The Watchtower has become famous for its use of disfellowshipping (their version of “excommunication”) to rid its ranks of fornicators and anyone they’ve branded as “apostates” and “evil doers.” Meanwhile they have criticized the Catholic Church and other religions for doing essentially the same thing for similar reasons.
The Watchtower is also known for denying the fact that they do use “shunning” as enforced punishment. Publicly they claim not to break up families or friendships by enforcing “shunning,” claiming that “shunning” anyone, including family members, is a “personal choice made by each individual.”
Those who are close to Jehovah’s Witnesses (or have been JWs at one time) are well aware that almost every Jehovah’s Witness family has been divided to some extent by someone close to them being shunned. For the Watchtower to deny that they promote such a doctrine is scandalous – and yet they do that consistently in both word and print.
Along comes this story about former members of the Scientology cult and how their family became divided and forced apart by religious “shunning.” Reading this article should make you wonder if the leaders of Scientology are reading The Watchtower and Awake! magazines (and maybe vice versa). Maybe Jehovah’s Witnesses (and their Governing Body) and Scientologists (David Miscavage) use the same script writers.
As you read this story reported by ABC News, just consider substituting “Scientology” with “Watchtower,” “Scientologists” with “Jehovah’s Witnesses” and “disconnection” with “disfellowshipping.” You should see that this news article could be used to describe the practices for either religion.
While their religious teachings are quite different (but in many cases equally ridiculous), they make for “strange bedfellows” in how they treat former members and dissidents.
>>> Note: Be sure to watch the additional videos that follow the initial report.[Original publication date: March 17, 2014]