An open letter to the Governing Body

By “Brother Siam”


Editor’s Note: This article was originally published as a post on the JWN forum. With the kind permission of its author, we are republishing it here in a slightly edited format. [Here is a link to the original version.] “Brother Siam” is an active Jehovah’s Witness living on the West Coast of the United States. A Witness his whole life, he served as a pioneer for several years, and as an elder for seven years. He hopes that other elders in his position will read this and reconsider their responsibilities to their assigned flock. He invites your comments…


The Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses
Watchtower Society, Inc.
New York, USA

Dear Brothers,

I served for seven years as an Elder in the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. I recently relinquished this privilege for the following reasons:

1. My whole life I was taught that Armageddon is going to be here any moment and is “imminent.” The direction from the Holy Spirit said that the end was going to come in 1914, 1925, 1975, and before the end of the 20th Century. Your followers would “never grow old” or “fulfill any career.” That didn’t happen. “Imminent” and “soon” stretched on for over 100 years. These interpretations of Bible prophecy have proven to be false, and yet you continue to pretend that they were “directed by Jehovah.”

2. I was taught that there would be very few “anointed” left when the end came and that the number will decrease as the end drew near. The number of “anointed” is actually increasing.

3. I was told that field service is a “life saving work” that must be performed with a “sense of urgency.” So far not one person’s life has been saved. And even though the work is “urgent,” the antiquated method of calling on empty houses is still used as the primary way of trying to reach people. Television, the Internet, email, postal services, and social networking are not being used – even though the effectiveness of these methods has been proven. I doubt that you feel that this is a “life saving work” yourself.

4. We are taught as an organization that “the light gets brighter” as Jehovah blesses his servants with Holy Spirit and increased understanding. Is Jehovah responsible for flip-flopping doctrines such as the “generation” of Matthew 24:34? Organ transplants? Blood transfusions? The identity of the “superior authorities”? Or is it the men who claim to be “inspired”? Despite these changes, each time the credit (or blame) is given to Jehovah. If the members of the Faithful and Discreet Slave class were actually “inspired,” “faithful,” or “discreet,” these teachings would have never changed.

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Are changes coming to the Watchtower?

Editor’s Note: Be sure to check out our new permanent page:
Changes and Challenges Facing the Watchtower.


I’ve been looking at the Watchtower from the outside the organization since the mid-1960s. As many former Jehovah’s Witnesses will attest, you can be away from the religion for many years, but somehow the effects of the cult continue to affect your life forever.

Now that I’ve been out for so many years, certain facts and truths about the Watchtower are clear as a bell to me. I don’t even think twice about them now. And yet I often wonder if I can see these things so clearly, why can’t those who are closer to the organization – those who live within its grasp every day of their lives – why can’t they see it even clearer than I?

Why can’t they find the facts about the Watchtower’s unsavory past? Facts are everywhere, including right in their own publications, CD libraries, and outside resources.

Why don’t they admit that they are bored and unsatisfied with the quality of their meetings, the writing style and depth of research found in their magazines and publications, and the actual amount of love and understanding they get from their local leaders?  Want an example of “boring”? Try listening (and singing) to the songs from their latest Kingdom Songbook.

Why do they allow themselves and their friends and family to be treated like the “sheep” they claim to be? They are often prodded, abused, and sheared by their shepherds – and then thrown to the wolves when they want to leave the flock.

Why do JWs continue to silently ignore the errors of the Watchtower’s teachings? Don’t they ever wonder why a college student can challenge and question a professor – someone obviously more educated than he – and yet not be afraid of being ejected from school? So why can’t Jehovah’s Witnesses question and challenge their leaders whenever something is confusing and just doesn’t ring true? Don’t they rate honest, quality answers to their questions from their “teachers”?

Why don’t JWs stop and consider why it is that the writers of the Watchtower publications, supposedly working under the inspiration of Jehovah’s holy spirit, always use terms like “apparently,” “perhaps,” and (their favorite at the moment) “evidently”? If the writers aren’t sure, perhaps they should save that article for a later date and publish it after they have gathered more specific information or received more “inspiration”?

The fact is that thousands of Jehovah’s Witnesses are leaving the religion every year, just as I did over 40 years ago. Many more want to leave, but are locked in because of the Watchtower’s cruel shunning rules.

It is also a fact that many finally get to a breaking point and leave anyway – if not physically – in mind and spirit. They just go through the motions, but they are not Jehovah’s Witnesses at heart. They are no longer afraid of “being destroyed at Armageddon” – because they know that Armageddon is just a myth. They will die, as we all must, but due to old age, natural causes or disease, or from an accident.  They realize that Jehovah will never drop an asteroid on their house or pick them out of a crowd and zap them with lightning.

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“Dubs for Dummies”

By “Farkel”


Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Worldwide Brotherhood of Jehovah’s Witnesses™,
     There has been much public interest in our beliefs lately, so we
have prepared a very brief summary of our core beliefs in a new pamphlet
which you may offer to interested persons. Hopefully, this pamphlet will
generate enough interest with honest-hearted people and enable you to
start many new Bible studies. Please remember to occasionally use the
Bible for reference in those studies, but also remember the Biblical
counsel on moderation in all things.
     The Faithful and Discreet Slave CLASS through careful prayer and
consideration has come up with a title for this pamphlet that will
surely generate interest and curiosity. We have entitled it
“Dubs For Dummies.”
     To the worldwide body of elders: for instructions on how to distribute
this pamphlet in field service work and informally, please refer to
Watchtower Directive AU-474-392-17, page 17, sub-section 9, paragraph 14.
Make sure the congregation follows these instructions exactly as written.
We offer our warmest Christian regards,

Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, INC.


Dubs for Dummies

If you are an honest-hearted person who is interested in knowing more about the Bible and its wonderful provisions for mankind, we ask you to please consider the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses. We are confident that once you do, you will see that Jehovah’s Witnesses are endeavoring to follow the Bible as our Creator wants us to do. You may have heard about Jehovah’s Witnesses, but also may not know what we believe and practice. We encourage you to take a few minutes and review this brief summary of our main beliefs:

We do not celebrate birthdays because we believe life is sacred and we do not want to put ourselves at risk getting beheaded, as so commonly happens at such gatherings.

We only have one celebration a year. This is the celebration of the Lord’s Evening Meal, held on Nissan 300ZX-turbo of each year. To prepare for this grand celebration, our congregations around the world purchase approximately 80,000 bottles of wine and then assemble together in our Kingdom Halls. No one is allowed to smile at this celebration because it is a “serious celebration.” At the meeting, we fill up glasses with wine, and pass them around so that everyone can look at those glasses of wine. After everyone has had a chance to look at those glasses of wine, the celebration concludes with a prayer. You might be wondering what happens to these 80,000 bottles of wine that everyone had to look at. Well, it is customary to end the evening by purchasing another 2 MILLION bottles of wine and drinking all that wine in various gatherings after the celebration of the Lord’s Evening Meal.

Jehovah’s Witnesses are the only True Christians™ and some day may actually write a book using the name “Jesus” or “Christ” in its title.

We believe that every prophecy in the Bible has a greater fulfillment in our modern day, and that every prophet in the Bible pictured an even greater prophet in our day. Every single one of the good Bible prophecies and all the good prophets in the Bible are fulfilled in and by us and those who govern us. All the bad prophecies and bad prophets apply to everyone else. Jehovah’s Witnesses are a humble people.

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Apostate in the neighborhood

I think the word got out among Jehovah’s Witnesss that there is an “apostate” in my neighborhood. There is someone in my neighborhood that they avoid. They never knock on his door. Nope. Never. I’m sure that God approves of their behavior – because they’ve been told that for them, apostates should be identified – and then ignored.

I live in a very nice, very safe neighborhood in a medium-sized city in central Oregon. For a while, I’d see either JWs or LDS missionaries working this neighborhood at least once a month. During the summer we seemed to get more than our fair share, simply because there is very little traffic on our quiet streets, and the homes are surrounded by tall trees – making the area shady and cool.

During the winter I wouldn’t see any Mormons, but there were frequent JWs knocking on doors. They would often pull up in a big sedan and then work the neighborhood in what seemed to be strange and illogical patterns. I’d watch as they paired off as two sisters or in husband and wife teams.

Shortly after my wife and I moved here four years ago, we were visited by two JW sisters. They appeared to be in their mid-50s, and even though it was midwinter, they were nicely dressed. When they knocked, my wife answered the door. Never a Jehovah’s Witness, she quickly made it clear that she was not interested. Just before shutting the door, however, she suggested that “maybe my husband will talk to you.”

I went to the door and politely listened to their canned presentation, accepted their Watchtower and Awake! magazines, and even gave them a $1 donation. Getting that dollar bill would encourage them to mark me down for an eventual “go-back” or return visit.

As expected, within two weeks one of the sisters and her husband came to the door. I was in my office that looks out over the front lawn, and I watched as they drove up and parked in front of my house. They were driving a large American sedan. For some reason, they sat in the car for nearly twenty minutes. I could tell by the vapor coming out of the tailpipe, that they were sitting there with the engine running. I guessed they were going over their notes and planning their strategy. They finally left their car and walked up to my front door. I knew instinctively that this was the follow-up visit I’d been expecting.

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Douglas’s Story

By Gordon Smith

As ill-luck would have it, I was born in 1964 to an unyielding Witness father who, as I was to discover, was intent on proving himself to be more holy than Swiss cheese. If that weren’t enough to be getting on with, my two older siblings and I regularly suffered the effects of his violent nature as well as his compulsive behaviour. So obsessed was he with his religion, that his life revolved around straining every last self-righteous drop of meaning from the society’s non-stop outpourings.

My earliest memories as a Jehovah’s Witness were that of being dragged mercilessly backwards and forwards to the Kingdom Hall and from door to door, preaching the Grim News of the Kingdom. Even then, the regimen and strict organisation of our lives seemed to me to be bordering on the criminally insane.

In his attempt to knock us into Christian shape, Dad doled out gratuitous discipline as though it was about to go out of fashion. Against today’s liberal standards, all that brute physicality would be totally unacceptable. Against my own personal standards of reasonableness and caring, even back then in 1960’s, my father fell awfully short of the mark.

Once at school, I had no choice than to begin to make comparisons between my own, rather bizarre life, and that of the other children I saw around me, and that was when the real horror of the situation struck me as hard as a black pudding to the nape of the neck. I was a weirdo!

The one shaft of light, however, amongst the impenetrable darkness of life as a Witness was knowing that soon, this system of things, as they frequently called it, was coming to an end. “Just five more years.”, were Dad’s watchwords and he would regularly talk us through the cataclysmic events that were to bring about the end of the world.

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Watchtower “breakdown” on the Highway to Paradise

By Terry Walstrom

All of us at one time or another have owned an automobile that was a real lemon!  While the car may have been  shiny, stylish and totally cool-looking – the problem was it was a piece of crap.

Repair, after repair, after repair! A never-ending spiral of maintenance kept it in the shop more than it was on the road!

You may have really loved that car. In fact – it might well have been a classic – but was totally useless for basic transportation because IT COULD NOT GET YOU WHERE YOU WANTED TO GO!

And that, my friends, applies to the religion known as “Jehovah’s Witnesses!”

The engine which drives this “tour bus to a Heavenly Paradise” keeps breaking down, forcing the bus to the side of the road and making the passengers wait for repairs.

All the while, the tour guide and the bus company offer glowing reassurances that you are “IN GOOD HANDS” and the arrival will be well worth the trip!

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