Monday 20 July 2009

Podcast 9 - The "hearing" begins.


In this edition of the podcast we start the first of my judicial hearings. This is part 1 of the first hearing.

I'll let the audio speak for itself, however, please notice who the two witnesses are and how apostasy is defined when I ask what the charge means in real terms.

Please feel free to copy and distribute these podcasts. If you've any comments, please leave them on the website;


  1. Thanks for posting, Matt. I appreciate the confident way you handle yourself in these hearings. The idea that you make clear you're not going to answer questions about things of which you're not accused is brilliant. Why let them conduct a fishing expedition?

  2. I am surprised that Matt was convicted on the basis of comments made in shepherding calls & private conversations with his brother. As an ex-elder myself , I don't think that I would have been happy to DF someone on that basis.

    The elders have handled this in a ham fisted way.

    Thanks for posting , Matt.

  3. absolutely shocking behaviour

    they are like a pack of wolves.......(in sheep's clothing of course)

    they'd better hope this doesn't get wide public reflects very poorly on their claim of being the only true religion.......pharisees more like....

  4. Eddie/Manchester30 July 2009 at 01:21

    One can almost feel sorry for these elders...almost. To an outsider this would sound like something from George Orwells 1984.

    I agree Matt, you do handle yourself very well and hopefully they will come to thier senses and realise that they are caught in the Watchtower web.

    When can we have part two?.....i cant wait.

  5. I have finished listening to the recording of the judicial committee. You handled things absolutely on point. I have much respect for the reasoning used and the direction you are going in your relationship with God.

    I myself had to use the bible to study myself out of the mental grasp that the watchtower held on me. It has been since Oct 2007 that I came to the realization of the same points that you were discussing in recording 1-4.

    It is true that the body of Christ is through out the world. Their protection during these last days is that they aren't in one group so cannot be targeted by tyranical leaders. So maintain your personal relationship with God.

    The Jehovah's Witness members suffer from a sort of mass spiritual abuse which is perpetrated by the governing body. A sort of stockholm's syndrome. There are 5 symptoms of this spiritual abuse that is displayed. 1. Spiritual Guilt, 2. Low spiritual confidence, 3. Loss of individuality, 4. Strict hierarchical adherance, 5. Lack of proper Jesus speech.

    They attacked every symptom that you did not display because they themselves suffered from it.

    Be strong brother. Your journey is just beginning.

  6. So grateful for this podcast. You've done a superb job of caputuring the terrible process of retribution for daring to do what the Watchtower and Awake exhort its readers to do: examine one's religion and quit if you see it conflicts with the Bible.

    My wife and I stopped attending meetings last year after making such an examination. So far only one elder has contacted us to ask us why; other congregation members tend to avoid us now, probably out of suspicion or awkwardness. Good friends of ours (Witnesses) have repeatedly pleaded with us to return and wanted to know why we left, but we have steadfastly refused to give any of our reasons.

    After listening to the way in which your comments at two shepherding visits were then used as evidence against you I realize how wise our course was.

    It is just appalling that after they *asked* you to express yourself on your views, they then charged you with "spreading" your views. I don't want to go through the agony and humiliation of DF or disassociation, but it is so wrong that I am forced to remain silent because of their bullying, intimidatory practises that are designed to keep people "in club" ... not so very different from the old Catholic practise of using the fear of hellfire to stop members from straying.

    Two questions: Were you previously advised that you could present witnesses or advised of any other rights you had at the hearing? And what information did they provide before the hearing to allow you to prepare a defence?

    All the best. I admire your courage and coolness under pressure.