A video (with english subtitles) has been released by Johanneksenpoika.fi showing Watchtower Society, Finnish Branch Office spokesman, Veikko Leinonen apparently giving mis-information to a journalist. What he says to the journalist totally contradicts what he is heard reading later – about how a person should be treated when they decide to no longer be a Jehovah’s Witness.
The video begins with a female journalist asking – can “a child when he becomes a young person decide to be a Jehovah’s Witness or not.”
Veikko Leinonen says “it is a personal matter and no one else can decide.”
The journalist then asks “Can he leave freely and start his own life?”
Veikko Leinonen then says “Absolutely, absolutely freely and we hope they will return freely and there will be no obstacles.”
The journalist then asks “so this sort of leaver is not shunned?”
Veikko Leinonen replies “No No No.”
What is surprising is that a Branch Office spokesperson would so blatantly make statements to the media that contradict Watchtower Society’s known policy and practices.
The Johanneksenpoika.fi video has the same Finnish Branch office spokesperson Veikko Leinonen, reading the Watchtower Society’s shunning policy, which totally contradicts what he told the journalist. He reads:
“a simple “Hello” to someone can be the first step that develops into a conversation and maybe even a friendship. Would we want to take that first step with a disfellowshiped person?”Watchtower 1981 Sep 15 p.25
He is then heard reading:
“Is strict avoidance really necessary? Yes for several reasons. … Although there might be a need for limited contact on some rare occasion to care for a necessary family matter, any such contact should be kept to a minimum.” Keep Yourself in God’s Love (2008) pp.207,208
Thousands can testify that shunning not only exists it a requirement for Jehovah’s Witnesses to shun family and friends if they are to show “loyalty” to the beliefs of the organisation.
This is also confirmed by the recording made during the “Gods word is truth” 2013 District convention series where Witnesses are told to ignore the human family bond and to shun family members to show “loyalty.”
Here is the JWsurvey video with that recording from the 2013 convention – thanks to John Cedars
Given the current spotlight on the Finland Branch Office by journalists and government it is amazing that the Branch Office spokesperson Veikko Leinonen should be caught spreading mis-information that is so easily refuted.
If there is no shunning why are so many denied their human right to undisturbed contact with their families?
Finnish Jehovah’s Witnesses Johanneksenpoika.fi Link
JWsurvey’s transcript of 2013 District convention shunning talk Link
JWfacts Shunning and disfellowshipping Link