The Jehovah's Witnesses

9 News
August 5, 2015



* The Jehovah's Witness Church was founded at the end of 19th century in Pennsylvania by a small group of bible students led by Charles Taze Russell.

* Jehovah's Witnesses live by a first-century interpretation of the bible, taking its teachings literally.

* a council of eight men based in Brooklyn make up the worldwide Governing Body.

* The church now has 8.2 million active members in 239 countries.


* The religion has been active in Australia since 1896 with a branch office set up in Sydney in 1904.

* The Australian Branch Office co-ordinates activities of all congregations in Australia and New Zealand.

* There are currently 817 congregations in Australia with over 68,000 active members and membership is growing.


* All members live by a strict code of conduct based on Scriptures.

* They renounce the world and live in relative isolation from the broader community.

* The father is head of the family with authority over his wife and children.

* Parents are encouraged to teach their own children sex education because a secular education is more likely to result in immorality.

* They believe the end of the world is near.


* Jehovah's Witnesses do not report child sexual abuse to police but deal with it internally.

* They believe the only way to end child abuse is to "Embrace God's Kingdom under Christ".

* Three or four elders form a judicial committee to deal with wrongdoers, who if unrepentant can be "disfellowshiped", or excommunicated and shunned by the congregation.

* The Australian branch has received 1006 allegations of child sex abuse since the 1950s.

* Of 401 disfellowships in Australia for alleged child sexual abuse, 230 were later reinstated; 35 of whom were reinstated more than once.

* Two or more witnesses are needed before a complaint of sexual abuse would be upheld and elders consider the spirituality and the seductiveness of the complainant.

* Source: the opening statement of a Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse hearing into the Jehovah's Witness Church.



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