IF YOU ARE LOOKING TO DISASSOCIATE FROM JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES, HERE IS A SAMPLE LETTER YOU CAN MODIFY FOR YOUR USE:
I have decided not to disassociate myself from the ____________ Congregation of Jehovah’s Witness. I have serious questions about foundational teachings of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, which to this time still remain unanswered by any Jehovah’s Witness, including any elders, but I have no problem with the ____________ Congregation. My only disagreement is with certain actions, policies, teachings, and writings contained in publications produced, and oral teachings promulgated either individually or collectively by the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses and its legal corporations, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc. and the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, Inc., and the International Bible Students Association.
This is also to notify the _____________ Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses that you, nor the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, including its over 100 other associated business corporations, have any authority over me whatsoever. This is also official notice to you, to discontinue any and all stalking activities against me and to never come to my home again, uninvited, especially when _____________ is not at home.
If you decide to take any judicial action against me, there are certain things of which I must be notified, and which must be clarified, before I would agree to meet with any judicial committee. These items are as follows:
- I shall be notified in writing of the time, place, and purpose of any meetings with a judicial committee.
- I shall be notified in writing exactly on whose behalf the judicial committee was convened and is acting; the ____________ Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses, or its legal corporations, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc., the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, the International Bible Students, or any agency not here named.
- If any other agency, other than the one for whom the judicial committee has informed me they are acting for, is consulted, reported to, or allowed to have any bearing on the outcome of the judicial process, I will consider the judicial committee as acting in their behalf.
- I shall be notified in writing of any accusations against me; the names of persons making such accusations, and the substance of any evidence against me.
- I shall be notified in writing of any and all of my rights and responsibilities involved in the judicial process.
- I shall be given sufficient time between notification of any meetings with a judicial committee and the time of the actual meeting to prepare a response to any accusations.
- I shall be allowed to have one person of my choice present during all meetings between me and the judicial committee, as an observer.
- During the meetings with the judicial committee, I, and or my observer, will take whatever notes we feel are necessary.
- I will not recognize any action taken by the judicial committee as valid unless it is communicated to me in writing, stating the exact nature and reason for the action.
- If the judicial committee is acting only for the _________________ Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, it is enjoined from notifying any agency outside the congregation of their action. If the judicial committee or anyone acting in their behalf notifies or reports to anyone outside the Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I may take appropriate legal action.
- I may appeal any action taken by the judicial committee.
- Before I will meet with a judicial committee or an appeal committee, you must notify me in writing of the names of all of the members of the judicial committee or appeal committee, and who each one represents.
- There shall be no contact between the judicial committee and the appeal committee other than to inform them of the time and place of my meetings with them. If I determine that there is any contact, communication, or attempt on the part of any of the members of the judicial committee or anyone acting on their behalf to, in any way prejudice or sway the appeal committee, I will insist that a new appeal committee be formed.
- I shall be notified in writing of any and all of my rights and responsibilities involved in the appeal process.
- I shall be allowed to have one person of my choice present during all meetings between me and the appeal committee.
- During the meetings with the appeal committee, I, or my observer will take whatever notes we feel are necessary.
- I will not recognize any action taken by the appeal committee as valid unless it is communicated to me in writing, stating the exact nature and reason for the action.
- In this written communication the appeal committee must state exactly on whose behalf they are taking the action.
- Whoever the appeal committee has stated that it is acting for, it is enjoined from notifying any other agency. If the appeal committee, or anyone acting in their behalf notifies or reports to anyone outside the exact agency that they represent, I may take appropriate legal action.
- I understand that if I am disfellowshipped by the judicial committee and the disfellowshipping is upheld by the appeal committee, that I am, at that point, no longer considered by such committee or appeal committee to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. I also know such agencies may consider making a public announcement of their action. Any statements, even implied, in such announcement may be considered liable, and subject to appropriate legal action. Any mention by speeches, or talks, or teachings to convince, coerce by implied or actual threat of similar judicial action; or to encourage by private counsel or suggestion any of Jehovah’s Witnesses to treat me differently from any other person that is not one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, to be a serious violation of my civil rights and I may initiate any legal action, civil or criminal that I deem appropriate. This includes any attempt to convince by speeches, talks, or teaching, to coerce by implied or actual threat of similar judicial action; or to encourage by private counsel or suggestion any present Jehovah’s Witnesses to shun or avoid me, cease or otherwise modify their doing business with me, or terminate or otherwise abrogate any lease, rental, mortgage, or any other legal agreement that I may presently have with them, I may consider such to be an infringement of free trade, and may initiate appropriate legal action.
- I consider any communication between the members of the judicial committee and myself and the appeal committee and myself to be ecclesiastically privileged. Any attempt to reveal the substance or tone of those communications to any other person or group will be considered by me to be a breach of that privilege, and may result in legal action. This includes any announcements beyond the fact of disfellowshipping; speeches, talks, or any other communication, written or oral, public or private.
As a final warning, I will hold as personally and financially liable, any elder, body of elders, or individuals taking any action of any kind against me, including slander. Any action by any committee will be considered the action of all appointed elders in the congregation.
The local elders need to be aware that the Watchtower Society is both unwilling and unable to shield the actions of elders from both criminal and civil prosecution. Instead, historically, the Watchtower Society uses extensive legal maneuvering to shield itself from any liability. They leave the elders “holding the bag.”
Respectfully and Sincerely,