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    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      TTH:
      Just wait until YOU get to be 73, and find battle scars galore.
      A lot of mature restraint is really just being too TIRED.
      Ya wanna FIGHT!?
      ..... yeah, yeah, yeah ....... start without me.
      I need to take a nap.
      ==============================================================
       
      ... except for the Governing Body.  
      When THEY make mistakes, they pay no price whatsoever.
      WE DO.
      They .... never miss a meal.
    • By 4Jah2me
      So lets try to be a bit positive.  A question.  How is the GB and the JW Org moving forward SPIRITUALLY ?
      What progress has it made in the last fifty years ?   I'm not talking about physical things, not buildings, not books, not meeting times........ 
      I'm talking about purely spiritual matters.  Spiritual guidance, true spiritual love from the top of the Org down, mercy, understanding of people, serving the congregants as a way of serving God Himself (as Jesus did), showing patience without having weakness, making true adjustments according to true scripture not according to man's guesses. 
      You may of course comment as to what you feel would make for good spiritual progress within the JW Org too. 
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Norway is the great catalyst that will force the GB to start thinking about basic human rights, as currently there is a lot of discussion in the Norwegian Government about " ... Why are we giving the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society Norwegian dollars (Kroners) every year from Tax money for their charities ... for EACH and every of the approximately 112,000 JWs in Norway (paraphrased), when they prohibit their members to vote"... which THEY consider to be an inalienable, and non-negotiable human right of all peoples, everywhere.
      The WTB&TS is currently being governed by the Lawyers, Accountants, and the Finances department, with the GB not admitting being personally responsible for ANYTHING.
      What we consider "reasonable", they consider EXTREMIST, and many European nations give tax money to ALL legitimate churches, without restriction on how they spend it.
      By violating what these governments' and peoples' basic understanding on what constitutes extremism, soon, if not already, it is going to affect the flow of cash into the Society's Treasury.
      One of several major concerns of the Governing Body is to not hemorrhage money, as it has been doing for years in the constant Child Sexual Abuse court cases.
      THIS is what will drive any change .... not love ... not justice ...not fairness .... MONEY!
      -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      By the way .... has the Society recently decided that voting is a matter of personal conscience?
      What I have read is so "weasel worded", I cannot tell.

    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      I realize there are many reasons to go to an Assembly, or Convention, and when my children were living at home they would go to others' conventions  for a variety of reasons, as well as their own.
      I would always ask them when they returned home "What did you learn that was new?" .  This was important to me as I had to work long hours to afford to finance their explorations and socialization, which I thought was important ... but I still expected them to learn something new ... and since I was paying for their travels, to tell me what was going on.
      Generally, attendance to an out of town Convention nearby would cost about $200 a day, times three days, so that would be $600.
      Now that I am retired, and my income has been cut by about 80%, it's even MORE important to me to want to get good value for the time and money I would be spending for my wife and I to spend three days, traveling out of town, to learn something of lasting value .... something worth at least three days of our time, which is painfully obviously shorter, and the what is now considerable effort and considerable expense.
      In Engineering it's important that the "Law of diminishing returns" be observed so that you do not go physically, mentally or emotionally bankrupt.
      Perhaps I am just asking for some encouragement that the effort is worth the cost and effort, and that the benefit is worth it, so if I may ask ......
      WHAT DID YOU LEARN THAT WAS NEW AT THE 2019 "LOVE NEVER FAILS" REGIONAL CONVENTION ?
      ......
       
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Is it fair?
       
       
      Is it FAIR.wmv
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      I find it interesting when so much is compared between the Jews and the JW's.
      But in my opinion, one big difference between being a Jew before and in the time of Jesus, and being a JW, is choice. 
      If a person was born into the Nation of Israel, they were born under Law and ruled over by the Religious leaders (and the Romans) at that time. There was no choice of being a Jew or not being a Jew. They were born into it. So of course many of them, probably all of them, committed 'sin' and had to make sin offerings. God had chosen that Nation, those people had responsibility but not of their choice. 
      Now, people that enter the JW religion do so voluntarily.  ( Unfortunately for those born into it, they have to go through the motions of serving the JW Org until they are of an age whereby they can leave home. Then, when of age they too can volunteer to be a JW or chose to leave the Org.). 
      There is a big difference from being born into a Nation which you may not like, than voluntarily joining a religion which you do like.
      So the big question is, if 'millions' of people voluntarily join this JW Org, why do so many commit child abuse, adultery and many other sins ? 
      If this is supposed to be 'THE true religion', why are the people not guided by God through Jesus  Christ ?  Just reading comments on here from so called JW's makes me laugh. There is no love, no mercy, no understanding, no respect even. 
      Being an ex JW and seeing things from both sides i have found more genuine love, kindness, friendship, respect, warmth, understanding etc outside of the Org than inside. Inside the Org people have to be told to 'love one another', outside the Org people do it anyway. 
      It has amazed me how JW's can really believe that God is with them when they are so cold and selfish.
      With the Jews that were born into that Nation, they had no choice about their way of life. It was basically a dictatorship by God. The Laws were from 'above'. Obviously for the right reason, to bring forth Jesus Christ who in turn would 'rescue' the human race from complete destruction. But it was a totally different situation to the JW Org today.
      So now all you 'JWs', think on it. Do you truly believe you are in this' special environment' within the Org ? Do you really think that your Org has God's approval ? 
      Think deeply about all the problems within JW Org. All the disgusting things being done voluntarily by all the volunteer JW's. 
      Now ask yourself, are you really a volunteer JW or are you trapped in the Org for fear of losing all those 'so called friends' ? 
      You know that you can only have your family and 'friends' as long as you are a JW.   Do you feel like the Jews must have felt, trapped in that Nation ? 
      As we know many of the Jews left the Jewish religion and way of life to follow Christ, but it was difficult for them. However, they did have God's approval and God, through Christ made this known clearly. And it seems that many are leaving the JW Org to seek God's approval too. 
      But remember that all JW's are volunteers, or should be, so why oh why is there so much trouble in that Org ? 
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Here is another question.
      If Christ has ALREADY come to Earth as an invisible presence, and is ruling as King NOW ......  starting in 1914 ...... why are we still celebrating the Memorial?
    • By The Librarian
      Part of a series on: Jehovah's Witnesses >
      Jehovah's Witnesses began capitalizing Governing Body as a proper noun in 1971;The Watchtower that year announced "The present Governing Body comprises eleven anointed witnesses of Jehovah." The original members of the 1971 Governing Body, all now deceased, are indicated in italics in the lists below.

      Current
      The following people are members of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses[7] (year appointed in parentheses): Samuel Herd (1999) Geoffrey Jackson (2005) M. Stephen Lett (1999) Gerrit Lösch (1994) Anthony Morris III (2005) Mark Sanderson (2012) David H. Splane (1999) Kenneth Cook (2018)  Deceased
      The following individuals were members of the Governing Body until death (years active in parentheses, including years as Watch Tower Society directors, informally identified as the "governing body" prior to 1971): Carey W. Barber (1977–2007) John (Jack) Barr (1977–2010) William Lloyd Barry (1974–1999) John C. Booth (1974–1996) Charles J. Fekel (1974–1977) Frederick William Franz (1944–1992)—5th President of Watch Tower Society George D. Gangas (1971–1994) John O. Groh (1965–1975) Milton George Henschel (1947–2003)—6th President of Watch Tower Society William K. Jackson (1971–1981) Theodore Jaracz (1974–2010) Karl F. Klein (1974–2001) Nathan Homer Knorr (1940–1977)—4th President of Watch Tower Society Guy H. Pierce (1999-2014) Martin Pötzinger (1977–1988) Albert D. Schroeder (1974–2006) Grant Suiter (1938–1983) Thomas J. Sullivan (1932–1974) Lyman Alexander Swingle (1945–2001) Daniel Sydlik (1974–2006) Resigned
      The following individuals resigned or were asked to step down from their positions in the body (years active in parentheses): Ewart Chitty (1974–1979) Raymond Franz (1971–1980) Leo K. Greenlees (1971–1984)  
    • By Jack Ryan
      Loesch, Barr in the middle, Barry in the foreground
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      Luke 10 v 21  In that very hour he became overjoyed in the holy spirit and said: “I publicly praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have carefully hidden these things from wise and intellectual ones and have revealed them to young children. Yes, O Father, because this is the way you approved.
      This seems to show that 'higher education' was not needed to learn, understand and teach, the truth from God, at that time. 
      It seems to be a well know thing within the JW Org and by people outside of same, that JW's are 'told' not to aim for higher education. I say told, although some will say strongly advised, with a possible caution of being disfellowshipped. 
      Now I've noticed on here recently that deep conversation about many things has been and is taking place. Politics earthwide. religious beliefs earthwide and the latest thing seems to be Evolution (from a very deep standpoint ). ( These things were never taught to me at school. )
      I left school at 15 years old, as soon as I was able, for reasons previously mentioned. Here in UK now teenagers have to remain in education until they are 18. The three years from 15 to 18 seem to me to be almost 'higher education', but compulsory.  How much they learn at school now I've no idea. 
      My feelings are, and yes ok i cannot put proof to these feelings, but, my feelings are, that all forms of higher education are advised against by the GB and the JW Org. Some of you may have some proof of this in writing. So, where does this leave JW's ?
      If a young person leaves school to go into full time 'service' ministry, they do not get a higher education. Their 'basic' education may have been just that, very basic. They are then not 'qualified' to talk to others on a higher education level, and this might even be to the point of not understanding such things as are being discussed on here lately. 
      ( Much of what is being discussed leaves me miles behind. I'm a very simple person. Plus at 69 I forget more than i learn. Yes I do write lots of notes and have books for recording different things, but the mind boggles. )
      With respect for those I knew and loved in the past, within my ex congregation, many of them were 'simple country folk'. And I think Tom said about not having the time or inclination to do research online or or otherwise. So let us go back to the scripture at the top. 
      So many questions. Does God reveal more to those of a lesser education ?  Is higher education and greater knowledge a disadvantage when wanting to serve God properly?
      Or is it that those of higher education are too stubborn to learn God's way ?  Too proud maybe ?   
      There are many things that the Bible doesn't tell us. is that deliberate ? Does God want to keep it simple for us ? So, should we pursue more knowledge about worldly things ? 
      A problem may occur when talking to others about God, in that they may have more knowledge on a certain subject than we do and therefore believe something different. Should we then educate ourselves to their level on the same subject, or just pass them by ?  Bearing in mind the scripture at the top of this page. 
      There has to be a balance of course. But my feelings are that the GB would like JW's to be educated only by the Watchtower studies and by the 'workbook' evening meeting studies. And of course by personal Bible reading.   But do JW's do as they are told in this respect or do a lot of them 'educate themselves', or take further education elsewhere ? 
       
       
    • By The Librarian
      All posts tagged 'Geoffrey Jackson" 
      Brother Jackson started pioneering in February 1971 in Tasmania, the island state of Australia. In June 1974, he married Jeanette (Jenny). Shortly thereafter, they were appointed to serve as special pioneers. From 1979 to 2003, they served as missionaries in Tuvalu, Samoa, and Fiji—island nations in the South Pacific. While in the islands, Brother and Sister Jackson also contributed much to the work of translating Bible literature. Beginning in 1992, Brother Jackson served on the Branch Committee in Samoa, and from 1996, on the Branch Committee in Fiji. In April 2003, he and Jenny became part of the United States Bethel family and began to work in the Translation Services Department. Soon thereafter, Brother Jackson was made a helper to the Teaching Committee of the Governing Body. (See w06 3/15 p. 26) Tragically, Geoffrey's wife Jenny lost her battle with cancer and died 22 December 2009 at the age of 54. Geoffrey has since remarried. He is one of the youngest members of the Governing Body, born in 1955.   Recent news:
      Geoffrey Jackson testifies at the Australian Royal Commission 

      Governing Body member Geoffrey Jackson Declines to Appear Before Australian Royal Commission and then is ordered to appear on Friday August 14th at 11:00am Australian time.
       
      Milshon Masara (L) posing for a picture with guest speaker Geoffrey Jackson and his current wife, Loraini Jackson. 

      Taken at the Zimbabwe 2014 International Convention - They came, saw and made Zim richer.
       

      Geoffrey and Rae Jackson

      Loraini Jackson is from Tazmania according to this talk: 
      Related Items:
      Talks by Geoffrey Jackson
      When Is Armageddon Coming? - Encouraging clip of a talk by Geoffrey Jackson of the Governing Body

      Talks translated into Spanish
      Enseñe a sus hijos a amar el Reino de Dios - Teach your children to love God's Kingdom
      Geoffrey Jackson knows how to dance and party!


      Books by Geoffrey Jackson available for sale on Amazon.com
       

      International delegates running into Geoffrey and Loraini Jackson in Harare, Zimbabwe.   
    • By TrueTomHarley
      How many of them do you want answered?
      We went round and round on a prior thread and you just repackage your questions and run them through again.
      The verse says: ‘Taste and see that Jehovah is good.’ If you tasted and saw that he was bad, what can I say? Check your taste buds. But you can just as easily say it to me.
      It may be that you should be praying to The LORD. It is the GB that brings God’s name to the fore, nearly everyone else seeks to bury it, and you have made clear that you don’t trust the GB as far as you can spit.
    • By Jack Ryan
      I suspect @James Thomas Rook Jr. made this one... LOL
    • By Jack Ryan
      Did You Know?
      You can openly and publicly question if the President of the United States is fit for office. You can question his policies, his statements, and his character. Your family and friends will not be taken away from you.
      You can openly and publicly question the policies, fitness for office, statements, and character of governors, senators, congressmen, judges, and various other politicians and leaders in the United States. Your family and friends will not be taken away from you.
      If you believe in a god, you can pray to your god questioning his authority, ability to rule, his decisions, and his purpose. When you open your eyes, you will find that your family and friends have not and will not be taken away from you.
      Jesus had his authority questioned many times. (Matt. 21: 23-27) According to the Bible, he would have had the power to punish those questioning him. Yet, he did nothing to them. He harmed no one physically or emotionally.
      You can confidentially question the ability to lead, the validity, the teachings, the doctrines and policies of the Governing Body to only two family members or close companions.  Your family and friends WILL be taken away from you. You will be labeled as dead, evil, and mentally diseased. You can and will likely lose all the social connections and relationships you have developed over a lifetime.
      Only absolute dictators take away the rights of those they rule if their authority is questioned. Look at the examples of Stalin, Hitler, Bashar al-Assad, and Kim Jong Un. 
      The Governing Body today will attend court hearings in other countries rejoicing when freedoms are granted to their followers. They will organize letter writing campaigns to lobby for religious freedoms of Jehovah's Witnesses. They will take legal arguments to the highest courts to fight for the rights of the organization that they govern. Yet, all it takes for you to lose all of your freedoms to be with your very own family is the admission to enough witnesses that you no longer believe the Governing Body are chosen by God and have authority over you. 
      Did You Know? The Governing Body will fight tooth and nail for their own perceived freedoms, but they have no problems taking away your own freedoms and declaring you dead if you dare to question them.
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      As my wife and I are preparing to adopt five children, and knowing historically how many elders' children have abandoned the Truth, for whatever reasons there might be, common to mankind ... the thought occurred to me ... Were all of the Apostles Single?
      If any were married, how did they balance their responsibilities to their families, with the field ministry?
      If they were in the Ministry, were they supported by the congregations from the Apostles money box ... and were their families also supported as they rove about ministering about the Good News?
      If so, that would indicate a paid clergy !
      I suppose it all hinges on he first question.
      WERE ALL OF THE APOSTLES SINGLE ?
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Which Pill Would We Take ..... The Red Pill? .... or the Blue Pill?
      In the political world, more and more people are rejecting "Fake News" as provided by CNN (Clinton News Network), ABC (All 'bout Clinton) and NBC (Nothin' but Clinton), etc., and are seeking the truth about what they are being told ..... wherever it may be found.
      Today John Stossel had an article about this on Foxnews which is incredibly important ... not only for the political ramifications ... but every manner of philosophical thought ....  and our very view of how the Universe works, and what "makes it tick".
      If you have seen the movie "The Matrix" .... a MUST SEE movie .... you already know the common expression "Red Pill? Blue Pill?".
      If you don't ... YOU SHOULD. 
      The concept behind the expression is incredibly important ... as to whether we live in and artificial fantasy construct world ... or a world of what is actually REAL.
      JOHN STOSSEL: More people tuning out mainstream media, embracing 'truth'
      http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/03/27/john-stossel-why-so-many-are-taking-red-pill-and-discovering-truth-about-mainstream-media.html
      Oh ... and if you have not seen it .... get a copy of the movie, so you will actually get a "feel" for the depth of the now commonly understood  idiomatic expression.
      (For those in Rio Linda, that has nothing to do with sex, it has to do with basic understanding .....)
      Grok?
       
       
       
       
       
    • By Noble Berean
      The February 2017 WT had this to say about the GB:
      Compare this to the November 2016 WT which had this to say about the GB's authority:
      The GB wants the unquestioned control and the credit for leading God's organization, but they also wants total freedom from accountability when they are wrong. The existence of the org is based around everyone accepting this premise.
      But how is this premise not 100% illogical and absurd? The GB is presenting itself in 2 completely conflicting ways:
      The GB is uninspired, fallible, and errs, so they should not be blamed for incorrect direction. The GB should not be questioned by JWs, and there is no place for independent thinking. The GB cannot state they make errors in their direction and simultaneously demand unquestioned obedience to their direction. That doesn't make any sense. If anything, JWs should be skeptical of the GB's directions because of their history of incorrect direction. However, critical thinking is discouraged as a negative trait in organization literature--even when that thinking is based on the Bible.
      If there is a God, then surely he is just, and I cannot imagine he would structure an organization on such an illogical premise.
      Think of how this premise negatively affects JWs. Adherents are essentially commanded to follow direction that may be 100% wrong. They are told to "wait on Jehovah" if they have doubts. This also means that a JW could be punished for having a correct idea that is currently not in harmony with the GB. I'm sure this has happened with JWs over its history.
      Also, isn't it disturbing that the GB have set things up so that they have maximum control and minimum accountability? It's the definition of plausible deniability. Everyone here is well aware of the legal issues with blood transfusion rejection and the sex abuse. In these legal matters, it is pretty clear that the organization is distancing themselves from any accountability and is instead placing the burden on the individual JW. This flies in the face of the culture of the religion where everything a JW does revolves around supporting the organization. There is no room for personal opinion. To suggest otherwise in legal cases is very dishonest and shady. Moreover, it goes against the idea that their is an equal relationship--we're supposed to die over organizational doctrines but the GB won't even acknowledge their role in court proceedings?
      The very fact the organization uses plausible deniability in their literature is highly suspect. The fact that they can force JWs to follow their direction, but when it's wrong they can point to a WT and say, "See! We said we were fallible and uninspired!" It all smells dishonest and shady.
    • By Witness
      ”Jehovah leads and feeds those in the earthly part of his organization by means of “the faithful and discreet slave” under the direction of Christ, the “head of the congregation.” w16 November pp. 14-18
      If these men were “inspired”, the above statement would be true.  It takes inspiration from Holy Spirit, for them to receive Christ’s direction. Spirit must be infused in the person to guide them in the way of Christ; but we have it in print, that it is not the case with the GB. 1 John 2:4; 1 John 3:24
      Instead, they rely on the voting system. It once was a required two-thirds majority in favor of passing new rules or doctrine; which at least you could understand that individuals had the freedom to reject an idea; although I was shocked that voting was even considered.  Now, the GB must be 100 percent in agreement when passing new rules/doctrine. 
      How many teachings of past leaders have been rejected by today’s leaders?  How far back does it go, that Wt’s leaders were not inspired?  Whether two-thirds or 100 percent needed to agree on doctrine by men admitting to not having inspiration, it is apparent that it began with Russell. 
      Maybe this new GB member is not rule-oriented, but it really doesn’t matter.  He must go with the flow, and it may be a rude awakening for him. 
      These scriptures have spiritual fulfillment today:
      “Jesus called them over and said, “You know that the rulers (elder body) of the Gentiles (those not anointed) lord it over them,
      and those in high positions (GB) act as tyrants over them. 
       It must not be like that among you. On the contrary, whoever wants to become great among you (among the anointed chosen Body of Christ, since Jesus was speaking to his future apostles) must be your servant*, and whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave*;  just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”  Matt 20:25-28
      *This is not the practice with the GB.  They authorize their appointed rulers (elder body) to judge their fellow anointed slaves as not worthy of spiritual life.  Are they serving their brothers in Christ, or condemning them through acts of tyranny?  Matt 24:48-51; 1 John 2:9-11; James 2:4  Uninspired men fabricate rules and doctrine that every JW must obey, and it is called guidance from God through Christ – or from a “spirit-directed organization”.  I imagine in my mind a looming spiritual power within the world since that is where it is physically built and seen, breathing a spirit, but not from the Almighty God.  1 John 2:15-17; Eph 2:1,2; Rev 13:11-15
      Without holy inspiration, in what manner does God and Christ guide the organization?  The GB? The members?  It can be said a thousand times that God directs the organization, the “faithful slave”, the elder body – yet one slip of truth will wipe out each and every one of those false claims.  That being, the Governing Body is not inspired by Holy Spirit; and if they are not inspired by God's spirit, neither is the organization.    1 John 2:27,18,19; Mal 3:18; Matt 24:4,5
       
    • By The Librarian
      Kenneth Cook was announced today at morning worship as the new member of the Governing Body. 

      He was formerly a helper on the writing committee.
      He is an anointed brother in bethel that about 3 years ago got assigned to Writing Correspondence from Bethel Office in Wallkill.
      He is not a rule oriented brother at all. Definitely a people person, a pleasurable brother. Makes people around him feel relaxed an at ease.
      Brother Cook started pioneering on September 1, 1982, and began serving at the United States branch on October 12, 1984.
      He has been in Bethel his entire life evidently. No children. 
      The Governing Body is now composed of eight anointed brothers.
      For more about the Governing Body see:
      I will update this list of members here:

    • By Witness
      “And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” Matt 8:20
      "Woe to him who builds his palace by unrighteousness,
      his upper rooms by injustice,
      making his own people work for nothing,
      not paying them for their labor.
      14 He says, ‘I will build myself a great palace
      with spacious upper rooms.Â’
      So he makes large windows in it,
      panels it with cedar
      and decorates it in red.
      15 “Does it make you a king
      to have more and more cedar?
      Did not your father have food and drink?
      He did what was right and just,
      so all went well with him.
      16 He defended the cause of the poor and needy,
      and so all went well.
      Is that not what it means to know me?”
      declares the Lord.
      17 “But your eyes and your heart
      are set only on dishonest gain,
      on shedding innocent blood
      and on oppression and extortion.” Jer 22:13-17
       
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Jehovah's Witnesses put former Brooklyn Heights hotel up for sale
      See also:

      By Lore Croghan
      Brooklyn Daily Eagle
      Attention nostalgic Brooklyn Dodgers fans!
      The Jehovah's Witnesses are selling the former Brooklyn Heights hotel where the forever-missed baseball team stayed during home games.
      The Watchtower has just announced it is putting The Towers, also known as 21 Clark St., up for sale.
      The Dodgers, who in the 1950s infamously left Brooklyn for Elsewhere (to this day, some of us find this trauma hard to write about), used the hotel as their home base, so to speak.
      The 313,768-square-foot, 16-story building is now a residence for the Jehovah's Witnesses — but not for much longer.
      The religious organization is liquidating its once-massive Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO real-estate holdings because it is moving its headquarters to upstate Warwick, NY.
      The Leverich Towers Hotel, as 21 Clark was originally known, had its grand opening in 1928. The architecture firm was Starrett & Van Vleck — which also designed Saks Fifth Avenue's and Lord & Taylor's high-profile Manhattan flagship stores.
      “When you walk the streets of Brooklyn Heights and come alongside The Towers, the elegance of the building commands your attention,” Watchtower spokesman David Semonian said in the announcement about the building's sale.
      “Yet beyond the beauty that we have worked hard to tastefully preserve, The Towers has been a comfortable home for members of our headquarters staff for decades,” he said.
      'The Aristocrat of Brooklyn Hotels'
      The former hotel, which is located on the corner of Willow Street, is located in the landmarked part of Brooklyn Heights. So a purchaser is likely to leave the exterior of the stunning building — which has colonnaded, Venetian-style towers gracing its four corners — largely intact.
      In the property's early days, it was advertised as “The Aristocrat of Brooklyn Hotels.”
      A rooftop terrace with knockout views of Lower Manhattan, New York Harbor and the Brooklyn Bridge that helped give the hotel its cachet remains intact.
      In 1975, the Watchtower bought the magnificent building for $1,992,229.08 from a trust with Leo Rosner and Philip Robbins as trustees, city Finance Department records indicate.
      Following the purchase, the Watchtower turned the hotel into a residence and dining hall for more than 1,000 people who worked at the organization's world headquarters.
      Another Watchtower spokesman, Richard Devine, said the Jehovah's Witnesses were expanding their printing plants at that time and needed space to accommodate increasing numbers of personnel.
      The Jehovah's Witnesses did a more extensive renovation of The Towers starting in 1995, Devine added.
      The Watchtower has been working for the past several years to sell off its Brooklyn real estate portfolio. The latest round of marketing started this past December.
      Vincent Viola, the owner of the Florida Panthers hockey team, recently bought Brooklyn Heights residential property 124 Columbia Heights for $105 million.
      Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner has a handshake deal to buy the Watchtower's Brooklyn Heights headquarters at 25-30 Columbia Heights plus DUMBO development site 85 Jay St. for roughly $700 million, the New York Post has reported.
      Source: http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2016/5/24/jehovahs-witnesses-put-former-brooklyn-heights-hotel-sale
       




    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Melody's Interview at 2017 "Don't Give Up" Regional Convention". 
      Last year my wife and I attended an Assembly in Orangeburg, SC, where a brother in an interview on stage was proud that he had not said a single word to his disfellowshipped father in over 20 years.   We were sitting up close and could see his face in person, and on the large monitors. His declaration of cruelty was followed by intense applause from the audience. 
      We were stunned and horrified.
      This video was originally posted on YOUTUBE by the mother of Melody, at a Regional 2017 Convention where she is proud of having shunned her sister, who is disfellowshipped, but many adverse comments on YOUTUBE made her ashamed .....  and she took the posting down.  
      I got this video copy from the  Russian equivalent of YOUTUBE web site,  RUTUBE.COM.
      After she details her cruelty to her sister, the audience reaction is vigorous applause.
      THIS IS WHY the Russian government and most of the people HATE Jehovah's Witnesses.
      Oblivious, clueless, extreme cruelty, in the name of righteousness.
      Melody's interview @ the Regional Convention 2017 _Don't Give Up_.mp4
      .
      .
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      My wife and I are planning to see the movie  "DUNKIRK" this weekend, and I have seen "Saving Private Ryan", and "Schindler's List", all very violent war movies, and in my opinion very IMPORTANT movies to see. 
      The list of incredibly important movies could fill a notebook.
      I could probably list 10 off the top of my head .. some important for very different reasons.
      "The Notebook" comes to mind.
      Some, merely cultural icons, like the entire STAR WARS and STAR TREK franchises, etc.
      What has been your actual experience about what kinds of movies the Brotherhood actually sees ?
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Has the Society ever ruled on what happens if a man or woman abandons their spouse forever ... is the one abandoned stuck forever ?
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    • An interesting take with a lot to say for it. When Jude mentions these "rocks beneath the surface" for example, it always reminds me of the first time I read "Paul and Thecla" while at Bethel, but at the NYPL, via a book about Christian widows of the 2nd century. Paul and Thecla is an early Christian short story or novella with Thecla, not Paul, as the hero. It's one of a few stories of this type, probably written by and for women in the early Christian congregations. The antagonists of some of these stories are the 2nd century "circuit overseers" who would go from congregation to congregation saying all the right things from the "platform" but then they would also quietly worm their way into the houses of well-meaning sisters and widows, and try to take advantage of them sexually. I was quite surprised when the Watchtower last year mentioned Paul and Thecla for the second time in nearly 100 years, and was again surprisingly supportive of the work as containing possible reflections of true traditions believed in the 2nd century: *** w18 March p. 13 par. 3 Questions From Readers *** The Acts of Paul and Thecla was highly regarded in early centuries, as confirmed by the fact that 80 Greek manuscripts of it exist, as well as versions in other languages. Thus, our artistic presentations are in line with some ancient indications of what the apostle looked like. I personally have never experienced a "bad" circuit overseer. All of them have been exemplary and I have always looked forward to their visits, especially when hearing a new one for the first time. But I think all of us old-timers have had experience with congregational drifters, and we often look at them with the same kinds of suspicions. Sometimes it's a young brother who is very vague about his last congregation and who quickly latches on to an association with another eligible sister. Sometimes it's a more elderly brother, perhaps even a special pioneer, looking for an alternate congregation, hoping the trouble he caused in the last congregation won't get reported in too much detail. (Speaking from a real example, this elderly brother also latched onto a "relationship," and place to stay, with a family of sisters: a sister with an unbelieving and ailing husband, and a couple of daughters. It was a recipe for disaster.) The younger brother caused some heart-ache by getting engaged to a sister, and the engagement was later broken off.  It's hard for me not to imagine such cases when I read Jude. So, at first, it was hard for me to see them as drifters into forums like this one to cause other kinds of trouble, but I can definitely see a similarity now.  
    • I’m not really sure what “worshipful” means.  When celebrities come into town, they are mobbed by fans. Are those fans worshipful? I might say yes, but the fans themselves will just say they they are flocking to them out of respect for their accomplishments. If brothers pose for selfies with the GB members (much to the latter’s annoyance, I am consistently told, someone said with the possible exception of Lett) are they “worshipful?” It’s in the eye of the beholder, I think. Though I have a great many faults, admiring personalities is not one of them. I would love to have a GB member stay at my house so I could ignore him. “There’s your room—make yourself at home. If you’d like to visit, that works fine, but you have many things to do and if you ignore us completely that also works fine with us,”  Probably there are few words they could hear that would please them more. And no, @James Thomas Rook Jr., I wouldn’t present them with a list of my QUESTIONS that, as MEN of HONOR, they are obligated to answer,
    • Just for interest, here is an interview with prince Andrew. It's acutely embarrassing the excuses  he makes and the denials.... Read comments, they are entertaining  
    • Yes. Just watched it. I like that you talk about the broad effects of the impact whistleblowing has had in this particular area. It's not just the Witnesses, but many institutions. Many guilty people would have probably got away with sexual abuse 20 years ago, but not so much today. Even royalty have been put under the microscope. History is rife with stories of rich dirty old men having sex with underage girls and getting away with it. When enough people make noise, it can't be ignored.
    • Maybe this was in the sense of these "bad elders" rejecting the counsel given by "good elders" who were quoting Bible books and the Mosaic Law (as transmitted through angels), or these "bad elders" were speaking out against sayings of Jesus and inspired writings of the apostles, as if they held no value to this time they were in, so many decades after Jesus originally spoke them. Also (less likely) Jude quotes the book of Enoch, specifically a part about the judgment of angels, and he appears to refer to another book about the "Assumption of Moses." We don't know how much more of those books were accepted other than the portions referenced, but these books were part of a genre that gave names to dozens of angels and referenced many more hierachies of thousands of angels. Good point! I doubt it. There are too many scriptures, and too much context that shows what Paul was up against in trying to get the congregations to accept and understand the concept of "grace" or "undeserved kindness." (Along with "law" "legalism" "works" "righteousness" "sin" "conscience" etc.) Paul had to write chapters, nearly whole long letters, on the subject, and it even put him for a short while at odds with the Jerusalem council. Probably it is sometimes. But I'd guess there are some exceptions, too. For example, the whistleblowing of the CSA cases all over the world has drawn attention to a lot of things that go on in the world where the abused victims felt powerless. In many institutions, including once-hostile work environments, this is actually changing for the better. The threat of monetary sanctions has made even rich men who could once get away with anything (as Trump claimed), think twice. It has definitely helped in some suburban schools and even corporations I once worked for. I suspect that many priests and elders who once thought they would get away with anything are now more apt to think again before abusing persons.
    • The old method of handling this was to use the expression "present truth." Many adventists including Seventh Day still use the expression. It's based on a mistranslation of 2 Peter 1:12 where the KJV said: Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth. The tendency among 19th century Adventists was to see a "chronology" element or "time" element in the English expression that did not exist in the original Greek. Therefore, the idea was that: even when in the midst of learning or teaching falsehood, it was still "present truth" at the time, and what is now "present truth" could turn out to be false in the future, but it will always have been "present truth" because it's always the best we had at the time. From the Greek, this is better translated as "the truth that is present in you" (American Standard and NWT).  A similar rush to see a time element in the English translation was done by Barbour and Russell and others who had been associated with Adventists. Here's an example from Leviticus: (Leviticus 26:28) 28 I will intensify my opposition to you, and I myself will have to chastise you seven times for your sins. This was originally the primary source for Russell's 7 times = 2,520 years, and the 7 times of Nebuchadnezzar's dream about his own insanity was only a secondary source. But we have since learned that Leviticus here didn't refer to chronological "times" but the sense was "7 times as much" as in "I will hit you twice as hard, or three times as hard, or seven times as hard." This was already in the context, but chronologists and numerologists rarely notice the context until they have already formed a time related doctrine. (Leviticus 26:18-21) . . .“‘If even this does not make you listen to me, I will have to chastise you seven times as much for your sins. . . . 21 “‘But if you keep walking in opposition to me and refuse to listen to me, I will then have to strike you seven times as much, according to your sins. Now that we have noticed this, we have been stuck with using Nebuchadnezzar as if his wicked Gentile kingdom somehow represented Christ's Messianic non-Gentile kingdom. (Another contradiction between 1914 and the Bible.) We still tend to make a "chronology word" out of things having to do with time when we translate the Greek word for time as "appointed time" instead of what might better be translated as "opportune time." Note that it's the exact same word "time" in these two verses: (Ephesians 5:16) 16 buying out the opportune time for yourselves, because the days are wicked. (Luke 21:24) . . .and Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled. Neither the word opportune nor appointed is found in the Greek, only the word time. But the more typical meaning is "opportunity" as in: Will you find the opportunity to do this? Will you find the time to do this? Not: Will you find the appointed day and hour to do this? We have added a more specific chronological sense that usually isn't necessary in the Greek.  
    • Elon Musk shows himself to rather out of touch with science. He is using his money to make a name for himself by driving forward with some outlandish plans. He is an embarrassment to his own employees sometimes when he quotes pseudo-scientific ideas that have been obsolete for decades. (One of these was the idea of using nuclear explosions to make Mars inhabitable.) But his optimism to get employees to "make it happen" will drive some scientific progress in spite of himself. Even here, however, he has often just attached his name to some idea that came out of Japan or China or some US or European scientific think tank that was never associated with Musk. He attaches his own unrealistic timelines to these ideas, however, and then begins to lose credibility.  This particular idea has some merit, but there is a lot more expense in creating the infrastructure than people realize. There is the mining of the elements that go into solar cells, the manufacture of solar panels, the trucking of materials to such a solar hub, the infrastructure to build out the lines from the hub across the USA. Currently these types of expenses reduce the ROI value of this particular type of renewable energy so much that it makes carbon (coal/oil/petroleum) seem much more desirable for generating power, and for which an infrastructure is already in place. When viable, I would like to see how close to Hoover Dam this could be built to re-use some power lines that emanate from there, and already reach to many southwest states. Perhaps an even better idea would be to find a place near Yuma or Mexicali, so that half of the power would be used to desalinate water for Mexico and the US by piping saltwater from the Gulf of California, then freshwater back out with a mountain or salt and minerals as a byproduct.    
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