2012 Memorial Protest Planned in UK

On the evening of April 5, 2012 a protest will be held outside the headquarters of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society of Britain (IBSA). A protest representative informed the editor of Ex-JW.com that the group plans to protest the Watchtower’s harsh and unloving rules for shunning former members. They also plan to expose the Watchtower’s unfair and unworkable “Two Witness Rule” that protects pedophiles and criminals who are Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Organizers are asking that anyone wanting to speak out against the Watchtower’s unscriptural and illegal teachings to join them. Show up in front of the Society’s UK Headquarters building the evening of the Jehovah’s Witness Memorial Celebration, Thursday, April 5th at 7:00 PM.


IBSA House, The Ridgeway, London NW7 (Stacey Harris) / CC BY-SA 2.0
IBSA House

The Ridgeway

Mill Hill

London, NW7 1RN

The Memorial Celebration will officially begin sometime after sundown and last about 90 minutes. Protest organizers would like volunteers to show up as early as possible. “The public needs to understand that the Watchtower Society is hiding the truth and lying about Jehovah’s Witnesses’ unfair and illegal practices within local Kingdom Halls in the UK and the rest of the world.”

Read More


Expanded JW.org, Mini-Mags Announced

The Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses has sent out a letter to all congregations worldwide announcing major changes in how it will distribute the “good news of Jehovah’s Kingdom” starting in June 2012.

Dated April 2, 2012, the letter states that elders will make an official announcement about the contents of the letter after the Watchtower Study during that week. Insiders leaked copies of the letter in several languages, allowing several Jehovah’s Witness discussion forums and websites to publish excerpts and PDF versions of the original letter to their readers on March 24.

The letter describes how the Watchtower Society plans to expand its use of the Internet in the next few months. The organization plans to combine its three official websites under the JW.org banner and then deactivate Watchtower.org and JW-media.org domains. The letter states, “The redesigned jw.org Web site is planned for release around the beginning of June 2012. It will paint an appealing picture of our preaching work, branch offices, Kingdom Halls, and conventions…Selected features from our magazines that can be presented more effectively on the Web site will now be published only on jw.org…In addition, a series of online articles available only on the Web site will present concise, clear answers to questions about the Bible and Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

Emphasizing and expanding its Internet presence is a major change in direction for the Governing Body and the Society. Historically opposed to the Internet since the “world-wide web (WWW)” first appeared in the late 1980s, the Watchtower has  written many articles warning its members against using MySpace.com, Facebook, Twitter, and other social websites. Personal computer use and accessing the Internet has been a frequent subject at assemblies and conventions for several years. Convention speakers have warned Jehovah’s Witnesses about visiting “apostate” websites and forums that might expose the Watchtower’s past errors, false prophecies, and embarrassing leadership. In fact, many local congregations have taken a hard-line against the Internet. Some Jehovah’s Witnesses have been reprimanded or disfellowshipped for discovering facts about the Society on the Internet and then making the mistake of bringing their questions to local elders or writing letters to headquarters. The Governing Body has labeled any online resources that discuss Watchtower history and teachings not owned by the Society as “apostate sites” – even if former Jehovah’s Witnesses do not run them.

Even though current versions are hardly more than pamphlets, the letter states that starting with the January 2013 issues, both the Awake! and public editions of the Watchtower shrink from 32 to 16 pages. The Watchtower places the blame for this change on their difficulty of “acquiring paper and equipment for printing.” One benefit mentioned in the same paragraph is an expanded worldwide readership. “Since each issue will contain less material, it may be possible for more translation teams to be able to translate every issue of the Awake! and the public edition of the Watchtower, thus increasing the number of languages in which they are available.”

The “study edition” of the Watchtower will continue as a 32-page magazine. Because this “private” version is limited for distribution only to active Witnesses and their families, there are rumors that the Our Kingdom Ministry may discontinue as a separate publication in the future and its essential articles included within the “study” Watchtower.

Read More


Menlo Park Kingdom Hall Lawsuit Dismissed

By the Editor

A federal judge dismissed the Menlo Park Kingdom Hall lawsuit last week due to filing and jurisdictional issues.

On January 6, 2012 the Chief Magistrate Judge for The United States District Court for Northern California, Maria-Elena James, dismissed a lawsuit filed in August 2010 by Jonathan Cobb Sr. and Walter Arlen St. Clair.

Readers of Ex-JW.com not familiar with this case should take time to read earlier articles outlining the events leading to the filing of this lawsuit along with the backgrounds of the plaintiffs and the defendants. You can find links to those articles by typing “Menlo Park” in the search box in the far right sidebar.

The judge’s decision to dismiss was not related to the issues in dispute or any of the civil or criminal acts alleged in the case. She dismissed the lawsuit due to the lack of federal jurisdiction over the issues involved. In her written opinion, she pointed out that her court did not have the authority to rule on most of the charges outlined in the plaintiffs lawsuit.

Judge James did not make any comments on the validity of the plaintiffs’ charges, nor was her ruling a vindication for the actions of any of the parties involved (including alleged criminal acts by the defendants). Instead, she ruled that the plaintiffs’ claims fell outside of the federal court’s jurisdiction, although some criminal and civil (torts) complaints might be successfully pursued in state courts. She also pointed out that because the plaintiffs had not asked for specific monetary damages (the court has a minimum threshold of $75,000 in these kinds of cases), their case did not meet those federal court guidelines.

You can read the judge’s written decision in full by clicking on this link or the one at the end of this article.

Read More


Registration Turned Off – and On

Due to a potential “denial of service” attack, I turned off subscriber registration services back on March 14, 2011.

Since then I’ve installed some new protective software that will allow normal registration to resume. We’ll see how it works over the next few weeks. There continue to be constant attacks by spammers and other nefarious hackers with nothing better to do than to try to disrupt the work of others. Sites like Ex-JW.com are especially vulnerable because there are those, including the Watchtower Society, who would love to shut us down any way they can – in ways legal or illegal – as they see fit.

——– from earlier version of this article ——-

Let’s face it: A lot of groups and individuals don’t like websites that expose the problems with the Watchtower Society and its followers, Jehovah’s Witnesses. Every so often, sites like this come under attack and must take defensive and protective measures to make sure that our servers are not damaged and that our readers are not endangered with computer viruses or spam.

Ex-JW.com has several built-in defenses and so far they have worked well. As editor and webmaster, I constantly monitor the site to look for any abnormality or attacks against the site. Unfortunately, all the best defenses in the industry can not protect this site or other against the constant barrage of attacks by spammers, hackers, and criminal organizations who dedicate themselves to damaging the work of others.

You can still comment and send messages through our comment form. I will reopen registration after I feel confident that the danger has passed. For most of you who have been subscribers for some time, your subscription status is still active.

I hope this does not discourage anyone from coming to this site, but I’ve taken this action to protect all of my readers, new and old.


Menlo Park scandal on Cult Free Radio

The ongoing scandal surrounding the July 2010 merger of the Menlo Park and Redwood City (California, USA) Kingdom Halls will be discussed in an upcoming UStream podcast hosted by “MadSweeney” on Cult Free Radio, Saturday evening, May 28, 2011 at 10:00 PM, EDT / 7:00 PDT.

Our editor, John Hoyle, who has followed and reported this story since it broke last August, will be a guest on the show. In addition to discussing the background story, he will also report on late breaking developments.

“Cult Free Radio,” is the brainchild of a former Jehovah’s Witness known as “MadSweeney.” It’s intended to be a new online tool for educating the public about the dangers of cultish religions. While its true that the subject of Jehovah’s Witnesses will come up often, Sweeney, the host and moderator, has made it clear that his program is not just about the JWs and the Watchtower Society. He is out to identify and expose the dangers of any cult or religion that seeks to control the minds of its members, often destroying lives and families.

The premier of the podcast took place Saturday, April 30, 2011 at 10:00 PM EDT. There were some technical glitches during that first show, but host “MadSweeney” says that he has worked out most of the details and feels that his program is “ready for primetime.”


Read our special interview with MadSweeney!

CULT FREE RADIO (Interview)


Listeners may simply monitor the show by accessing it through their browsers, or they can register and then enter social commentary with the host and other listeners as the program progresses. Anyone wishing to call in may do so by using Skype, a free communications service. Skype is available free for computers and most iPad, iPhone, and Android cell telephones. There are user guides available on the UStream website.

To listen to the show, access the site at:

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/cult-free-radio

Skype callers can call in to “cultfreeradio” after the show begins and MadSweeney opens up the lines for discussion.

Read More


An Interesting Twist in a Child Custody Case

By Richard E. Kelly

Although a bit apprehensive at first, I was recently asked to help a non-JW mom in a child custody hearing. Due to the story of my own childhood, Growing Up in Mama’s Club – A Childhood Perspective of Jehovah’s Witnesses, she believed I could help convince the court that her three school-aged children should not be baptized as JWs, if that was their choice, until they were 18 years old.

She’d married a disfellowshipped JW and early on made a non-binding verbal agreement with her husband that their kids would not be raised as JWs. After their divorce, the dad had a change of heart. He was reinstated and began attending meetings sporadically. Several months ago, he started taking the kids to the Kingdom Hall on the Sundays he had custody. As soon as the mom found out, she filed a complaint.

The mom did her homework and provided good documentation to the court to support her concerns. Then she petitioned for me and another ex-Bethelite to be her expert witnesses. The questions and our testimony were to be as follows:

Read More