Candace Conti (pictured in her interview with ABC) has spoken out for the first time about the appeal court decision
Candace Conti (pictured in her interview with ABC) has spoken out for the first time about the appeal court decision

As current and former Jehovah’s Witnesses digest the news that Watchtower’s appeal against the Candace Conti verdict has faltered, albeit with the punitive element of the judgment reversed, Candace has reacted for the first time by telling me: “We are not done yet.”

News spread on Monday that the State appeals court in San Francisco had upheld the $2.8 million compensatory damages in the original June 2012 verdict, but overturned the $8.6 million punitive award against Watchtower.

The court decided that, though Watchtower had neglected its responsibility to supervise known pedophile Jonathan Kendrick in field ministry, a “church-sponsored activity,” the organization had NO duty to warn parents in the congregation that a pedophile was in their midst or report him to authorities.

An insightful report by investigative reporter Trey Bundy has suggested that the court reached its decision because the precedent set by the Conti verdict might be too burdensome to enforce.

“The burden would be considerable because the precedent could require a church to intervene whenever it has reason to believe that a congregation member is capable of doing harm, and the scope of that duty could not be limited with any precision,” the judges wrote.

Candace’s attorney Rick Simons responded by pointedly telling Bundy: “They think in public policy terms that there’s too much risk in broadening the church’s responsibility and liability so that it burdens what churches do. We think there’s too much child abuse in these institutions.”

Simons has also gone on record with the Contra Costa Times / Bay City News Service saying: “This is really a public policy issue, and of course we disagree as to what is the best public policy. Ms. Conti is of the view that public policy should favor requiring churches to do all they can to prevent further abuse by identified child molesters from happening, rather than just requiring that they pay money to victims after the abuse occurs.”

Now Candace has herself spoken out, indicating that she is prepared to take this matter all the way to the Supreme Court if she must in order to see children protected and justice fully served.

Referring to the ruling on Monday, Candace told me: “This is just another step. It will not change the amount of money but it might help change the laws. And you know me, I’m all about the laws. We have the chance to make positive changes in the Supreme Court for how children are protected. We may have another year and a half to go.”

When I pressed her on whether she is definitely taking her case to the Supreme Court, Candace replied: “It’s questionable now but we are trying to make the best case, and we might only take it to the Supreme Court if Watchtower takes it there. Other than that we are waiting. The ball is still unfortunately in their court.”

During our exchange I couldn’t help but wonder whether Rick Simons shared Candace’s optimism. After all, it is one thing for Candace to shrug off the financial aspect in such a convoluted legal struggle in favor of pursuing justice, but lawyers are known to be a little more cautious and pragmatic.

“Oh Rick, is the energizer bunny. He is just ready for whatever comes, and is willing to take it as far as I am willing to go!” – Candace assured me.

Whether the case ends up in the Supreme Court remains to be seen. And as Candace indicated, it will depend largely on whether Watchtower is content to lick its wounds and consolidate its losses, or fight to the death under the delusion that Jehovah will carry them to victory against Satan’s hoards.

Before our conversation ended, Candace assured me that she would keep me posted on future developments once the next step in her long journey becomes clear.

Whatever happens next, it is encouraging to see that Candace’s appetite to see justice served is unwavering, and is matched by her lawyer. Let’s hope that political concerns over burdensome “adverse social consequences” yield to basic common sense, and it is finally recognized that, irrespective of local reporting laws, parents deserve to know if a pedophile is in their church and has access to their children.

 

new-cedars-signature2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Further reading…

81 thoughts on ““We are not done yet!” – Candace reacts to appeal court decision

  • April 16, 2015 at 3:52 am
    Permalink

    I am so happy that this verdict hasn’t dampened Candace’s spirit! She is one hell of a woman and shows courage that is beyond the pale. Thanks for this post because it has lifted my spirit too.

  • April 16, 2015 at 4:06 am
    Permalink

    I tend to think the Watchtower will “fight to the death under the delusion that Jehovah will carry them to victory against Satan’s hoards.”!

    “Any weapon . . . formed against you will have no success.”—ISAIAH 54:17. (w07 12/15 p. 21)

    Such verses fuel delusion and push JWs deep in their Cognitive dissonance and fail to reconcile the reality and what their call the truth!

  • April 16, 2015 at 5:35 am
    Permalink

    Folks,

    Candace Conti, and her mother, are heroes indeed. The WTBTS will perhaps continue to appeal this case.

    Whatever happens, the fearless and compassionate actions of Candace have already led to so much good for others.

    We shall watch this case with interest, as we all try, in our own ways, to highlight the disgusting “two witness rule” and the damage this causes to innocent children.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • April 16, 2015 at 6:05 am
    Permalink

    Candace is a hero, and has no doubt already saved many children due to her persistence.
    I don’t understand how the court didn’t comprehend the fact that this religious organization is not like most in that it requires members to cut off anyone who isn’t a JW in good standing so they are completely dependent on JW’s for all of their support, and then the congregations are kept small so that only leaves members a very small pool to choose from. Then they are blasted every week with the information that Armageddon is coming soon and run to the Watchtower for safety. If the talk isn’t on “run to the Watchtower Armegedon is coming soon”, then the talk is on “how great the only true Christian Congregation is” Or a combination of both.

    Other Christian Churches rarely talk about themselves, they talk about how great Jesus is, and if they do talk about themselves it’s about how we are all sinners.
    The pastor at the church I attend now even preached a couple of months ago how you can’t trust someone just because they say they are a Christian or go to our church. Some people are there for the wrong motives. All volunteers are background checked, and there are strict rules, like children’s workers are not allowed to have a child over 2 in their lap. Only women are allowed to take children to the restroom and then there has to be 2 of them.

    The witnesses claimed in the past to be the true shephards taking care of their flock (JW Members), still claim in recent talks that they do not have pedophiles and that they are totally clean.

    The mentality of every JW I’ve ever know is if someone is a witness that means they can be trusted 100%. My daughter asked her grandmother, if she trusted her new cleaning lady. the snooty reply was, “oh, she’s a SISTER!” Case closed, she’s even from another congregation and had never met her.

    This stiff-necked child crushing organization needs to have policies in place that protect children. They need to shout from the rooftops that just because someone is a witness does not mean they can be trusted. They won’t do it unless it costs them lots of money. The court is the only one that can make them pay. The court failed. Can someone sue the court?

  • April 16, 2015 at 6:53 am
    Permalink

    One almost wonders if some of these lawmakers have pedophile leanings. Come ON, too burdensome? How would requiring that congregations issue a general warning be too burdensome? A general warning could be issued (without naming names) that children might be at risk and for parents to use appropriate caution.

    The Society has proven time and again, that they are willing to endanger innocent children, instead of initiating common-sense steps to protect them, but it is a sad day when lawmakers refuse to recognize that simple steps do not necessarily have to be “burdensome.”

    Putting up roadblocks instead of protecting children from predators could be said to be a crime in itself.

    • April 18, 2015 at 1:12 am
      Permalink

      Nada que! La tal C Conti iba por el dinero de la WT. Ella no esta conforme porque le restaron la suma de dolares; esa es la realidad. Sinceramente creo que poco le importan los niños de las congregaciones. ¡Si quere dinero que trabaje!. Muchas instituciones religiosas encubren la pederastia en sus congregaciones por sus nexos con funcionarios corruptos y por tanto no se les castiga. Ejemplo grande, la ICAR.

      Una pregunta final ¿Si el veredicto hibiese sido lo contario hubieran dudado del honorable jurado y de los dirigentes del tibunal?…

      • April 18, 2015 at 3:25 am
        Permalink

        @Tontonton, What makes you think that all Ms. Conti and her lawyers care about is the money? What makes you think that she doesn’t care about the children?

        What this woman did first was to go to the congregation where she was abused and ask them if they could warn parents of molesters in their congregation and they were told that no, the Society has orders for elders that if a molester is in their congregation, that it has to be kept quiet. So, then she went to the congregation where Kendrick had molested his step granddaughter and she asked them too if they couldn’t warn parents of known molesters and she was given the same answer. So, then she wrote to the Society and they refused to answer her back so that is when she decided to take it to the courts. She was only asking for $1,444.00 in compensatory damages and it was the courts that validated her claim for the abuse of all the children with $28 million dollars and the reason for that is to bring it to the Society’s attention. Anything less would have not mattered to the Society. Before the verdict, the Society could have cared less about Ms. Conti in that they paid no attention to her letter but after the verdict, they at least sat up and took notice of Ms. Conti.

        Ms. Conti is responsible for not taking big pay outs like all the other victims have done who have tried to sue the Society.

        She decided to not take the “bribes” to keep quiet. You have no reason to make the statement that you did that it’s only about the money for her and that she doesn’t care about the children who are being and have been molested in the congregations.

      • April 18, 2015 at 11:45 am
        Permalink

        Tontonton,it´s always the same with you, the JW´s, as soon as U face something that cuestions your system of beliefs, the first reaction is to put the blame on the ICAR.
        Putting the blame in someone else is like a bleach bath for your “Mother Organzation”, and if the catholics sucks all the faults of your beloved WT,way better!
        Who cares about justice and love and care! Let´s blame catholics for global warming, air poisoning and whatever comes in mind, as soon as the WT keeps the cleanest image they sell in their tabloids Watchtower and Awake, BOTH a monument to phariseeism.
        Si no te cabe, no repartas!

        • April 28, 2015 at 7:55 pm
          Permalink

          The fact that she made a deal with the guy that molested her not to go after him but after the WT money is questionable on her part. I’m on neither side but the problem I see in these forums is a childish battle between haters and lovers to the WT going to extremes and completely one-sided in their arguments seeing things as black or white. In real life, things are more complicated than that but in these forums everyone seems to be thinking with their emotions and not their brains.

          • April 29, 2015 at 12:45 am
            Permalink

            Hi Justifier. And your comment is not black and white about “these forums.. a childish battle between haters and lovers… extremes… completely one-sided…”? Your comment does not shed any light on anything.

          • April 29, 2015 at 2:50 am
            Permalink

            Justifier, where did you get the idea that Ms. Conti made a deal with Kendrick? We’d all like to know something about this case that nobody else has heard of before except for you.

  • April 16, 2015 at 7:21 am
    Permalink

    Thank you! You’re wonderful for all that you’re doing for the children to be really protected, as the Convention of New-York (1991) says: the “supreme interest of the child” that has sadly been forgotten one more time… It’s so encouraging for us who suffered very bad things in our childhood because of the Watchtower, to see that there is in the world so brave “never done” people making it changes step by step, for the best! Take care of you… THANK YOU Candace and John and all of the people who help you….

  • April 16, 2015 at 7:24 am
    Permalink

    Such admiration for Candace through all this!

    If a honest religion cannot protect the children, then what is it for? Schools and medical facilities are required this fundamental requirement, even for volunteers. It is not too “burdensome” for them (schools, facilities). Even many neighborhoods put up posters if a previously convicted sex offender moves in.

    Now, will the California Supreme Court, accept a petition by Candace? The California Supreme Court accepts only 4%-5% cases.

  • April 16, 2015 at 7:51 am
    Permalink

    No matter what you decide to do Candace you are an amazing young woman and I am behind you 100%.

  • April 16, 2015 at 8:13 am
    Permalink

    Trey Bundy highlights an important issue to consider–it isn’t just the JW kids that are at risk when the congregations keep to this ridiculous policy of protecting the privacy of known pedophiles, it is the children in the community where these pedophiles are proselytizing. It is chilling to think that one’s child could unknowingly open the door to a sex offender, but the fact is that existing WT policy has left space for exactly this sort of situation to happen.

    To me, it is unconscionable that WT allows known sex offenders and pedophiles to engage in the public ministry. They could easily protect the community by restricting these criminals to letter writing or telephone witnessing, but don’t. This shows the supreme disregard and contempt this organization has for anyone not in their membership and in good standing.

    This shows how important it is to support the fight of Candace and other victims of WT abuse, and I hope that justice will in the end be served. Keep fighting the good fight, there are many who support your work Candace–also you Cedars, for bringing this news to the world. Thank you for your activism!

  • April 16, 2015 at 8:25 am
    Permalink

    If the elders were required to warn the congregation when there was a confessed or convicted pedophile attending the Kingdom Hall, that right there could go a long way in protecting children. How is that a burden to enforce? What about the burden that a child bears for a lifetime after they have been abused?

    As well, simply requiring all publishers to undergo a Child Abuse Registry check before allowing them to go door-to-door should hardly be regarded as a burden. Most churches require their volunteers to go through background checks just to work in a charity shop or food bank… how much more should this be required of Jehovah’s Witnesses who are required to go door-to-door offering home Bible studies to members of the community?

  • April 16, 2015 at 9:57 am
    Permalink

    We all know that the Watchtower is negligent when it comes to protecting children within the organization and I believe that if Candace takes her case to the Supreme Court that she will win. If her lawyers feel that she can win the case, then I hope she takes it all the way to the Supreme court.

    The reason that the Watchtower Society is negligent when it comes to protecting the kids is because the Society decides what gets published in the magazines and books and they never warn in any of those publications that an abuser will most likely be either a family member or a close friend of the family or a babysitter and we all know that the only people that Jehovah’s Witnesses are allowed to associate with are other Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Watchtower never warns anybody that an abuser could be another Witness. The Watchtower wants the whole world to believe that Witnesses are the most trusted and “clean” people in the whole world and will do anything to maintain that “lie”.

    90% of all child molestations occur within the family or close family friends but the Society only warns parents and children about stranger danger, not family or friends danger. This lack of warning has to be deliberate from the Society’s side.

    It all comes down to the two witness rule. Inside the Organization, we all know that if a child comes forward with a molestation accusation, that if they don’t have another witness to the molestation, that the congregation will not stand behind them if they turn the abuser in to authorities.

    They will be on their own against the abuser and most likely will be shunned for “bringing reproach on Jehovah’s name”. They are intimidated into keeping it quiet.

    Then if the abuser or their family should tell anybody about the abuse, they will be called before a committee for slander and they will be told to be quiet about their accusations or they themselves will be disfellowshipped (kept quiet) and not allowed to warn anybody else about the abuser. This makes an impossible situation for the victim and their family.

    This makes it a pedophile paradise for abusers. The only thing abusers have to do is to make sure that when they abuse a child, that they have to do it with no witnesses.

    In the case of Kendrick, he insinuated himself into Candace’s family because her mother and father were unable to care for her properly and he took advantage of that, which is what abusers do. They see a situation like that and they know that the child is looking for attention and that is called “grooming”. The better a pedophile is at “grooming” a child, the less likely it is that the child will even realize what is happening and the less likely it is that they will turn the guy in, once they realize what has happened to them. Pedophiles know what they are doing and a lot of times, they can get away with abusing many children over many years before they finally get caught. It is very difficult to turn in an abuser, once that person has made the child “fall in love” with them.

    If he had never molested another child, a person could believe that maybe Candace was lying but the fact is, that when he remarried when he moved to another congregation, he molested his new step granddaughter. That time, he had to serve prison time for it. He admitted his crime both to her and his first stepdaughter. So, he is a pedophile and so that is the 2nd witness for Candace. The first one was his first stepdaughter and her 2nd witness was the step granddaughter.

    How did this guy divorce and remarry with no repercussions? How did that happen? In my neck of the woods, if he did something to his stepdaughter where his wife was able to divorce him and he was able to remarry, that tells me that what he did could have been considered adultery, since he remarried without being considered adultery. So, is that all it takes to get a scriptural divorce nowadays? “Touching” somebody’s breast? It seems that was all it took in his case. That would be enough for a lot of wives and mothers to get a divorce, but is that the case now? Those elders were told to keep him away from kids but that was all that happened to him and even then, they let him insinuate himself into Candace’s family, knowing that he had a problem with pedophilia. So, he touches his step daughter and his wife divorces him for it and then the elders let him off the hook with a warning from the Society and he goes to another congregation and remarries with a letter from his old congregation that in effect was a recommendation for him to hang out with kids.

    Somebody has to pay for this.

    If you look at his case in California, he used drugs on at least one of those girls. It was more than than just “touching”.

    I hope that Candace writes a book some day. There is so much to this story that needs to be said.

  • April 16, 2015 at 10:02 am
    Permalink

    We live in a strange world. Governments regarding religion should be fair to both parties, the institution and people.
    It is unbelievable that in today’s world these organisations are allowed to break families and ruin people lives when someone decide that cannot support certain teachings and ideas.
    They are getting allowances and protection while thousands of people must deal with abuse and physiological harm.
    If freedom is a human right should be for everybody not just for modern religion organizations.

    • April 18, 2015 at 10:20 am
      Permalink

      @David

      JWs are one of the organizations bankrolled by the powerful banking elite early on for the purpose of subverting Christianity, and there are many ways to skin a cat. A heavy focus on Old Testament study, stealth consolidation of property by the corporation, rules that are anti-family, absolute control by a few, and world-destruction-rapture doctrines (fake prophecy invented by Jews in 15th century) are some of the hallmarks of these religions in America. That the JWs haven’t become raving Zionist lunatics like many other subversive sects is a complete mystery, and, I must reluctantly admit, to their credit.

      I always pray Candice and her lawyers continue the fight against the child-endangerment policies of the Watchtower. At present, I know of some JW congregations that have given public notice about the presence of registered pedophiles in their membership, but I can’t honestly say that this organization has done all that it can to protect children. It is not their agenda.

      I apologize if this comment appears more than once. I was having trouble posting; it was not appearing at all until I changed my hardware and re-submitted it.

  • April 16, 2015 at 10:16 am
    Permalink

    This is a very difficult issue for the legal system to deal with.
    In the U,K, we have, “Sarah’s Law” whereby a parent or
    guardian can have access to info, regarding anyone having
    contact with children. As to whether such persons have
    convictions for offences against minors.

    This concession is tempered with the proviso that, “There must
    be sufficient access or connection with the child, to justify
    disclosure.”

    We’re all aware of the Police’s fears about open disclosure.
    The possibility of vigilante action and of the paedo, moving
    to another area and off their Radar. I can’t envision a law,
    allowing announcements from pulpit or platform, identifying
    a paedophile in the midst of the congregation.

    The Org, were guilty of lax supervision of a known child molester,
    this needs sorting out. First of all the bird brained 2 witness rule
    has to be scrapped, Police should be called “First” in the event
    of any accusation, ( not the branch office ), anyone proven guilty
    should be banned from field service and conducting Bible studies.
    ( A JW, in our area of Yorkshire, molested a 14 year old girl he was
    studying with.) I could hardly believe it, he was the last person
    I would have suspected.

    No doubt Elders will be getting more instructions on this subject.
    Not with the aim of caring for the flock. But of protecting WTs,
    reputation and material assets. And probably with the object
    of shifting responsibility onto the slaves (Elders) and away from
    the Masters.

    • April 16, 2015 at 11:17 am
      Permalink

      I’d like to engage Ted on something here: you say call the police. Ok, what justice system is perfect? You do realize that people have been falsely accused, falsely put to death, people have gotten away with rape, murder, etc…using secular courts as well. Secondly, elders do not handle the criminal aspect anyway. Their job is to determine if something happened in order to take congregational action, NOT civil action. Whether or not the police is called depends on the accuser. You’re not barred from calling the cops yourself. The “two-witness” rule (if you understand it) cannot be thrown out, as it’s used in ANY accusation — not just issues of abuse. Imagine a scenario in which you’re accused of stealing money from a business account your share with a fellow witness. You didn’t do it, however, with no two-witness rule, the accusation is taken as factual with no need of further evidence (second-witness), and you’re kicked out. This is what you’re asking for if you scrap the rule. The rule prevents the “he said, she said” nonsense. Additionally, courts use the rule, in a sense, all the time. They ask for evidence (second witness) to corroborate accusations. Evidence people…you always need evidence. This standard cannot be brushed aside. That’s the spirit of the two-witness rule.

      • April 16, 2015 at 11:20 am
        Permalink

        Jack…

        “Evidence people…you always need evidence. This standard cannot be brushed aside. That’s the spirit of the two-witness rule.”

        Are you seriously expecting us to believe that police are incapable of gathering evidence beyond questioning people? Are you further expecting us to believe that part-time janitors (I mean elders) are better equipped to investigate an allegation of child abuse than the police are?

        • April 16, 2015 at 11:38 am
          Permalink

          Cedars, that’s not what I said. I never even mentioned the competences of the police. The elders deal with the congregation, the cops deal with criminals. That’s the point of my post. Also, folks are acting as if justice is assured if you “let the police handle it”. Do I NEED to mention the swaths of mishandlings, false imprisonments, false lethal executions done by secular courts to make my point?

          • April 16, 2015 at 11:41 am
            Permalink

            “The elders deal with the congregation, the cops deal with criminals. ”

            By defending Watchtower’s two witness rule you are taking a stand precisely against that sentiment. The two witness rule robs authorities of the chance to deal with criminals.

            But thanks for showing your true colors so quickly.

      • April 16, 2015 at 11:44 am
        Permalink

        Further, Jack,
        Are you aware of what mandated reporters must do? While not applicable in all states, required reporters must report to the police even a suspected act of child abuse. This includes sexual abuse but also encompasses domestic abuse as well.

      • April 16, 2015 at 4:19 pm
        Permalink

        Jack, not sure if you’re an active JW in a position or have held a position of responsibility in the congregation or not (not that it matters), but as someone who recently (11/14) left the organization after years of serving on the elder body (up until 11/14) I can tell you the two witness policy is flawed. The last elder body I served with found it difficult to agree on all aspects of it. It makes you wonder how many other BOE are facing the same crisis. The points you make are from a WT policy perspective; a perspective that has a history of being very unreliable and written in double talk at the cost of its members. The two witness policy does have its place in certain congregation matters, but not all. It especially does not have its place when it comes to incidents involving sexual abuse. What rapist has an audience (the second witness) to their acts? Since the release of the Shepherd the Flock of God book; the number of BOE letters sent to append, revise or correct sections related to pornia, sexting, deviant behavior or acts of greed to be inserted in the book made the book appear to be flawed and quickly become difficult to refer to when a serious/judicial congregation matter arose. The WTBTS recognized this, with the assistance of Candace and other lawsuits, when it came to sexual abuse of a minor and so quickly sent out the BOE letter with the direction to contact the legal department directly, NOT the authorities. By doing this, the WTBTS has taken it upon themselves to become the law. You are right “Whether or not the police is called depends on the accuser. You’re not barred from calling the cops yourself.” This is classic JW deflection speech. It’s yet to be seen a situation turn out well or in favor of a JW who goes “around” the congregation arrangement, let alone straight to the authorities with a matter. The congregation and the organization have a history to quickly vilify the individual(s) who do such actions. The two witness policy, much like the blood policy, is part of the undue influence the organization has on its members. A person knows what the common sense step to take is, but instead is stuck questioning their loyalty to Jah (WTBTS) and/or risk being ostracized for not “believing or following” the direction of the slave.

        You mentioned “Evidence people…you always need evidence. This standard cannot be brushed aside. That’s the spirit of the two-witness rule.” The scriptural account (De. 22:23-27) of how cases involving rape were to be handled mentions that if no one was around (a second witness) to rescue the girl from the man assaulting her than the act of screaming served to absolve her from being judicially dealt with (no evidence needed and no second witness needed), and the man is to die. In the spirit of this scripture, couldn’t it be said that the victims of sexual abuse are “screaming out” when they report the assault even though no second witness is around?

        “We are not done yet” – Candace Conti

  • April 16, 2015 at 10:40 am
    Permalink

    Candace, you are an inspiration to us all….! Keep fighting the good fight and clear your name! May you keep strong and focused.Much love to you and your family.

    • April 17, 2015 at 5:43 am
      Permalink

      HER NAME WAS ALREADY CLEAR.

  • April 16, 2015 at 11:01 am
    Permalink

    Adverse social consequences??? You mean like what Disfellowshipping does?

    There should be no safe haven for child rapists.

  • April 16, 2015 at 11:15 am
    Permalink

    **Warning!**

    There is a child molester still in good standing that has HIV at North congregation in Toledo, OH. USA

    • April 17, 2015 at 6:33 am
      Permalink

      @ Mama Joy:

      **Warning!**

      “There is a child molester still in good standing that has HIV at North congregation in Toledo, OH. USA”

      Was or is he an Elder (again) currently in Monroe Michigan and are his initials “LM” and his wife named Letha? Because if so, You need to take it to the FBI in detail. It’s no secret and that is his home congregation. That and Manhattan congregation.
      https://tips.fbi.gov

  • April 16, 2015 at 11:30 am
    Permalink

    Bottom line is that our system of law MUST be changed regarding the protection of children. The idea that criminals are protected with privacy because they, in private, confessed a crime against a child to officials of a non profit organization should be criminal in itself. Freedom of religion is not free and should not include the freedom to withhold information regarding a crime against children to authorities or members of that organization.

    #1. If officials of a religious institution are informed of any potential crime committed against a minor They MUST report it to local authorities within 24 hours.

    #2. Local, State and Federal laws trump any and all laws mandated by a religious organization.

    #3. Anyone that is a member of a religious organization who has committed a crime against a minor MUST be identified to its membership.

    #4. Violations of these laws MUST deliver stiff penalties including loss of non profit status, prosecution, incarceration and financial loss.

    If these fundamental laws of reason are not applied, I guarantee that children will continue to be abused and covered up.

    The saddest part of all this? That we are even having this conversation. That our law makers are allowing this to happen. That we have allowed religion to run free. We should not have the right to believe, teach and practice anything in the name of religious freedom! Now take my previous sentence and really understand what that means because if we do not get our heads around what religious freedom should mean, anything is protected under our current laws.

    “With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.”
    Steven Weinberg

  • April 16, 2015 at 11:32 am
    Permalink

    Thanks for this update.Way to go Candace.
    If something evil like Watchtower can be exposed by the Truth it fully deserves to be. Information is the enemy
    of charlatans like the JW Governing Body they hate
    the light of disclosure.

    • April 17, 2015 at 9:15 am
      Permalink

      Yaaaaa!!!! Sparlock’s my hero!!!!

  • April 16, 2015 at 12:18 pm
    Permalink

    What were seeing here is the failures that we see from time to time in the Judicial system. The court ruled as it did because they are not the Supreme Court and don’t want to accept the responsibility of making that decision and setting the precedent for future cases. It is usually reserved for the Supreme Court to make those kind of decisions. Cases like this drag on for years but either way they eventually get settled. No matter the outcome people are going to weigh in on this case and of course most favor a decision based on the truth and common sense. It’s all part of a process. Long after it’s over this girl will be known as the one who forced the Watchtower to deal with these thousands of reports that lay in their own file system. It’s just a matter of time where they will have to make a change because religion aside it’s the RIGHT AND HONORABLE THING TO DO ESPECIALLY ON BEHALF OF THESE VICTIMS.

  • April 16, 2015 at 12:43 pm
    Permalink

    Remember “We’re Carlie Hebdo” after the Paris attacks? Well, how about “We’re Candace Conti!” I mean look, I personally haven’t suffered any abuse from this cult, but I’ve seen plenty of lives ruined. Let’s stand with her, shoulder to shoulder. There are other cases pending, so her battle will have opened the door for those victims as well.

    Ms. Conti, I hope you read these posts, because here is your…I mean OUR anthem:
    http://youtu.be/gVRbHwIXG_k

  • April 16, 2015 at 2:38 pm
    Permalink

    @Jack, Surely you realise, producing witnesses to sexual
    crime is virtually impossible. These are crimes carried out
    in lonely dark places, or behind locked doors. In such cases
    the 2 witness rule is totally inappropriate.

    If a relative of yours claimed they were violated by a JW
    and there were no witnesses. Would you go to the Elders
    for justice or to the police ?

    The first option would result in an impasse. If you took the
    second route and the police gave you the same line as. the
    Elders,- No witnesses, can’t take any further action.
    Would you and your family victim be content with that ?

    Of course there is a third option often suggested by Elders.
    “Leave it in Jehovahs hands”- which simply means we’re
    baffled.

    Jack, I don’t see the point of your mentioning that people have
    been unjustly convicted. Does this mean we should abandon
    the Law and rely ( as Cedars pointed out ) on janitors?

    I noticed that when the GB, challenges the law, they don’t put
    window cleaners and janitors up, but educated @Jack, Surely you realise, producing witnesses to sexual
    crime is virtually impossible. These are crimes carried out
    in lonely dark places, or behind locked doors. In such cases
    the 2 witness rule is totally inappropriate.

    If a relative of yours claimed they were violated by a JW
    and there were no witnesses. Would you go to the Elders
    for justice or to the police ?

    The first option would result in an impasse. If you took the
    second route and the police gave you the same line as. the
    Elders,- No witnesses, can’t take any further action.
    Would you and your family victim be content with that ?

    Of course there is a third option often suggested by Elders.
    “Leave it in Jehovahs hands”- which simply means we’re
    baffled.

    Jack, I don’t see the point of your mentioning that people have
    been unjustly convicted. Does this mean we should abandon
    the Law and rely ( as Cedars pointed out ) on janitors?

    I noticed that when the GB, challenges the law, they don’t put
    window cleaners and janitors up, but educated lawyers.

  • April 16, 2015 at 2:43 pm
    Permalink

    Comment duplicated, sorry.

  • April 16, 2015 at 4:10 pm
    Permalink

    I just wish Zalkin & Simons would collaborate. What a powerhouse of opponents to the WT that would make.

    “This is really a public policy issue”.

    It very much is. I thought that there was a case last year with 2 boys that were found out in field service by a pioneer who went on to molest them. Correct me if I’m wrong but that’s where a big lightbulb moment happened for me when I read somewhere that it was asked… “who is knocking at your door”.

    Has WT changed their policy on allowing a child rapist or any rapist go out door knocking?

    I was out on field service one day & because others had pre-arranged partners, I was put with this brother that I hardly knew, although we were in a group the whole time. The Elder that took the group told me to be with him when he went to the door as he was not to be left alone to do the door. He didn’t tell me anymore than that as you can imagine my mind went in to overdrive as what this man had done to be in this position. I look back now & wonder why the Elder left that responsibility to me & why it was okay for me to be with him.

    I can see how easy it would be for a female of any age to be put in a vulnerable situation because you are being obedient to those taking the lead. I didn’t question the Elder about it but now I wish I had of. I think I had every right to know the answer since I was the one chaperoning him.

  • April 16, 2015 at 4:31 pm
    Permalink

    Jack, Do elders take an active, positive step in exposing
    the dreadful crime of Paedophillia. Or do they sit on the
    fence, keeping quiet, hoping the victim will take no action?

  • April 16, 2015 at 4:57 pm
    Permalink

    what make my sick to through up to watchtower is because these people claiming they are Jesus spiritual brothers and the faithful slave.
    if Jesus was the leader of the christian congregation and was a child molestation case what he would do? He will use the worldly institutions to claim innocent ? or he will use this legal laws to win over thousands of crimes child molestations? when Jesus was front of pilot he said my kingdom is not from this world. or apostle Paul he wrote to the Corinthians do not go to worldly courts . if these people was real Christians they will admitted right the way and would apologize for what happen to thousand of innocent children in their congregations. these people are demonic.

  • April 16, 2015 at 6:14 pm
    Permalink

    I hope I don’t get shot for saying this but I can kind of understand the courts decision. Just imagine the litigation that would arise for all organizations if they were required to tell their members if someone had a criminal history.
    For example say I joined a tennise club where it was known by the president and secretary that one of its members had a conviction for fraud. Unbeknown to me I then do business with him and he rips me off. Hey it would of been nice if the tennise club had informed me but they were by no means obliged to. So what we are saying here is that it’s the tennise clubs fault that this guy ripped me off. Perhaps there could be some responsibility but it would never stand up in court.

    • April 17, 2015 at 5:08 am
      Permalink

      @ Thinking of leaving, Of course it doesn’t make sense for any congregation elder to take it upon themselves to warn the congregation of a sex offender without solid proof. The elders should stay out of it.

      All Witnesses should be told that if somebody in the congregation was abused that they should take it to the police and let the police do their investigation and let the police decide if there was a crime or not. If there was a crime, then it’s put in the papers and the person is tried and then everyone knows what happened. That is how everyone knows that a certain person is a danger to children and will be smart enough not to let their child be alone with that person.

      The janitors for living elders take that job upon themselves to determine if there was a crime and if there wasn’t another witness to the crime, the elders can’t do anything to the abuser and either it’s dropped and “put in Jehovah’s hand” or else the victim and the family either drop it or they take it to the police. If the elders haven’t determined that there was a crime committed, the victim and the family will be held to account from the organization as if it was them that some how “brought reproach on Jehovah’s good name” and they will be the ones shunned and not the abuser.

      That is wrong. That is why abusers get away with their crimes in the Organization. The abusers know what a huge risk the victim and their family are taking when they decide to go to the police. The abuser knows that the family and the victim stand to lose all their friends and family over their reporting the abuse to the authorities if they supposedly “turn in” a man in the Organization who is still in “good standing” and not been disfellowshipped. That is what abusers in the Organization are counting on. It all boils down to the two witness rule and shunning if there isn’t solid proof that the elders can determine with their limited knowledge of such crimes.

      That is what is wrong with this whole thing. The Organization only cares about it’s reputation. They don’t care about the kids at all.

      They know that they don’t have to tell the victims that they can’t report the abuse to the police.

      Everyone in the Organization knows the repercussions and 99% of the time, they won’t report the abuse to the authorities because of those repercussions. That is what the Society is counting on.

      The Society has all it’s bases covered when it comes to child abuse. They are expert cult leaders in every respect and they know it. They know how to work the system to their benefit and they have the lawyers to make sure the can get away with it legally.

    • April 17, 2015 at 6:07 am
      Permalink

      The tennis club never claimed you could trust them to protect you.

    • April 17, 2015 at 8:33 am
      Permalink

      In most cases, the tennis club wouldn’t know about the fraud either. But suppose you let your children take lessons at a tennis club; and the club’s management has learned about an abuse case; you really don’t expect anything from them?

  • April 16, 2015 at 8:14 pm
    Permalink

    @thinking of leaving
    if I would elaborate on your reasoning than this could be even stretch further.A side of any state,county,school,work place…any street or neighborhood has it’s own people with some criminal history ,so if somebody what to move in than the responsible local authority-municipality should inform him about all these “folks” with some criminal history.Thieves,robbers,other crooks…etc.
    because there is a change that I may be harm or wrong in some way after my move.It may seem like a crazy idea but why not.Why not to go to such extend in order to prevent or protect.I thing it should be in public interest.There problem is that crimes are not committed only by previous offenders but also by “new” first time offenders.So that all of us as potential criminals.Than what ?
    Society or states in general tend to be forgiving and doesn’t want to discriminate such individuals by publicly exposing them preventive measure are insufficient in this respect.
    However child molestation is extremely sensitive matter and some countries have the publicly accessible registry of such offenders.But looks like even this is not enough to prevent such crimes.As the saying goes: “There is no safety lock which can stop the thieve.”
    Having said that there should be NO excuse for leadership of JW to have weak ,insufficient or flaw policies in this matter !
    Interest of child must be in forefront of any organization or institution ,moreover if they claim to be Christian !

    • April 16, 2015 at 11:28 pm
      Permalink

      The society 40 years ago used to name people & Give the reason WHY they were Reproved or DISFELLOWSHIPPED but they got SCARED of Legal Consequences so now it is Announced that such a person is no longer one of JW or Reproved & doesn’t specify the Reason .
      SO NOW THE GB choose NOT to FOLLOW SCRIPTURE When it SUITS THEM!!!
      The Apostle Paul at 1 Corinthians ch.5 NAMED the MAN in Front of The WHOLE CONGREGATION & NAMED the SIN of SEXUAL IMMORALITY with his STEPMOTHER!! If GODS LAW Supercedes Caesars Law as the GB maintain in the 2 witness rule ,WHY AREN’T the Governing Body CONSISTENT????
      As I have said before The GB will change when it becomes Financially in their interests to do so .!!

      • April 17, 2015 at 9:31 am
        Permalink

        Agreed Pickled, but let’s take that one step further in relation to the Conti case.

        The WTS (i.e. GB) always says something like “fight to the death under the delusion that Jehovah will carry them to victory against Satan’s hoards.” Basically, they are a bag of hot air, just like their predecessor Rutherford. If they do carry this out, then they are likely to run the risk of actually getting the $8M reinstated. However, if they think with their wallet (which I believe they will), then you won’t hear another peep from them. I tend to think they won’t shoot their mouth off any more about this case.

        Like Conti and her lawyer, let’s see what they do.

      • April 17, 2015 at 9:46 am
        Permalink

        Whoops! They wouldn’t say “under the delusion…” What I meant is something like, “we’ll fight the hoards of satan’s minions to the highest court in the land!” and Isaiah XXX…. You know what I mean.

  • April 17, 2015 at 7:26 am
    Permalink

    The problem with the Organization is that they don’t do a good enough job when it comes to warning parents about child abuse. They only touch on the subject. Pedophiles molest babies up to age 16. Babies are not capable of telling parents that their babysitter or father or brother or cousin has abused them. Children up to the age of about 4 or 5 aren’t capable of telling parents and 90% of child abuse is from close family members or family “friends”.

    People in the Organization should be made aware of this and are left in the dark. If parents in the Organization were made aware of how sneaky these people are and made aware of the fact that it’s a CRIME and not a “sin”, they could take it more seriously. As long as the Society wants to claim it’s a “weakness” due to imperfection and not treat it as a CRIME, the children will always be discounted and their lives ruined.

    In the United States, some states have 3 times and you are out. That means if you have been convicted of any crime 3 times, you will be put in prison for the rest of your life. It doesn’t even have to be the same crime. That should be true of child abuse.

    If the person has been left out on the street after having served his time (as Kendrick’s wife said), and they commit the same CRIME or any other crimes, they should be put away for life away from children. Kendrick committed this crime 3 times and shows he is not to be trusted around children. There is no excuse for him walking the streets a free man.

    In the Organization, this man is not restricted from field service. In the Organization, he is EXPECTED TO GO DOOR TO DOOR.

    In the United States, it goes state by state but in my state, each city has a sex offender registry list and if you have a computer and type in sex offenders and your city, each person’s address will show up as a red dot so that parents can locate where these people live. They are not to live close to schools etc. This isn’t enough to protect the kids but at least it’s a start.

    They should have something tattooed across their forehead or something like that. The tattoo wouldn’t kill them or anything but it could be an inducement for them not to commit the crime in the first place if they knew that was what would happen to them if they were caught. Just a thought.

  • April 17, 2015 at 9:01 am
    Permalink

    I often wonder how this religion in all good conscience can actually claim to be “God’s spirit directed organization” while trying to defend themselves in court for covering up the abuse suffered by innocent children within the congregation. It appears that they care little about their members and really their only concern is their image and their money.

    Finally everyone is starting to see the sludge that lies beneath the shiny polished surface of this religion and the more individuals who come forward, the more we see all the dirt and grime.

    Of course they don’t want the rank and file to go directly to the police as they want to keep this “in house” so they can keep it all under wraps and sweep everything under the carpet. In their eyes the child who was molested is simply collateral damage and the image of the watchtower is first and foremost. Anyone who does not put the watchtower first and who does not follow the watchtower protocol is not following the spiritual direction provided by the watchtower and is therefore no longer considered to be a true follower and everyone in the congregation will look at this person with disgust.

    It really is a no win situation for those who are trapped within the confines of a religion whose members are imprisoned within a jailhouse with no real walls.

    • April 17, 2015 at 9:38 am
      Permalink

      Rob, you are so right. If it was God’s one and only organization, then the abuse that Conti and other suffered would not have happened in the first place. The “Bible Teach” book shows a trash ridden candy sucker to demonstrate how disgusting churches are to the WTS. I think this is now a self-portrait of the WTS itself.

      Greedy, Disgusting, and Dirty!!!

      • April 17, 2015 at 7:36 pm
        Permalink

        @Rob . your Analysis of how the JW Organisation works is SPOT ON . Elders must go to the LEGAL DEPARTMENT FIRST before the Police !! WELL ‘GET STUFFED ‘ Governing Body ,My Child’s Welfare comes first & I AM GOING To the Police & to the courts !! The scripture the GB MISAPPLY is 1 Corinthians 6v7 about Brothers not taking out Lawsuits against one another BUT if the CONTEXT is Read before& After scriptures is CLEARLY talking about FINANCIAL MATTERS !!! So if a CRIME is Committed ‘ GO TO The POLICE ‘

        • April 17, 2015 at 7:48 pm
          Permalink

          @Searcher . Agree totally with your comment & your Final Conclusion!

  • April 17, 2015 at 10:21 pm
    Permalink

    I am / was a born in jw to a single parent family so i would say my family with multiple children would have been a perfect target for abuse or mistreatment of many and any kinds of abuse in the organization. This never happened to my family. And I never heard of it happen to any of my friends and family. Obviously this doesnt mean it wasnt happening or didnt happen to them. Im just saying from my long experience as a witness and in a vulnerable spot i saw no weaknesses in this regard amongst jw. Heck, they seem to love to announce a persons shortcomings from the stage. I dont believe jw policy is meant to cover and protect sinners. I think it does the opposite. the way i see it: If a victim/ member of congregation comes to an elder or ANYONE in congregation and as soon as the MENTION of sexual abuse is heard, the listener immediately tells victim to contact police, and if a child, phones the police for them and supports them if requested to the station. Thats the problem i see. No phoning of the service committee.

    I havent researched the nature of child sex abuse so i dont understand all the nature of it, but i do know in my country it is handled specifically and different than other crimes. And rightfully so. So jw’s or really any religious organization thinking they can handle and control the crime within their religious “court” is near sighted. In jw’s for instance, the most they could do is disfellowship the accused which would of course only serve to isolate the vicitim and accused and increase the abuse. And its obvious that a two witness rule makes this sort of crime a free for all bc theres rarely another witness. Again, i dont believe witnesses are trying to “hide” a sexual predator problem. I just think they need to look at the nature of the crime more seriously and that their “two witness” policy cant apply to every crime.

    Something that makes little sense to me is ppl complaining that the elders arent alerting others of past crime. When i move to a new area, i always consult the sex offender registry for my neighborhood and area. Its my responsibility. Also, i would never imagine or expect the elder body or a person in the congregation to tell me everyones past serious sins. So and so was convicted of murder, manslaughter, domestic abuse, etc etc. I wouldnt want to hear it. Where would the reporting of past serious sins stop? I protect my family not the elders. Same as at my daughters school. I dont expect the teacher or principle to give me a low down of what info they have acquired of whats going on in a students life at home, ie if a parent is reported as an offender. If i let my child play at their house and they were abused would i accuse the school of not letting my family know that info? NO. The general population has a lot of nasty bad people in it, some are catholic, hindu, baptist, jw, jewish etc. And if the law doesnt require these organizations to report then the weight of the vicitims tragedy falls plainly on the law of that land/ state.

    • April 17, 2015 at 11:49 pm
      Permalink

      @Vivian . You sound A Nice but Niave JW . Don’t you see what is wrong when you research the Dozens of court cases the Elders, Victim & Abuser have faced each other in a Judicial Committee & the POOR ABUSED VICTIMS have to Recount the Whole EVIL CRIME in Front of these Men so they can Disfellowship IF & it is A BIG IF the Abuser is found Guilty .
      If Vivian you follow the Bible the Elders should Announce Publicly in front of the Whole Congregation what the CRIME is like the Apostle Paul did at 1 Corinthians chapter 5 when the man was found guilty of sexual immorality with his stepmother, There are LOADS more Holes in your Argument like when Brothers at field service arrangements when they assign brothers to work with children .
      Also read January 15 2015 study watchtower Page 24 paragraph 4 and see the Disgusting sexual things that the Governing Body ADMIT their own Brothers are committing!!

    • April 18, 2015 at 4:32 am
      Permalink

      @Vivian, like Pickled brain said, you are naive’. Just because your family didn’t suffer from sexual abuse, you are discounting all those who have been abused.

      You seem to think that if a person comes to the elders that the elders would first and foremost tell the victim and their family to go to the police? You are only assuming that, but my question is, why would the victim go to the elders first, if they weren’t told to do that?

      The reason is clear. To accuse another witness of sexual abuse of a child is a very serious crime and the Witness knows it’s a crime and they know that in order to do the “right” thing when it comes to the congregation, the first thing they would do is to go to the elders first and let them tell the victim and the family what to do because they know how serious it is.

      Why are Witnesses compelled to go to the elders first? Why are then the elders told to get in touch with the Branch to let the Branch lawyers tell the elders what to do? You are leaving out all that.

      You should do some research before making the assumption that the Society is squeaky clean when it comes to covering up child sex abuse.

      You seem like the kind of person, that unless it actually happened to you or your family that you don’t believe the stories.

  • April 18, 2015 at 12:14 pm
    Permalink

    Stephen Lett’s quote, denying accusations that the religion
    provides a shelter for paedophiles. —

    “If anybody takes ACTION against someone. who would threaten
    our young ones, and takes ACTION to protect our young ones,
    it’s Jehovah’s Organisation”.

    Never was the word, ACTION more misapplied. ACTION means
    “Doing something.”

    A victim goes to elders, no witnesses, ( which are virtually impossible
    to provide, ) so NO ACTION is taken, and a possible molester left
    free to cause more distress.

    Victim asks, should I contact the police? Elders have no option but
    to follow instructions from Shepherding the Flock, book.
    “If you are asked, make it clear that it is a personal decision”

    So once again a passive response, no involvement, NO ACTION.
    So “Jehovahs Organisation” rather than making protection of the
    children a priority, gives the paedophile a 50/50, or better, chance
    of remaining at large, ( Odds would be influenced by how pressurised
    the victim felt .)

    Mr, Lett’s talk of ACTION then, is just empty rhetoric of which his
    organisation have perfected into a fine art.

  • April 18, 2015 at 1:42 pm
    Permalink

    Vivian,

    Welcome to JW Survey and thank you for your comment. I am glad to read that you have no experience of child abuse in your family and social group. Thank goodness for that.

    I would entreat you to fully research the true child protection policy of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. You will be shocked and saddened by what you discover.

    As a Christian, would you agree that Christians are held to a higher standard of morality than some other people?

    Why do you blame the “superior authorities” (Romans 13) for the failure of Jehovah’s Witnesses to report child abuse accusations to the authorities, when not legally obliged to?

    Should not a Christian organisation go beyond the law and do what is right? Wouldn’t you want to inform the police if you discovered that the crime of child molestation had occurred? What would JESUS want you to do? What is the loving thing to do in this situation?

    I hope that we can benefit from your opinion in the future.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

    • April 20, 2015 at 10:08 pm
      Permalink

      Thanks for your response. Ive noticed a bit of bullying on these forums, including this one. Maybe not so much bullying as jumping to conclusions and making assumptions as to a responders opinions, outlooks and general character. I am slowly leaving jws with my family with little ones so its slow and careful. But I can tell everyone this. Being a born in jw with all the thought control and lack of tolerance for differing opinion and thought,(my mother, a born in jw as well) I am determined to be as unbiased, thoughtful and reflective as I can be. And teach my children the same. I don’t care if you are a jw or aren’t, or a member of the gb or a hobo on the street or Candice conti, I will do me own evaluations of information. I think jw policy should be completely hands off when it comes to alligations of sex abuse. Complete and quick referral to legal authorities and the courts that can actually stop the abuse and lock the abuser. The law unfortunately is on jw side so the case can only go so far. Until the law is reconsidered.

      People come into the jw congregation sometimes as past abusers, same as in all types of organizations. If jws or the general population thinks jws have less occurrence of pedophiles than the general population I can see some efforts and exposing that misunderstanding. But I just don’t believe its a “paradise for pedophiles”. Having a complete and lengthy experience with the group I don’t support the idea. I see other terrible human right violations by the group that are carried out in a more black and white and obvious manner.

      • April 20, 2015 at 10:24 pm
        Permalink

        I am failing to say (with too many words) that JWs do need reform on many policies. They obviously look at themselves with a halo of their heads and maybe the rest of the world does as well. The group needs honest exposure of its weaknesses but I don’t think child molestation is the biggest problem. Those laws need to be changed across the board. You make it safer for jw kids but not other groups? the group as a whole thinks and wants to be the “chosen” and really cant see its own flaws and self righteousness. I don’t even think its hypocrisy… bc is so ingrained from childhood. My very large, entire family has been caught and swallowed by this strange goofy group. I want to see it exposed. But not on this issue.

        • April 21, 2015 at 3:06 am
          Permalink

          @Vivian. I agree with what you said. It should be taken out of the hands of the congregation elders altogether and it should be a law that when a case of child molestations accusation has happened and the elders or anybody else knows about it, that the person who knows about it, has to report it to the authorities.

          Doctors and teachers are forced by law to report abuse of children when they know about it, but when it comes to clergy and lawyers, they don’t have to because of “confidentiality”.

          Those laws should be changed to include everyone who learns of the abuse of a child since the child needs an advocate for them since they are just children and a lot of times, the abuser is an uncle, father, mother or cousin or close friend of the family.

          As it is now, the Watchtower Society is a pedophile paradise and the laws of the land are what is making it possible for these men to get away with their crimes against children in the congregation and it probably is like that in any other religion as well. The difference is that in any other religion, the victims aren’t going to be shunned for turning in the abuser because most people aren’t regular church goers.

          In the United States, the statistics are that only 1 in 5 people actually belong to a church where they go to church every Sunday but in the JW religion, they go to church a lot more and the organization is a lot more close knit so in the general population so when molestation occurs, it’s most likely going to be within the family or close friends from the Hall. The general population isn’t going to have to worry about reporting the abuse to elders like what Jehovah’s Witnesses would do. The general population (even if they belong to a church and a fellow church member was the molester) doesn’t have to worry about “Jehovah’s name” being dragged through the mud. Do you see the difference? The general population won’t have the 2 witness rule either.

          The problem is so very complicated and if it was the law that all child abuse that has become known, has to be reported to the authorities, it would be taken out of the hands of the elders. That is the way it should be.

          If a person has a conscience and sees that a child is living in a condition where a child is being abused and the child doesn’t have 2 witnesses, the 2 witness rule should not be the abusers way out where they can continue to abuse the child.

          Anyone with a conscience would get that child out of the situation and not tell them or the parents “leave it in Jehovah’s hands” just because there wasn’t a 2nd witness to the crime, while that child is still in that situation.

          If the parents decide to report the abuse, then the elders and congregation need to be neutral and stay out of it until the police have concluded the examination.

  • April 18, 2015 at 4:26 pm
    Permalink

    TAKE A STAND! Next time a JW comes to your door.Express this: When the Watchtower decides to take a different stance on protecting young ones, you will then open the door for them, until then— your door is closed, for any discussion.Don’t take their literature, don’t engage in discussion.Close the door politely.
    Their own policy states if they know of a wrongdoing and don’t report it, they are equally guilty of the crime.
    Tell them take a hike…all of them. Don’t associate with child molesters, or any of the elders keeping them in secrecy.
    Thank you.

    • April 20, 2015 at 9:35 am
      Permalink

      Excellent response!

      Those guys will have a lot more than dust to shake off their feet when walking back to the car.

      I’ve always wanted to ask a crew coming to my door, “Your religion is open, right?” Wait for their response, the follow with, “If so, then let me review your “Sheparding the Flock” book on how you handle child molestation accusations.” “Oh, you can’t? I thought you were an open religion, not a secret society.”

      I can only hope.

  • April 18, 2015 at 6:26 pm
    Permalink

    Next time a JW come to your door two brothers together ask if one is an elder if so ask if he is supervising a pedophile in case.

  • April 20, 2015 at 1:07 pm
    Permalink

    Louise made an excellent point at the JWpodcast show yesterday, and I want to expand on that. When viewed from a responsibility viewpoint there can only be two options when the elders have a confession or suspicion of child abuse:

    1) they do not go to the police: that means they want to solve it “internally”, so they should warn parents about it.

    2) they do go to the police: that shares (shifts?) the responsibility to the police, so they can do their job.

    If they don’t tell the police, the police can’t protect anyone now can they? In that case the elders should take responsibility. They are so eager to perform those JCs!

    Don’t let WT have it both ways, keeping it internal yet protecting no-one!

  • April 21, 2015 at 6:47 am
    Permalink

    Vivian,

    Thank you for your thoughtful and interesting reponse. I hope that you have not been the victim of bullying on this site. Sadly, we have a problem with this in the ex JW community at the moment.

    I am working with others to change the law in the UK, to make it compulsory to report accusations of child sexual abuse to the authorities. This will help to protect ALL children in the UK.

    This will not, in itself, solve the problem, but it will help to solve it.

    I have to respectfully disagree with you on not using child abuse as an issue to expose the WTBTS cult.

    I do so because I am primarily concerned with the children, and I think that we can help starve the WTBTS of new converts by exposing this disgraceful situation.

    We can agree to disagree, and I will at no time insult your opinion.

    Thank you for your input on this very important issue.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

    • April 21, 2015 at 1:13 pm
      Permalink

      I suppose even if I don’t believe it is a “pedophile paradise”, because of its policies and determination to protect their image/ name it could easily become one. its commendable that you are making efforts to protect jw and all children by reversing and changing policy/law.

  • April 21, 2015 at 5:00 pm
    Permalink

    Candace has great courage, refusing to be cowed and intimidated
    by the corporate bullies and their expensive lawyers.

    While laws requiring public identification of paedophiles in a
    congregation may not get approval from the judiciary,
    Many states and countries make it “Mandatory” to report any
    accusation of child abuse.

    It’s feasible then that this could become “Universally” accepted,
    I think campaigning for this is a realistic aim.

    The WT Org, would not then be able to do the Pontius Pilate act

    Anyone found guilty would then be identified in the media and
    exposed in this way ( as anonymous has already suggested. )

  • April 22, 2015 at 4:42 am
    Permalink

    Vivian,

    Thank you for your kind and supportive comment.

    We can all help with this issue, wherever we live.

    I would encourage you to write to your Representative, and ask them about mandatory reporting. Some States in the USA have mandatory reporting, but not all of them.

    Here in the UK, there is no legal obligation for all citizens to report accusations of child sexual abuse to the authorities. Some groups do, like teachers and doctors etc. I will continue to press for mandatory reporting in the UK.

    There are issues surrounding this, but they can be debated and solved.

    The most important thing is that children and young people are protected as fully as possible from the paedophiles who want to prey on them. This is something that all people want, and so I am confident that we can make some progress here.

    I wish you success with your eventual exit from the WTBTS. There are many people here and on other sites who will help you as much as they can.

    Thank you for your comments. They have been of great interest and benefit to our discussion of this very serious issue.

    Peace be with you, Excelsior!

  • April 23, 2015 at 12:57 pm
    Permalink

    Eric that was my point exactly, if you read my comments accurately you would see that….! Candace’s name has been besmurched and tarnished by the Watchtower Org. This needs to be put right.

  • April 23, 2015 at 10:52 pm
    Permalink

    There is a lot of heartbreak in this news, the local congregations will see their Elder’s spiking the ball in victory a dramatic contrast from the humble way Candace and her mother explained the previous decision. The next step although I didn’t see it mentioned in any articles, is the 9th District Federal Court also in San Fran. The 9th Federal District includes Nevada, Arizona, Hawaii, California, Washington and Oregon, and like the city it’s based in is the most Liberal court in America. They are the people who struck down not one but two voter approved changes in California law that defined marriage as ONLY between one man and one woman. The attorney would need to add an attorney who is authorized to present cases at the federal level just as he had to join with an appellate attorney to deal with the State Court of Appeals. Nothing was said of the California State Supreme Court in Sacramento which would be the natural next stop, after that the 9th Federal, and then an application to the Supremes in Washington DC. I personally cannot imagine the 9th Federal Court placing the rights of this sick and twisted church over the rights of the children they have an obligation to protect. If they were looking to avoid opening a can of vipers and to support the right of religious dogma, they would not have kicked Prop 8 the Prohibition on Gay Marriage to the curb, Twice! I see a great deal of hope and many opportunities to reverse the reversal.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: