William H. Bowen of silentlambs USA to Deliver Stuffed Lamb to Japan Branch of Jehovah's Witnesses
Flyer to Announce Safeguards for Jehovah's Witness Child Sex Abuse Victims in Japan
Will address conferences in three cites across Japan
National Support Group Seeks Investigation of Church Hierarchy
Thursday Feb 10th at the Japan Home office for Jehovah's Witnesses and later at local Kingdom Halls of Jehovah's Witnesses, a representative for silentlambs will deliver a stuffed lamb as a symbol of innocence lost, advocates will deliver a formal request from the silentlambs organization for a church hearing to investigate possible criminal cover-ups by the denomination's leadership for Jehovah's Witnesses the Governing Body. A news conference to announce a national flyer to be distributed across Japan to Jehovah's Witness Kingdom Halls in an attempt to protect children. Bowen will then go on to speak to conferences across Japan in Tokyo on the 11th, Osaka on the 13th, and Sappro on the 15th.
Thursday, Feb 10, 11:30 a.m.
William H. Bowen national Director of "silentlambs", a recently established support group for Jehovah's Witness abuse victims will be conducting along with advocates for children.
Jehovah's Witness Home office for Japan located at the front entrance.
William H. Bowen will request a meeting with leadership of Jehovah's Witnesses in Japan to ask for assistance in petitioning USA Governing Body, to change policies that are detrimental to protecting children. According to William H. Bowen founder of silentlambs, "We allege that Watchtower has established a child abuse policy that has ignored abuse survivors, protected child molesters and disfellowshipped those who have tried to support them. This will be a public statement that leadership for Jehovah s Witnesses (Governing Body) must stop hurting children."
www.silentlambs.org, William H. Bowen: Paducah KY
PO BOX 311, Calvert City, KY 42029
February 1, 2005
I wish to request a meeting with the Japan Branch Committee on February 10, at 1 pm to discuss Watchtower Policy on child abuse in Japan. I also would like to see how we might work together to assist the Governing Body in the U.S.A. to adjust policy for better protection of Jehovah's Witness children.
I realize this is short notice but I am traveling several thousand miles to be in your area and feel our meeting could be very productive.
Below as you will note are the added sentences in a letter written to the United Kingdom congregations that did not appear in the letter to all congregations in the U.S.A. dated 5-24-02. It has given many of our American brothers and sisters pause to see the difference between these two letters. The U. K. letter seems to go one step further than the U.S.A. counterpart. It states:
"Our position is that the secular authorities deal with crime while elders deal with sin. To avoid a miscarriage of justice elders must not interfere with, prevent, or impede any secular investigation into child abuse. They must ensure that secular laws are adhered to. (Romans 13:1)
To that end they are instructed to contact the legal dept at Bethel whenever they receive information from even one person who alleges that child abuse has occurred. When a report is received guidance is given by the legal dept to ensure that:
1. The alleged victim and other potential victims are protected from possible abuse.
2. The council is given to report crime to the proper authorities and to comply with any additional legal requirements.
The elders know that it is the absolute right of the victim, his or her family or anyone else to report the matter to the authorities, if they so wish. (Galatians 6:5)"
This difference gives credence to the following questions:
1. Why are U. K. brothers and sisters informed that all child abuse is reported to the authorities when in the U.S.A. they are not?
2. Why did the recent Panorama program in July, have several cases that indicated exactly the opposite occurred when U. K. Jehovah's Witness children were molested?
3. Why has there been no acknowledgement or apology to the victims who were hurt by Watchtower Policy?
4. Why did various police officials acknowledge that Jehovah's Witnesses did not cooperate with them when child molestation was investigated in the U. K.?
Questions like these deserve an honest and Christian answer to help the public know where the truth lay. We would like to discuss what the current policy is for Japan congregations of Jehovah's Witnesses in order to see which policy they are following. In addition, it might be helpful to Jehovah's Witnesses in Japan to see that the local Branch is willing to make a public statement on such an important issue to protect children.
In good faith I look forward to our meeting. As the Governing Body stated in the 5-24-02 letter to all congregations; "The moral cleanness of the congregation continues to be of vital concern to the "faithful and discreet slave." (Matthew 24:45) This gives me hope we can find a productive basis to encourage the Governing Body to take the Christian course by placing the protection of our children as the highest priority in a religion that claims to be the only channel to God.
Thank you for your consideration and along with this letter goes my warm Christian love.
Very truly yours,
William H. Bowen, National Director