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Jehovah's Witnesses official says to destroy records because 'Satan's coming after us' - The Philadelphia Inquirer

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Watch: Jehovah's Witnesses official says to destroy records because 'Satan's coming after us'

The Philadelphia Inquirer (Pennsylvania, US), Monday, July 9, 2018

A Jehovah’s Witnesses official delivered an urgent message to a group of elders at a 2017 seminar in Britain: The time had come to rethink the record-keeping policies of the organization, which has come under fire for its handling of child sex abuse complaints.

Shawn Bartlett, the Witnesses’ record management overseer, explained that handwritten notes and drafts of internal documents needed to be destroyed because of the potential legal harm they posed to the organization, which has 8 million followers worldwide and more than a dozen congregations in the Philadelphia area.

“The question is: Why has this come up?” Bartlett said, according to a video recording of the seminar that was leaked online earlier this year by an anonymous insider.

“Well, we know that the scene of this world is changing, and we know Satan’s coming after us, and he’s going to go for us legally. We can see by the way things are shaping up. So the organization has said, ‘We’ve run into difficulties in the past because of the records we have.'”




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I watched the video:

Highlight shown doesn't indicate what types of records are destroyed. So its not a legal smoking gun, as its standard practice to have a standardized records retention schedule in all companies. For example, the IRS (code section 6001) mandates retention for certain records. They will purposely use that as the excuse, even though few legal challenges would ever attack the borg on the basis of standard business information, and the real excuse is probably child abuse.

One possible issue from a legal standpoint is what is considered a "personnel file" as the that must be retained indefinitely. If a lawyer could say that any JW, due to the mandatory time sheet reporting is to be considered a personnel of the WT, and thus the records must be kept. Interestingly enough, I wonder if they would consider the new publisher number enough to consider one a qualified personnel of the WT. Worth watching.

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The reason they have whatever records they do, if it is child abuse records being referred to,  is that they investigated a great wrong in their midst when others did not in theirs.

Should they destroy anything, it puts them on par with everyone else, who never thought to attempt to root out the evil. Seen in this light, it does indeed seem to be "Satan coming after them.'

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35 minutes ago, Jesus.defender said:

Oh, i am pretty sure there is ANOTHER reason they would want to destroy their records.

It is hard to comment on their policies or records, much less compare them with the records of anyone else, since others hid their heads in the sand and kept none.

It is in Chapter 12, 'Pedophiles' of the free ebook Dear Mr. Putin - Jehovahs' Witnesses Write Russia, which I trust the Librarian will let me link to, since it is not like that time long ago when he took issue because he (correctly) thought I was hawking my first book which was not free.


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Just now, AllenSmith33 said:

Okay, now Allen, behave yourself. Seriously.

It is excellent stuff that you contribute. Don't mess it up.

You have made what appears to others as personal attacks and have been tossed on your ear several times. Have others engaged in attacks and not been tossed? I many times have been called a liar with no repurcussions at all. It doesn't matter. It is what it is.

Nobody will ever say that you do not get worked up. You cannot afford the luxury. Please, never post a comment immediately. Take time to think it over and cool off if you are heated. The most brilliant comments that you, I, or anyone else, make are quickly buried. There is no need to be hasty. Take your time.

Remember it is a public forum that you are on and people can (and do) say whatever they want. You cannot stop that.  You have to work around it somehow when they post what seems malignant.  If you hurl something ultra-harsh that gets you tossed, you have indulged your own fury, but fallen short of reaching your full power.


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I do not know US laws regarding archives and records. However, I guess there is no difference in the fact that the State Archives, the National Archives of any country, do not collect all the records that arise in the work of an institution (no mater of what sort of private or legal body is case). There are different activities within an organization or institution, depending on the type of company, association, society, or how it is registered within the trade and other laws of the country in which it operates.

Depending on the type of society (corporation) in question, there are laws, regulations on how to handle business documentation. There are deadlines for custody, there is a freedom to decide (according to some rules) which documentation will be kept and how long, and which will be destroyed. Sometimes private documentation (I'm not just talking about texts, but everything else what can be of  the interests for society, objects, pictures, and so on) can be given on guard or to sell to the National Archives.
Documentation on material and financial work is to a great extent in the interest of the state and there are legal provisions there.
Also for information about employees.
For a lot of the other papers, and WT is a private company, I think the free will of the owner is to decide what to do with documents, writings and notes and the like.

In case of WT, think, they can do what they want. But to how long, no one knows. Obviously they makes a plan how to secure them self from own wrongdoings, and not only to be accurate with the law.

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So which is it then?

  • They hide evidence to a case of abuse?


  • They destroy evidence to a case of abuse?


  • Fail to reproduce evidence to a case of abuse?

You can't have a Charmander, and a Bulbasaur or a Squirtle at the same time, you can only pick one to go with. A silly analogy, yes, but I find it relatable to the matter of focused choice. Other then that, more information for this story will be brought forth and with said information we can gather the detail and evidence. But is reminds me of the time the same people made others believe JWs go house to house to write and or draw the Watchtower logo on private property, saying the WT knows all, as if to make them see as crazy persons. As of late, a bit busy with a debate regarding extremist of Islam.

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Here is something you have to think about, to discern the relevancy, if any .....

When the Muslims had taken over Spain, many centuries ago, the Spanish warred against them, and one Military General, who I understand was also a Catholic Bishop ( The Catholic church having devolved from the Roman Military ...) was laying siege to a Castle controlled by the Muslims, as they were about to lay waste to the Castle, he was informed that half the people in the Castle were Catholics.

He pondered over this dilemma but for a moment, and gave the order,  "Kill them all ... let God sort 'em out!"

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