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JW Triple murder-suicide shatters quiet of Keego Harbor

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Keego Harbor Â— A quiet residential street became a horrific crime scene Friday with news that four people — a couple and their adult children — died in what police are describing as a triple murder-suicide.

636543906898437841-keegoharbor1.jpg

By late afternoon, some yellow police crime scene tape remained around the two-story wood frame bungalow in the 2300 block of Cass Lake Road where police were sent about 8:10 a.m. on a welfare check after a relative became worried about the family, Keego Harbor Police Chief John Fitzgerald said.

“A relative had concerns and asked us to look into it,” said Fitzgerald. “It’s tragic and our thoughts and prayers are with the family.”

Inside the house officers found four bodies who neighbors identified as Daniel Stuart, 47, his wife, Lauren, 45, and their children, Bethany, 24, and Steven, 27.

Fitzgerald said the “perpetrator” was among the dead but would not provide details other than to stress “we think we know what happened here and there is no danger to neighbors.”

Fitzgerald said police have recovered what is believed to be the murder weapon but would not elaborate. He said all the deaths remain under investigation.

Neighbors John and Jackie Tristani said they awoke Friday to learn police were outside the victimsÂ’ home.

“My son said police were repeatedly calling out ‘Lauren, come outside,’ " said John Tristani. “When she didn’t respond they (police) went inside. A few minutes later, they came back outside, shaking their heads.”

Tristani said he had been watching television late Thursday night and never heard anything from the Stuarts' home.

Sources close to the investigation said the family pet, a dog, was also slain by the killer. Investigators also found a note which may help explain what led up to the deaths. They would not discuss its contents.

The deaths puzzle the Tristanis, who knew Lauren Stuart as a “hard-working” neighbor who could often be seen working in her yard and remodeled the house largely on her own.

“She would often come over and borrow tools – a saw, a pickaxe – whatever,” said Tristani. “She was always doing something.”

The Tristanis said in one of their first meetings with Lauren Stuart a few years ago she attempted to “recruit” them into the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

“I said we were Catholics and weren’t interested,” he said. “She accepted the answer and it was the end of that.”

Lauren Stuart worked at an area gym, he said, and her husband was involved in some form of medical business in the Ann Arbor area.

Darlene and Dennis Buck, who live a block away on Cass Lake Road, said they were enroute home from a trip to northern Michigan when they learned of the murder-suicide.

“We have lived here since ’74 and nothing like this has ever happened in our neighborhood — not even close,” said Darlene Buck.

Jackie Tristani said she found it all “scary” – not just the deaths but that something might have been going on in a neighbor’s home without her knowledge. She had tried to get Bethany a job at her workplace and her son knew both Bethany and Steven. There was never any mention or indication of trouble inside the home, she said.

“I would hope that if there was a problem inside there someone would have reached out, we would have tried to help,” she said, her voice quaking. “Maybe we could have done something.

“But you never really know everything there is about your neighbors, do you?”

http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/oakland-county/2018/02/16/4-dead-keego-harbor-murder-suicide/345756002/

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He could still be forgiven by Jehovah. Manasseh was reinstated as king after killing his sons. So their is biblical precedent.

All their sins are now forgiven since they have all died.

Their next thoughts will be in Paradise.

And the story even mentions the spouse as  preaching the good news to her neighbor. ... so by her good works her spouse will be saved if he became an unbeliever at some point. Which in this case he had to have at the last moment.

Except the dog. We will never see him again in Paradise.

 

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Friends: Jehovah's Witnesses shunning drove Keego Harbor mom to murder-suicide

An apparent triple murder-suicide involving four family members left residents of the small town of Keego Harbor stunned and searching for answers. Wochit

At 45, Lauren Stuart appeared to have it all.

A successful husband. Two college-educated kids. A modeling portfolio. And a charming home in Keego Harbor with a heart wreath on the door.

But behind the seemingly idyllic life, friends say Stuart struggled with the anguish of being ostracized from the religion she and her husband had been raised in. About five years ago, Stuart and her husband left the Jehovah's Witnesses, a Christian denomination that has been criticized for its strict indoctrination and for its practice of shunning former members.

Friends and others believe that struggle with being shunned may have driven Stuart to do the unthinkable.

Last week, Stuart shot and killed her husband and two adult children, and then killed herself. Police found the bodies Friday morning while responding to a call from a concerned relative.

The tragedy sent longtime family friend Joyce Taylor reeling as she and others say they believe the murder-suicide was the result of shunning by the Jehovah's Witnesses. She said the Stuarts left the religion more than five years ago because of "doctrinal and social issues."

According to Taylor and several other former Jehovah's Witnesses who talked to the Free Press, when someone leaves the religion, a drastic shunning takes place: No one inside the religion, even parents, are allowed to speak to the departed again.

Taylor barged into a Kingdom Hall meeting in Union Lake over the weekend, stood on a chair and lambasted the gathering.

“Excuse me everyone, My name is Joyce Taylor ... Two days ago, four people died as a result of your shunning process,"  Taylor said, while batting away members and yelling at them. "Five years ago you people pulled your support from this small family, the only support they had was you people. You turned them away and you shunned them."

"For what?!!," she screamed loudly. "Because they wanted to raise their children as they saw fit.”

According to Taylor, Lauren Stuart and Daniel Stuart, 47, wanted to send their children to college, but the religion forbids that. They did so anyway. Their son Steven, 27, excelled in computers, just like his father, who was a data solutions architect for the University of Michigan’s Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care. Bethany, 24, excelled in art and graphic design.

"All they wanted to do was raise their family the way they wanted to," Taylor told the Free Press on Monday, saying the Stuarts were ostracized by their parents and everyone in the Jehovah's Witnesses community when they left.

"They were shunned every way possible. If Lauren went to the grocery store, they didn't look her in the eye," said Taylor, a former Jehovah's Witness herself. "When you are raised a Jehovah's Witness, they choose your friends. They choose who you associate with. And if you go against that, they will dis-fellowship you, or shun you."

The Free Press called the Union Lake Kingdom Hall on Monday, but no one answered. Multiple phone messages were left with the elders of Kingdom Hall, but none of the calls were returned. Messages to the Jehovah's Witnesses national headquarters also were not returned.

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Lauren Stuart, 45, of Keego Harbor (Photo: courtesy, Brittni Beversdorf)

Taylor, who last saw her friend a week before she was found dead, said she doesn't know exactly what drove her friend over the edge. She believes that her friend was battling some kind of personal problem, but felt so alone in the world because of being ostracized by her former religious community that she did what she did.

"She worshiped Danny. Danny worshiped her. They were like hand in glove. But she was very concerned about Dan. He was prone to depression and she was always worried about him," Taylor said.

She later added: "She was in emotional distress ... she felt alone. I was her lifeline."

According to interviews with friends, neighbors and employers, Lauren Stuart, after leaving the Jehovah's Witnesses, appeared to be set on making a new life for herself. She contacted modeling agencies and photographers to see whether there was a market for older models like herself. She also worked as a part-time personal trainer at the YMCA in Farmington Hills a few years ago and cleaned houses.

This is how she referred to herself in one online post:  "I love acting and modeling. I am a very passionate person and it reflects in my work. I am adventurous in nature and so I like a wide variety of acting and modeling experiences. I enjoy learning new things especially with good direction. ...  Life is an adventure and my goal is to die knowing I did the things I wanted to do."

Bernadette Strickland, director of the John Casablancas modeling studio in Plymouth, was among those who gave Lauren Stuart a shot at modeling.

"I remember her because she had enrolled in our workshops. She was very nice. She asked a lot of questions," said Strickland, who recalled Lauren Stuart being happy and having a good life.

"She looked like she had a great family and she was very attractive. She kept herself up so well,"  said Strickland, adding she was "very sorry" and shocked to learn of what happened.

New Haven photographer Brittni Beversdorf had similar memories. She said she met Lauren and photographed her in 2012. At the time, she said, Lauren and her husband had  just bought their home in Keego Harbor and Lauren was excited about renovating it herself.

"She was very friendly," Beversdorf said, noting she was "shocked" to learn of the woman's tragic death.

Taylor said that she last saw Lauren Stuart a week before she and her family were discovered dead.

"She came over to my house. we had tea, coffee and talked," Taylor said, noting her friend gave no signs that she was about to do something terrible.

She said Lauren talked about her kids and expressed excitement about her husband being involved in a project at the University of Michigan, where, she said, he was helping develop a software program that helps detect heart attacks.

"She was talking about the business he was hoping to get going, how much she was looking forward to it. We talked about that, our kids," Taylor recalled.

And then came the phone call. A week later, a mutual friend called Taylor and told her about the murder-suicide.

"I couldn't believe it. I just couldn't believe it," she kept saying.

Keego Harbor police declined comment, saying only that the investigation is ongoing.

This is not the first such incident.

In 2001, the shame of being thrown out of the JehovahÂ’s Witnesses drove former Michigander Christian Longo to murder his wife and three young children in Oregon. Authorities said his financial troubles triggered his expulsion from the religious group, which then triggered the killings.

In 2014, a family of four was found dead in their South Carolina home in a murder suicide carried out by the father, who was a devout JehovahÂ’s Witness. All four were shot in the head.

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2018/02/19/keego-harbor-jehovahs-witness-mom-triple-murder-suicide/351559002/

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Report shows how Keego Harbor woman killed herself and her entire family

As the demons consumed her, Lauren Stuart plotted. 

Weeks before she did the unthinkable, the distraught Keego Harbor woman researched suicide methods on YouTube and watched videos on how to use a Glock handgun.

She made a video of herself saying that she was “broken” and that she didn’t want to burden her family. She left a suicide note on the dinner table, tidied up the house, texted a relative and her husband's boss,  and turned over the family photos on a secretary desk.

Then, she ended it all.

“I took my husband and kids with me so they don’t have to feel my selfish act. They will sleep until Christ resurrects them,” Stuart texted a cousin on Feb. 15 at 5:07 p.m. “I truly hope you do better where I have failed.” 

Months after a murder suicide stunned the sleepy town of Keego Harbor, the Free Press has obtained investigative documents that shed light on what drove an aspiring model to kill her two grown children, her husband, herself and the family dog. 

According to police records and interviews with family, friends and neighbors, Stuart  battled many problems, including depression, ostracism from the Jehovah Witness church, and mental scars stemming from alleged sexual abuse as a child.

These factors combined, police believe, led Stuart to cave to despair on a February weekday when she fatally shot her son, daughter and husband — using pillows to suppress the sound — before shooting herself between the eyes.

According to police records obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, here is a timeline detailing what happened, on both the day of the killings and the weeks leading up to them: 

  • Feb. 6 at 11 p.m.: Lauren recorded a 2-minute video of herself explaining that her pending suicide had nothing to do with her family, but that she had “many issues,” that she “canÂ’t do it anymore” and didnÂ’t want to be a burden to her family.
  • Feb. 7 at around 1 p.m.: She recorded another short video talking about her “path of destruction” and childhood sexual abuse by a relative that she said drove her to want to commit suicide. 
  • Feb. 15 at 9:24 a.m.: Lauren sent her husbandÂ’s boss a text: “Mark, this is Lauren. Dan had a accident this morning and has died. I canÂ’t talk now. Someone will inform you later on details at hospital.” The boss texted back asking for more information, but she never responded. 
  • Feb. 15 at 5:07 p.m.: Lauren texted her cousin telling her she “became evil” and that she “took my husband and kids so they donÂ’t have to feel my selfish act.” That was the last communication Lauren ever made. Her cousin texted her back stating: “Lauren, you are scaring me? What are u saying????? Â… DonÂ’t do it Lauren.”
  • Feb. 15 between 9 and 10 p.m.:  A neighbor heard gunshots. She thought someone was slamming doors. It was Lauren killing the dog, which was found in a bathtub the next morning by police, along with the four bodies.

The cousin, who tried texting Lauren again at 1 a.m., never heard back. She went over to the house the following morning with a friend. When no one came to the door, she called police to conduct a welfare check.

‘This was premeditated’ 

Police still don’t know exactly what time the family members were shot, but they believe the daughter was killed first and that the mother lured her 27-year-old son over to the house, citing a text message she wrote her son on Valentine’s Day, asking him if he “was still coming over to the house” at noon on Feb. 15. He had already been there on Valentine’s Day.

“This was premeditated and carefully planned out by Lauren,” wrote police, who believe Lauren Stuart had her son over on Valentine’s Day to conduct a  “dry run” of her murder-suicide.

When police arrived at the house the morning of Feb. 16, the  kitchen was organized. The refrigerator was stocked. Handwritten labels were on various items and a calendar hung on the refrigerator. 

First, they found the dog. An officer, fearing there was an active shooter, yelled to a partner, “get your gun out? There’s a dead dog in the tub.”

Additional units were called. The officers then climbed a spiral staircase to the second floor and found the son. Steven Stuart, a skilled computer expert like his dad, facedown on the floor of a spare bedroom. Police say they believe he was sitting in a chair when he was shot in the head twice and fell to the floor. 

In another bedroom, they found the daughter, Bethany, 24, a graphic designer and passionate artist who was shot in the head while she slept in a bed. A pillow was placed over her head beforehand, presumably to suppress the sound. Police found visible gunshots through the pillow case. 

Stewart’s husband, Dan, a software designer at the University of Michigan Medical School, was found on the basement floor in front of a couch with a gunshot wound to the head. His right hand was in the front pocket of his jeans and the white pocket liner was slightly pulled from the left pocket, suggesting he was standing when he was shot and tried to react, thus pulling the pocket liner.

Lauren was found at the base of the stairs in a corner with a pistol next to her. She had shot herself between the eyes, a method she had researched on the Internet.

On the dinner table there were two notes. One was addressed to the Medical Examiner, the other a suicide note. 

“I allowed evil into my heart when I chose not to accept God’s free love and it made me sick inside,” she wrote. “I killed my family because I know my death would stumble them. At least now they will not suffer and will be resurrected into love forever in peace.”

Immersed in religion

Police interviewed multiple family members, friends and neighbors who described the Stuarts as a quiet and sometimes “odd” couple who were estranged from their family because of their leaving the Jehovah’s Witness church about 10 years ago.

Multiple family members said that Lauren, who had 11 siblings, long suffered from depression that got worse after she had her children. In recent months, they said she became more religiously preoccupied and went off on rants.

Lauren’s father told police that he had not spoken to his daughter in years and that her mother died when she was 13. He said that he never cared for her husband and that he believes “Dan pulled Lauren away from the family.” 

One of Lauren’s sisters told police that she had not spoken to Lauren in six years and that she, too, believes “Dan pulled Lauren away from the family.”  She told police that Lauren and her husband both suffered from mental illness and that they “fed off of each other.” She said her sister was deemed “Apostasy” for speaking out against the JWs and leaving the organization. 

“It is clear that Lauren showed symptoms of severe depression and displayed abnormal behavior leading up to the incident,” police wrote in their investigative notes. “It would appear that Lauren immersed herself in her own world of her version of religion and increased depression.”

She got no help. No professional counseling. No prescription drugs were found in her system. And although there was no alcohol found in her system, according in to the investigation report, there were small traces of marijuana found in her system, and also in that of her husband and son. 

That, coupled with the loneliness, the loss of family and friends over religion and childhood scars, “manifested, magnified and drove her” to do what she did, police concluded.

“Lauren’s’ complete immersion into religion appeared to have only further alienated her and her family from friends and other family which may have compounded her already fragile state of mind,” police wrote, noting one of Lauren’s sisters expressed little remorse about the tragedy.

In a statement that perhaps best exemplifies how estranged from her family Lauren was, police wrote:

“(The sister) showed a very solemn and somber demeanor when she spoke and stated that she is not sad for Lauren and her family and that when she heard the news of her sister’s actions, she was not surprised in the slightest.”

https://www.freep.com/story/news/2018/05/18/keego-harbor-murder-suicide-lauren-stuart/620709002/

 

- I personally think the cold hearted father and sister should be feeling quite guilty right about now. Thier PIOUS disfellowshipping landed them rotten fruitage. Completely ANTI-LOVE. ANTI WHAT GOD WANTS.

Jehovah is a foremost a GOD OF LOVE.

Her sister sounds almost reptilian-like cold hearted from this story.

All Jehovah's Witnesses everywhere need to reflect on thier Pharisaic attitudes and do as Jesus commands:

STOP JUDGING THAT YOU MAY NOT BE JUDGED.   (as have the public judged the father and sister in this case)

No amount of preaching will overcome the many stories like this.

JUST STOP.

Are you listening JW.org and the Governing Body?

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On 5/18/2018 at 9:48 AM, Jack Ryan said:

- I personally think the cold hearted father and sister should be feeling quite guilty right about now. Thier PIOUS disfellowshipping landed them rotten fruitage. Completely ANTI-LOVE. ANTI WHAT GOD WANTS.

Jehovah is a foremost a GOD OF LOVE.

Her sister sounds almost reptilian-like cold hearted from this story.

All Jehovah's Witnesses everywhere need to reflect on thier Pharisaic attitudes and do as Jesus commands:

STOP JUDGING THAT YOU MAY NOT BE JUDGED.   (as have the public judged the father and sister in this case)

No amount of preaching will overcome the many stories like this.

JUST STOP.

Are you listening JW.org and the Governing Body?

The story is indeed tragic, but we do not know for sure of the situation in greater detail with the Father and Sister, let alone words from the siblings themselves regarding those in question. Both the victim and her husband were having mental issues anyways and have been away from the religion for more than 5 years, if we are also to take the word of the others who had their say, like the Catholic couple.

Other then that, if you are not a fan of expelling, then you should join those who want Apostle Paul's teachings purged from the Bible, since the idea and practice of expelling did stem from Paul, and to some extent, Jesus, so the gospel of Matthew, specifically chapter 16, must be purged also.

God is indeed a God of love, but we have to remember, us as human beings are imperfect, anything can happen at any given time, problems will ensue and the like, so pinning the blame on a group who had no action in the 5 year period of this person is silly, in addition, they did not put the intent in mind or the gun in her hand. Elsewhere, people are not looking at this as a Religion Based Problem, they are looking at it as a Racial Problem, for at the time of this murder-suicide, there had been several murder-suicides that took place on that very week, all done by Caucasian (White) People, and thus the blame is being pinned on all people who are white, when the reality is, those who choose to take action upon ill intent in mind has done so by means of going over the edge, therefore it is unwise to blame a whole group for the actions of a few bad eggs, in this case, a mother who clearly had mental issues and a problematic past, who did use religion and other means to cope with her issues, I do not know what to say about the husband because clearly he was not right in the head also.

But as I said before on here, everyone, even in the same faith community is different. You can have a Christian in the Congo who is a true Christian vs that of a British Christian who is leading a double life, same faith, but clearly they are not the same person, for a Christian man can do a crazy crime that caused trouble and even injury and death to some person(s), does not mean the all Christians are the enemy, the picture that Atheist seem to paint on all Christians regardless of the denomination.

That being said, like I said, if you wish for expelling to be a practice that is abandon by the mainstream Christians, they it is advise you ignore chapter 16 of Matthew and ignore Apostle Paul, for most Christians who take the bible seriously really take into account of what is said in the scriptures, no matter how you try to knock it, hence the difference between mainstream and true Christian practice.

All in all, tragic, but pointing the blame won't help anyone, especially when you know exactly who had the gun in their hand to take out people and then themselves, this goes for a numerous murder-suicides that took place that very week, including this one.

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@Jack Ryan Unfortunately using a murder-suicide to push an agenda will not help anyone here, nor the family of the victims or anyone who knew them. It gets a bit hypocritical also judging on this murder-suicide being one of many murder-suicides that took place that week, nearly identical as well, in addition, this mirrors that of the gun-tooting Christian woman who offed her family then herself.

At the end of the day, the one wholes the gun has ill intent, be a Jehovah's Witnesses, a Baptist, a Protester, a Muslim, a man or woman of racial background, a skinhead, etc.

But with all of this, people still look for someone to blame, mainly when the story has been pieced together, and the more this continues, the more it will continue to put people at risk, if I am not mistaken there has been several situations against JWs and other churches already.

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      Here is the story, in a Norwegian newspaper.
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      I do find it kinda' funny that JW's love to talk about billions of people being removed / destroyed / killed / murdered at Armageddon. Billions of people.
      And for what ? Well JW's say it's for not serving God. But they will also say it's for not being a baptised JW. 
      Well we do know for sure that God either deliberately had, or deliberately allowed, the destruction of Jerusalem in circa 70 C E, and for what ? 
      Well the Bible shows us it was for not serving God properly, and for killing God's son. 
      BUT when I suggest that the Governing Body should be removed or destroyed, oh dear, the JW's they get really upset ya know. 
      Governing Body = 8 men.   Jerusalem = how many, men, women and children, thousands of them. 
      But oh dear, now it would be murder. So what was it back then ?  Your see JW's live in a dream world, wrapped up in cotton wool, they just cannot face the real world.
      The Governing Body do not serve God properly. That is clearly visible to anyone that honestly wants to see it. 
      The Governing Body are destroying JW Org, and if JW Org is God's true Organisation then the GB are deliberately working against God and against God's intentions. 
      Humans that deliberately work against God and cause problems for God do not last long on this Earth. 
      The Bible shows much proof of this, such as those that opposed Moses. 
      I am expecting the GB to be removed, one way or another. But only if God really wants to use the JW Org / Watchtower soc for His own purposes. 
      If God does not want to use those Orgs then it would seem sensible for God to set up a new Org for His purposes. 
      The only problem with the GB being 'removed' is that JW's will call it a 'sign of the times' and 'persecution', but if God causes the removal then I'm sure He will put them straight. 
      Those people that say that the GB cannot be removed / destroyed, are those people that worship the GB. And those people that worship the GB may probably need removing too. 
      The world is wicked, it belongs to Satan. The Earth is wonderful and it belongs to Almighty God.
      For God to save this Earth and for Him to save a few humans too, drastic things have to take place. Drastic things have to take place.
       
    • By Albert Michelson
      What is the good news?
       
      The Bible is clear that even if someone had been clearly selected by god if they deviate from the truth they are to be rejected. 
       
      Galatians 1:8-9 However, even if we or an angel out of heaven were to declare to YOU as good news something beyond what we declared to YOU as good news, let him be accursed.  9 As we have said above, I also now say again, Whoever it is that is declaring to YOU as good news something beyond what YOU accepted, let him be accursed.
       
      This holds even more weight for ones like the GB who are not clearly selected and who's claim to authority rests solely on a demonstrably false interpretation of scripture.
      The organization claims that the 1914 teaching is necessary for salvation and even goes as far as to claim that the 1914 teaching is the good news spoken of in the Bible.
      *** w67 12/15 pp. 753-754 pars. 3-4 What Now Distinguishes the Good News to Be Preached ***
      "What a joy-inspiring addition or enlargement to the good news now to be preached! Now has come the victorious kingdom of our God together with the authority of his Christ, his Messiah! As for Satan the Devil and his demons, they have only a short period of time until they are bound and imprisoned in the abyss after the “war of the great day of God the Almighty” at Armageddon. All this additional wonderful information has been true since the end of the “appointed times of the nations” in 1914, and particularly since World War I closed in the year 1918. Not before the “appointed times of the nations” ended in the fall of 1914 could the good news be preached of the newborn, established heavenly kingdom of God and of his Messiah. This, then, must be the good news that Jesus Christ in his prophecy said had to be preached first in all the nations. (Mark 13:10) This generation of human society that has seen and experienced the world events since the Gentile Times closed in 1914—this is the “generation” that will not pass away until all the things foretold have happened, including the preaching of the good news first in all nations.
      4 Jesus’ prophecy in Mark 13:10, “Also, in all the nations the good news has to be preached first,” has not been undergoing fulfillment during the past nineteen centuries. It is only since the second decade of our twentieth century that this prophecy has been undergoing fulfillment. This began to be realized by the International Bible Students Association and the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society since the end of the second decade of our century. In the magazine issue of July 1, 1920, of The Watch Tower and Herald of Christ’s Presence the article was published entitled “Gospel of the Kingdom” and based on the theme text, “‘And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.’—Matthew 24:14.”
       It is for this reason that the organization is chained to the 1914 teaching. As the scripture I quoted above demonstrates the Bible says that one who teaches a good news that is false is cursed. If the organization admits that the 1914 and 1919 teachings are false they will have to admit that not only were they not selected as gods channel but that they have been teaching a false good news for the majority of their existence. It is for that reason that they disfellowship and shun people who cannot conscientiously remain in the faith. It's easier to just eliminate the opposition then to actually address the real issues with your theology. 
      *** w86 4/1 pp. 30-31 Questions From Readers ***
      Why have Jehovah’s Witnesses disfellowshipped (excommunicated) for apostasy some who still profess belief in God, the Bible, and Jesus Christ?
       
      "Approved association with Jehovah’s Witnesses requires accepting the entire range of the true teachings of the Bible, including those Scriptural beliefs that are unique to Jehovah’s Witnesses. What do such beliefs include?
       
      That the great issue before humankind is the rightfulness of Jehovah’s sovereignty, which is why he has allowed wickedness so long. (Ezekiel 25:17) That Jesus Christ had a prehuman existence and is subordinate to his heavenly Father. (John 14:28) That there is a “faithful and discreet slave” upon earth today ‘entrusted with all of Jesus’ earthly interests,’ which slave is associated with the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. (Matthew 24:45-47) That 1914 marked the end of the Gentile Times and the establishment of the Kingdom of God in the heavens, as well as the time for Christ’s foretold presence. (Luke 21:7-24; Revelation 11:15–12:10) That only 144,000 Christians will receive the heavenly reward. (Revelation 14:1, 3) That Armageddon, referring to the battle of the great day of God the Almighty, is near. (Revelation 16:14, 16; 19:11-21) That it will be followed by Christ’s Millennial Reign, which will restore an earth-wide paradise. That the first to enjoy it will be the present “great crowd” of Jesus’ “other sheep.”—John 10:16; Revelation 7:9-17; 21:3, 4."
       
      This is supposedly a list of the fundamental doctrines of Jehovah's Witnesses that all are required to believe. You will in most cases be disfellowshiped for not believing in one or more of them. Unfortunately the truth is most of them are false.
    • By Jack Ryan
      If the love you have for your children is predicated on their beliefs, you don't love your children you love YOUR beliefs
    • By Jack Ryan
      In previous decades, when someone was disfellowshipped, they were told their time would be 6 months. Now it’s a full year?
      Why did that change from 6 mo to a year? and are they getting more ppl to come back with the increased time? With the less members staying in the org, you would think they want to lower the “jail time “
      Also are there any other religions that gives you months or years of time out, if you commit a sin, even if you actually want to come back?
      Also any former elders here? Why is there a standard set time for everyone? And why can they reject someone’s letter who wants to come back? Don’t they need more members ?
    • By Jack Ryan
      Jehovah's Witness Organization Redefines Shunning to Falsely.mp4
      Every JW visiting this page should MORALLY comment below and publicly state that this JW Lawyer is LYING through his teeth to the Canadian Supreme Court.
      If you don't, YOU participate in this gross sin. Because you ALL KNOW this is a false statement.
      Remember as well that this JW Lawyer is also an Officer of the Court.
      What the courts do not know is that JW's consider outright lying in court a part of "theocratic warfare" just like Muslims do. So it is a virtue to them.

      SMH.
      Can you spell P-E-R-J-U-R-Y?
    • By Jack Ryan
      "Sunday, December 30
      Asa’s heart was complete with Jehovah all his life.—1 Ki. 15:14.
      Each of us can examine his heart to see if it is fully devoted to God. Ask yourself, ‘Am I determined to please Jehovah, to defend true worship, and to protect his people from any corrupting influence?’ For example, what if someone close to you has to be disfellowshipped? Would you take decisive action by ceasing to associate with that person? What would your heart move you to do? Like Asa, you can show that you have a complete heart by fully relying on God when you are faced with opposition, even some that may seem insurmountable. You may be teased or ridiculed at school for taking a stand as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Or colleagues at work may taunt you for taking days off for spiritual activities or for not often working overtime. In such situations, pray to God, just as Asa did. (2 Chron. 14:11) Remain firm for what you know is right and wise. Remember that God strengthened and helped Asa, and He will strengthen you.
      w17.03 3:6-8 "
      https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/dt/r1/lp-e/2018/12/30
    • Guest
      By Guest
      Assistant Attorney General Rock Wood, who represented the legislators, told Judge Ellen Carmody Thursday that courts generally only lift the veil of internal communications for criminal cases and for civil cases involving voting rights and redistricting, as reported by the Detroit Free Press.
      “There would be no reason to make an exception for the Tesla lawsuit,” Wood said.
      Wood went on to say that if Carmody allows access to lawmakers’ records in such a case, there will be a raft of lawsuits aimed at harassing and intimidating lawmakers to the extent that “legislators are spending all their time on this, and can’t legislate,” Wood said.
      Tesla attorney John Bursch, a former state solicitor general, said there’s no privilege for communications between lawmakers and third parties, such as lobbyists.
      And because the case is about potential economic discrimination that harms consumers and violates the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution, communications among lawmakers and between lawmakers and their staff members are also subject to subpoena, Bursch told the court.

      The electric automaker had subpoenaed records from Governor Rick Snyder, Senator Joe Hune and Representative Jason Sheppard and others in its federal lawsuit against Snyder.
      Tesla especially zeroed in on Senator Hune, who has received contributions from the Michigan Automobile Dealers Association. According to the Detroit Free Press, Tesla attorney John Bursch said in court Thursday that Hune was subpoenaed because he introduced the last minute amendment that effectively created the Anti-Tesla law and that his wife, Marcia, “works for the auto dealers” as a registered lobbyist employed by a firm that has the Auto Dealers of Michigan as a client.
      The Hunes had not responded to Detroit Free Press’s request for comment and Sheppard declined a comment through a spokeswoman.
      The subpoena also included Representative Sheppard, who wasn’t in office at the time. His inclusion comes from his statement to a Tesla representative that Michigan auto dealers and manufacturers don’t want Tesla in Michigan, “so you’re not going to be here,” as recounted by Bursch.
      The subpoena hearing stems from a lawsuit against Snyder, Michigan’s Secretary of State Ruth Johnson and state Attorney General Bill Schuette over a 2014 state law that has colloquially become known as the Anti-Tesla bill. The law bans automakers from selling vehicles directly to consumers, which is Tesla’s sales model.
      Tesla’s complaint outlines that the law’s purpose is “to reward the dealers’ generous lobbying efforts by handing them a monopoly,” as we previously reported.
      Tesla is seeking two things from the lawsuit: a declaratory judgment that Michigan’s ban on direct-sales violates the Due Process, Equal Protection, and Commerce Clauses of the Constitution as applied to Tesla and a permanent injunction preventing state officials from enforcing the law, including the October 2014 amendment.
      The post Tesla subpoena hearing update: Claims of corruption in Michigan appeared first on TESLARATI.com.
       
    • Guest
      By Guest
      The case over Michigan’s ‘Anti-Tesla law’ will be dragged out well into 2018 as both sides are expected to provide a list of expert witnesses next month, and the pre-trial “discovery” phase is predicted to take months.
      A lawsuit of this magnitude has the potential to set national precedent in commerce and trade regulations as Tesla continues to defend its business model relying strictly on hype and word-of-mouth.
      “Any type of lawsuit like this — whether you win or lose — establishes a precedent,” said David Cole, chairman emeritus of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor in an article published in The Detroit News. “It’s hard to change the direction of that. It’s a big deal.”
      As Model 3 sales begin to roll out, the law is stifling business in a state where car manufacturing is the largest industry.
      The law bars Tesla from practicing its direct-to-consumer distribution model. New auto sales can only be conducted by franchised auto dealerships, which Tesla claims discriminates against out-of-state interests and is an unconstitutional infringement on their preferred business model.
      Tesla is currently finding ways around the law — consumers can order their Teslas online but they have to pick them up in neighboring states like Ohio or Illinois.

      In Detroit, affectionately referred to as “Motor City,” the automotive industry is the largest industry and largest employer in the entire state of Michigan. Nearly 5 percent of Michigan’s workforce is employed by the auto industry and the industry accounts for $42.4 billion, or nearly 11 percent of the state’s total Gross Domestic Product.
      It comes as no surprise that industry giants have powerful lobbyists working to further their agenda. Related political action committees have donated more than $1 million to state office holders since 2011, including all but two active legislators, according to the Michigan Campaign Finance Network as cited in the article.
      Revisions were made to the legislation in 2014, but Musk and company are claiming that these revisions are “protectionist” and are aimed at maintaining the status quo of sales regulations.
      Representative Aaron Miller (R-Sturgis), introduced legislation that would allow Tesla and other automakers to distribute directly to retailers rather than franchised dealerships, but the bill went nowhere. Miller is a fervent advocate for free-enterprise and is baffled by the states unwillingness to budge on the matter.
      “For me it’s simply common sense,” said Miller. “Refusing any company’s style with protectionist laws is just not the right thing to do. I don’t care if it’s Tesla, a small startup…someone who wants to sell jeans or baseballs directly should not have this sort of barrier to be in the marketplace.”
      In addition to the lawsuit, Tesla has also tried to subpoena any correspondence between lobbyists and state legislators containing communications regarding the 2014 amended law.
      Tesla claims it subpoenaed the legislators because of a June 2016 statements to the company that it will “not be allowed to operate in Michigan because Michigan dealers and manufacturers do not want Tesla in the state.”
      Legislators fought back with their claim that this subpoena is an attempt by Tesla to harass them for not submitted to Tesla’s demands.
      A trial date has not yet been set.
      Source 
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Defense lawyers in the murder trial of Sandra Jean Melgar on Tuesday blamed "a couple of cowboys" at the Harris County Sheriff's Office for jumping to conclusions and accusing her of fatally stabbing her husband in 2012.
      "Sandy Melgar got sucked into this by a couple of cowboys who came up with some theories and game over," defense attorney Mac Secrest told jurors in closing arguments of the three-week murder trial. "Where are the real killers? Are we going to see them in the courtroom anytime soon? I wouldn't bet on it."
      Melgar, 57, who faces the possibility of life in prison if convicted, is accused of stabbing her husband on Dec. 22, 2012, then tying herself up to stage a home invasion on the eve of their 32nd anniversary.
      Friends arriving for a party the next day found Jaime Melgar's body in the couple's northwest Harris County home, with Sandra Melgar tied up in the master bedroom closet.
      The defense insisted that Sandra Melgar never saw the home invader that hit her in the back of the head, tied her up and brutally stabbed her husband 31 times.
      Melgar's attorney said police failed to investigate a neighbor with a criminal record who was acting strangely at the crime scene.
      Instead, Secrest told jurors, two sheriff's detectives, one of whom was later fired for backdating a search warrant in a murder case, decided to charge Sandra Melgar and stopped looking for evidence.
      "There's no physical evidence that points to her at all," Secrest said, explaining that Jaime Melgar was stabbed and beaten about the head and body. "No broken nails, no problems with her hands, no bruising of the hands."
      Prosecutor Colleen Barnett said Melgar was motivated to kill her husband and stage a break-in for a $500,000 life insurance policy.
      She also said Melgar's religious beliefs as a Jehovah's Witness made her look for a way to get out of the marriage without a divorce, which would have left her ostracized.
      Because a church friend testified that Jehovah's Witnesses believe dead people are "sleeping" until the Apocalypse, Barnett said Melgar may have taken her husband's death lightly.
      "If I kill him, then I'm not ostracized — I get to hang out with my friends — and I get the money," Barnett said, imagining Melgar's thinking.
      When it came to Melgar's hands, Barnett pointed to photos of Melgar's right hand which showed cloudy nails, saying she used a harsh cleaner or detergent after the bloody stabbing to clean up.
      "This proves she's the one. That she did it," Barnett said. 
      Jurors began deliberating immediately after the closings in state District Judge Kelli Johnson's court.
      http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Jury-deliberating-in-murder-trial-of-Houston-wife-11950857.php

    • By Jack Ryan
      This was a case where in June 1987, the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit upheld the Witnesses' right to shun those who fail to live by the group's standards and doctrines, upholding the ruling of a lower court.
      http://openjurist.org/819/f2d/875
      Has there been any cases after this, where DF cases went to court? Have there been cases in other countries were DF decisions were challenged and reversed?
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Here in the United States we have Cable TV with such things as "History Channel", "Discovery Channel", "Scifi Channel", and "A&E" the "Arts and Entertainment Channel".  Apparently around November 13 of this year they had a famous (?) TV star, Leah Remini,  who had been a Scientologist since she was eight years old turn Apostate, and she has done at least two TV seasons exposing the ills of the Church of Scientology", do an Expose' of Jehovah's Witnesses.
      I do not watch TV as a rule, and missed it, and I spent a few days looking for it and trying to download a copy.  It was not on YouTube, but I did find it under "Aftermath Jehovah's Witnesses" on the Russian equivalent of YouTube, "Rutube.ru". It would not download with my usual download software, so I had to find a free screen capture software, which took about four hours to get the settings just right, and I was able to download the two hour program from my monitor, as it was playing.
      Therefore, I watched the TV program three times, as I experimented with the settings to get a good screen copy to my hard drive..
      I could see both sides of the program viewpoints presented, and did not find us to be misrepresented in any way whatsoever ... but if there was EVER a clear example of the Law of Unintended Consequences, the horror the Governing Body has caused in disfellowshipping the way that it is currently done ... by ripping families apart, and creating  irreparable damage that can never be corrected with reinstatement, was chilling, and puts us in the same class as Scientologists ... which completely disregarding the horror and hardsip, and cruelty without any mercy whatsoever it creates locally, shames Jehovah's Name and Reputation over the whole planet.
      I don't believe there is anything a local Jehovah's Witness could do ... rob a bank ... have a harem ... have sex with horses ... etc., ad nauseum ... that would besmirch Jehovah's name and reputation globally as much as our current blatantly cruel public policies of destroying whole families for the sins of one person.
      I am very glad to have the education I have to know that the TRUTH is still the truth .... even though the 85% drivel has rotted and fermented into rotten sewage.
      Most JWs do NOT have this educational advantage ... so their lives are permanently destroyed.
      I don't expect much from people, and almost NOTHING from groups of people .... so for me, like getting one of those great salads at the Olive Garden Restaurant, and finding a big chunk of solid sewage in it ... I hold my nose, and eat around it.
      This TV Special is global news .... what could I possibly say to the average person that would clear the Name of God, that the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, NOT THE TELEVISION PROGRAM, has corrupted by its Pharisaic policies that have real world consequences?
      The exact same thing happened in ancient Israel, and a system that God blessed and supported for a thousand years and more was abandoned by God.
      The exact same thing.
       
       
       
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      CAN A PERSON ... OR SHOULD A PERSON . BE DISFELLOWSHIPPED IN ABSTENSIA?
      Here is the situation .....  a person REPORTED to be one of Jehovah's Witnesses is accused, and NOT convicted ( ... because he is a fugitive from Justice ...) .....

      Apparently he was at one time in a "Position Of Authority", which possibly alludes to his being an  "Elder", and he may have relocated to another State or even another Country. Possibly using an alias.
      The  various Congregation Elders cannot find him, the Society cannot find him, and the U.S. Marshal's Service cannot find him.
      Not having any indication to the contrary ... at least from the information given in the pseudo-Wanted Poster shown above, he is possibly still officially one of Jehovah's Witnesses.
      Whether he is or not, his bad example raises an interesting  aspect of trying to figure out how the disfellowshipping "system" protocol actually works.
      Can any of the Congregations  he went to disfellowship him without his being present  to answer charges ?
      ... and SHOULD he be?
       
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      A Special Forces veteran, publicly branded a poisoner, has broken his silence to tell the Sunday Mercury: “I did not kill my wife with weedkiller.”
      And Lieutenant Commander Robert McIntyre, who served the Royal Navy with distinction from 1963 to 1971, says the bombshell allegation will be the death of him.
      “This is going to see me off,” said the 72-year-old at his cluttered bungalow in Bloxwich, near Walsall, the oxygen machine wife Valerie used still prominently placed in the living room.
      “That’s it for me, that’s me finished.”
      Robert, raised on the Isle of Skye, spoke out after an inquest heard 88-year-old Valerie told family from her hospital deathbed: “That bastard has killed me.”
      She claimed that Robert, who became a long distance lorry driver after his military stint, had poisoned her with weedkiller, the hearing was told.
      https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/navy-hero-not-kill-wife-15277332Valerie, a devout Jehovah’s Witness, died at Walsall Manor Hospital in September 2017. Her service at Bushbury Crematorium did not take place until September 11 this year.
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      DO  WE STILL  DISFELLOWSHIP  THE  MENTALLY  ILL ?
      I was a teenager in the 60's,  and I had a good friend that on Scout camping trips I introduced to the Truth, and I was there in NYC at Yankee Stadium when he was baptized as one of Jehovah's Witness. He was a true "straight arrow", and pioneered, always dressed immaculately, and eventually over the years became an Elder.
      One night, at an Elder's Meeting, he announced to the other Elders that he was Jesus Christ, and that his mother was the virgin Mary, and of course he was disfellowshipped.
      He spent several years in private mental institutions until his insurance money ran out, then in a State institution for several years.
      He called me up, and told me the story, and I told him I was the Great Turtleman, and every November, before I hibernated, I rose from the swamp and gave toys to all the good little boys and girls.  I was just pulling his leg, but he was dead serious.
      Later, he was in England, while his wife was trying without success to get him to take his medications, and fell over a balcony at Heathrow Airport and got killed.
      DO  WE STILL  DISFELLOWSHIP  THE  MENTALLY  ILL ?
       
    • By Jack Ryan
      from 2016 the year that they started the return to Jehovah brochure.
    • By Jack Ryan
      a heartbreaking video has emerged online showing how far reaching and deeply ingrained this shunning policy is; a video showing JehovahÂ’s Witnesses clapping in applause as a little girl announces she is shunning her own sister.
      Little Melody, and the sister she doesnÂ’t have.
      The incident appears to take place at one of this years Watchtower conventions. The video was posted on youtube by the girls parents, apprently eager to share with the world how they had trained one of their children to pretend her sister didnÂ’t exist purely on the basis of religious dogma.
      The video was comment-protected once viewers began expressing concern and displeasure at what they saw, but at the time of writing the video itself is still live and can be viewed below on the family’s youtube page. (EDIT 11/09/2017 – The video has been removed, but we have linked to an alternate site which has a copy)

      t shows a little girl called Melody. She is ten years old, and was apparently baptised when she was 9. This means that Melody is now committed to the religion for life, and will be shunned if she ever leaves, or “unrepentantly” breaks any of its vast array of detailed rules.
      During the interview, Melody explains that she has a sister who was “disfellowshipped,” which is the Witness term for one who is excommunicated; someone who was thrown out of the faith rather than leaving of their own accord. We are not told the reason for the disfellowshipping, but one can be subjected to it for a wide range of reasons such as pre-marital sex, celebrating Christmas or birthdays, voting, taking a blood transfusion, joining the military, or simply questioning any of the doctrines of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
      Melody states that her sister was trying to contact her, and asking her to stay in contact despite Watchtower decreeing that she be shunned. Remember, MelodyÂ’s sister has probably lost all her family and friends at this point; everyone she ever knew and loved.
      Melody admits that she misses and loves her sister, but states that she was afraid that if she didnÂ’t cut her sister off completely, she might be tempted to keep some form of relationship going. Thus, she has decided to shun her completely, as Watchtower demands. She claims that this was to protect her relationship with Jehovah.
      The audience of JehovahÂ’s Witnesses watching this announcement applaud.
      Source
    • By Jack Ryan
      This comes from the final talk at the Birmingham, AL Convention. Herd talks kind of low and there is some background noise, so here is a transcript starting at about 1:25.
      I thought this was interesting because it doesn't appear to be in the talk outline. Admittedly, I just skimmed through the outline quickly, so it might be in there. Either way, there is something twisted about comparing the shunning of children to casting out demons from heaven.
      Edit: For those wondering, this talk is from August 5. The part before when the transcript starts is Herd talking about King Asa removing his grandmother from her position.
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