|Russian JWs Apologise
|A Declaration sent to silentlambs
|To the people of Russia and of the world
D E C L A R A T I O N
of active members of the Jehovahs Witnesses International Organization
We are compelled to write this Declaration because of recent events in the United States that have to do with established incidents of sexual abuse of minors involving some appointed servants (including elders) of the Jehovahs Witnesses religious organization. We want to express our opinion about the situation and about the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Societyposition in this regards.
Our organizations leadership the Governing Body of Jehovahs Witnesses remains silent and pretends that nothing extraordinary is going on. Nevertheless we cannot remain silent any longer, because we see it all, we face these problems in our everyday lives and we feel confused and ashamed when others point us to such incidents. Thus we in Russia feel very uneasy about these facts.
We do recognize clearly that the present internal policies of our organization are favorable and conductive to concealment of such transgressions against law and morals. All who attempt to press for just punishment of the offenders will themselves come under condemnation unless they have enough evidence against an accused person oftentimes presence of two or more eye-witnesses of a given incident is requested, whereas one-man witnesses of crimes committed against close kin are dismissed. Therefore a criminal often goes unpunished and privately continues to commit felonious acts against his victim. We do not know of any single instance when elders of a congregation would turn to the law enforcement agencies with a request to investigate claims of sexual abuse, although crimes of such kind should be investigated by experts.
This probably happens because the elders themselves, as we know, are often involved in similar transgressions (including, to be sure, not only sexual sins, but also deceit, licentiousness, rudeness etc,). Praise God, we do not know of any instances of pedophilia in Russia, but in other situations actions of elders are being portrayed in such a way as if nothing has happened elders being often shielded by fellow elders and/or regional overseers. All this gives rise to feelings of indignation and aversion. We have enough examples to prove our case, but it is not our goal to publish these. Unfortunately it turns out that it has become more important for Jehovahs Witnesses to maintain authority of the elders and of the organization in general than to maintain biblical ethics and morals. Wed be glad to find ourselves mistaken, but thus far all facts speak in favor of such conclusion.
On behalf of all Jehovahs Witnesses indignant with the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society policies we would like to make apologies to those who have suffered from such actions on part of Jehovahs Witnesses. We are truly ashamed of their actions.
We do this because we recognize that the Governing Body of Jehovahs Witnesses, with its usual practice of improper pudency, will never do it. Public should know that among Jehovahs Witnesses both in Russia and in the world there are hundreds and thousands of honest people they see all the lawless deeds of their organization and sincerely mourn it.
We also do recognize that many policies of our organization are not biblical, but rather based upon dogmas put forth by the Governing Body of Jehovahs Witnesses. One result of such unchristian position is their policy of concealment as applied to various crimes committed by members of the organization. Rank-and-file Jehovahs Witnesses are mostly unsatisfied with this policy, but they remain silent for fear of being repressed by the leadership which has only one interest: to maintain a positive public image of the organization.
We do not want to be condemned by God along with those who stubbornly persist in their delusions (2 Thes. 2:11-12). Having put our hope in His mercy and submitted everything under His mighty hand (1 Peter 5:6), we pray for our brothers that God may open their eyes (Rom. 10:1).
Members of the Jehovahs Witnesses International Organization
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