|We ask this statement be delivered to all congregations of Jehovah's Witnesses in the United States
*A cry for help to all men of conscience in the organization of Jehovahs Witnesses
The recent court rulings in NAPA California have given authorities the right to access congregation judicial files that contain any information that provides evidence of the crime of child abuse. Yesterday silentlambs received a report from California. A Jehovahs Witness on the internet revealed that the elders in their family were very angry as they believed their religious rights were being taken away. They also went on to reveal the elders were destroying the records in the NAPA Congregations to stop the judicial system from accessing material that might further convict Jehovahs Witness child molesters.
This is something that silentlambs feels is a very real threat and possibly happening as we speak. The comment above suggests that elders in California are committing criminal acts to protect child molesters. It is defined as obstruction of justice to destroy evidence of criminal behavior. This is verified by the directives in the 1989 body of elder letter that states;
The legal consequences of a breach of confidentiality by the elders can be substantial. If the elders fail to follow the Society's direction carefully in handling confidential matters, such mistakes could result in successful litigation by those offended. Substantial monetary damages could be assessed against the elders or congregation. In some cases where the authorities are involved, certain complications could lead to a fine or imprisonment. These possibilities underscore the need for elders to be discerning and to follow carefully directions provided by the Society.
At any time an elder is confronted with a search warrant (whether given advance notice or not) , the elder should first ask to read the warrant. After reading it he should ask if he can call for legal guidance and then call the Society's Legal Department. If for some reason the Legal Department cannot be contacted, the elders involved should make every effort to obtain the assistance of a local attorney for the purpose of protecting the confidentiality of the records. It may be impossible to stop determined officers from conducting the search authorized by the warrant. Conscientious elders will want to do all they reasonably and peaceably can to preserve the confidentiality of the congregation in harmony with the principle set out in Acts 5:29.
Subpoenas may be issued by a court or in some cases by a governmental agency or an attorney. If an elder receives a subpoena, he should contact the Society's Legal Department immediately. Never turn over records, notes, documents, or reveal any confidential matter sought by subpoena without receiving direction from the Legal Department.
You can read the letter in its entirety at this link, http://www.reexamine.org/BOE/1989-07-01.pdf
As you will note from the above directives elders are advised to not cooperate with legal authorities but instead act at the direction of the Legal Department. What does the Legal Department advise? Note the comment made in a 01/01/01 letter to all Bodies of Elders in the United Kingdom when the government attempted to access judicial files;
Between March and August 2000 circuit overseers discussed with bodies of elders how to bring personal and congregation files in line with the Data Protection Act. By now you should have followed all the instructions contained in the "Checklist for Complying With the Data Protection Act. This involved the destruction of most judicial records, minutes and agendas of elders' meetings that contained personal information, letters of introduction, correspondence relating to individuals, and so forth.
You can read this letter at this link, http://www.silentlambs.org/education/1101boe.cfm
If the judicial files had of been retained it could have provided the written evidence for legal and criminal actions for authorities to act upon. This letter exploited a legal loop hole to prevent that from happening. The evidence shows that the Jehovahs Witnesses Legal Department will go to any deception to protect the Watchtower Corporation and use local congregation elders to accomplish their dirty work.
We greatly appreciate the help of certain courageous elders. For example, the murder letter was sent by one brave former elder, the 4-25-01Body of Elder media letter by another elder who wanted to help, the British Body of Elder letter cited above by another gutsy elder was moved let everyone know. These persons were moved to do something and it has been of great assistance. With the events unfolding above we need this assistance once again.
This matter is not about our stand; it is about what is right. Victims have spilled their guts to make this known, men in high places that have sympathy for this issue need to assist.
It will not change from within, if you want to make a difference you have to stand up for what is right. This is it, the time is now, if you think you need to wait on Jehovah, how do you not know this is an effort guided by Jehovah that will succeed?
When Jehu looked up at the window and asked, "Who is with me?" Those men in "high places" had to make a choice. They had to either do what they knew in their hearts was right or they could have waited on Jehovah. Sometimes you have to grab evil and throw it out the window. While we claim no special dispensation, silentlambs stands before you now and says, "Who is with us?"
You men in high places have a choice to make. Support misguided people or stand up for the children. We ask no one to leave Jehovah but instead, to do what you know is right. If you have the power to make a difference and you choose to wait, can you in good conscience do this knowing that a child might suffer due to "waiting on Jehovah?"
If you can assist, email silentlambs, at firstname.lastname@example.org lets talk, we will protect your confidentiality as we have done many times before, let's see if together we can do something meaningful to resolve this matter. We need any written letter or directive that might indicate the destruction of records as well as any verbal instruction from any Legal Department representative or authority in the organization. Regarding any type of verbal instructions, try to get a voice recording or Tran scripted and include time, place and the names of all parties present, to provide evidence of obstruction of justice.
We ask each man of conscience to think about what you do from this day forward, you can make a difference and help the needed changes come quickly to protect children. We have spoken from our heart now what does your heart move you to do?
Will you help the silent lambs?
We await your response.
*(We ask that this alert letter be delivered to all congregations of Jehovahs Witnesses in the United States)