All Are Invited to Attend
BROOKLYN , NEW YORK
Help Jehovah’s Witnesses see the importance of protecting children.
September 27, 2002
2:00 P. M.
Pierpoint Place & Columbia Heights
For further information see:
You Are Invited to a silentlambs March in Brooklyn New York
On September 27 th 2002 , we are asking for survivors and supporters of those who have suffered abuse within the Jehovah’s Witness community come together for a peaceful march in Brooklyn New York .
At silentlambs we care about children, in addition, we wish to let abuse survivors know that are not alone and have our support. This will be a united statement to the Watchtower organization that they must change policy to protect our children. Also, if you can serve as an eye-witness it is another way to take a stand for righteousness in behalf of all silentlambs.
WHO MAY COME?
EVERYONE! At silentlambs we practice “don’t ask don’t tell” when we gather for important events. We do not care if you are DF, DA, or what you may personally hold as belief. We ask that all simply support those who were abused as Jehovah’s Witnesses without prejudice as to standing in the organization. If you plan to attend please email and let us know how many are in your group to help us to know beforehand how large a group will be there so we may plan accordingly.
The march will start on the west side of Pierpoint Place and Columbia Heights we will then walk about seven blocks to our destination 25 Columbia Heights.
WHAT WILL WE DO?
When we arrive, those who wish as time allows, may make a sixty second statement on how their lives have been affected by abuse within the Jehovah’s Witness organization. All are invited to bring a stuffed lamb for each Jehovah’s Witness victim of abuse they know to leave as a symbolic gesture of how many have been hurt by Watchtower Policy.
If you wish to serve as an eye-witness regarding how the Governing Body has allowed Watchtower Policy to hurt children, you are invited to come forward. Please email your name, address, and telephone to Bill Bowen at firstname.lastname@example.org . Whatever your status regarding the organization you have the right to serve as an eye-witness. Read enclosed letter to the Governing Body for further explanation. Please bring any written documentation such as Watchtower correspondence along with your first hand experience of what happened to your or your family when abuse problems arose. Please be willing to explain how you were hurt by Watchtower Policy.
We have obtained discount hotel and rental car discounts if you wish to attend and spend the night. Please email at email@example.com and let us know how many in your group are planning to attend and we will provide you with a list of accommodations to choose from and how to make arrangements. You can also arrange air travel through www.travelocity.com
If you wish to assist abuse survivors to attend who are financially unable, we are setting aside a special silentlambs travel fund. I am contributing the first $100 to help those who may not be able to afford travel expenses. Your assistance will determine how many we can assistance to be there.
If you need financial assistance to attend, please email as firstname.lastname@example.org Please send your name address and telephone as well as a brief description of what assistance you need in order to participate in the silentlambs march.
I think it is best described by poem that was posted on my guestbook, it goes as follows:
It's not enough to have a dream unless I'm willing to pursue it...
It's not enough to know what's right unless I'm strong enough to do it...
It's not enough to join a crowd, to be acknowledged and accepted...
I must be true to my ideals, even if I'm left out and rejected...
It's not enough to learn the truth unless I also learn to live it...
It's no enough to reach for love unless I care enough to give it...
In conclusion, it is an honor to be associated with those who speak and take a stand for what is right. Your efforts to attend will make a difference. Abuse survivors are the real heroes of silentlambs, with hearts like a lion and courage like David, their actions protect children they will never know. Our united efforts will protect children who have yet to be born.
June 6, 2002
Service Committee/Service Department
25 Columbia Heights
Brooklyn, NY 11201
I am writing to address a serious matter involving the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The basis of this letter is found in the scriptures at Galatians 2:11-14. In those verses it describes the occasion when Paul confronted Peter for wrongdoing. The humble reaction of Peter not only showed his repentance but his willingness to follow theocratic direction.
It is interesting to note in a recent letter dated February 7, 2002, this position was reiterated by the head of the Department of Public Information, J. R. Brown. Therein Brother Brown states, “Our Governing Body is willing to resolve differences of opinion within the framework of the congregation and according to Scriptural principles.” This is a welcome affirmation of how an organization directed by God’s spirit should operate. No one is above God’s law, even as Peter who walked with Christ did not consider himself above reproof from a fellow elder when he became involved in wrongdoing.
Wrongdoing is a serious matter within God’s organization. By the directions we are offered, no one is above the directives offered by His organization and anyone who knows of serious wrongdoing and does not report it would in effect, “share in the sin” thus making them subject to a similar judgment for not reporting the matter. To provide the basis for this opinion I refer to the 1985 Watchtower where it makes this statement:
w85 11/15 21-2 Do Not Share in the Sins of Others ***
Elders must also be alert not to protect one another or ministerial servants if one of them has committed a serious sin that could result in disfellowshipping. They should follow the principle outlined by Paul, who wrote: “Never lay your hands hastily upon any man ; neither be a sharer in the sins of others; preserve yourself chaste.”—1 Timothy 5:22.
Today I write this letter as a fellow elder and Jehovah’s Witness in good standing. Why do I make that statement? In December of the year 2000 I made public my decision to resign as an elder in protest of Watchtower Policy regarding how child molestation was handled in the Christian congregation. While on December 31, of that year the Circuit Overseer informed me that he accepted my resignation, yet to date, no announcement to the congregation has been made in that regard. By protocol within the organization it would appear as a result I remain an elder until that announcement is made. Please refer to the June 28, 1999 letter to All Bodies of Elders where it states:
June 6, 2002
“An announcement of deletion should be made to the congregation after receiving from the Society the returned S-2 form or an S-52 letter indicating that the recommendation has been approved. In such a case, the brother should be informed of his deletion before the announcement is made.”
So according to this information the deletion does not take effect until the announcement is read to the local congregation and I am informed of it being given, thus it appears that along with being a Jehovah‘s Witness in good standing I also remain an elder. It is true this is a loophole but you might compare it to the loophole used by Watchtower Legal to avoid reporting child molestation in 33 States. As they use their loophole to protect the image of the organization, I use my loophole to try and protect children.
Therefore with the above thoughts in mind I as a Jehovah’s Witness and fellow elder wish to make the following charges against the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses:
1. Apostasy-The Governing body has taken action against the true worship of Jehovah and the established order among his dedicated people (Jer.17:13; 23:15; 28.15,16 ; 2 Thess. 2: 9,10) They have deliberately spread and stubbornly held to teachings contrary to Bible truth in the establishment of an organizational Policy that hurts children.
2. Loose Conduct-The Governing Body has shown a. disregard for theocratic order in their failure to protect the flock. ( Gal. 5:19:2 Pet. 2:7; w83 3/15 p.31; w73 9115 pp, 574-6; it-2 p. 264 )
3. Causing Divisions-The Governing Body has committed deliberate action to disrupt the unity of the congregation and undermined the confidence of the brothers in Jehovah's arrangement by their inaction on matters concerning child abuse and battered women. ( Rom. 16:17, 18; Titus 3: 10,11 )
The actions of the Governing Body in establishing Watchtower Policy with regard to how child molestation is handled in the Christian Congregation at the direction of the Service Department, Legal Department, District Overseers, Circuit Overseers, and local elders, has broken God's law and destroyed the lives of many faithful brothers and sisters.
Therefore I formerly request to resolve this matter “within the framework of the congregation and according to Scriptural principles,” by calling for a judicial committee to be convened in Brooklyn, New York on September 27, 2002 of three impartial elders who are spiritual men with no fear for standing up for righteousness, I will bring several hundred eye-witnesses who will provide extensive evidence in the form of written documentation, personal experience, and eye-witness testimony, to accuse the Governing
June 6, 2002
Body that by their policy on child molestation they are guilty of racketeering, witness tampering, conduct unbecoming a Christian and crimes against children.
It is my hope the judicial committee will be able to find acts of repentance commensurate with their wrongdoing committed against children. If so then Public Reproof will help the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses to know the Governing Body has become truly repentant humble men and will act in the best interests of Jehovah's Witness children. On the other hand if proper works of commensurate repentance cannot be found or if they try to minimize the wrong, the Governing Body should be disf'ellowshipped and not reinstated until they take responsibility for their actions.
The date has been set months in advance to give the Governing Body time to make appropriate arrangements to be present as well as prepare for their defense and also to give the witnesses against them sufficient time to make travel arrangements.
It is my optimism the Governing Body much like the Apostle Peter, will humbly address these matters in the best interests of the entire organization so as to bring God's blessing and holy spirit in full flow upon his people. I offer you ten days from the date of this letter to respond in a timely manner, along with this letter goes my warm Christian love.
Very truly yours,
William H. Bowen on behalf of
PO Box 311
Calvert City, KY 42029
cc. Governing Body