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      @Ted . Thank you so much for your KIND & ENCOURAGING Comments. You understand what I am going through seeing someone you Love still being Manipulated by Mind Control of the GB!!
      I am biding my time because she is an intelligent woman BUT it is hard if you have been bought up in the Truth for 50 years & to Admit it is ALL
      A SHAM & A BIG CON so i am by her side being a Friend,Supportive but also Being Subtle like ‘isn’t it wonderful the Last Days are over 100 years long ,Armageddon must be really close otherwise it wouldn’t be called the Last Days?’ & other comments like ‘ wasn’t it amazing when Paul said at Acts 17v24 that GOD doesn’t Dwell in Handmade Temples so obviously the early Christians didn’t spend much money on their buildings as they met in houses!!

  • May 20, 2015 at 2:09 pm
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    Fantastic comments guys please keep it up. You know as an x J W it means so much to me that so many of you out there feel the same….Until I found this site I found it very hard to express how I felt, bottling it all up inside, feeling angry and isolated….No more!

  • May 20, 2015 at 2:20 pm
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    Hope your reading this Governing Body…
    You will be held accountable when it all comes crashing down around you.Who will be your saviour and defender? Not this Jehovah God! He dosen’t know you!

    • May 20, 2015 at 3:03 pm
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      @M Saurus. Enjoyed your comment. & you were fortunate the family came with you at the same time which is helpful & supportive. I wish you well for the future& No it wasn’t mean to ask . That’s fine by me & what I feel refreshing about this website is WE CAN ASK any Questions,UNLIKE in the Organisation where if you ask certain Questions you will be viewed suspiciously & maybe shunned as Bad Association!!

  • May 21, 2015 at 4:06 am
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    If I am typical of how people feel when they watch those jwbroadcasting shows, I would have felt overwhelmed when they keep showing all the Bethels and all the branches and all the building work and all the future projects etc. and all the Bethelites that need to be supported.

    For a typical person in a community that goes to a church, the thing those people have to worry about is paying the minister of that church his salary and the upkeep of the church. They might have fund raisings and car washes and bingo games etc. to raise money but they have fun doing it and their pancakes breakfasts etc. are fun for those people to support and they get something for their money but when it comes to supporting the world wide work and the Society keeps showing all those buildings and all those people that need to be supported by contributions, it seems overwhelming to me and I am wondering if others still in the Organization feel the same way when the Society keeps showing all that stuff that needs supporting and they keep begging for more and more money.

    I think what the intent of the Society is when they keep showing all those projects and buildings and Bethelites that live off of the donations is to put into the rank and file’s minds that the Society has a huge outlay of money to fork out every day (you can tell by the videos and pictures of those places and Bethelites it has to be millions of dollars every day) and so that is why the cry for more money but if I was already having a hard time meeting my bills every month, it would encourage me to look for excuses to find out that it’s not the “truth” after all so that I could walk away from the stress of supporting all that stuff and Bethelites and keep that money in my pocket to make my life easier.

    I would think the latest jwbroadcasting show has to be very stressful for those already strapped for money. I know I thought every month when I was still going to meetings, how much I’d love to keep that $80 a month and I secretly wished for it to be found out to be a fraud and to come crashing down so I could keep that money. I was thinking that for a long time.

    I hated going to meetings and assemblies and I hated the agony of thinking of Armageddon and I hated the thought that if I didn’t go out in service more that Jehovah would kill me at Armageddon for not doing more.

    Every time I came home from a meeting or service, I would be so depressed and it would take me days to get over the depression and then the very next meeting, the depression would start all over again. Every time they’d cancel a meeting for weather, I’d be so happy, not sad. Just the thought of going to meetings and service and assemblies made me depressed.

    • May 21, 2015 at 1:29 pm
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      @anonymous thank you for that comment. I agree wholeheartedly with every point you made.
      I remember as a child looking around at my school thinking how unfair it was that every person would die very soon except for maybe…maybe me, if I was good enough, if I had done enough field service etc.
      What a horrible way to be brought up!

      I was very good at sport and was targeted by school sport teachers & local sport scouts, but while playing school sport during school hours was ok with my parents, there was no way I would be able to join a sporting club. That is now a huge regret now I have faded & I am in my late 30’s.

      I remember hating the monotonous meetings, field service, pre-study, the whatever you are doing now is not good enough, the constant “encouragement” you need to reach out and do more.

      I wish there was a way of finding out the exact figures the Org. Have paid out in out of court settlements & law suits over the last few years, it would really be an eye opener for so many who are still in.

      • May 21, 2015 at 2:10 pm
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        @Wanderer, I feel bad that you didn’t find out when you were young the truth about the truth but you still have a lot of good years ahead of you. I am so happy for you that you didn’t have to be almost 70 like I am before having woken up. Be glad about that anyway. Over the years, I have known scores of people who have lived their whole lives waiting for Armageddon to come and are now dead. What a waste of human lives this Organization is!!

        • May 22, 2015 at 3:26 am
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          @anonymous we can both be happy to be out of the Org, let’s celebrate that!

          My Wife stopped a few moths after I did, and then we had our children. I am so glad that my kids will have every opportunity I can possibly give them to be whatever they want, and pursue any interest they want, be it sport, academic, art, dance etc. not a pigeon hole of pioneer/menial job.

          I just wanted to say that although I really don’t post much, I read everything here and I really enjoy your posts. You just make so much sense to me.

          • May 23, 2015 at 2:56 pm
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            Thank you so much for saying that!!! You made my day!! I am so glad for you that your wife came out too and your kids don’t have to grow up in such a horrible religion.

  • May 21, 2015 at 9:21 am
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    Pickled- I understand. It’s hard. And our “family” are several states away so it’s not as hard for us. They will speak to us but it’s very awkward. Just remember to do what’s best for you and your sanity. They always used to speak of a “double life” – it’s hard to maintain and the stress is not good for you healthwise. Best to you!

  • May 21, 2015 at 9:42 am
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    Hello to all.
    Nothing watchtower does surprises me. There appears to be no rock bottom for this sinister cult. All of us who were jws know what kind of pressure will be put on children in order to extort money. This talk of getting children baptized as young as nine is very troubling. Do not be surprised if watchtower starts baptizing babies. The ramifications of this are hideous. Reading “my book of bible stories” to the very young will lead to terror for the children. We know that jw parents will use thinly veiled threats to get the children in line. I believe that watchtower is devolving. Present trends indicate that many members who leave, do so because of the information available on the net. I have no figures to prove my theory of devolution.In time watchtower will be composed of the very young and the old. Jws aged between twenty five and forty five will become a very small percentage. This group are the most likely to go online and find the real truth about watchtower. Gone are the day`s of the small discreet box at the back of the hall for contributions. I would say that most contributors use electronic banking in line with watchtower`s leap into the age of technology. Jw children have it really bad as it is. Now they have to render service to Mammon as well as their genocidal jehovah. Watchtower I hate you for what you do to children.

  • May 22, 2015 at 2:37 am
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    There’s another misleading statement by Stephen Lett that Witnesses are overlooking when he was talking about when in 1990 when they stopped charging for the literature at the back literature counter. Even though the brothers handling the literature didn’t ask for money, it was understood that we were to put the same amount of money for that literature in the contribution box. I remember talks telling us that if we were to buy that literature in a store, how much would it cost and that is what we were told to put in the contribution box for that literature.

    That literature cost the brothers and sisters the same amount to them as before the new arrangement but when they placed the literature with the householders, it was presented as “free” but at the end of the sales pitch, the Witness was supposed to say to the householder “if you would care to contribute towards the cost of the printing of the literature, I’d be happy to take it towards the printing of more literature.”

    I think I might have done that one or two times and could never bring myself to do it again because if the literature is presented as “free”, then why was I supposed to then ask for a donation after the householder had said they’d take it? It never made any sense to me and I couldn’t do it but I was made to feel like I was going against God if I didn’t do that by anybody else that was with me at the door, especially by the pioneers but doing that made me feel low down and dirty.

    I stopped going in service and meetings about a year ago and as I remember hardly anybody asked for a donation any more. They just give the literature away, willy-nilly and of course if the householder is taking the literature and throwing it in the trash as soon as the Witness walks away, what care to they have but on the other hand, the Witness who just gives it away like that, can count it on their monthly time slip and it looks good for them. That is misleading when it comes to just how important all those translating offices are needed and all those printing plants are needed when probably 99% of that literature is thrown in the trash as soon as the Witness walks away from the door.

    The literature was never “free” though. It got paid for by the Witness by putting the money for that literature in the contribution box at the back of the hall. The only difference was that before they stopped charging for the literature at the back of the hall, the Society got paid two times for that literature, first when the Witness paid for it at the back of the hall and then when we asked for the money for that literature from the householder, we had to put that money that they gave us for the literature in the contribution box as well.

    So they got paid twice for that literature and then in 1990 when the new arrangement went into effect, the Witnesses were supposed to ask for a donation but I think very few did, but they were supposed to ask for it anyway and they were expected to put that money in the contribution box as well but they still paid for the literature out of their own pockets.

    Lett was very deceitful to the camera. Since 1990 was 25 years ago, most new Witnesses today wouldn’t know what was really going on in 1990, especially with the Jimmy Swaggart thing.

  • May 22, 2015 at 3:02 am
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    “I think I might have done that one or two times and could never bring myself to do it again because if the literature is presented as “free”, then why was I supposed to then ask for a donation after the householder had said they’d take it?”

    Anonymous, I left before all of this, but I can’t imagine asking for a donation after giving someone the impression it was free. Most householders would feel obliged to give one, and probably a lot more than what we used to “place” them for before all this happened. It’s so calculated!

  • May 22, 2015 at 10:52 am
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    @Pickled brain

    You’re doing the right thing. Discretion is the better part of valor.

    • May 22, 2015 at 1:33 pm
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      @Neale Krouni. Sorry Neale just noticed your comment.Thank you for your encouragement. Much Appreciated!

  • May 22, 2015 at 6:05 pm
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    We all know how Rutherford had his two Cadillac cars during the depression and his mansion in California called Beth Sarim but this is what he wrote in the 1934 Yearbook where the Watchtower reprinted the Declaration of Facts to Hitler in 1933 on page 137:

    “Instead of collecting money from the people and using the same to erect great buildings and to support men in luxury, we print the gospel message of God’s Kingdom and carry it to the homes of the people that they may at the least inconvenience to themselves, gain a knowledge of God’s purposes concerning them.”

    When our ancestors got sucked into the Watchtower Organization, they were led to believe that their contributions were not going to go for fancy buildings and to support a wealthy clergy class. That is how our ancestors were led to believe the Watchtower Organization was all about. It was only to spread the gospel message to the people’s homes and were told that religion is a snare and a racket.

    Most people in the Organization today are 3rd or even 4th generation Witnesses going back to the early 1900’s. Our ancestors thought that they were getting themselves into a religion that really cared about the people and weren’t out to suck money out of them. They thought that this religion was different than all the other religions that passed the plate or tithed them.

    If you look around almost any Kingdom Hall, you will see families of families who make up the majority of the publishers. Those families go back at least 60 or 70 years. Those people passed on their religion to their kids who passed it along to their kids and along the way, it morphed into a religion that is no different than any other religion with it’s big buildings and clergy living in luxury and asking for more and more money.

    If we were brought into this religion 30 or 40 or 50 or 60 years ago, this is not the same religion that we joined. When we joined this religion, we believed that God was directing it but God is not directing the Organization.

    With knowledge comes wisdom. If our ancestors knew anything about the Bible, they couldn’t have been so easily fooled but that is how the Watchtower attracts new followers. They attract people who don’t know anything about the Bible and so are not wise about the Bible and easily manipulated by so-called scholars (the Witnesses).

    Witnesses are like the frog that gets dropped into a bowl of cool water. If the water warms up real gradually, the frog won’t realize he’s being cooked. That is how the Society has gotten so many into believing it’s scholarly nonsense. If it happened all of a sudden, people would recognize it’s nonsense and get out but that’s not how we got sucked into the Watchtower cult. It started with our ancestors who joined what they thought was a humble religion and it’s taken over 100 years but it’s not a humble religion anymore.

    It started out different than the other religions in not passing the plate and making people believe that the Society was not like other religions in saying that religion is a snare and a racket, but unfortunately, the Watchtower Society is a snare and a racket after all and the rank and file are the frogs being cooked to death by it.

    • June 9, 2015 at 1:11 am
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      wow you are so right you have expressed what i have had a struggle to vocalize my parents are dead now and i still feel a bit of disloyalty to them not jw.org and on the horns of dilemma with my own children it is so very very damaging this whole fiasco of grabbing money is just plain greedy

    • July 25, 2015 at 8:28 pm
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      anonymous, you are so correct about most congregations being comprised of several families of 3rd to 4th generations witnesses, just like my congregation. And inter-married as well. So with that comes a legion of robots, with the occasional black sheep. And SO TRUE about this religion not being the same as when a person joined 30, 40, 50 years ago. I hear this being said in puzzled, hushed conversations with believing JWs who have been around for quite some time. They are really wondering what is going wrong. I could gladly give them a clue, but will wait for the right time.

  • May 22, 2015 at 7:39 pm
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    When we were younger and saving for a deposit for our first house (small modest home in a very working class area) we were told by our group study conductor not to be materialistic and that buying a house was a waste of time because we were so close to “the end”.
    Turns out we bought just before a property boom and paid it off quick! So glad I didn’t listen to a labourers financial advice ;-)

    How can JW’s have that attitude but then watch this blatant money grabbing televangelist, agree with him and then give him more money?
    How does a remote translating office cost a million dollars? Is that keeping your eye simple?
    My extended family are all in and very strong, but they are intelligent people, how do these people not see through the deceit?

    • May 23, 2015 at 7:29 am
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      Obviously not so intelligent. ;) Don’t be fooled.
      P.S.: I learned a long time ago, If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, quacks like a duck…

      • May 28, 2015 at 5:50 am
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        Neal Krouni,

        Welcome back, sir!

        One’s intellectual capacity has no bearing on whether one falls under a cult’s influence or not.

        As a case in point, look at the folks from Universities who are radicalised into extreme forms of Islam.

        True, if one has not had access to education on critical thinking, then one may be more susceptible to indoctrination, but one’s intellectual capacity really has no bearing on whether one becomes indoctrinated or not.

        Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • May 23, 2015 at 4:59 am
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    There is a new Youtuber called Spike r and his latest video is about Stephen Lett’s speech asking for more money and he has a very interesting take on it.

    • May 23, 2015 at 7:12 am
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      Very interesting clip. Could the gb indeed be literally “rolling around” in cash like Scrooge McDuck? I think a more plausible theory (call it a Conspiracy Theory if you like) is that a portion of that money is being funneled to some other, possibly secret, sister or parent organization. Much like “protection money”, it may explain why wt is still afloat in spite of the child abuse scandal, and is openly permitted to operate using obviously cult-ish methodologies and techniques!

      • May 23, 2015 at 7:17 am
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        And if you don’t believe the Government goes after cults, just think back to Waco!!!

  • May 23, 2015 at 1:50 pm
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    Hey Cedars or whatever your name is today. I finally figured out why people hate you. I wouldn’t be surprised if you were a child molester yourself. Are you an undercover JW??? Keep contemplating suicide you toffee-nosed closet case!!!

    • May 23, 2015 at 2:00 pm
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      Ladies and gentleman… a Cedars-hater. One of the more eloquent ones… ;)

      • May 23, 2015 at 4:09 pm
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        With some of the comments and all the f words that so many JW’s use when they comment on “apostate” web sites, this guy really is a more eloquent Cedars-hater. I almost think this guy went to college or something, he is so eloquent.

        • May 24, 2015 at 10:03 am
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          @ Anonymous. Do you think Our Dear LOVABLE OTTO went to not just college but maybe Elders School or Even Gilead to Learn such Kindness in wishing suicide on someone…. CHARMING!!!!

        • May 28, 2015 at 5:54 am
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          anonymous,

          One doesn’t have to go to university to write simple sentences like this individual does!

          An eight year old could have written it!

          I notice that Otto has not responded to any of our comments!

          Let’s hope he goes away and learns more about this cult, and how to converse with people in a civilised manner!!

          All the best to you, dear Lady!

          Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • May 24, 2015 at 1:28 am
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    @Neal Krouni

    I also like to think about what lays behind things, what drives the front bit we see – of organisations commercial or political. I’ve never thought there could be a controlling hidden entity, pulling the strings of the GB. Yet they are acting with a higher level of competence than they as individuals display. For example as in Steven Lett’s bizarre display – he’s clearly not a capable strategic thinker, and we know what Tony Morris spends his time thinking about when he passes through airports. He’s not thinking about what he can learn from the businesses around him – he’s getting excited by women in tight pants. And can’t stop talking about it.

    These people, the GB, don’t seem to be skilled enough to be so effective manipulators, so that we were all ensnared, for example.

    Surely they must be getting serious professional “worldly” advice on how to do this. Does anyone have any inside info about such relationships – meetings with advisers etc.?

    Or does it just come with the territory – that once you have a cult the persons ceded power just know what to do – like its a human encoded natural capability. That once someone allows you power you know how to keep it.

    SwimmingWild

  • May 24, 2015 at 4:01 pm
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    @ Otto Atlantis, I don’t know if you’re a J W apologist, or a perverted troll or both! But get back from under the rock you crawled from…You see the truth will come out about this so called Christian Organisation, where will you be then?

  • May 24, 2015 at 6:08 pm
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    500 COMMENTS on Stephen LETTS begging for money from Children ??? OBSCENE!!!!

  • May 25, 2015 at 1:34 pm
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    Hmm, I wonder what’s next, probably telling the Faithfull J dubs that Satan is behind the Orgs’ money troubles and that this is signalling the ‘ Time of the End ‘ and for them all to rally round the G.B.

    • May 25, 2015 at 2:28 pm
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      @Stephen LETTS . I think I should be appointed FINANCIAL ADVISER to the GB .., my advice to make up the shortfall in funds for Kingdom Hall builds,RTOs ,etc
      1)Manufacture SOPHIA & CALEB Soft Toys & ask ALL Under 12 year JWs to get their parents to buy them at $24.99 for the pair
      2)Get rid of some of the printing presses & Get in Sophia & CALEB Producing Machines.!!
      3) have a SPECIAL CAMPAIGN 3 times a year to Give These toys to the public & invite Contributions instead of Memorial,Convention & other Campaigns!!
      I wonder if I would get to be the 8th member of the Governing Body as I Had a VISION LAST NIGHT of SOPHIA& CALEB under the Influence of ‘THE HOLY Johnnie Walker SPIRIT ‘. …
      I am sure I Can do BETTER GESTURES than Stephen LETTS!! I did get a ‘GOOD ‘in the Theocratic Ministry School !!
      There is ONE PARTICULAR GESTURE I am GOOD AT …., it INVOLVES…., TWO FINGERS???? It comes Naturally, Especially when 7 Rich American Men come Begging for Donations!!!

  • May 28, 2015 at 5:43 am
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    Folks,

    It’s very simple. All Mr Lett has to do is open up the full accounts of all the different organisations that the WTBTS own, and then we will be able to see clearly just how much money they have, and how much any alleged shortfall is!

    We’re waiting, Mr Lett!

    Oh, but he won’t do that, will he?

    How on earth does this cult get away with having no public ally accessible accounts? Come on governments of the world, take this cult to task!

    Meanwhile, we can all publicise the opacity of the financial status of the WTBTS to our representatives in government, and any body that oversees charities.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • May 29, 2015 at 12:35 pm
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    If someone handed Stephen Lett an invoice, an account for him to pay whatever he could afford. With no details about what he is expected to pay for. Would he pay it?
    Who pays an invoice without knowing what it is for?

    If you know a person has just sold property for millions of dollars. They have not used the millions and say we have a shortfall. How rich is that! Some transparency would not go astray. Come on now, no one pays a bill without checking the details and knowing what it is for.

    Is it to give to Africa, where some have only one meal a day. Is it for retirement homes for the elderly. Is it for compensation for child abuse. Settled out of court with gag orders. What is it for?

  • June 9, 2015 at 1:24 am
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    i have some thoughts on all the comments and the topic of the money grabbing may 15 broadcast what interests me is that we are all angry about this blatent abuse ot trusting people there was no spiritual content to the speech and i dont know about you non exs but the congregations i visit are dying from spiritual starvation all are depressed some suicidal and to top it off more money is demanded to perpetuate the agony we all suffer money is emotive because what the gb fail to recognize we have to go to work for it and we are tired and there is no reward just guilt to support their comforts so ther pr campaign was hogwash to me and i am dissappointed and bereft and hope they start a lottery soon with the prize being Everlasting life sorry that is the cynic coming out bye for now

  • July 26, 2015 at 1:38 pm
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    I find it ridiculous that they tell you not to get an education, don’t get a career, only work the barest minimum hours in your menial job, don’t be materialistic. After all Armageddon is just around the corner.
    Now give us all of your money, we have long term financial plans and new worldwide headquarters to build that will take years to be built.

  • August 22, 2015 at 10:56 pm
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    Just a thought: Why would GB cancel all Kingdom Hall loans and also not charge for publications? If they are going to be fined for all the child molestation cases, perhaps they don’t want this income showing up on their financials. If they can still get the same money from donations, they won’t be out anything, but it will be different when authorities look at their financials. Plus it makes the congregations think the GB are so wonderful to cancel their loans they’ll want to repay them even more. We used to ask for a dime for both mags back in the ’70s, but now I see they have to give them away or nobody would be placing any.

  • August 28, 2015 at 8:46 am
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    I’m no witness and they come to my house once in a while but man you all should just keep it to yourself, you all entitled to say and publish whatever you want but you know saying negative stuff about other people comes and goes. Do you think Donald Trump cares what I post about him? I’m just a nobody and witnesses don’t care what I post or what you all post. Point being, you’re not opening or closing anybodies eyes with your comments. My uncle is a JW and he does not care what you all write, if his religion is the truth or not is his problem. I don’t care what you write and I’m not a JW so let’s stop belittling people with your comments. Thank fellas.

  • September 8, 2015 at 6:02 am
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    Take note of Stephen Lett’s body language! Notice when he shakes his head and when he nods his head. Very revealing. The loans weren’t “cancelled” anyway as he claims – I’ve seen a copy online of the 4 pages sent to each congregation. Apparently the 1st page was read to the congregation but the information on the other 3 pages tells a very different story. This religion is not the honest one I thought it was – as the child abuse enquiry finally convinced me. 54 years a witness. Now I am unhinged. I had picked up on a few lies myself in recent years but had no idea how habitual and serious the lies really are. Jesus did not need to lie. He is pure.

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