As with anyone associated with Jehovah’s Witnesses the worst possible news anyone can have is being df. It means a loss of everyone and everything you have known all your life. When I first came forward to the media with my allegations of abuse cover-ups in the organization, one thing I made clear to reporters was that they would df me for speaking out on this issue. You see I played Watchtower, I knew they were so arrogant that they would not let me tell them what they were going to do. So they had to have their control and not do anything. Bad mistake Watchtower. Your stupidity allowed me months and months to gather evidence and make a stronger case that I ever would have if you had df’d me in the first two weeks. But I depended on your arrogance and stupidity, not to mention a PR Department that operated like the gang that couldn’t shoot straight.
First they call me a liar in the congregation, bad move boys, I got it on tape. Then the tape of my father, just plain stupid, even reporters were calling me amazed at how evil they were. Then came to sanctions, I documented each one through correspondence and requests for apology, they of course ignored them. Thank you very much, you are proving your lack of Christianity. But perhaps I am leaving the absolute diamond behind, that is, your denial of any wrongdoing. With 30 stories maybe it was just a few bad eggs, with 100 stories perhaps it was just some elders out of line, but over 5,000? When you lie with 5,000 victims accusing you, you make a complete ass of yourself. Thank you JR Brown.
Think about it, what person has ever been df with such torpedoes broad siding Watchtower. The New York Times, Sunday when I have my appeal hearing, CNN the day before, and a nice article locally all about it in the morning. Watchtower, how stupid do you have to be to get that much bad PR? Shoulda backed off, but like a spoiled brat you wanted it now, so we gave you both barrels. Does anyone see what has happened here? Remember when the uprising occurred in China? The liberal side started to get a strong following and appeared at the verge of bringing democracy to the entire country. What happened? It gave the conservatives an excuse to completely crush all liberals. To this day there is no liberal movement with substance in China. So to with Watchtower, when the issue of a problem with child molestation first surfaced I had many insiders who contacted me and offered help. They instantly saw the problem and in an effort to save the organization they offered insights and assistance to help things move forward. They said they would protect me. Perhaps it was a combination of the above along with liberal protection that allowed me to last for seventeen and one half months without being df. Well, a change occurred at the end of April much like what happened in China. The conservatives used silentlambs as an excuse to squash the liberals and any chance of reform in the organization. Why do you thing they are asking for 1,000 to leave? Who do you think 90% of that 1,000 are? It is the liberals, they are being kicked out wholesale and by doing so the last chance for the organization to save itself. The battle is over, Jaracz won.
All Jehovah’s Witnesses will now “not be going beyond the things written” and if anyone says different, you will be disfellowshipped. Remember China did not go out of business, they just lost the only chance they had at being a better government. So to with Watchtower, they could have protected children better, they could have had more compassion, they could have shown more love, they could have made it easier to be a JW. Not any more. They will sacrifice everyone in the organization to follow the bidding of a spoiled brat known as the Governing Body. “To hell with the children, we just don’t want anyone telling us what to do.” So it goes…
So tonight I went to the meeting. I called every reporter I knew and asked them to come and one did show up, just enough to make them nervous. She sat up front across the auditorium and I asked an elder to provide her with a song book. Which he quickly complied with, don’t’ want to stumble any prospective members. I was able to briefly explain how the meeting was going to proceed as no one else volunteered. I guess I could have counted my time.
I was spoken to by two elders after I looked them in the eye and said something to them directly. Everyone else looked away and refused to speak even if I said something to them. Could it be someone did not keep confidentiality? I was there about five minutes early and stood up toward the front of the auditorium the rest of the congregation stayed in the back. The PO looked at me with a dirty look and laughed, I took my finger and pointed straight at him for about five seconds and gave him a big smile. I ain’t taking no crap “type” look.
Then the meeting started, I had my song book so I sung nice and loud. All those around me were trying to drown me out, so they were screaming at the top of their lungs. It was nice to finally get the friends to really sing out. Then came the school, I was nice and even looked up the scriptures. Everyone who gave talks was nervous as cats, noticeably shaking and glancing over my way. It was like they thought I was going to pounce on them or something. At talk number two I went back to the bulletin board to catch up. We are getting a new CD. It is called WT cd 2001, isn’t this 2002? They said it would be coming soon so I guess it is not ready yet. The letter was dated at the end of June. Nothing of note other than I clearly noticed the molesters name was not anywhere on the board, not even a TMS part. So it appears I might be having a little effect on his life anyway, especially since I told the entire world when they started using him again. He had a nice little group around him all visiting and making him feel welcome before the meeting. After thirteen months out, not one person acted like they wanted me there. Hey, what can I say, I guess the spiritual paradise does not like people who are in the media.
The reporter came back and we stepped out side to do a bit of an interview as we waited for the halfway point. Then they started to sing as Sheila drove up with the digital camera. Did I say we got Pictures?
Each part on the meeting in the TMS was prefaced by comments about the worldwide work and how these talks were being given all over the world. Nice PR for the reporter, boy were they laying it on. At the announcements they finally said we would now like for brother elder to come up to the stage. When he got up there, I stood up. He then started talking about the CO visit last week and made a motion to pay expenses. I sat down. I thought maybe later. Nope they skipped it.
Now for any elders out there, everyone know you make the announcement during the “announcements”, why did they wait? Did the have “fear of man?” I went out and talked to the reporter from the Paducah Sun. I suggested they were holding it till last, hoping she would leave or they may wait till another meeting to keep me guessing. I told her they were playing games and they just blinked again. She called her editor and he gave her thirty minutes more.
We went back in and I got to thinking, I am tired of these silly games. Lee Stockwell had the last part on the meeting and since he has made an ass of himself on several occasions I thought I would wait for him to get up there. What was I going to do?
From this point forward we have decide to make a new guideline for anyone disfellowshipped for abuse issues. We make our own announcement.
When Stockwell got on the stage I stood up and turned to the audience and said: “Tonight they were supposed to announcement that I was to be disfellowshipped. I object to this announcement, I object to this proceeding. I have broken no biblical law, I have broken no law of the organization. The Governing Body has ordered my disfellowshipping to prevent my presentation of evidence that proves them to be lying hypocrites. I am now a silentlamb, as are the thousands of abuse survivors whose lives have been ruined by Watchtower Policy on child molestation.”
Stockwell tried to out yell me at one point, but shut up. Sheila was taking pictures and that froze them from grabbing me as they knew we would get it on film. I had my say and walked out. When I got to the back Stockwell announced, “William H. Bowen has been disfellowshipped.”
I yelled, “You got it!”
I then walked out the door. It was a sense of exhilaration and relief. I finally got to say to the congregation what I had wanted to say for two years. I did nothing wrong.
The reporter sat on the carport for light and copied my statement to the congregation. They were coming to the window and peeking out, giving me angry looks. I just smiled and waved while Sheila took a few more pictures. They really looked small at that point
The reporter said “be sure and buy a paper Friday” we said our good-byes. As I started my truck with loud pipes, I guess Satan entered into me for a moment, I drove through the drive through, kicked it in neutral and floored it as I coasted through. Was that disrupting the meeting?
When I got home Sheila and the kids were waiting with champagne and a nice family hug. I now wear as a badge of honor, being disfellowshipped for standing up for children. I find no shame, no guilt, and no dishonor for what I have done. If everything with silentlambs ended today I would believe it to all be worthwhile for the assistance and hope given to so many. You can stand, you can speak out, and take back what they robbed you of. Your self esteem and knowledge you did nothing wrong.
Joe Anderson also was disfellowshipped tonight. He followed the same tack. He mailed out letters to everyone in the congregation except the PO. The letter informed them of his disfellowshipping and the reason why, along with the original letter he wrote resigning. So when they made the announcement everybody already knew. Joe did not attend, there was no point to it.
The conservatives have won, the organization will go on, but it will be a harsher crueler organization driven by soldiers without conscience and scared rabbits to do their bidding. The worst part is the damage done to children till Watchtower Policy finally changes.
I include Joe’s letter below:
1527 Normandy Rd.
Normandy, TN 37360
I am writing to let you know about my situation in the congregation and my feelings on the matter. You might also say this is a letter telling you goodbye.
I’ve been associated with Jehovah’s Witnesses for over fifty years and my interest is still in Jehovah and his purpose. What has always impressed me was the honesty and truthfulness of the organization, and for changes the organization has made in the past to benefit the congregations. I want to add here that I continue to have only love for all of Jehovah’s Witnesses, including the elders and the people at Watchtower headquarters, many of whom I’ve known since the 1950s.
Recently, I wrote a letter explaining why I resigned as an elder and sent it to the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society regarding changes that I believed were needed in their child sexual abuse policies. I gave each elder in the Manchester Congregation a copy of the letter to let them know what I was doing. Let me say here that this has nothing to do with doctrines, etc., but about procedures that could impact safety of the flock, Christian love, and elders doing the right thing in behalf of the membership. However, because of writing this letter, at a judicial hearing a few weeks ago, I was accused of “undermining the confidence of the brothers in Jehovah’s organization.”
I have enclosed, for your observation, a copy of this letter so you can get a sense of what’s going on. As you know, this type of thing is always kept secret from the congregation, consequently, everything appears to be going peacefully. Normally, I concur with the organization’s procedures regarding privacy for there are issues that do not involve the entire congregation so it’s best to respect confidentially. However, I perceive that keeping quiet about sexual child abuse in a congregation is a totally different situation. This criminal activity has to be exposed to protect us. Appropriate handling of sexual abuse accusations and subsequent information to the congregation does not “undermine the confidence of the brothers in Jehovah’s organization.” On the contrary, keeping child abuse a secret does “undermine the confidence of the brothers in Jehovah’s organization.”
To give you examples of deviant sexual proclivities kept secret within the organization that have served to “undermine confidence of the brothers in Jehovah’s organization” were the dismissals from Bethel since 1991 of two Governing Body brothers, Chitty and Greenlees. Chitty was homosexual and also an alcoholic. He returned to England, where he was from, and the Watchtower Society provided him support and an apartment to live in. He was not disfellowshipped.
Greenlees was a known homosexual when he lived and worked at Georgetown, Watchtower’s Canadian Branch Office and his appointment as a member of the Governing Body caused considerable shock to the staff there. He was dismissed from Brooklyn Bethel in the mid 80’s while Barbara, Lance and I were there and sent out as a special pioneer. Later, informed people at Bethel told us that Greenlees was not dismissed for being gay, but rather for molesting a young boy. He was not disfellowshipped.
In my resignation letter I referred to a young lady who was with the Manchester Congregation some years ago, who came forward as a result of the Tennessean newspaper and identified several brothers in our area who molested her as a child. To say the least, I was shocked to hear her story, and then when the elders were informed when I met with them, two of them corroborated some of her claims.
I believe because of the nature of pedophiles that all of us should know about their past offenses, which would warn us of the potential harm that can come by keeping this a secret. There are over 23,000 U. S., Canadian and British cases of confessed and accused molesters filed at Watchtower headquarters, many of which have never been turned over to the authorities. If you take into account that by Watchtower Society requirements there has to be two or more victims before some action is taken by the congregation against a molester, this would mean there are many thousands more victims than 23,000 molesters. In fact, one Jehovah’s Witness in Nevada molested seventeen children before he was imprisoned. He still is not disfellowshipped. Presently, there is one confessed molester now attending the Manchester congregation and another former elder who confessed to molestation, who moved to a nearby congregation last year. But Watchtower policy prohibits us from telling you who they are. In the Manchester Congregation, there is only one elder who has small children in his care who knows who these men are, consequently, he can protect his children, but you who have children are not permitted that right to know. Is that fair? Or loving?
Why can’t we write the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society with our concerns, questions, and doubts about things that effect us? But as you can see from the action taken against me that you’re not “free” as you think. See James 1:25. In addition, never forget that James said in chapter 4, verse 17 that if you know what’s right and not do it, it’s a sin.
If you write to Watchtower with compliments, you hear nothing. But write something that they term negative or divisive, your letter is sent back to your home congregation and the elders investigate. If you don’t repent then you will be disfellowshipped. Since my Bible-trained conscience does not allow me to repent of what is perceived by the Watchtower Society as “undermining the confidence of the brothers in Jehovah’s organization” from what I said in my resignation letter, I will be disfellowshipped.
To see what the Bible tells us about Christian freedom read 1 Peter 2:19-21 and Hebrews 3:6. Notice too that 1 Cor. 10:29 asks why should it be that a person’s freedom is judged by another person’s conscience.
My desire is not to separate you from the congregation and the many friends you have. I’m merely letting you know what is going on, which I’ve always wanted to do. There is a lot more to say, but for now I can only say I hope changes will be made because this issue is causing an immense amount of pain and suffering for victims and their families, including my own family. Moreover, the worst effect of all is that they leave the organization. It’s very sad.
In closing, I send my best wishes and will miss your association.