Are Jehovah's Witnesses Disfellowshipped for Taking a Blood Transfusion?

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    M ThomasCovenant posted Wed, 19 May 2010 17:50:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 441 of 887
    Joined 7/20/2005

    Any 'proof' or quotes or experiences one way or other

    M sacolton posted Wed, 19 May 2010 17:58:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 3280 of 3544
    Joined 2/12/2008

    It's considered a "automatic disassociation" to willingly give or receive blood.

    M ThomasCovenant posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:08:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 442 of 887
    Joined 7/20/2005

    Is this anecdotal or written instruction though?

    mentallyfree31 posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:11:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 162 of 691
    Joined 2/14/2010

    Good question. I personally do not have the printed reference material for the consequences of taking a blood transfusion.

    M sir82 posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:22:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 4288 of 9328
    Joined 5/17/2005

    Short answer is "no".

    In practical terms, the answer is "Yes".

    About the year 1999 or 2000, the Society sent a letter to all COs in the US, and the COs considered that letter with all elders. It is not available on any website, nor does anyone below the rank of CO have access to it, to the best of my knowledge.

    In that letter, it was explained that any JW who "willingly" accepts a blood transfusion has, by his actions, shown that he no longer wishes to be one of Jehovah's Witnesses and thus has disassociated himself. It goes on that 2 elders "may" visit the JW and determine his status; if he seems repentant, then perhaps with strong counsel they wouldn't have to "accept" his disassociation.

    It is a similar situation to what happens if a JW joins the army or runs for political office; "by his actions he has shown that he has disassociated himself".

    All of this was done so that the JW hierarchy could say, in court, under oath, that "we do not disfellowship JWs for accepting blood transfusions".

    Of course, as anyone familiar with JWs knows, there is no difference whatsoever in how someone who is "disfellowshipped" is treated vs. one who has "disassociated himself".

    And JWs have the gall to criticize those who "speak half-truths or knowingly twist the truth".

    M undercover posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:31:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 9340 of 13147
    Joined 9/25/2002

    I think saco is right.. It's an automatic DAing these days. The terminology may not be the same as DFing but the results...and the announcement to the congregation...is the same thus resulting in the same shunning.

    Just a bunch of legalese to keep the flock fooled but protect the corporation from liability...

    The blood doctrine over time has become a real pain in the ass for the WTS, but they can't just drop it. To do so would admit error and mis-intrepretation of scripture. You can't have the dubs thinking that, "hey, if they were wrong here, maybe they're wong in other areas...". They also can't have people coming back to them with lawsuits for deaths that were incurred during the period of when they did ban blood transfusions. So they've slowly, over time, changed how they go about coercing people to adhere to the ban and how they identify just what 'blood' is and how it can or can't be used. It used to be, "no blood, no way, no how". Now, it's "no blood, except for most fractions or if through a continuous loop through this machine or if used in this way or that way". In order to try to get out of a mess, they've created a bigger doctrinal mess.

    I try hard to not let the label "dangerous cult" to be identified with JWs because I hate for people to have the misconception of a People's Temple kind of deal, but when people's lives are at stack...and people have died...because of this stupid doctrine, it really does put the JWs in that "dangerous cult" category.

    edit: Sir82 posted while I was working on my post and his info is more up-to-date and factual than my memory.

    M ThomasCovenant posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:39:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 443 of 887
    Joined 7/20/2005

    Watchtower 15th Jan 1961 page 63

    ''In view of the seriousness of taking blood into the human system by a transfusion, would violation of the Holy Scriptures in this regard subject the dedicated, baptized receiver of blood transfusion to being disfellowshiped from the Christian congregation?

    The inspired Holy Scriptures answer yes''

    M ThomasCovenant posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:41:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 444 of 887
    Joined 7/20/2005

    Watchtower 1st August 1958 page 478

    ''One of Jehovah's witnesses who claims to be of the anointed remnant recently went to the hospital and took a blood transfusion, voluntarily. Should she be allowed to partake of the emblems of bread and wine at Memorial time?-R. J., United States.

    We, of course, regret with you that this sister who professes to be one of the anointed remnant took a blood transfusion voluntarily during her stay in the hospital. We believe that she did the wrong thing contrary to the will of God. However, congregations have never been instructed to disfellowship those who voluntarily take blood transfusions or approve them. We let the judgment of such violators of God's law concerning the sacredness of blood remain with Jehovah, the Supreme Judge. The only thing that can be done in the cases of individuals like this is to view them as immature and therefore not capable of taking on certain responsibilities, hence refusing to make certain assignments of service to such ones.

    Since an individual is not disfellowshiped because of having voluntarily taken a blood transfusion or having approved of a dear one's accepting a blood transfusion, you have no right to bar this sister from the celebration of the Lord's Evening Meal. As an anointed member of Christ's body she is under orders and command by Christ Jesus to partake. Whether she is unfaithful as to what she professes to be by virtue of taking the emblems of the Lord's Evening Meal is something for Jehovah God to determine himself. His judgment begins at the house of God. It is not for you or anyone serving the Memorial emblems to act as the judge, but to allow the emblems to go to anyone in the audience as these are passed along in the normal manner of letting each one have the opportunity to partake''

    miseryloveselders posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:41:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 292 of 2654
    Joined 8/31/2009

    It used to be, "no blood, no way, no how". Now, it's "no blood, except for most fractions or if through a continuous loop through this machine or if used in this way or that way". In order to try to get out of a mess, they've created a bigger doctrinal mess.

    When reading that line, it really impresses upon you how retarded the whole doctrine is. It would be laughable if not so tragic.

    M undercover posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:43:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 9342 of 13147
    Joined 9/25/2002
    ''In view of the seriousness of taking blood into the human system by a transfusion, would violation of the Holy Scriptures in this regard subject the dedicated, baptized receiver of blood transfusion to being disfellowshiped from the Christian congregation?
    The inspired Holy Scriptures answer yes''

    They do? I'd like to see that scripture...

    Or is the WT considered that inspired scripture?

    isaacaustin posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:44:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 4705 of 6449
    Joined 4/21/2005

    ThomasCovenant,

    It was not a dfing offense in 1958, but by 1961 it was?? Am I interpreting this correctly?

    cult classic posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:45:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 374 of 1931
    Joined 4/4/2010

    There was a "brother" in our area who received a transfusion about 11 yrs. ago. He was battling leukemia and some other disorder. His prognosis wasn't good. It seemed he got better overnight. So the "friends" assumed he'd taken blood. It became "common knowledge" that he had accepted a blood transfusion. And neither he nor his wife denied it when asked.

    No announcement was ever made. But they were blacklisted so badly in their congregation/circuit that they just stopped coming. In effect they were disfellowshipped.

    edited to add: I do remember the couple starting to question the blood doctrine openly with close friends. These friends in turn told the elders that they were questioning the doctrine, so when he got better the assumption was he'd taken blood.

    I just remembered that part of the story. I was sad when I saw them out shopping one day. I hadn't seen them in years and I waved to the wife and she turned away........ I'm sure the whole situation really caused them pain.

    F blondie posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:47:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 29639 of 37885
    Joined 5/28/2001

    There is nothing in print in the WTS publications regarding disassociation. BBC had a reference to it. When the CO visited each congregation, at the elders meeting, he verbally told them that it had changed to disassocation. He read it from a piece of paper with WT header but would not let the elders look at this "non-letter" nor was a copy given to the elders.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/790967.stm (below is quote from this article)

    But if this looks like a major climbdown, a spokesman for the organisation - also called Watch Tower - insisted it was merely a procedural change.

    He said not taking blood remains a biblical injunction and a core tenet of the faith.

    If a member has a transfusion, they will, by their actions disassociate themselves from the religion. The ruling emphasises personal choice, he said.

    He added that if they repented afterwards, they would be offered spiritual comfort and the possibility of redemption.

    But the distinction between what in other words amounts to resigning rather than being sacked, does seem to be a major shift.

    M undercover posted Wed, 19 May 2010 18:49:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 9343 of 13147
    Joined 9/25/2002
    But they were blacklisted so badly in their congregation/circuit that they just stopped coming. In effect they were disfellowshipped.

    Yes, even when they can't "get" you and DF you, they can "mark" you and then through the ole gossip mill, people will talk enough shit about you that others will "mark" you and before you know it you're being shunned... all without a JC meeting or announcement made.

    The WTS has really perfected how to use peer pressure to make the masses conform to group think and action.

    cult classic posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:01:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 375 of 1931
    Joined 4/4/2010

    You know this has got me thinking back.

    I learned of the situation when a mutual friend of the couple and myself were talking. She was catching me up on all the gossip and told me about the situation. The wife and my friend were actually good friends. They were bridesmaids in each other's weddings. I remember being shocked at how angry she was that the couple were questioning the blood teaching. Now this lady is a very liberal JW. And it totally took my breath away at how much venom she had in her voice about the situation. I remember her saying, "And I just know he took a blood transfusion. They are going to pay for this."

    Crazy huh?

    M ThomasCovenant posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:03:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 445 of 887
    Joined 7/20/2005

    Isaac Austin said 'It was not a dfing offense in 1958, but by 1961 it was?? Am I interpreting this correctly?'

    That's how I would read it. I looked on the CDrom and typed 'transfusion disfellowship'

    oppostate posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:10:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 55 of 450
    Joined 11/18/2009

    No... No, JWs don't DF people for taking blood.
    Let me explain from experience.
    I sat in on a judicial committee. The brother 
    was not very active in service, only spotty
    meeting attendance, he had health issues,
    needed bypass, took blood, he admitted it
    in a handwritten note the Service Overseer
    got from him when he stopped by the hospital
    while the man was recuperating. The decision
    was made within five minutes of starting the
    meeting. The man had disassociated himself
    through his actions and admitted to the actions
    without writing he was repentant so the paper
    work was done and it was announced he was
    no longer a Jehovah's Witness, even before
    the man had a chance to get back on his feet
    and go on with life after the operation. No 
    visits from "the friends", no sisters making
    meals during his convalescence, he might 
    as well have died on the operating table
    as far as the congregation was concerned.
    He often took walks along the sidewalk in
    front of his house, to regain health, on a
    main street of town, many cargroups would
    go by I'm sure, I wonder how he felt looking
    at them looking at him from within their self
    righteous cargroups.
    To this day I'm sickened about the whole thing.
    Although I went along with putting the paper
    work through I first said let's talk to the brother
    let him get better and talk. I was voted down.
    I'm sick about it inside. It's one of those things
    I'm sure I'll have to answer for one day. All I 
    can add is that I'm truly sorry I went along with
    it. I hadn't seen him walking the sidewalk for
    a couple of years, maybe he went to a nursing
    home. The BOE then got a letter from his daughter
    who was never baptized asking if some brother
    would give the talk at the funeral home for him.
    None in the 8 man group of the BOE would 
    volunteer; it's not done for DF'ed and DA'd 
    individuals. 
    It's a sick cult, we're all too afraid of breaking
    men's laws and too quick to uphold what deep
    down we know to be an inhumane and uncaring
    way of dealing with people we should reach out
    to help, to shepherd, to bring refreshment from
    the scorch of this "system of things" but we 
    do the easy thing and go along, to the heart
    ache and suffering of innocent ones.
    That's my experience on Blood and DF'ing.
    So... No, JWs don't DF people for taking blood..

    M moshe posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:12:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 3808 of 9056
    Joined 1/18/2005

    Jw's are between a rock and a hard place over blood transfusions. If they loosen the rules, it might seem that anyone who died in the past died a needless death- pretty hard to take, if that was your jaundiced baby you let die 30 years ago by denying a blood transfusion. If they drop the prohibition all together, then it appears that all JW's were sacrificed for a false dogma and the WT religion now has blood guilt over the loss of innocent life. As much as they might want to totally drop the no-blood dogma, it will be very hard for the leaders to do that, without lawsuits and more loss of membership.

    F nelly136 posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:13:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 3181 of 3741
    Joined 12/14/2000

    i've just scoured the blood pages on the watchtower site,

    been updated by looks of it, (cleaned up for public consumption)

    anyways, you have to look very carefully to find clues on the severity of receiving a blood transfusion.

    A doctor may want to provide what he thinks is the best care, but he has no duty to seek legal justification to trample on your basic rights. And since the Bible puts abstaining from blood on the same moral level as avoiding fornication, to force blood on a Christian would be the equivalent of forcible sex—rape.—Acts 15:28, 29.

    and the jw punishment for fornication is..................................

    F nelly136 posted Wed, 19 May 2010 19:18:00 GMT(5/19/2010)

    Post 3182 of 3741
    Joined 12/14/2000

    .......of course as the others have said disfellowshipping sounds like the person on the operationg table has no choice,

    dissasociation by choice almost sounds like they have a free choice bleh

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