Do Jehovah’s Witnesses have a pedophile problem? I will let the following sources of information answer that question for me. You can also read the full article at Michigan Skeptics. The sheer volume of it – including advocacy groups in multiple countries – says plenty.
It should be noted that the Watchtower Society has, in various ways and at different times, put information out to the public regarding its official stance on child abuse. Their statements are, as with most things, pretty devoid of meaning and full of obfuscation. Nothing has really changed. Nothing good at any rate. Internally, the organization seems to have dug in its heels even deeper than before.
Many have been disfellowshipped (excommunicated and shunned) from Jehovah’s Witnesses without any or with little possibility of defend themselves just because they tried to stand up for molested children and protect them from pedophiles within Jehovah’s Witnesses organization.
If you question Jehovah’s Witnesses about these things you cannot rely on them telling the truth not even in the court. “While malicious lying is definitely condemned in the Bible, this does not mean that a person is under obligation to divulge truthful information to people who are not entitled to it.” – Insight-2 p. 245
Do Jehovah’s Witnesses protect pedophiles within the organization? Yes, they do. The policy of Jehovah’s Witnesses is that if a congregation has a known pedophile only a few of the elders in the congregation knows about it. Today the elders, that know they have pedophiles in their congregation, are not allowed to warn and protect the congregation. This is the current policy of the Watch Tower.
There have been several reasons that paedophiles have been able to find sanctuary amongst Jehovah’s Witnesses and that the Watchtower Society is now being held accountable for the actions of its members. Most damaging, and described in detail below, were the following:
The two witness rule to establish Scriptural crimes
The three year rule for sins of elders
Other concepts also at play have been:
Worldly wisdom cannot be trusted
Reproach must not be bought on Jehovah’s Organization – Witnesses are expected to solve problems within
Everyone must engage in preaching
Since 1997, there has been improvement in Watchtower policies regarding child abuse, particularly due to pressure from the media and legal cases, and included are the latest Watchtower regulations for each point.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses have settled nine lawsuits alleging church policies protected men who sexually abused children for many years.
Inside sources reveal 23,720 reported/unreported child molesters on file at Jehovah’s Witness headquarters in New York
JW Survivors is a volunteer not-for-profit community based victim advocacy group for survivors of the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses within Australia. The group was founded by Steven Unthank. The seeds of JW Survivors were planted by current and former members of the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and their families, in response to the Victorian Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and other Organisations, and an extensive submission made in relation to the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses and their administrative controlling corporation, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Australia.
Documents and court cases relating to child abuse within the church of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT: December 1, 2012
$3 Billion class action lawsuit on behalf of Jehovah’s Witnesses children
A $3 Billion class action lawsuit is being launched in Australia on behalf of up to 6,160 children within the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Documents relating to the class action reveal over 14,000 serious criminal breaches of mandatory child protection laws, committed against these children by elders and “ministers of religion” within the Church of Jehovah’s Witnesses over the past 4 years.
Documents and court records relating to the case of “Candace Conti v. Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York”.