I was born into the Jehovah’s Witness religion. My father was and still is an elder and actually is serving as the presiding overseer of his congregation. He has been the cleaning overseer for the District Conventions and Circuit Assemblies since I was a little girl and was in charge of the drama for the 2009 convention entitled, “My brother was dead and has come back to life”.
My mother is a Regular Pioneer and has been since I was little. My brother is serving where the need is great with his wife in Nicaragua. I was baptized at age 13 and went to Pioneer School at age 16. I continued my full-time service after marrying a Bethelite from Patterson. I would be lying if I said that my childhood was not happy. During school, I occasionally felt left out around birthday or holiday times, but since I knew nothing except the Witness way of life, I had no idea about what I was truly missing.
I had two very strict but loving parents and they raised me in a warm home. As a young adult, I had no intention of ever leaving the organization. I really thought I had the truth. It wasn’t until I married my husband in 1997 and he began to abuse me in unimaginable ways that I began to have my doubts. When the physical abuse started, I was 19 and pregnant. I did hide the abuse for a while because we were examples in the congregation. He was a Ministerial Servant and we were both Regular Pioneers.
Finally, when it got to the point that I felt I could no longer take it, I went to my father and told him that I wanted to leave my husband. His exact words to me were:
“You can’t Sach! You need to go to the elders.”
After a very brutal beating, I called my mother and an elder. Incidentally, this elder had been a close family friend before I was born and he had given my marriage talk. My mom and the elder came to my house. My mom with camera in hand and ready to call the police was stopped by the elder who told her that it would tarnish Jehovah’s name and put His people in a bad light. I was only permitted to stay at my parent’s home until my husband and I had met with the elders and it was safe for my daughter and I to return.
This went on for at least another year and I was finally fed up! I wanted a divorce but was only permitted a legal divorce, not a scriptural divorce, because the marriage bed had not been defiled and I had no grounds. So, I developed a plan to give me grounds for divorce. After carrying it out, I was told in my Judicial Committee (panel of three Jehovah’s Witness elders) that the decision to divorce as my husband was not mine since he was the injured mate. He forgave me and said that he wanted to stay married. So, because of my decision to divorce him anyway and because of my un-repentance, I was disfellowshipped.
I lost every family member and friend that I had ever known with the exception of my paternal grandmother who risked her own spiritual standing in the congregation to maintain a relationship with me. For the most part, we kept it secret.
When I was disfellowshipped in 2001, I moved to a small town about an hour away from where I had lived. I met a wonderful Christian man and even though I was turned off to religion altogether, after about 6 months of dating, I decided to go to the church where his father, his father’s wife and grandmother fellowshipped. I went for the sole purpose of finding fault and using that as my excuse for not returning, but I couldn’t find anything wrong with the church. Everything that I had been told about “false religion” was a lie.
The members were looking up Scriptures in their Bibles, following along with the pastor as he gave his sermon. Everyone was friendly and went out of their way to welcome me, and the best part was that they shared activities with the other local churches! There was none of the “We’re the only religion God approves of” attitude! That was probably the biggest turning point for me.
Well, in November of 2002, I remarried and in May of this year, I had my fifth child and we are all very happy. We are fellowshipping at our local Presbyterian Church. My daughter from my first marriage as well as the rest of our children are being raised in a true Christian home and are being loved unconditionally. While my Jehovah’s Witness family has a distant relationship with my children, they still refuse to have any dealings with me unless it is directly related to business matters or extreme situations like a death.
My grandmother lost her battle to cancer in 2007. It was at that time that I decided to write my book entitled No Part Of Their World. It contains all the intimate details of what went on behind the closed doors of a “spiritual family.” My book can be found on Amazon.com or BarnesAndNoble.com or you can learn more about my book and order it on here: http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/NoPartOfTheirWorld.html
I have no doubt in my mind that I made the right decision to leave Jehovah’s Witnesses. I was so brainwashed and blind! They have now labeled me an “apostate” and a “threat to the Christian community” because I chose to tell the truth about “the truth”.
I thank God everyday for the life that I have! I feel that I am very much like Job. Satan was able to take away his family for a short time, but God replaced it ten fold! That’s what God has done for me! I may have lost my biological family, but I have faith that someday they will see “the truth” for what it really is and come around. Until then, God has blessed me in more ways than I can count and no one, not even my family, can deny this.
This post is also available in: Spanish