Jehovah's Witness Leadership Excuses Rapist
- I was summoned for a thorough interview and then branded as bad company, Anette says, she was raped at the age of 13
By Kurt Simonsen - 8:30 - 2. May. 2004
Annette was just 13 when she at one of Jehovah's Witnesses summer assemblies was raped by a 20 year old Jehovah's Witness. The rapist, a man she knew, was the son of one of the elders in this sick cult.
- The rape had the result that I, in front of my friends, from the platform in the Kingdom Hall was branded bad company. The man that raped me, that had sex before marriage was left off with a slap on the wrist. Today he has a wife and children and is still a Jehovah's Witness, Anette Holloese, she is forty and lives in the North Sealand village of Graested .
But the horrible experience as a thirteen year old girl still haunts her.
- I will never forget it. It was horrible, first being raped, then interrogated and asked all kinds of intimate questions by six to eight older men - so-called elders - and then being branded as bad company - as one that should be shunned by other children and youth., explains Anette.
I WILL KILL YOU, IF...
Annette claims that several girls among Jehovah's Witnesses through the years have experienced exactly the same as she did as a thirteen year old.
- Basically it is only normal that young people have urges and needs. This is completely warped among Jehovah's Witnesses. Young people goes to parties and get intoxicated without the knowledge of their parents. During Jehovah's Witness assemblies a lot of girls are sexually molested by boys.
- I was with a girl friend - the twenty year old man's own sister - when I was raped at the summer assembly in Broendby in 1977. She just left with some boy, after we had entered a trailer. Her brother ripped my dress apart and raped me.
- When his sister and the boy returned, they obviously knew what had happened. The guy said: "I will kill you if you ever tell anyone what has happened here."
IT'S YOUR OWN FAULT
Annette went straight to her mother at the tent camp. Her mother immediately saw that something was wrong. But it was the next day that Anette dared to tell her what had happened. Annette was then examined by a doctor that established that her virginity was lost. She did however not get pregnant.
Annette did never actually found out what her father and mother actually made of the whole thing. She didn't receive any support - was just told to let herself be interrogated by the elders.
- Mother and Father drove me to Copenhagen , where I was sent to a Kingdom Hall and placed in the middle of six to eight older men. It was the "elders"
- There I had to, again and again tell them what had happened in the most intimate details. All the while they pressed their handkerchiefs against their brows. That's why I still today, have a thing with handkerchiefs.
- A month later there suddenly was a decision. In our congregation an elder entered the platform and explained to the whole congregation that I was bad company.
- In front of my parents and all of my friends he said that I had made up the whole thing about the rape and all, and that all of them should shun me.
- My parents didn't say anything. Didn't do anything to help or protect me. They just accepted the organizations version.
Annette left Jehovah's Witnesses alone at the age of seventeen.