|A brother reports his elder molester
|Watch a powerful video of a brother reporting the current elder that molested him.
|Once again we see Watchtower policy in the reality. A brother comes forward at the gravesite of Charles Taze Russel founder of the organization of Jehovahs Witnesses, to tell his story of abuse and identify the currently serving Presiding Overseer and former Special Pioneer that molested him as a child. If you go on the silentlambs website home page and look at the left column click on the picture to view the video and see the campaign for the special talk this Sunday.
This video shows current policy of JWs on the abuse issue. In the January 1, 1997 issue of the Watchtower the following comments were made,
*** w97 1/1 29 Let Us Abhor What Is Wicked ***
Depending on the law of the land where he lives, the molester may well have to serve a prison term or face other sanctions from the State. The congregation will not protect him from this. Moreover, the man has revealed a serious weakness that henceforth will have to be taken into account. If he seems to be repentant, he will be encouraged to make spiritual progress, share in the field service, even have parts in the Theocratic Ministry School and nonteaching parts in the Service Meeting. This does not mean, though, that he will qualify to serve in a position of responsibility in the congregation. What are the Scriptural reasons for this?
For one thing, an elder must be self-controlled. (Titus 1:8) True, none of us have perfect self-control. (Romans 7:21-25) But a dedicated adult Christian who falls into the sin of child sexual abuse reveals an unnatural fleshly weakness. Experience has shown that such an adult may well molest other children. True, not every child molester repeats the sin, but many do. And the congregation cannot read hearts to tell who is and who is not liable to molest children again. (Jeremiah 17:9) Hence, Pauls counsel to Timothy applies with special force in the case of baptized adults who have molested children: Never lay your hands hastily upon any man; neither be a sharer in the sins of others. (1 Timothy 5:22) For the protection of our children, a man known to have been a child molester does not qualify for a responsible position in the congregation. Moreover, he cannot be a pioneer or serve in any other special, full-time service.Compare the principle at Exodus 21:28, 29.
All members were led to believe that any child molester would never have a position of responsibility in the congregation. The fact remained the Service Department policy for child abusers never actually changed. This was alluded to in the statement on child abuse offered on the Watchtower PR website, jw-media.org, where this comment was made in describing policy,
In a few instances, individuals guilty of an act of child abuse have been appointed to positions within the congregation if their conduct has been otherwise exemplary for decades. All of the factors are considered carefully. Suppose, for example, that a long time ago a 16-year-old boy had sexual relations with a consenting 15-year-old girl. Depending upon the U.S. jurisdiction where he lived when this happened, elders may have been required to report this as an incident of child abuse. Let us say that 20 years have passed. The child abuse reporting law may have changed; the man may have even married the girl! Both have been living exemplary lives and they are respected. In such a rare case, the man could possibly be appointed to a responsible position within the congregation.
In this video the abuser was not sixteen years old and the victim was certainly not a consenting participant. Once again this is a deception presented to cover current policy of allowing pedophiles after twenty years to re-qualify and have their record expunged from the pedophile database maintained by the Service Department. This was stated in a Body of Elders letter written to all congregations in the United Kingdom. Note the quote below,
There is one exception to the above direction: The elders may have written to the branch office and given full details about a former child abuser who is currently serving as an elder or ministerial servant. In such a case, if the branch office has decided that he can be appointed or continue serving in a position of trust because the sin occurred many years ago and because he has lived an exemplary life since then, his name should not appear on the List, nor is it necessary to pass on information about the brothers past sin if he moves to another congregation unless contrary instructions have been given by the branch. If therefore, such an appointed man moves to another congregation a letter confirming the move should be sent, addressed to the Societys Legal Department.
So, on the video when the victim was told that the matter was handled it basically meant that current policy was being followed and that the elder that confessed to being a child molester was allowed to continue in his position of responsibility. It is interesting to note that convicted sex offenders are not offered this type of protection by the laws of the land, yet with Watchtower Policy the pedophile paradise is a fine place for a molester to reside. Misinformation was presented shortly before the Dateline program aired with the 05/24/02 letter to all congregations that made this statement,
We have long instructed elders to report allegations of child abuse to the authorities where required by Law to do so, even where there is only one witness. (Romans 13:1) in any case, the elders know that if the victim wishes to make a report, it is his or her absolute right to do so.----Galatians 6:5.
As you can see from the video this victims child molester was not only not reported but promoted and supported as a member of the congregation. It is apparent the loophole of being in a non-reporting state allowed this pedophile to be protected by Jehovahs Witnesses. This person apparently is not on the database of 27,000 + molesters maintained by the Service Department that remain in large part not reported to authorities. You can read about the database by clicking on the lamb picture on the home page of the silentlambs website. This database was set up for JW Service Department to monitor the confessed child molesters in their organization and provide updates when new children were molested while not being reported to police. These pedophiles remain anonymous and continue to molest children while most members are unaware of their presence in their congregation. For those reasons we created the current listing of congregations where child molesters have been reported by victims as a way to give members a place to go to see if their congregation has been red flagged as a place where molestation has occurred. You can access this list on the home page of silentlambs website. We provide this as a service and update the list on a regular basis when new reports are brought in. We are also in the process of adding new countries where reports have been made as well.
For these reasons we ask that the special talk campaign be supported by all that can. Help all Jehovahs Witnesses see the need to report the crime of child rape and not allow elders to interview their children on matters of police investigation. We feel that if this protects just one child it will be worth the effort to help clarify the importance of protecting children. Thanks to all that have supported silentlambs activities in the past and remember it is only by your tax deductible contributions to silentlambs that we exist. In the end we are proud to give abuse survivors a voice while protecting children. silentlambs