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  1. Prince's death puts spotlight on Jehovah's Witnesses ❤ Prince's death has put an unprecedeted spotlight on his JW - in suburban Minneapolis, as well as the Jehovah's Witness faith nationally. 'We lost a spiritual brother' in Prince'.... For more than a decade, Prince spent many Sunday mornings inside a simple Jehovah’s Witnesses hall in a Minneapolis suburb, listening to Bible readings, sharing his insights in group discussions, and singing such hymns as “God’s Promise of Paradise” and “Be Forgiving.” “His beliefs were very, very strong,” said Larry Graham, a close friend who introduced Prince to the faith. While the superstar was comfortable door-knocking in Minnesota to spread the Bible’s message — a requirement for all Witnesses — he also tried to spread Jehovah’s teachings to musicians and others in his circle, Graham said. “It’s a side of him most people don’t know,” he said. As Prince fans across the globe await an explanation of his unexpected death on April 21, worshipers at this St. Louis Park church remember a modest guy who would slip into the fellowship hall on Sundays with zero fanfare. Ironically, in death, he has put an unprecedented spotlight on his church. Warner Bros. plans vinyl reissues of Prince's 1985-1992 albums 7 charities to give to in honor of Prince's memory “We’re seeing a tremendous surge in interest,” said Jim Lundstrom, a church elder in St. Louis Park. “I’ve gotten calls from Paris, London, Africa … and all points in between. Now our name is coming to the fore.” Like the others in this church, Prince didn’t fear death, because he believed in a future earthly paradise. But, Graham said, the superstar was not planning to make his worldly exit yet. Graham said he knew nothing of opioid painkillers, now the focus of Prince’s death investigation. Graham also denied claims that Prince couldn’t have hip surgery because his faith prohibited blood transfusions. While Jehovah’s Witnesses can’t get blood transfusions, medical technology offers alternatives, Graham said. In fact, Lundstrom belongs to a national network of hospital liaisons who help church members at the Mayo Clinic, the University of Minnesota and elsewhere receive optimal care without transfusions. “We recognize that life is a gift from God,” said Graham, a bass player for the 1960s funk band Sly and the Family Stone. “Any medical treatment that will make us well again, we seek that.” Prince’s Sunday home About 70 people sat with Bible study pamphlets on their laps at Prince’s Jehovah’s Witnesses hall last Sunday. It’s a simple room, with no crucifixes or religious symbols — just comfortable chairs and plenty of Bibles and Watchtower publications available at the door. “He’d usually sit over there,” said one member, gesturing to the rows center and back. The nearly two-hour service opened with a hymn, and then a guest speaker preached about the Bible being an “owner’s manual for our lives.” That was followed by an hourlong, engaging discussion about loyalty to God, during which worshipers answered questions such as: “How can you be loyal to both Jehovah and your friend or relative?” The service ended with a simple prayer and a song, and folks meandered out the door. Prince’s path to this church began at an after-concert party in Nashville about 20 years ago, Graham said. Prince and Graham, both performing in town that night, found themselves talking about life’s big questions. Prince later asked Graham, a member of Jehovah’s Witnesses since 1975, if he would consider moving to Minneapolis to continue teaching him the Bible. Graham, at the time living in Montego Bay, Jamaica, said yes. He has been Prince’s spiritual mentor and close friend ever since. “We started studying the Bible on a regular basis,” recalled Graham. “And the more he learned, the more questions he had, like: ‘Why are we here? Where is everything heading? What’s the future for mankind, for the Earth?’ ” Prince also learned that Jehovah’s Witnesses do not celebrate Christmas and Easter, for example, because those holidays have roots in pagan traditions. They do not serve in the military. They view Jesus as the son of God, but not God, and they don’t believe in a trinity. They pray to God, called Jehovah, who will return to rule a paradise on Earth. Prince, known as “Brother Nelson,” joined Jehovah’s Witnesses in 2003. The church was a beneficiary of Prince’s philanthropy, but it’s difficult to say how much he gave. Collection plates are not passed. Giving is done privately, often in cash and often at a church table with two slots marked “Local Congregation Expenses” and “Worldwide Work.” No will for Prince has surfaced, and Graham said he was unaware if Jehovah’s Witnesses would benefit from a $100-million-plus estate now being claimed by Prince’s family members. Near the giving table is a large map of St. Louis Park, with every street on a grid that is used for door-to-door ministry. “We have the whole world [mapped],” said George Cook, a church elder eyeing the map. “We’re very organized.” There are about 8 million Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide, he said, and about 15,000 are Minnesotans. Ministry, Prince style It wasn’t uncommon for Prince and Graham — or Prince and other church members — to grab their Bibles and head out to neighborhoods. Sometimes people recognized their famous visitor, sometimes not. He enjoyed it, Graham said. And having a celebrity like Prince as a visible supporter made others more interested in checking out the religion, he said. But Prince’s ministry extended beyond the city map. “If there was some visitor at Paisley Park, they could sit down and have a conversation,” said Graham. “It could be after a show. Or you could just be out and about, and run into people, and just start talking about the Bible. Many, many kinds of settings. “He would never try to force his beliefs on anyone. But he was always willing to share the things he learned in the Bible.” One thing Prince learned was to be “a positive person,” Graham said. He ate and drank in moderation. He stopped cursing. And he stopped writing the raunchy lyrics that characterized some of his early work. Prince also was at Graham’s side at various Jehovah’s Witnesses conferences, digging deeper into an unusual faith he credited with turning his life around. “[The Bible] helps you with every aspect of your life,” Prince said in a 2004 interview. “Once you can clean out the cobwebs, so to speak, you can see everything more clearly.” A type of protection When asked why a free-spirited musician would choose a structured faith, Graham said that’s not how he — or Prince — saw it. “It’s not really restrictive. It’s more like a protection from things that could possibly harm us,” Graham said. “So it’s a positive thing … and making you a better person.” Prince was particularly drawn to biblical messages of a hopeful future, he said. One of his favorite passages was Revelations 21:3-4, which states that God ultimately will dwell with his people and that “death will be no more.” “The resurrection and the hope for the future — and many more [passages] — we discussed many weeks and many months and years,” Graham said. “A lot of people will remember Prince for his music,” he added. “But he’d also want people to know what he learned from the Bible. We lost a really good friend and a spiritual brother.” UNTIL TO PARADISE........ OUR DEAR BROTHER ❤ ♪ ♫ ♪ ♫.♪ ♫ ♪ ♫.♪ ♫ ♪ ♫ ♪ ♫.♪ ♫ ♪ ♫.♪ ♫ ♪ ♫ ♪ ♫.♪ ♫
  2. Prince reportedly once said he wanted President Obama to outlaw birthdays and Christmas. “Why doesn’t Obama just outlaw birthdays?” the “Purple Rain” singer once asked Van Jones, the CNN political commentator reveals in a story published Thursday in GQ magazine. The “Purple Rain” singer, who died in April at age 57 from an accidental drug overdose, was baptized as a Jehovah’s Witness in 2003. Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t celebrate birthdays because they “believe that such celebrations displease God” and because Christmas has pagan roots, according to the Church’s official website. “Although we choose not to celebrate Christmas ourselves, we respect each person’s right to decide for himself in this matter. We do not interfere in the Christmas celebrations of others,” the website states. Jones said Prince told him, “I was hoping that Obama as soon as he was elected, would get up and announce there’d be no more Christmas presents and no more birthdays — we’ve got too much to do. Jones, who indicated he was laughing during the conversation with the music superstar, replied, “I don’t know if that would go over too well.” https://origin-nyi.thehill.com/blogs/in-the-know/309451-van-jones-prince-wanted-obama-to-outlaw-birthdays-christmas
  3. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/04/26/a-closer-look-at-jehovahs-witnesses-living-in-the-u-s/
  4. An interview with Prince's spiritual brother entitled, "#1 In A Million Concert by Larry Graham [Interviews] Within this article are interviews regarding the beliefs of these two spiritual brothers based on their faith in God's word the Bible. To read this article go to my webpage www.angelladywriter.com
  5. Prince namatay mas maaga sa araw (Abril 21) sa edad na 57 sa kanyang Paisley Park tahanan at studio, ang kanyang publicist nakumpirma sa Associated Press . TMZ unang iniulat sa mga balita. Gone But Not Forgotten: In Memoriam 2016 Prince ay hospitalized noong nakaraang linggo pagkatapos ng kanyang eroplano para ay sapilitang upang gumawa ng isang emergency landing sa Moline, Ill. Inilabas ng ilang oras mamaya, isang rep sinabi TMZ na siya ay battling isang masamang kaso ng trangkaso. Isa sa mga pinaka-iconic na musikero sa kasaysayan ng musika, ni Prince malawak na karera lumago sa labas ng ang tanawin ng musika ng kanyang katutubong Minneapolis, kung saan siya nakatira sa kanyang buong buhay. Kanyang 1978 debut album For You at self-titled second LP, inilabas noong Oktubre 1979, kicked off ang isang hindi kapani-paniwalang madaling dumami run ng album na kasama 1999,Purple Rain , Around The World In A Day , Mag-sign O Ang Times at Batman , bukod sa iba, buong 1980s sa isang clip ng halos isang bawat taon, umuusbong sa bawat release. Ito ay 1984 ni Purple Rain - ang kanyang unang No. 1 album sa Billboard 200 - inilabas kasabay ng pelikula ng parehong pangalan, upang cemented sa kanya bilang isa sa mga pinakadakilang mga artist ng kanyang henerasyon, pagkamit sa kanya ng dalawang Grammys, at Oscar at isang tagumpay laban Michael Jackson ni Thriller para sa Favorite Pop / Rock Album sa ang 1985 American Music Awards. Kasama ang paraan, siya ay nagtrabaho sa ilang mga bands sa ilalim ng isang serye ng mga pseudonyms, kabilang ang mga Ang Time, ang New Power Generation at Ang Revolution, bilang parehong frontman at producer. Prince ay kilala rin para sa kanyang eponymous ibig Symbol, na nilalang protest laban sa kanyang longtime record label Warner Bros., sa ilalim kung saan siya pinakawalan ng isang album noong 1992. Ang kanyang ika-18 at huling album para sa label, 1996 niChaos at Disorder , sa wakas ay inilabas niya mula sa kanyang kontrata. Bilang isang recording artist, Prince ay maalamat para sa kanyang masagana ang ani at perfectionist kalikasan na pinahihintulutan sa kanya upang i-release ng isang tumibay liko ng materyal bilang siya experimented sa studio; bilang isang resulta, unreleased b-gilid at bootlegs ay naging mataas na tanyag Collectibles para sa taong matibay tagahanga, at ang kanyang kasumpa-sumpa "vault" ng mga pag-record ay naging ang mga bagay-bagay ng mga alamat. Ngunit siya rin ay tunay na transendente bilang performer, regular na lumalawak ang kanyang mga palabas sa dako roon ng tatlong-oras na mark at ng pagpapakita ng kanyang mga nakamamanghang guitar trabaho, na naging isang underrated bahagi ng kanyang legacy, madalas overshadowed sa pamamagitan ng kanyang iconic singing voice at kakayahan bilang isang songwriter at bandleader . Higit sa kanyang 35-plus-year career, siya pinakawalan 39 solo studio album at hindi kailanman tumigil ilalabas ang mga bagong materyal; mula noong Septiyembre 2014, kaniyang binulag ang apat na bagong mga talaan full-length sa kanyang pinakabagong band, 3rd Eye Girl, patuloy na eksperimento sa psychedelic rock and intergalactic funk. Ni Prince legacy bilang isang musikero, isang mang-aawit, isang estilo ng icon at isang endlessly creative isip ay halos walang kapantay, at ang kanyang impluwensiya ay umaabot mula sa pop sa R & B na maging sobrang lungkot sa hip-hop at kahit saan sa pagitan. Purple Rain ay ang unang ng apat na No. 1 album sa Billboard 200; isang karagdagang 12 LPs masakitin sa nangungunang 10 sa apat na iba't ibang mga dekada. http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7341522/prince-dead
  6. The Internet is a sea of purple and vintage Prince photos today, and for good reason. The legendary pop icon would have celebrated his 58th birthday today. The governor of his beloved home state, Minnesota has declared June 7 as Prince Day in honor of the musical genius. While the world stamps social media tributes with #HappyBirthdayPrince, it’s important to note that the enigmatic star actually didn’t celebrate his own birthday. To Prince, June 7 was always just another day. Prince is among a group of beloved entertainers who didn’t believe in celebrating birthdays, due to their faith as Jehovah’s Witnesses. Another beloved icon, Selena Quintanilla, is also in that group. Although she’s celebrated long and wide on both her birthday and the anniversary of her death, there were no personal celebrations or birthday cards for the Tejano beauty. Two weeks after Selena was brutally gunned down on March 31, 1995, then-governor of Texas, George W. Bush, declared the singer’s birthday Selena Day. I didn’t realize that Prince didn’t celebrate his birthday until this year. It caused me to pause a minute — as a huge lifelong Prince fan, June 7 was a national holiday in my family since I was three years old. I declared him the love of my life before pre-school, and celebrated by listening to his music for the entire day, and wearing purple when mom gave me the green light to dress myself on my own. With such incredible legacies, it’s rather poetic that artists like Prince and Selena even transcend the idea of an ordinary birthday celebration. The holidays, the candlelit memorials and purple lit dance parties do them more justice than any mere mortal’s birthday cake.
  7. Prince learned Jesus was Jehovah’s Son and not God or part of a God Head or a Trinity. He learned this by combining Scriptures written about Him and Jesus own admissions. The first scripture does not say it is Jesus that Jehovah is talking to, however, it becomes powerful when read in the same line of thought with others about creation. Read Genesis 1:26 And God went on to say: “Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness” New World Translation That Jesus Christ was the first creation of Jehovah, after His creation Jesus was the Co Creator of the Heavens and the Earth : Now read Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16 because by means of him “all [other] things were created“in the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created through him and for him. Revelation 3:14 “And to the angel of the congregation in La·o·di·ceʹa write: These are the things that the Amen says, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation by God. Jesus was then and is today “the faithful and true witness” He is foremost one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The phrase “the beginning of the creation by God” reaffirms the truth that Jesus was the first angel Jehovah created. These scriptures help us to see that the Trinity Doctrine that is the Base of many church teachings was something made up by church leaders to elevate them above their parishioners or Just a Lie. We Love JW.ORG Source: Steve Hesseltine
  8. The recent passing of music icon Prince has motivated many people to look at a once little-known fact about his life: his faith. Though he was baptized a Seventh-day Adventist, Prince became a Jehovah’s Witness. He regularly attended services and even knocked on doors, as this CNN.com story illustrates: On one occasion Prince knocked on a door in a middle class suburb of Minneapolis. A woman answered and stared at the instantly recognizable singer, easily the Twin Cities’ biggest celebrity, Lundstrom recalled. “In the middle of Prince’s very nice Bible presentation, the woman says, ‘Excuse me, but has anyone told you that you look a lot like Prince?’ He looks at her and says, ‘It's been said.’ Then goes back to his presentation. When the woman asked Prince for his name, Prince said, ‘Rogers Nelson,’” his middle and last name. One problem in stories like these and other commentary on Prince is that he is often described as a “conservative Christian,” even though Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christians. Now, before I explain why Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christians, I need to head off some objections, specifically: “How dare you question someone else’s faith!” and “Don’t you have any respect for the recently departed?” First, when I say Prince was not a Christian, I’m not saying he was a bad person. “Christian” and “good person” are not synonymous. Bad people can be Christians—indeed, all Christians are sinners—and there are good people who happen to be non-Christians. The term Christianrefers instead to people who believe certain truths about God and have received certain sacraments, namely baptism, in accordance with those truths. Second, I’m not questioning what Prince believed or judging the contents of his heart and soul. I’m assuming that Prince was a faithful Jehovah’s Witness until death. What I am saying is that if someone believes Jehovah’s Witnesses theology, he is not a Christian. Of course, the critic will reply, “Who gave you the right to say who is and isn’t a Christian?” But even the critic will admit that some people, like Jews or atheists, are not Christians. His criteria for being a Christian is probably “anyone who says he is a Christian,” which makes sense in a world where one’s personal sense of self-identity is allowed to override almost any objective measure of reality. However, if Jesus rose from the dead and left us an authoritative church to guide believers to salvation, then I’m going to go with the definition of Christianity Christ’s Church gives us. Tangling with the Trinity The key difference between Christians and non-Christians such as Jehovah’s Witnesses is the doctrine of the Trinity. According to theCatechism of the Catholic Church: Christians are baptized ‘in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.’ Before receiving the sacrament, they respond to a three-part question when asked to confess the Father, the Son and the Spirit: “I do.” “The faith of all Christians rests on the Trinity” (CCC 232). But Jehovah’s Witnesses emphatically deny the doctrine of the Trinity. They say the Trinity is “the lie that made God a mystery”[1] and is simply “not a Bible teaching.”[2] Many of their objections to the Trinity can be answered by explaining what it actually is. For example, when Jesus was tempted to worship the devil, he refused and responded by quoting the Old Testament’s command to “worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve” (Luke 4:8). The Watchtower, the official magazine of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, says of this passage, “Jesus made it clear that there is just one God who must be worshipped when he said ‘him alone,’ not ‘us,’ which hewould have said if he were part of a Trinity.”[3] But the Trinity doesteach that there is just one God to be worshiped, and this God is a unity that can be referred to as “him.” God is not a collection to be referred to as “us” but three persons united in one being, each of whom fully possess the divine nature. Other Jehovah’s Witnesses criticisms of the Trinity try to prove that the doctrine is unintelligible or is a pagan belief that was assimilated by Christian doctrine and is not biblical. For example, one Watchtowerarticle says: The Trinity, explain Catholic scholars Karl Rahner and Herbert Vorgrimler, "could not be known without revelation, and even after revelation cannot become wholly intelligible." Can you really love someone who is impossible to know or understand? The doctrine of the Trinity, therefore, is a barrier to knowing and loving God.[4] But this objection confuses being incomprehensible with beingunintelligible. Yes, the Trinity cannot be fully comprehended, or understood, in every respect. But just because something is not “wholly intelligible,” it does not follow that it is unintelligible, or nonsense. Jehovah’s Witnesses even admit that their God Jehovah is not completely understandable. According to their training manualReasoning from the Scriptures, “Should we really expect to understand everything about a Person who is so great that he could bring into existence the universe, with all its intricate design and stupendous size?[5] Since there is nothing else in the universe like the Trinity, we can expect that there would be things we don’t understand about this doctrine, even though on the whole the doctrine is not a logical contradiction. The Trinity is a mystery, but that does not mean it is some unknowable “black hole.” Rather, a theological mystery refers to truths that we would not know if God had not revealed them to us. It is, like other mysteries of the faith, “not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit” (1 Cor. 2:13). Jehovah’s Witnesses also claim the term Trinity is a pagan one derived from ancient mythology and is not found in the Bible. It is true that the word does not appear in Scripture, but neither do the wordsGoverning Body, generation of 1914, kingdom hall, or other words associated with many important Witnesses doctrines. This shows that a doctrine does not have to appear in the Bible in order for one to believe it to be true. Furthermore, the claim that the Trinity is based on mythological “triads” of gods such as Osiris, Isis, and Horus in Egypt is false. These pagan triads are nothing like the Trinity, because they represent three different and competing gods, while the Trinity is one God who is three co-equal, co-eternal persons, or, as Tertullian wrote in A.D. 216, “The unity is distributed in a Trinity. Placed in order, the three are the Father, Son, and Spirit.”[6] The bottom line All people, no matter what their beliefs, will eventually stand before God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. That’s why Catholics evangelize, or share the good news about God: so that all people can have a relationship with God before death. This is especially true when it comes to evangelizing groups like Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons who claim Jesus as their savior but deny the deity of Christ. These groups don’t even feel it is appropriate to pray to Jesus, so it is an act of kindness, not arrogance, to correct their mistaken Christology. This is done out of love so that the person can come to know the God who not only became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1:14) but stands ready with the Father to dwell within our very being (John 14:23). Join me in praying for the soul of Prince and for all those who die with mistaken beliefs about God. In this Year of Mercy especially we have hope of their eternal salvation. If you want to learn more about how to answer the arguments of Jehovah’s Witnesses, see my booklet 20 Answers: Jehovah’s Witnesses. [1] “The Lie That Made God A Mystery,” The Watchtower, November, 1 2013, 5. http://www.jw.org/en/publications/magazines/wp20131101/lie-made-god-a-mystery-trinity/. ? [2] Reasoning From the Scriptures (Brooklyn: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, 1989), 405. ? [3] “Is the Trinity a Bible teaching?” The Watchtower, March 1, 2012, 23. http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2012173. ? [4] “The Lie That Made God A Mystery,” The Watchtower, November, 1 2013, 5. http://www.jw.org/en/publications/magazines/wp20131101/lie-made-god-a-mystery-trinity/. ? [5] Reasoning From the Scriptures (Brooklyn: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, 1989), 149. ? [6] Against Praxeas, 2. ? After his conversion to the Catholic Faith, Trent Horn earned a bachelor's degree in history from Arizona State University and a master's degree in theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is currently pursuing a graduate degree in philosophy from Holy Apostles College. Trent is a... more... Source:the Catholic Faith
  9. This undated photo provided by the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office in Ramsey, Minn., shows Dr. A. Quinn Strobl, the chief medical examiner at the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office. Strobl performed Prince's autopsy on April 22, 2016, the day after he died. (Midwest Medical Examiner's Office via AP) May. 12, 2016 Prince's autopsy, particularly the toxicology report, may clarify whether prescription painkillers played any part in his death. Determining whether the music superstar died of a drug overdose will likely involve not only tests of his blood, urine, liver tissue and fluid from the eyes, it also will require compiling evidence from Prince's medicine cabinet, his medical history and possibly information from witnesses and those who knew him. Authorities haven't said when results of the April 22 autopsy will be released, only that it would take weeks. ___ WHAT'S ALREADY KNOWN? Questions about Prince's health surfaced April 15, when his plane made an emergency stop in Moline, Illinois. He was found unconscious aboard the aircraft, a law enforcement official who was briefed on the investigation told The Associated Press. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media. While the plane was on the tarmac, the official said, first responders gave Prince a shot of Narcan, an antidote used to reverse suspected opioid overdoses. The official said investigators are looking at whether Prince overdosed on the flight and whether an overdose killed him six days later. One possibility is the powerful painkiller Percocet or something similar, the official said. A medical examiner completed the physical autopsy in four hours on April 22, the day after Prince was found dead at age 57. The Midwest Medical Examiner's Office did not release a preliminary cause of death based on the autopsy alone and has said the toxicology results would take weeks. ___ WHY DOES IT TAKE SO LONG? Toxicology reports can be based on multiple rounds of tests, escalating in sophistication as pathologists, toxicologists and chemists work together to answer questions, according to the College of American Pathologists. First, basic screens are run on blood and urine to detect categories such as opiates, amphetamines, marijuana, alcohol and barbiturates. Confirming those results can take days and sometimes requires repeated testing. More tests are then run to identify each chemical's unique fingerprint by measuring its mass and other traits. Sometimes, a specialty lab is called in to test for specific drugs. Finding multiple drugs in a person's system can add time to the process. Tests typically are run on various fluids and tissues including bile and the eye. "The blood only gives you a snapshot of exactly what was happening at the moment of death," said Dr. Bruce Levy, a pathologist at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "By looking at other body fluids or tissues, you can get more of a sense of history of a person's use of a drug or medication." ___ WHAT COULD THE AUTOPSY SHOW? The autopsy report will help clarify whether Prince had a medical issue such as a heart problem that might explain his death, said Dr. Paul Wax, executive director of the American College of Medical Toxicology. "If he didn't have some other medical condition, then was there enough evidence based on the forensic toxicology testing and other information from pill bottles, family, friends and eyewitnesses to suggest that the death was from drugs?" Wax asked. If prescription drugs are involved, Prince may have been taking medications exactly as directed, or taking more than prescribed. The report could include evidence that prescriptions from several doctors were involved, or may say nothing about the source of any culprit drugs. Death certificates sometimes include mention of "polysubstance abuse" — abuse of three or more drugs — or "substance abuse" or perhaps "drug use disorder," Wax said. In Minnesota, such terms can be listed as a contributing factor. ___ WHAT DRUG LEVELS ARE LETHAL? It's tricky. Anyone who takes prescription opioid painkillers for a long time builds a tolerance to the drugs. A dose that could kill one person might provide medicinal pain relief to another. "That's the problem with opioids," said Dr. Lewis Nelson, medical toxicologist at New York University School of Medicine. "Unless you have a good sense of how much opioid the person was using in the past several weeks, it's hard to know how to interpret a post-mortem blood level." Crucial evidence such as pill bottles, Prince's medical history and other information would come into play, Nelson said. "The number has to be contextualized." ___ WOULD BRAND NAME PERCOCET SHOW UP ON AN AUTOPSY REPORT? Percocet would show up as separate listings for its ingredients — acetaminophen and oxycodone — on a typical forensic toxicology report, Wax said. Oxycodone is an opioid, but both ingredients can be dangerous. Acetaminophen overdoses kill about 150 people per year, and would show up as liver damage on an autopsy report. Overdose from opioids, including oxycodone and heroin, killed nearly 29,000 people in 2014. ___ WHAT MIGHT NOT BE RELEASED PUBLICLY? Minnesota law gives medical examiners broad authority to access a deceased person's medical records, including those on mental health and chemical dependency. The state allows medical examiners to include references to mental health records in a final summary report, but shields the records themselves from public disclosure. That allows a measure of confidentiality. "I think the autopsy report will be very objective," said Dr. Yashpal Agrawal of the College of American Pathologists. "It will say what the drug levels are, what drugs were found and give an opinion about what it means." He does not expect the autopsy report to make conclusions about addiction or chemical dependency. ___ WHO IS THE MEDICAL EXAMINER? Dr. A. Quinn Strobl, who has been the chief medical examiner at the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office since late 2009, performed the autopsy on Prince herself. Her office is the official coroner for 19 counties in Minnesota, including Carver County, where he was found dead. Strobl has been a practicing forensic pathologist since she finished her fellowship in 2005 and is board-certified in anatomic, clinical and forensic pathology. According to a 2009 (Minneapolis) Star Tribune article, Strobl is a native of Philadelphia who attended Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She considered going into family practice and surgery, and decided being a medical examiner was a good mix of the two. "I interact directly with the family, I deliver the diagnosis and I answer a wide spectrum of questions," she told the newspaper. "I don't deliver the bad news. Hopefully, I deliver answers." ___ WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? Autopsy reports usually include a cause of death such as "opioid poisoning" or "congestive heart failure" and a manner of death, such as "homicide," ''suicide," ''accident" or "undetermined." But those categories have no legal standing, according to Dr. Dave Fowler, Maryland's chief medical examiner and president of the National Association of Medical Examiners. "Medical definitions largely are there to classify a death for statistical purposes," Fowler said. "It's more of a public health tool than it is a legal or law enforcement tool." Asked whether a determination of "accidental overdose" would make it more difficult to file any charges, Fowler said: "Medical examiners are not in the position to be judge and jury. The legal decision is made by local prosecutors or grand juries. They have the authority to file charges. Whatever we call it doesn't make any difference to them. It shouldn't." Source:AP Chief Medical Examiner - Anoka County Midwest Medical Exam (@MidwestMedExam) | Twitter
  10. MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — Autopsy results show that Prince died of a self-administered overdose of Fentanyl, and his death was ruled accidental. The 57-year-old singer was found dead April 21 at his Minneapolis-area estate. The findings confirm suspicions that opioids played a role in the musician’s death. After he died, authorities began reviewing whether an overdose was to blame and whether he had been prescribed drugs in the preceding weeks. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Fentanyl is more potent than morphine, and is “sometimes used to treat people with chronic pain who are physically tolerant to opiates.” The autopsy report released by the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office listed his weight at the time of death as 112 pounds. An attorney said Prince had agreed to an intervention for painkiller addiction the day before he died. Prince’s death came less than a week after his plane made an emergency stop in Moline, Illinois, for medical treatment as he was returning from an Atlanta concert. The Associated Press and other media reported, based on anonymous sources, that Prince was found unconscious on the plane, and first responders gave him a shot of Narcan, an antidote used in suspected opioid overdoses. http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2016/06/02/prince-autopsy-death-toxicology/ See main post:
  11. “I have friends that are gay, and we study the Bible together.” “When everyone recognizes Jehovah's name, then everyone will be happy because everyone will know what to do and how to do it.” “I don't vote and I got nothing to do with it.” “The Bible is a study guide for social interaction.” “Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.'” “Prophecy is what we all have to go by now.” “I ain't mad at anybody. I don't have any enemies.” “I'm a Jehovah's Witness.” “If you look in the Bible there's no birthdays.” “Every day I feel is a blessing from God. And I consider it a new beginning. Yeah, everything is beautiful.” Source
  12. 2005 - $20,000 for CHANHASSEN JEVOVAH WITNES y ST LOUIS JEHOVAH WITNESS 2006 - $130,000 for JEHOVAH WITNESS KINGDOM HALL 2007 - $800,000 for PECCOLE RANCH LAKES KINGDOM HALL FUND The amounts of his donations has been posted in other forums with copies of the public tax filings of his Love 4 One Another foundation. I will add a link to this page to his central post on this forum:
  13. La repentina muerte del legendario Prince el pasado mes de abril sigue generando una incesante corriente de homenajes entre sus más allegados. Los últimos en querer rendirle tributo han sido los miembros de la congregación religiosa de la que fue tan devoto en los últimos años de su vida, la comunidad de testigos de Jehová de Minnetonka -en el estado de Minnesota-, que ayer domingo se reunieron para honrar la memoria del cantante. Entre los invitados al servicio religioso se encontraban principalmente amigos del artista y un gran número de feligreses que tuvieron la oportunidad de conocerle personalmente. En la iglesia también podrían haberse dado cita algunos familiares del intérprete que, sin embargo, trataron de pasar más desapercibidos, según informa el portal Entertainment Tonight. Además del famoso humorista Sinbad -amigo personal de Prince desde hace años-, también acudió a la ceremonia Larry Graham, bajista de la banda Sly and the Family Stone, quien podría haber jugado un papel fundamental en la conversión de Prince a la práctica religiosa que marcó buena parte de sus últimos años. De hecho, el músico no dejó pasar la oportunidad de dedicar unas sentidas palabras desde el altar a su querido amigo. "Prince Rogers Nelson nació el 7 de junio de 1958. Como artista y músico, sus triunfos hablan por sí solos y ofrecen un testimonio inapelable de su talento y creatividad. No obstante, Prince también mantuvo un interés profundo en todo el espectro espiritual que nos brinda la vida: comenzó a estudiar la Biblia hace muchos años y compartió sus reflexiones con toda la comunidad. Siete años después, fue bautizado como testigo de Jehová y decidió dedicar su vida a Dios y a sus hermanos. Por desgracia, Prince ahora descansa y tendrá que esperar a la llamada que Jesús hará a todos aquellos que nos dejaron para que vuelvan a la vida", rezaba el libreto que fue entregado a todos los asistentes.Poco después del servicio religioso, Romeo -su fiel guardaespaldas y confidente- aseguró a los periodistas allí congregados que el evento había sido "precioso, un verdadero homenaje a Prince" y que no habría habido mejor manera de "dar las gracias" al malogrado músico que con un encuentro en su adorada iglesia local."La gente de todo el mundo, no solo de nuestra congregación, se ha reunido hoy para dar las gracias a un hombre que ha mejorado nuestras vidas a través de su inolvidable música, con su intachable actitud y con su deseo de ayudar y ser generoso con los demás", añadió. Fuente: http://www.telemetro.com/entretenimiento/espectaculo/Prince-recibe-homenaje-iglesia-local_0_917308385.html
  14. En la imagen, (desde la izquierda) la asistente personal de Prince, Meron Bekure, la bajista de 3rdEyeGirl Ida Nielsen y la guitarist Donna Grantis, los exempleados Romeo y Mark Spark, a la salida de la iglesia donde se celebró un funeral por Prince, el 15 de mayo de 2016, en Minnetonka, Minnesota. (Jeff Wheeler/Star Tribune via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT; ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS OUT; MAGS OUT; TWIN CITIES LOCAL TELEVISION OUT MINNETONKA, Minnesota, EE.UU. (AP) — Entre fuertes medidas de seguridad, la iglesia Kingdom Hall de los Testigos de Jehová se llenó el domingo para un funeral por Prince, que rezaba allí antes de su muerte el mes pasado. Una fila de conos de tráfico separaba la iglesia de Minnetonka, un suburbio de Minneapolis, de los medios de comunicación y seguidores que esperaban al otro lado de la calle antes del evento, al que solo se podía acceder con invitación. Kari Spreeman, portavoz de la ciudad, dijo la semana pasada que la policía esperaba un máximo de 500 personas, incluidos 50 invitados de alto perfil. Algunas personas que no pudieron entrar a la iglesia antes de que se llenara si lograron obtener programas de mano del acto, que compartieron con los reporteros. El programa decía que el servicio comenzó con la canción “He Will Call”, seguida de una oración de bienvenida. Además incluyó una “entrevista” con Larry Graham, exbajista de Sly and the Family Stone y el mentor espiritual que introdujo a Prince en los Testigos de Jehová. El servicio terminó con la canción “See Yourself When All Is New” y una oración. El reverso incluía una cita de la canción de Prince “Beautiful, Loved and Blessed”, de su disco “3121”, de 2006, que decía: “Si algún día tengo que escribir la historia de mi vida, sinceramente podría decir que con toda la fama y la gloria, fui solo un pedazo de arcilla necesitado de la mano del alfarero”. En una entrevista con The Associated Press hace dos semanas, Graham dijo que para Prince era importante transmitir alegría a sus seguidores con su música. Pero lo que más le importaba era poder compartir las escrituras, agregó. “Su alegría, su mayor alegría, era compartir la esperanza de la vida eterna”, explicó Graham. En Kingdom Hall Prince era conocido como “hermano Nelson”. El músico fue hallado muerto en su centro de grabación Paisley Park en Chanhassen, el 21 de abril. Tenía 57 años. Las autoridades siguen investigando la causa de su muerte. Las dos exesposas del artista celebraron un funeral que contó con la asistencia de numerosas estrellas el pasado miércoles en Los Ángeles. Fuente: http://www.vivelohoy.com/entretenimiento/8621764/iglesia-de-testigos-de-jehova-celebra-funeral-por-prince
  15. Gallery: Prince memorial fills Jehovah's Witness hall in Minnetonka Prince memorial fills Jehovah's Witnesses hall in Minnetonka Mourners attend Prince memorial service at his Jehovah's Witnesses church Prince: Music icon mourned in private service at Jehovah's Witness temple Prince Memorial Held at His Jehovah's Witnesses Church in Minneapolis
  16. MINNETONKA, Minn. - To most people, he was known as Prince. But to a select and private few, he was known as "Brother Prince." Prince was a member of the local St. Louis Park congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses. And this Sunday, a memorial service has been planned at the Jehovah's Witness Kingdom Hall on Lake Street Ext. to celebrate his life. Brother George Cook is an elder with the church and said Prince was last there on March 23 – the day Jehovah's Witnesses across the world commemorated the death of Jesus. On Sunday, those who worshipped with Prince will say goodbye during a private funeral. Prince's family has been invited but declined to attend. They say the service was not organized by the family and Prince's ashes will not be present. While the number of expected attendees has not been released, Minnetonka Police will help provide traffic control for the area, as the hall is located in a quiet residential neighborhood. The service is invite only. Cook said Kingdom Hall seats 514 people -- hundreds are expected to attend. He said the private service on Sunday will be like any other funeral for a member. Along with singing, an elder from the congregation will offer words of comfort based on scripture. A member of the congregation said Jehovah's Witnesses from two other congregations will be bused in. The service was intended to be kept private but has now gone public. The service is planned for Sunday at 5 p.m. Tyka Nelson, Prince's sister, wrote a post on Facebook saying they're planning an August funeral for him. Source: http://www.kare11.com/entertainment/people/prince/jehovahs-witness-church-plans-memorial-for-prince/190536817
  17. Prince was more than a musical genius, he was my Christian Brother, and he will be deeply missed until we welcome him back in the New World! My Spiritual Brother, Prince Rogers Nelson, doing personal study as one of Jehovah's Witnesses.He will be so missed! Julie Chase View on Twitter
  18. Chances are your Instagram feed is a sea of purple right now. Prince Rogers Nelson has died at age 57, and the world is reeling. Gender-bending, beautiful, and iconoclastic, he was embraced wholly by the fashion community. Donatella Versace tapped the singer to perform at the fete for Versace’s H&M collaboration, dubbing him a “genius” and remarking at the time that “[you] need to see Prince live to really understand how remarkable he is.” She was only one of dozens of fashion figures to pay tribute to the late icon today. Here, some of our favorites. VOGUE
  19. Posted May 03, 2016 Once he wanted a chocolate fountain but when I asked where to put it, he looked at me, waited a beat, and said, “I do the music.” As told to Gabrielle Langholtz I was barely out of cooking school when I heard that Prince was looking for a private chef. It was 2008 and I had moved to LA right after graduation with dreams of breaking into food TV. Then Andy, a friend of a friend who occasionally cooked for Prince, told me the singer sought someone 24-7. Until cooking school, I’d lived on take-out. Now I had about three weeks of real-world experience under my belt. I was like, “No way.” “You should do it!” Andy said. “I bet you could split it with someone. Just try out!” That week, Prince was hosting an after-Oscars party and Andy roped me in. A pescetarian at the time, Prince loved Asian flavors and, since I’d tested recipes for Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast: Asian (by Farina Kingsley, my teacher and mentor) I wrote a quick menu. The party started at midnight and music blasted down the hallway into the kitchen. Stevie Wonder was there. I cooked potstickers for hours on end. Salma Hayek ate a Vietnamese summer roll right off my cutting board. I thought, “Maybe I can do this...” At 4:30 AM, I met with Prince’s assistant in his giant office. I told her I’d never been a private chef but that I’d love to try. She said they’d call me. A few afternoons later my phone rang at 3:30 PM. Prince wanted me to do a tryout. In two hours. And serve three courses. I ran to buy ingredients—including salmon filets and a bottle of Soy Vey marinade, which I stealthily poured into an unmarked glass bottle so it looked homemade—and raced back to Prince’s. He, his manager, and his girlfriend sat at the kitchen counter to watch me cook, while Prince explained that his next record deal ought to be better than Madonna’s. Inside my head I was like, “Don’t listen! Don’t look at them! Don’t fuck up! Just make it taste good!” I cooked teriyaki salmon like I used to make for myself all the time (with that Soy Vey assist!) with grilled asparagus on the side, plus a hot-and-sour soup that I’d literally never made before and a coconut sorbet with fresh mango for dessert. It was terrifying. The assistant had warned me that Prince eats like a bird, but he finished everything and asked for seconds. I drove home so proud. Even if I didn’t get the job I’d have a story to tell my grandkids someday. A few days later I was en route to a wedding in Vegas when Prince’s assistant called and said, “You got the job but you can’t split it, he only wants you. You have to be on call 24-7. Oh and by the way – he’s nocturnal. And you start tonight. Ryan Seacrest is coming to dinner.” I turned around, missed my friend’s wedding, threw my suitcase into my apartment, grabbed my chef’s jacket, and ran to Whole Foods with no idea what to make. An hour later I was back in Prince’s kitchen cooking miso-glazed sea bass over a “noodle pillow” – something I had made exactly once before, back in cooking school. But I stupidly made the noodle pillows first and they’d gone completely chewy by the time I served the dish. It was an epic failure. I served it to Prince and Ryan Seacrest myself, trying not to sweat, carrying it down a long hallway to a very formal dining room. For dessert I made ice cream with a sugar crisp, the kind you liquefy and then pour onto a Silpat baking mat to cool. But I made it too thick and watched Ryan get his teeth stuck in it. I thought I’d be fired on my first night. Instead, Prince’s assistant texted me a little while later that “P” was downstairs (practicing on the full, in-house stage) and wanted a cappuccino. I had never made one in my life and had to call someone to talk me through how to use the machine. I carried it down to him, the cup trembling on the saucer. He was riffing on the guitar, alone in the dark, but paused to thank me. I went back to the kitchen to clean up. When I thought he was done, I looked around the corner and saw him strutting down the candle-lit hallway to bed, in white boots with clear high heels studded with flashing red lights. For the next three months I was always on call. Every day I’d wake up, watch TV and wait. They’d call around 3 or 4 and say, “He’s hungry.” But about once a week they’d call and say, “He’s going out.” When the phone rang, my heart would pound. I never knew what to cook. I kept a list of ideas but would inevitably call friends in a panic for advice. It was like being on Chopped every single day. The assistants—one of whom wore a three-piece suit even when doing the laundry—made me bring all my own pots and pans (back at my apartment I had exactly one knife, one pot and one cutting board). They said they could only afford to hire a dishwasher when there were more than six guests. They had told me not to speak to Prince unless spoken to, and at first I felt like I couldn’t even look at him, but over time he made me feel comfortable. Prince was very private, mysterious and eccentric but very polite and kind. He introduced every single guest to me, even though he didn’t know my last name, where I was from or if I had a boyfriend. Prince had guests about every other night— Orlando Bloom, Cornel West, Kristin Chenoweth. He kept a floor-to-ceiling stack of Jehovah’s Witness Bibles and gave one to every guest. One time he decided to throw a late-night party for every A-list celebrity in town—and only gave me two days’ notice. Another time he asked for a birthday cake—at 11 PM (I bought it at the grocery store). He liked to eat healthfully but then he’d ask for quiche and a milkshake. Once he wanted a chocolate fountain but when I asked where to put it, he looked at me, waited a beat, and said, “I do the music.” One day I thought I could try a new restaurant for lunch before he needed me, but my phone rang at 11 AM. It was the assistant saying, “P wants to host a traditional English tea party—in an hour.” Scrambling, I ordered everything from scones to cucumber sandwiches to go, and raced back to serve it as if I’d made it all myself. But Prince also loved to relax, like anybody. He asked for that salmon teriyaki nearly once a week. I know he made himself scrambled eggs for breakfast because the pan would be waiting in the sink when I showed up. One night I made fill-your-own soft tacos, which he and his girlfriend ate in front of the huge TV watching American Idol and basketball, right in the open room where I cooked. They sprawled on the couch next to a beautiful, aerodynamic white piano with just two legs. It was surreal. And of the 75 three-course dinners I made, he returned exactly one dish: a five-spice soup. Since I’d omitted the chicken stock to make the recipe meat-free, I doubled the amount of onion (I’d read somewhere this can enhance flavor). But the result was horribly bitter. There was nothing I could do to fix it but he had guests, and I needed three courses. Minutes later he carried his full bowl back into the kitchen, put it on the counter and simply said, “No.” But more often, he expressed gratitude. One night I made mung-bean crepes stuffed with vegetables, followed by fish over black rice. He came back to the kitchen and said, “This is so beautiful. All my guests are very happy.” My only break was the three days he played Coachella. When he got back to the house afterwards, he said, “Where were you? I thought you’d be backstage.” I explained that his assistants had said I couldn’t come, and he said, “We’ll fix that.” He led me downstairs to the private theater and together the two of us watched the playback of the whole show. He told me what an idiot the sound guy was, and how the police told him to stop but he played five more songs anyway. After three months, I asked the assistant for two days off, even if they weren’t next to each other, but she said that wasn’t possible. I knew if I kept it up I would never go on another date or even have a drink with a friend, so I quit. I needed a life. Prince loved soy candles burning all evening on every surface, so on my last night, I bought him one and wrote a note saying, “I know you love these, and I wanted you to know how much I enjoyed my experience, and how much I learned from you.” He opened it while getting a private pedicure and his girlfriend came out and said Prince liked my gift and wanted to invite me to Bible study. It was tempting to have an excuse to see him again, but I said, “I’m not religious. I’m sorry but thank you for the invite.” To this day my friends still sing to me: “I just want your extra time and your qu-qu-qu-qu-qu- quiche.” Margaret Wetzler never returned to private cheffing. Today she is Vice President of Marketing at chef Michel Nischan’s non-profit, Wholesome Wave Source
  20. One of the hardest things to believe about the mysterious death of Prince last month is that he didn't leave a will. Ian Halperin doesn't believe it and he's launched a search effort for the so-far elusive document — in Canada. An investigative journalist, celebrity biographer and documentary filmmaker, Halperin says he's been working on a film about the last days of Prince's life from the moment he heard about the superstar's death on April 21 at Paisley Park in Minnesota. Halperin, a Canadian himself, says his sources, among them Prince's friends and relatives, have told him there is a will and it's probably in Canada, either Toronto or Montreal. "I'm not saying 100% there is a will, but based on the research I’ve done so far there’s a very good possibility that it's either misplaced or not yet found and the (authorities) are not looking in the proper places for it," Halperin told USA TODAY. He finds it impossible to believe that Prince, "this man who was the most business-savvy, sharpest knife in the drawer when comes to the music industry," could have failed to draw up a will stating how he wanted his estate to be disbursed upon his death. "There is no way he could have forgotten this or left it to chance," says Halperin, who met Prince several times. He's also the best-selling author of books (and films) about Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and her daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown, and his latest, Kardashian Dynasty. "My sources never said they know where it is, but they know there’s a will because he talked about it," Halperin said. "They think it’s in Canada because he did a lot business there, he really put down roots in Canada and he was involved in a relationship with a Canadian woman." Prince's second wife, Manuela Testolini, was born in Toronto, and about 15 years ago he settled for a while in the city's tony Bridle Path neighborhood. According toHuffington Post Canada, he was spotted at local clubs and a Toronto Raptors game, and one of his last shows was at the Sony Centre there in March. Halperin declined to identify the Canadian woman Prince was courting just before his death, and declined to identify who's been talking to his camera about a possible Prince will. After his sudden death, of still undetermined causes, Prince's sister Tyka Nelson, declared she knew of no will and petitioned for a special administrator to oversee his multi-million dollar estate. The matter is now in probate court in Minnesota where the administrator, the Bremer Trust, is supposed to be searching for a will, organizing his assets, such as real estate, cash and his music, and determining who among those claiming to be his heirs are in fact eligible to inherit. If there is a will, why hasn't someone — such as his lawyer — produced it to the court in Carver County, Minn.? Halperin says it may be some of Prince's relatives benefit from the absence of a will because Prince never intended to leave them anything. "If it's produced, certain people who thought they were entitled would not be entitled," Halperin says. "The motive (for concealing) is that he would have left a good bulk of his estate to the Jehovah's Witnesses (Prince was a member) because that's what he talked about. The people I've interviewed for the film said that he talked about leaving it to (the Witnesses) and to charity, and he never mentioned his family." If a will written and stored in Canada were produced and authenticated, it will almost certainly be valid in the USA, he said. "Legally a will is a will...and Canada is not a Third-World country." Source: http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/music/2016/05/11/author-filmmaker-launches-quest-find-princes-north-border/84252568/
  21. MINNEAPOLIS, MN - APRIL 21: Guests dance to Prince music as a slide show flashes images of the artist above the stage during a memorial dance party at the First Avenue nightclub on April 21, 2016 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images It’s been a couple weeks since we learned the tragic news of the death of a truly great performer, a pioneer in bringing soul and R&B music to mainstream. I read several news articles about his death, but I could find no mention of his religion. I’m speaking, of course, of the singer who had a #1 hit with “Me and Mrs. Jones”, Billy Paul. I’m sure no one appreciates my being facetious about the news of anyone’s death, but seriously… Why has nearly every news story about the untimely death of music icon Prince breathlessly pointed out that he was one of Jehovah’s Witnesses? Why should it matter to anyone what religion he was? David Bowie, in an interview years ago described himself as “not quite an atheist.” After he was diagnosed with cancer last year he began ‘searching for God’ in his words, but few of the news articles about his recent death mentioned his religion, if he had one. The obituary of Glenn Frey, who also passed away recently, talked a lot about money and drugs but said nothing about his religious affiliation. Perhaps Prince’s religion is newsworthy because of its relative rarity. According to Pew surveys, Jehovah’s Witnesses make up roughly 1 percent of the U.S. population. Similarly, the religion of John Travolta and Tom Cruise would probably never be mentioned if they were Presbyterians or Methodists. On the other hand,Scientology isn’t just rare, it’s also controversial. It was that same “oddball” quotient that made it a headline when George Harrison switched from Catholic to Hare Krishna. A celebrity being a Mormon is apparently newsworthy as well. When Mitt Romney was running for president his Mormonism was a frequent talking point – people wondered whether his religious beliefs would color his political decisions. When Donny Osmond was an 18-year-old superstar making megabucks (10% of which went to the church, of course) his church’s doctrine stated very clearly: “The General Authorities expect all able young men to serve missions…” However, in Donny’s case, he says, Hmmm. More $omething… For being a minority Jehovah’s Witnesses have had their share of celebrities before Prince. One of the earliest was Theresa Graves. Starting as a bikini-clad go-go dancer on Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In, she went on to become the first black female lead in a TV drama, Get Christie Love, for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe. While it started as a ratings smash, it was cancelled after one year because Graves had begun studying the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses and developed conscientious objections to acting in scenes that depicted drug use, immorality, and excessive violence – the three mainstays of police dramas. Graves never looked back; she abandoned show business and spent the rest of her life focused on her ministry. The list of celebrity Witnesses also includes musicians Larry Graham and George Benson, model Coco Rocha, and several professional athletes. What many news stories of this type get wrong is including names of individuals who are no longerJehovah’s Witnesses. Earlier I mentioned George Harrison’s conversion from Catholic to Krishna but in fact, I don’t know that he ever left the Catholic Church – they wouldn’t have cancelled his membership just because of his joining a mystical eastern religion. (Wouldn’t it be hypocritical, anyway, considering that many of their customs, such as the rosary, originate with mystical eastern religions?) According to the Church, in fact, a person never leaves; even if they write a letter asking to be removed from Church rolls. But with Jehovah’s Witnesses, it’s a different story. Their name is a verb. No one is born into the religion. A person who qualifies to be baptized into that faith is expected to witness; that is, by their words and actions, to advance the message about the coming of God’s kingdom. Someone who stops witnessing may for a time still be considered a Witness though inactive; but a person who chooses a life course out of harmony with those Bible teachings that he agreed to when he got baptized is considered to have stopped being one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. So lists of “Famous Jehovah’s Witnesses” that include celebrities who were perhaps only raised by Witness parents – Like President Eisenhower or rapper Ja Rule – are inaccurate. Likewise those lists should not include people who used to be Jehovah’s Witnesses but no longer are – a concept Catholics, among others, struggle with. (I had a Catholic tell me once, with a straight face, that a person could no more stop being Catholic than he could stop being Italian…) Another reason Prince’s religion is mentioned in all those news stories is the dichotomy between the Witnesses strict moral standards and his aggressively sexual lyrics. But a huge message in the Bible is that people can change, and apparently Prince did so. He stopped performing his former raunchy material. He preached from door-to-door and qualified to identify himself as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses when he did so. The Prince news stories have also been filled with a lot of incorrect information about the Jehovah’s Witness faith: Prince couldn’t have an operation he needed because of his faith. False. Jehovah’s Witnesses take the Bible’s proscription of blood seriously but in doing so, have actually pushed doctors to come up with better medicine, including bloodless hip replacement surgery. (See my earlier series called Advances in Blood Medicine) Prince believed he could heal himself by prayer rather than medicine. False, see above. There are religions that claim to practice “faith-healing” but Jehovah’s Witnesses do not. Jesus said the sick “need a doctor.” (Matthew 9:12) Prince had to be cremated within 5 days because of his faith. False. There is no such teaching in the Bible, nor is it part of the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The only teaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses regarding funerals is that they should avoid spiritism, such as customs arising from the (false) belief that the dead are still conscious somewhere and need to be appeased. “The living know that they will die, but the dead don't know anything.” (Ecclesiastes 9:5) Was Prince was “prohibited by the church” from talking about his charitable contributions?No. The Bible says: "When you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do…” (Matthew 6:2) Prince apparently followed that advice, not because his church said so, but because the Bible says so. And it’s just common sense. Did Prince leave millions to his church? Who knows? So far, no will has been found. Since tithing is not a Christian requirement, he didn’t owe them anything. I can guarantee you that, unlike the pastor who is suing a lottery winner in his flock who failed to share, Jehovah’s Witnesses will not be involved in any legal shenanigans to try to take any of Prince’s money. Prince’s religion didn’t allow him to eat meat. Wrong. That’s Seventh Day Adventists. In Genesis 9:3 God tells Noah, after the flood, “Every living and moving thing will be food for you; I give them all to you as before I gave you all green things.” If Prince was vegetarian, it was a personal decision, not a religious belief. (For a full discussion of what Jehovah's Witnesses believe and don't believe, go to jw.org.) As long as Prince stays in the news, his religion will as well, which could be either a good thing or a bad thing. One Facebook commenter this week perhaps explained it best: “For any who may have concluded that only the ignorant and naive would be a JW and go ‘preaching’: I dare anyone to call Prince ignorant and naive.” I have to agree. Source
  22. A low-profile member in life, the star draws attention to Jehovah's Witnesses after death. In this Nov. 22, 2015 file photo, Prince presents the award for favorite album - soul/R&B at the American Music Awards in Los Angeles. TEXT SIZE 348 EMAIL PRINT MORE For more than a decade, Prince spent many Sunday mornings inside a simple Jehovah’s Witnesses hall in a Minneapolis suburb, listening to Bible readings, sharing his insights in group discussions, and singing such hymns as “God’s Promise of Paradise” and “Be Forgiving.” “His beliefs were very, very strong,” said Larry Graham, a close friend who introduced Prince to the faith. While the superstar was comfortable door-knocking in Minnesota to spread the Bible’s message — a requirement for all Witnesses — he also tried to spread Jehovah’s teachings to musicians and others in his circle, Graham said. “It’s a side of him most people don’t know,” he said. As Prince fans across the globe await an explanation of his unexpected death on April 21, worshipers at this St. Louis Park church remember a modest guy who would slip into the fellowship hall on Sundays with zero fanfare. Ironically, in death, he has put an unprecedented spotlight on his church. “We’re seeing a tremendous surge in interest,” said Jim Lundstrom, a church elder in St. Louis Park. “I’ve gotten calls from Paris, London, Africa … and all points in between. Now our name is coming to the fore.” This is Prince’s St. Louis Park spiritual home, where the member known as “Brother Nelson” studied the Bible, attended services and left to go door-to-door in area neighborhoods. More Like the others in this church, Prince didn’t fear death, because he believed in a future earthly paradise. But, Graham said, the superstar was not planning to make his worldly exit yet. Graham said he knew nothing of opioid painkillers, now the focus of Prince’s death investigation. Graham also denied claims that Prince couldn’t have hip surgery because his faith prohibited blood transfusions. While Jehovah’s Witnesses can’t get blood transfusions, medical technology offers alternatives, Graham said. In fact, Lundstrom belongs to a national network of hospital liaisons who help church members at the Mayo Clinic, the University of Minnesota and elsewhere receive optimal care without transfusions. “We recognize that life is a gift from God,” said Graham, a bass player for the 1960s funk band Sly and the Family Stone. “Any medical treatment that will make us well again, we seek that.” Prince’s Sunday home About 70 people sat with Bible study pamphlets on their laps at Prince’s Jehovah’s Witnesses hall last Sunday. It’s a simple room, with no crucifixes or religious symbols — just comfortable chairs and plenty of Bibles and Watchtower publications available at the door. “He’d usually sit over there,” said one member, gesturing to the rows center and back. The nearly two-hour service opened with a hymn, and then a guest speaker preached about the Bible being an “owner’s manual for our lives.” That was followed by an hourlong, engaging discussion about loyalty to God, during which worshipers answered questions such as: “How can you be loyal to both Jehovah and your friend or relative?” The service ended with a simple prayer and a song, and folks meandered out the door. Prince’s path to this church began at an after-concert party in Nashville about 20 years ago, Graham said. Prince and Graham, both performing in town that night, found themselves talking about life’s big questions. Prince later asked Graham, a member of Jehovah’s Witnesses since 1975, if he would consider moving to Minneapolis to continue teaching him the Bible. Graham, at the time living in Montego Bay, Jamaica, said yes. He has been Prince’s spiritual mentor and close friend ever since. “We started studying the Bible on a regular basis,” recalled Graham. “And the more he learned, the more questions he had, like: ‘Why are we here? Where is everything heading? What’s the future for mankind, for the Earth?’ ” Prince also learned that Jehovah’s Witnesses do not celebrate Christmas and Easter, for example, because those holidays have roots in pagan traditions. They do not serve in the military. They view Jesus as the son of God, but not God, and they don’t believe in a trinity. They pray to God, called Jehovah, who will return to rule a paradise on Earth. Prince, known as “Brother Nelson,” joined Jehovah’s Witnesses in 2003. The church was a beneficiary of Prince’s philanthropy, but it’s difficult to say how much he gave. Collection plates are not passed. Giving is done privately, often in cash and often at a church table with two slots marked “Local Congregation Expenses” and “Worldwide Work.” This image made from a video, former Prince bassist Larry Graham talks about Prince in an Associated Press interview on Monday, May 2, 2016. Less No will for Prince has surfaced, and Graham said he was unaware if Jehovah’s Witnesses would benefit from a $100-million-plus estate now being claimed by Prince’s family members. Near the giving table is a large map of St. Louis Park, with every street on a grid that is used for door-to-door ministry. “We have the whole world [mapped],” said George Cook, a church elder eyeing the map. “We’re very organized.” There are about 8 million Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide, he said, and about 15,000 are Minnesotans. Ministry, Prince style It wasn’t uncommon for Prince and Graham — or Prince and other church members — to grab their Bibles and head out to neighborhoods. Sometimes people recognized their famous visitor, sometimes not. He enjoyed it, Graham said. And having a celebrity like Prince as a visible supporter made others more interested in checking out the religion, he said. But Prince’s ministry extended beyond the city map. “If there was some visitor at Paisley Park, they could sit down and have a conversation,” said Graham. “It could be after a show. Or you could just be out and about, and run into people, and just start talking about the Bible. Many, many kinds of settings. “He would never try to force his beliefs on anyone. But he was always willing to share the things he learned in the Bible.” One thing Prince learned was to be “a positive person,” Graham said. He ate and drank in moderation. He stopped cursing. And he stopped writing the raunchy lyrics that characterized some of his early work. Prince also was at Graham’s side at various Jehovah’s Witnesses conferences, digging deeper into an unusual faith he credited with turning his life around. “[The Bible] helps you with every aspect of your life,” Prince said in a 2004 interview. “Once you can clean out the cobwebs, so to speak, you can see everything more clearly.” A type of protection When asked why a free-spirited musician would choose a structured faith, Graham said that’s not how he — or Prince — saw it. “It’s not really restrictive. It’s more like a protection from things that could possibly harm us,” Graham said. “So it’s a positive thing … and making you a better person.” Prince was particularly drawn to biblical messages of a hopeful future, he said. One of his favorite passages was Revelations 21:3-4, which states that God ultimately will dwell with his people and that “death will be no more.” “The resurrection and the hope for the future — and many more [passages] — we discussed many weeks and many months and years,” Graham said. “A lot of people will remember Prince for his music,” he added. “But he’d also want people to know what he learned from the Bible. We lost a really good friend and a spiritual brother.” Star Tribune
  23. Prince's former drug dealer, "Dr D", claims that Price spent up to £27,772 ($40,000) a time on six-month supplies of Dilaudid pills and fentanyl patches – both highly addictive opioid painkillers. Dr D has claimed that Prince, who was found dead on Thursday, 21 April, at his home in Minneapolis, Minnesota was addicted to drugs for more than 25 years, and would regularly buying drug from him between 1984-2008. Speaking to the Daily Mail Dr D, claimed that the superstar could not perform on stage without drugs. He went on to say a doctor may have unknowingly contributed to Prince's death by prescribing strong painkillers for his hip condition, without realising Prince was already using opiates. "I first met Prince in 1984 while he was filming the movie Purple Rain and he was already majorly addicted to opiates," said Dr D. "I didn't hook him on drugs he was already a really heavy user. In the beginning, he would buy speed [amphetamines] as well as Dilaudid [hydromorphone]. "I would sell him black beauties which were a black pill and cross tops which were also speed pills. He would use that as a counter balance to get back up again from taking opiates. "That lasted for a couple of years. Then he would just buy Dilaudid, which is a heroin-based opiate. It is highly addictive. As far as I knew he never took heroin – as that would leave you out of it for days whereas Dilaudid gives you an energy buzz as well as making you feel relaxed – so he preferred it. "He needed the drugs because he was so nervous – he could be nervous in a room with just five people in it. He was scared to go out in public, he was scared to talk to people and didn't like to go on stage – he had the worst case of stage fright I'd ever seen. "A lot of performers rely on drugs to make them feel confident on stage, but he was by far the worse. "Plus he was always paranoid about doctors so he wouldn't ask them for help – he had a phobia of them. I was surprised when I heard he had been picking up prescriptions before he died." TMZ had reported that Prince had been spotted going into a pharmacy near his home four times in the week leading up to his death. Death due to drugs? After Prince's death, TMZ reported that anonymous sources said that Prince received emergency treatment for a Percocet overdose on 15 April – six days before he died. Percocet is a painkiller marketed in North America that contains paracetamol and the opioid oxycodone. On Saturday, 23 April, Cyril Wecht, a forensic pathologist who is not linked to the case has said that Prince's sudden death was from a drug overdose. Speaking on NBC's Today, Wecht said, "I would give overwhelming odds that, tragically, this is a drug death." He said: "When you rule out foul play, when there is no history of any kind of significant disease, when you rule out any kind of intervention, anything of an environmental nature, you come down to an autopsy that is essentially negative and that probably means drugs." In 2001, Prince joined the Jehovah's Witnesses. Part of the doctrine of the movement is that the taking of recreational drugs is forbidden. In 2005, it is rumoured that doctors told Prince that he required double hip replacement, but the singer refused the surgery, due to his religious beliefs. Prince's 1984 anthem Purple Rain looked on course to top next week's official singles chart in the UK, with three of his other hits in the top five. If it reaches the top spot, it will be only the second time Prince has scored a No 1 UK single and would set a new record for the song. Source: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/princes-drug-dealer-claims-that-superstar-could-not-perform-sober-1556480

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