Articoli con tag testimone di Geova
3 Luglio 2015
Le vicende giudiziarie che coinvolgono i Testimoni di Geova, non sono eccezionali, tutt’altro. “Quando si segue la questione internazionalmente, ci sono casi ogni settimana” afferma Sandrine Mathen, analista del CIAOSN (Centro di informazione e consulenza sulle organizzazioni settarie nocive). In Belgio sono attualmente in corso due procedimenti. Il primo portato avanti da Jacques Lejeune, un abitante di Liegi che è stato un testimone di Geova per 17 anni. Di professione contabile ha scoperto elementi dubbi nella contabilità della sua congregazione. L’uomo lo ha fatto presente e questo ha comportato la sua espulsione dalla comunità.
“L’ostracismo è estremamente violento” spiega Sandrine Mathen “da un giorno all’altro i membri della comunità non possono più rivolgere parola alla persona esclusa, cambiano strada quando la incontrano, etc.“.
Jacques Lejeune ha sporto querela contro l’associazione dei Testimoni di Geova denunciandone i comportamenti discriminatori ai sensi della legge sulla discriminazione. Tra la sentenza del tribunale di prima istanza di Liegi nel 2004 e quello della Corte d’appello di Mons nel 2014, il caso continua a trascinarsi. Nel frattempo è stato peraltro rinviato alla Corte d’appello di Bruxelles.
Un secondo caso analogo è quello portato avanti da Patrick Haeck, un abitante di Gand, i cui genitori si “sono convertiti” quando aveva 7 anni. Non avendo mai conosciuto altro è diventato anch’egli testimone di Geova. Fino a quando non ha iniziato a mettere in discussione la sua fede e ha fatto similmente presente il suo desiderio di parlare con la polizia in merito ad alcuni fatti di pedofilia nella congregazione. E’ stato immediatamente espulso quattro anni or sono. Patrick Haeck ha denunciato a sua volta le condizioni disumane dell’espulsione e ha presentato querela per diffamazione, ingiurie e violazione della legge anti-discriminazione.
Molti casi di pedofilia in seno all’organizzazione geovista sono stati riferiti dalla cronaca un po’ ovunque nel mondo: Stati Uniti, Canada, Francia, etc.
E’ soprattutto la gestione dei casi di pedofilia che ha portato i Testimoni di Geova dinnanzi ai tribunali. La loro politica è in effetti quella di chiedere prima l’opinione della sede dell’organizzazione di New York. Nel corso di molti anni quest’ultima ha raccomandato di non allertare le istituzioni per non danneggiare l’immagine del movimento. All’interno delle congregazioni alcuni pedofili sono stati dunque assolutamente tollerati e quelli esclusi possono anche essere reintegrati dando prova di grande pentimento.
Inoltre le politiche interne dei Testimoni di Geova esigono due testimoni. Un bambino solo che denuncia non è dunque preso in considerazione
Libera traduzione a cura favisonlus dell’articolo a firma di Elodie Blogie, “Loi et loi divine“, pubblicato su LE SOIR al seguente link
Regno Unito. Alta corte di Londra condannata la Società Torre di Guardia a risarcire una donna abusata sessualmente da bambina da un servitore di ministero dei Testimoni di Geova
19 Giugno 2015
Una donna che non può essere nominata ha ottenuto dall’Alta corte di Londra un importante risarcimento in relazione a una causa civile intentata per una vicenda di abusi sessuali commessi a suo danno da Peter Stewart, un servitore di ministero dei Testimoni di Geova. La vittima, secondo quanto testimoniato, fu ripetutamente molestata quando aveva tra i 4 e i 9 anni di età. La chiesa era informata delle accuse mosse contro Stewart poiché questi aveva abusato anche di un altro bambino nella comunità religiosa ma nonostante gli atti di pedofilia perpetrati, l’uomo aveva potuto continuare a essere membro dell’organizzazione e a ricoprire il suo incarico dichiarandosi pentito. Stewart era stato anche condannato nel 1991 per il reato di stupro, in un caso non correlato ma nel 2001, quando stava per essere interrogato dalla polizia a seguito delle accuse della donna, era deceduto. L’Alta corte di Londra ha ascoltato il drammatico racconto della vittima che a causa delle sofferenze subite aveva tentato di porre fine alla sua vita. In una dichiarazione resa alla BBC, la donna ha inoltre affermato che i Testimoni di Geova considerano gli abusi sessuali un peccato che deve essere risolto internamente all’organizzazione. Si tratta della prima causa civile intentata contro l’organizzazione religiosa nel Regno Unito. La Società Torre di Guardia dovrà ora risarcire i danni e un pagamento intermedio per le spese legali ammontante a £455,000
Peter Stewart admitted to victim’s mother he was a pervert, but when church elders failed to act she went to the police
A woman traumatised by five years of sexual abuse as a child by a Jehovah’s Witness minister has won £275,000 damages at the high court, in what is said to be the first case against the church in the UK.
The woman, now 29, who can only be named as A, was sexually abused from the age of four by Peter Stewart, a ministerial servant at the Limehurst Congregation in Loughborough, where her family worshipped.
The abuse, which began in 1989, stopped in 1994 after Stewart was arrested and jailed for abusing another child in the congregation and another young girl.
The victim remained silent at the time, and her mother gave evidence of Stewart’s good character at his trial. It was only in 1999, just before Stewart’s release, that A told her mother what had happened.
When her mother wrote to Stewart with the allegations, he admitted he was a pervert and told her he was sorry for the hurt and damage he had caused. She contacted an elder at the church and, when nothing was done, she went to the police.
Officers interviewed A in May 2001, but Stewart died a month later.
She claimed that the trustees of the Blackbrook Congregation and the Southwood Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Loughborough, the successors of the Limehurst Congregation, were vicariously liable for the assaults.
She also claimed they were liable for the actions of the Limehurst elders who, in 1990, failed to take steps to protect her once they knew Stewart had assaulted another child in the congregation.
The defendants claimed that because Stewart was now dead, A had brought her claim too late and they were not responsible, although they accepted he did sexually abuse her.
After a hearing in London in February, Mr Justice Globe said on Friday: “In my judgment the relationship between elders and ministerial servants and the Jehovah’s Witnesses is sufficiently close in character to one of employer/employee that it is just and fair to impose vicarious liability.”
James Counsell, the victim’s barrister, said A’s whole family were Jehovah Witnesses. A’s mother trusted and respected Stewart as a ministerial servant of the organisation, and after he befriended her she left him alone with her daughter.
The abuse took place during bible study lessons and involved touching and sex acts in the living room of A’s home and in the loft at Stewart’s home.
The judge said: “Throughout, he told the claimant it was their secret and that she should say nothing about what was happening. He told her that she would be damned as a sinner if she said anything to anyone.”
A has since been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. She had hoped to become a lawyer, but after her mental health deteriorated she did not get the qualifications she had hoped for and has not been able to hold down a steady job.
She said the abuse has affected her relationships, “sexual and otherwise”. She once became pregnant but had an abortion. She eventually married in August 2008, and although she and her husband love each other she feels unable to have children.
Globe said that all of the elders and ministerial servants who had given evidence were horrified by the abuse and showed remorse that a Jehovah’s Witness should have caused such harm to A.
He said that, at the very least, the Limehurst elders assumed a responsibility to warn the congregation about Stewart but, despite their good intentions, A’s mother and her children were either not warned at all or were not adequately warned.
After the judgment, A said: “The procedures the Jehovah’s Witnesses follow for dealing with child sexual abuse are the same as it was when I was abused.The one thing I would like to come from this case is that they will feel forced to change their child safeguarding procedures.”
The damages and an interim payment of £455,000 towards A’s legal costs will be met by the trustees of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.
FONTE: THE GUARDIAN
ARGENTINA. Rifiuta trasfusione di sangue e muore una donna Testimone di Geova vittima di un incidente stradale
3 Giugno 2015
ARGENTINA – CORRIENTES. DECEDUTA LA DONNA TESTIMONE DI GEOVA CHE AVEVA RIFIUTATO LA TRASFUSIONE DI SANGUE
Il direttore dell’Ospedale “Gral. San Martin,” Alfredo Revidatti, ha confermato il decesso di Mercedes Pucheta, la donna sessantenne, testimone di Geova, che aveva rifiutato una trasfusione di sangue. La sig,ra Pucheta svolgeva il mestiere di venditore ambulante ed era stata vittima il 28 maggio scorso di un incidente stradale, avvenuto all’incrocio di due vie nella città di Corrientes. Le sue condizioni erano apparse subito critiche e la paziente necessitava di un urgente intervento chirurgico. Entrata in coma, i familiari Testimoni di Geova si erano opposti all’operazione al cervello, mostrando il documento con il quale Mercedes Pucheta aveva precedentemente espresso la sua volontà di non ricevere trasfusioni. Il direttore dell’ospedale si è detto profondamente rattristato, poiché avrebbe potuto salvare la vita della paziente, anche se ha voluto precisare che le convinzioni e credenze religiose devono essere rispettate. Ha tuttavia auspicato che la provincia di Corrientes possa sviluppare un protocollo di intervento per casi simili.
FONTI DELLA NOTIZIA:
Dopo il video e l’articolo di The Independent, il post della studentessa che ha raccontato ai compagni di classe perché considera i Testimoni di Geova, una religione che distrugge vite e famiglie
25 Maggio 2015
I’m the Student Who Spoke About My Jehovah’s Witness Past on YouTube
This is a guest post written by Brie.
My name is Brie. I’m 18 and a senior at Lincoln High School in Manitowoc, Wisconsin. I graduate next week. And until I spoke about my religious history in class, in a video you might have seen online, I’d never shared that information publicly. My classmates were shocked that I was ever a Jehovah’s Witness.
My mother was raised in the JW faith. My father was not, but he joined when I was born. And I was the perfect little Jehovah’s Witness girl, baptized at age 12 and attending congregation meetings every Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday. (Recently it has been reduced to only two meetings a week.) Saturdays were my day to go out in field service (knocking on doors), though I did that even more during the summer. setting a goal for myself of 40 hours a week.
There were always small things about the religion that didn’t make sense to me at a young age, questions I couldn’t get straight answers for: How will there be room on Earth for all of the Jehovah’s Witnesses that ever lived? Where did all the animals on Earth come from if evolution isn’t true (since we know they didn’t fit on one ark)?
There were four big problems that really made me question my faith.
The first was teaching it to others. The Our Kingdom Ministry pamphlets my family received every month offered suggestions for how to present the literature in field service and I was great at reciting the presentation… exactly as written. I couldn’t ad-lib, because I didn’t feel like I knew enough about the religion to answer tough questions. If someone took the literature, you were supposed to take down their address and return later to encourage them to study the Bible with us. I would never check back because I worried about what they might ask me. In the classroom, I’m always the student who wants everything explained in detail, because I don’t like talking about something unless I truly understand it. But unlike my teachers, the Church elders refused to answer my questions.
I know why I felt that way now that I’m a bit older: Our answers were shallow and scripted. Even if devout followers wanted something more in-depth, we wouldn’t receive it because we were told not to question the teachings. (On top of that, it’s forbidden to look elsewhere for answers.) While there are websites dedicated to exposing the Jehovah’s Witnesses, we were told the people on those sites were being used by Satan to ruin our faith. All of the information out there was just brushed aside by active Witnesses as lies.
The second thing that made me question the religion was its stance on higher education. I have always done well in my classes, but Jehovah’s Witnesses frown upon people pursuing higher education. The reasoning, we’re told, is that life on Earth is temporary so we should be dedicated to Jehovah while we’re here. Any time spent pursuing “worldly” things is wasted and there would be plenty of time to learn in Paradise. But I didn’t want to serve tables the rest of my life. Education meant a lot more to me than they wanted it to.
Then there was the isolation from my father. He was Disfellowshipped by the Church six years ago. Even though he was excommunicated, I never stopped talking to him. (Unlike the God I was taught to worship, I had unconditional love for him.) But for years, that made me feel really guilty. I felt bad for loving my father! Members of the Church told me that by isolating him, he would be motivated to come back… but that’s not a chance I wanted to take. I knew he wasn’t going to return to the faith and I wasn’t ready to cut all ties with him. Plus, if he had given up his chance to go to Paradise, I wanted to make sure my limited time on Earth was spent with him.
The final straw came during in 9th grade when one of my friends and I went to the beach. I had been texting a boy from another JW congregation and sent him a picture of us on the beach… which meant we were in bikinis. Unfortunately, his mother went through his phone and came across our “horrible” photo. It led to Church elders coming over to my house to counsel me.
They told me I was guilty of making him masturbate. They even made me admit I got him to do it. That was never my intention, obviously, but having that conversation with Church leaders may be the most embarrassing moment of my life. I don’t think my face has ever turned so red. They made me feel dirty for enjoying my time at the beach and chatting with a friend — my other picked up on that, too, and couldn’t believe I was in trouble with the congregation for the crime of wearing a bathing suit.
After that, I was done. I no longer wanted to identify as a Jehovah’s Witness.
I’m actually not Disfellowshipped yet. But I know it’s coming because of my speech (I’m sure this post won’t help, either). Saying anything against the religion is considered apostasy and I know I’ll have to deal with the aftermath of my speaking out sooner or later. I just hope it doesn’t happen before my graduation next week.
I love my family and want them to be there when I cross the stage — but if religion gets in the way, that may not happen. I want them to be proud of my one last time before they cut me out of their lives. They will take this speech very personally and feel that I am speaking out against them and the other members of this religion. To be clear, I don’t hate Jehovah’s Witnesses. My frustration is with the Organization. They’ve destroyed families and have many secrets. While most members, including the ones in my family, are kind people who believe they’re simply doing God’s Will, I think they’re victims, just as I was. Maybe they’ll realize that one day. Until that happens, though, I know my family members will excommunicate me in order to “save” themselves (and, in their eyes, me).
I don’t know how anyone can prepare for that. It’s not something I’m looking forward to. It’s going to hurt. Bad.
I’m not an atheist, by the way, but I’m not exactly a believer either. My views on that are still developing. For now, I think there’s something else out there even if I’m not sure that affects me.
Either way, I’m pretty sure that Higher Power, whatever it is, doesn’t give a damn about whether or not I’m wearing a swimsuit.
That brings me to what happened in my public speaking class.
My teacher, Mr. Hansen, told us to write a persuasive speech. He pointed out that speeches are much more persuasive when you’re using something you value to drive your ideas. It made me think about what I value in life and what my class needed to know about.
My faith has been a part of me my entire life. When my relatives found out my mother belonged to some ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses support groups, they stopped speaking to her. So that idea of love being conditional seemed very relevant to me. I told my mom that’s what I wanted to talk about in class and she loved it. She even told her support groups about it, and some of the other members volunteered to share their stories (which my mom could attest to) with me for my speech.
I warned Mr. Hansen that I might go over time during my presentation, but I really didn’t want to cut anything out. I didn’t want to jeopardize the message or the stories those ex-JWs had shared with me.
The only reason I recorded the speech was so I could share it with my mother and the women I interviewed. I figured only a few people would see it so I just asked one of my classmates to record it on my phone. When I was done, the class was quiet and one girl told me it was beautiful. I felt like the message had come through.
My mother and her friends were also moved by the speech and wanted to share it with some friends, so I made a YouTube account and uploaded the video.
That’s why I was shocked that more than 1,000 people had seen it within a few hours. I don’t even know how to comprehend the fact that it’s now at 350,000 views. I can’t believe people actually care about what I have to say, but I’m glad the speech resonated with them.
In case you’re wondering, I don’t know what grade I got on my speech. But if it’s not an “A,” I might show Mr. Hansen the YouTube numbers…
I’ve been shocked by the response for a couple of reasons. One is that people are sending messages at all. I didn’t expect that. The other is that they’re overwhelmingly more positive and supportive than negative. I know how cruel the Internet can be (especially to young women) but thousands of people have told me they’re proud of me and support my cause. I’m amazed and still in disbelief… given that it’s only been a couple of days since a close friend of mine told me I’m all over Reddit.
I didn’t even know what Reddit was, but she told me, “Brie, that’s where things go viral.”
My mother is very proud of me. When she saw how big this got, she asked me if I would have posted the video knowing it would explode like this. I told I would have. If I’m going to be Disfellowshipped eventually, might as well speak my mind and try to make a difference. I’m also a little nervous, though, because I fear my relatives will find out… and the result will be messy.
Until that happens, I’m glad I did this.
Brie will be attending Carroll University this fall to pursue a degree in physician assistant studies.
Regno Unito. Giudice dispone temporaneo affidamento di un bimbo di 7 anni gravemente turbato dall’indottrinamento cui l’avrebbe sottoposto la madre Testimone di Geova.
23 Maggio 2015
Indoctrinated son ‘troubled’ by mother’s religion is put into care
It was feared that the seven-year-old boy’s mother, a Jehovah’s Witness, was causing him emotional harm by ‘immersing’ him in her beliefs
By John Bingham, Social Affairs Editor
A devout mother made a legally binding promise, backed up with the threat of criminal sanctions, never to talk to her son about her religion, take him to church or even say grace at meals in a doomed attempt to stop him being taken into care, amid claims that she was “indoctrinating” him, a judge has disclosed.
The seven-year-old boy, who cannot be named, has been placed with foster carers because of fears that his mother, a Jehovah’s Witness, was causing him emotional harm by “immersing” him in her beliefs.
The child, who teachers described as “troubled, angry and confused”, rejected his own father because he said he “could not be with people who didn’t believe in Jehovah”.
He appeared fixated with the idea that his father, who is separated from his mother but had shared parental responsibilities, would not be “going to Paradise” and told adults he “did not want to go to Daddy’s because he was not a Jehovah”.
Staff at his school became alarmed when he cut up teaching materials in RE class because he could not bear learning about mainstream Christianity.
One child psychologist who spoke to him for the proceedings reported how he would react physically even at mentions of the idea that Jesus died on a cross or references to the Bible.
Teachers said he also rejected other children, had only a small friendship circle and described him as “one of the most worrying children in our school”.
Details of the case were disclosed in a written judgment handed down by Judge Clifford Bellamy, after a hearing at the Family Court, sitting in Leicester, in which he set out his reasons for making an interim care order.
He found that the boy had suffered emotional harm as a result both of the conflict between the parents and, specifically, “immersion by his mother in her religious beliefs and practices”.
He concluded that she was doing this “with the intention of alienating him from his father”.
But the judgment disclosed that a social worker at the centre of the case rejected this assessment and believed that, while the boy was damaged by the conflict between his warring parents, the mother’s religion was not the cause.
It disclosed that at one point in the proceedings the mother went to the Court of Appeal to challenge an initial care order and made a number of strict undertakings in an attempt to stop the process.
These included not to take him to her local Kingdom Hall — the Jehovah’s Witness meeting house — or any other such gatherings; not to talk to him about religion at all; not to allow him to go on to the church’s website or watch religious DVDs; and, if he raised the issue, to attempt to change the subject.
But during a later hearing she asked Judge Bellamy to relax the ban on discussing religion. In a statement to the court she said: “I would like to be able to take [him] to the Kingdom Hall once a month.
“I believe that [he] misses going there, and to be able to pray at meal times. This is a simple grace for the food and I will continue to refrain from any further discussion about religion in accordance with my undertakings.”
The judge said that while he was satisfied he had the legal power to “regulate” the mother’s exposure of her son to her religion, he was not certain it would be possible to “police” those commitments.
He ruled that the boy was continuing to suffer emotional harm and that it was in his best interests to be placed temporarily in foster care.
FONTE: The Telegraph
NOTA: Sulla vicenda leggi anche articolo pubblicato ieri dal Daily Mail, qui;