Elders and Governing Body

Jehovah’s Witnesses Endorse Charitable Works, As Long As They’re Performed By Someone Else

The May, 2015, Awake magazine, published by Jehovah’s Witnesses, highlighted articles about those who are homeless and poor. In those articles, there are the stories of Joe and Martin, both once homeless, both of whom made changes to their lives to finally become employed and find housing; Joe quit smoking to save money, and Martin “took more interest in his appearance.” They did this after starting to study the bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the stories say that the local Witnesses eventually offered them some “help” in finding suitable housing.

Capture awake

From the May 2015 Awake magazine.

These individual stories are significant because, in order to receive any type of assistance from Jehovah’s Witnesses, you need to be at least studying the bible with them and making changes in your life that seem to indicate that you will soon become a Witness yourself. This assistance is then typically minimal at best, as these stories themselves illustrate. Jehovah’s Witnesses practice no official charitable works for the general public; they have no soup kitchens, no homeless shelters, no shelters for battered women, no educational programs that help people get back into the job market, and don’t even have clothing bins where the homeless can find discarded clothes and blankets.

This is important to consider as, in the same magazine, there is an article talking about post-typhoon mortality rates for girls versus boys, noting how girls in Asian countries are often neglected when it comes to resources and aid. They then seem to chastise those responsible by quoting a scripture from Isaiah 58:7, which says, “Share your bread with the hungry, bring the poor and homeless into your house, clothe someone naked when you see him.”

So shame on other people who aren’t “sharing their bread” and “bringing the poor and homeless into their house” after a typhoon, but hooray for Jehovah’s Witnesses who help the homeless by leaving them with religious literature, studying the bible with them, expecting them to somehow fix their own problems, and insisting they make changes to conform to their demands before they do even the slightest thing for just one of them?

“Giving That Pleases God”

If you’re curious about what type of charitable works Jehovah’s Witnesses perform, note the June 1, 2003, Watchtower, which stated that:

There is a kind of giving that is even more important than charity… While he took the lead in helping the poor, healing the sick, and feeding the hungry, Jesus primarily trained his disciples to preach… Why not listen to what Jehovah’s Witnesses have to say the next time they call? They come with a spiritual gift. And they know that this is the best way that they can give to you.

According to their own magazine, the best “charity” they can give to anyone is to preach to them. It doesn’t matter if someone is homeless, or literally starving, or has been wearing the same clothes for a month; it doesn’t matter if they have children who are living on the streets with them and who haven’t eaten anything but garbage scraps for days. The “best way that they can give” is to preach to them. According to the title of the article, this is the type of “giving that pleases god.”

Organized Giving … to Themselves

The same article mentioned above talked about organized giving, saying,

Jehovah’s Witnesses today are also quick to help when disaster strikes. During the summer of 2001, for instance, torrential storms caused major flooding in Houston, Texas, U.S.A. In all, 723 homes of Witnesses were damaged to some extent, many of them quite badly. A disaster relief committee made up of qualified Christian elders was immediately formed to assess individual needs and to allocate relief funds to help the local Witnesses to cope with the situation and repair their homes. Willing volunteers from neighboring congregations performed all the work.

In case you missed it, note who was helped during this disaster; “homes of Witnesses” were repaired and relief funds helped “the local Witnesses.” In other words, Jehovah’s Witnesses will organize to provide relief and aid only to other Witnesses.

Note, too, when this aid is provided, as there is no organized effort to support their poorest members in general. When a major disaster strikes, they may pitch in to help, but if your home is in disrepair because you earn a minimum wage or are unemployed or elderly, your chances of being helped are hit or miss.

Charity, or Fraud?

Another interesting point from the article stated:

One Witness was so appreciative of the help that when she received payment from her insurance company to cover the repairs to her house, she immediately donated the money to the relief fund so that it could help others in need.

Note what happened here; volunteers did the labor, yet the insurance company paid for repairs. Unless this payment was for materials that were not provided by the above-mentioned “relief funds,” isn’t this fraud? If she got “relief funds” from Witnesses to pay for materials, and didn’t need to pay anyone to actually fix her roof, why is the insurance company paying her any money? Money from an insurance company is meant to reimburse you for costs associated with repairs; they don’t just write you a check for your inconvenience of having a broken roof.

There may be facts not mentioned in the article, but unless I’m missing something, she had no costs for materials or labor, yet took money from her insurance company, which she donated to the Witnesses. This sounds like fraud on the part of both parties to me.

Just Clean Up Your Life, and Problem Solved

Go back again to the stories mentioned in the article above, about Joe and Martin. Note the solution Jehovah’s Witnesses mention for being homeless. Joe gave up smoking and the article said, “Of course, Joe’s decision not only benefited his health but also saved him money.” As for Martin, “he applied the same Bible principles that helped Joe, mentioned earlier, to take control of his life. Martin took more interest in his appearance…” and soon found a job.

So according to Witnesses, if you quit smoking you’ll save so much money that it will make a difference in whether or not you can afford a home? I agree that smoking is expensive but honestly, how many packs do you need to smoke to spend the money that could otherwise go toward rent and utilities? And yes, looking like a mountain man might impede your ability to get certain jobs, but what about all the homeless people who look perfectly fine, and the ones who don’t smoke?

The point is, Jehovah’s Witnesses are implying that you simply need to watch how you spend your money and get a good haircut, and presto, problem solved. You can pay rent and get a job just like that. They say nothing about the working poor, meaning those that do work but who still struggle to keep a roof over their heads because of obscene costs of living and low wages, or those who are unemployed simply because there are no jobs to be had. This is beyond shortsighted; it’s just insulting to those who are poor through no fault of their own.

Capture children

According to Jehovah’s Witnesses, the best thing they can give to the poor and destitute, even children, is a religious video.

The Poor Giving to Them

Chastising other groups for failing to provide adequate aid after a typhoon when you do nothing to support the poor and homeless is suspect enough, but it becomes even worse when you realize that Jehovah’s Witnesses actually expect the poor to donate funds to them. The December 15, 2013, Watchtower said:

In one very poor country in Africa, some brothers mark off a small section of their garden and use the funds from the sale of the produce from that section to support the Kingdom work.

This is despite the hundreds of millions of dollars the Watchtower Society has been earning from the sale of their buildings in New York alone (see this news story). These monies go toward absolutely no charitable works or efforts, as mentioned above. Not one shelter or food line or clothing bin, not one school, orphanage, educational or job search center, nothing.

Jehovah’s Witnesses chastise others for not “sharing their bread” or allowing the homeless into their own home, while taking money from those same poor and destitute and doing nothing to open their own homes to strangers. This begs the question, whom are they expecting to share all that bread, and whose homes are they expecting to be open? All that sharing and helping and charity is great as far as they’re concerned, but only if it comes out of the pockets of others. 

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13 replies »

  1. To you all, I’ve been reading your comments and it seems you are very bitter with regards to Jehovah’s Witnesses, I myself am not one of these people, it seems from your comments that you put more effort into putting your thoughts and feelings into empty words however if you put the same effort into action and reach out to people in need you wouldn’t have the energy left to speak bad thing about those whom you don’t know. My family live in the Philippines and the lost everything on November 11th 2013 when Typhoon Haiyan made landfall some lost even their lives, my family are Christians yet their Catholic church offered no help materially or spiritually yet complete strangers offered my family shelter, food, clothing and spirituality they themselves had lost everything yet they offered what they could to my family, when I asked who those people were I was told that they were Jehovah’s Witnesses I asked if they had lost everything how could they possibly help what was left of my family they said Jehovah supplied them these things through his worldly society and their brothers and sisters world wide, I broke down and cried I didn’t think so much love existed in this wicked world yet here we see people in the same situation as my family sharing what they had. This left a burning question in my heart, where was the church to which they were members, no help or concern came from there it seems to me that God isn’t supporting the Catholic church he seems to be working among ordinarily people who show Godly devotion and Godly charity and above all Godly LOVE to complete strangers, my family said that some of those Jehovahs Witnesses came from as far as England, Germany, Holland, Austria, Australia and America if any of those who volunteered their help in the Philippines ever read this my your God Jehovah bless you for displaying such Godly love to may your work continue and fill the earth so that those who speak against you with empty words come to realise that Jesus died for all mankind and he said that we should show nothing but Love towards our fellow man, may all of you put your efforts into showing the Sam Christian charity as those who showed such love to me and my family if we want blessings to be poured out on us we need to put into practice what Jesus commanded us to Love one another as he loved us he suffered a cruel death so that we might live, don’t let his death be in vain, may we all come to know God (Jehovah is his name) I myself have a long way to know to get to know my creator may I receive such blessings and may one day one of Jehovahs Wittnesses call on my door in order for me to get to know my heavenly farther who showed such compassion towards my family.
    Oshi Forb

  2. My mom joined the Jehovah Witnesses when I was around 7 or 8 years old the woman came to the door and offered to bring me and my sisters and brother with her to learn about the bible… my mom having like 6 kids at the time living in Redhook Brooklyn saw it as a free 2 hour baby sitting session and off we went for a few hours every Sunday. Little did I know or understand then the real meaning the Watchtower “the Watcher” is what they really represent. Many times as a child I never understood why people would stand outside Kingdom Halls with signs and picket. I would be instructed not to look not to read what they are trying to say and when I ask why are they doing that nobody picks Religions? I realized some 40 years later once the internet was in full bloom it was not a religion at all its actually a Cult.

    It will rip your family apart bit by bit if you allow it.

    • Be careful what you wish for you just might get it. The watchtower bible and tract society aka governing body is a group of deceitful fraudulent men who seek to mislead people like yourself. I suggest you do in-depth research of their organization if you want to know the truth about them. The Jehovah’s witnesses have a website called jw.org that they will steer you towards; however, that is a bias site. Please if you truly want to know the truth about them first pray to GOD, be lead by the Holy Spirit, and research, research, research.

  3. jws do more for anybody than any other religious body,not just for themselves.moneys in is all freely donated out of love not because the are told to.they donate clothes,shoes food & shelter and are usually the first ones there when a disaster happens.
    thousands will testify to that. as for the so called christian churches [catholic] they have hid, moved on hundreds or thousands
    of paedophiles. the churches are full of statues and such,the funny thing is that they portray Jesus on a cross? it was actually a stake one strait piece of wood.[LOOK IT UP].AND THE BIBLE EVAN TEACHES THAT THOSE WHO WORSHIP THEM AND BOW DOWN TO THEM WILL BE COME JUST LIKE THEM.BLIND, DEAF & DUMB. ALL THE HOLIDAYS ARE FILLED WITH FALSE DOCTRINES,XMAS JESUS WAS BORN MORE LIKELY IN SEPTEMBER /OCTOBER,WARM ENOUGH TO BE OUT TILL THE EARLY MORNINGS TENDING TO THEIR FLOCKS. HALLOWEEN MMM GHOSTS MURDER’S, SCARE TACTICS? THEY DONT EVAN USE GODS NAME JEHOVAH,LOOK IN ANY EARLY BIBLES YOU WILL SEE IT MANY TIMES.HOW CAN YOU CLAIM TO LOVE SOMEONE BUT DONT EVAN KNOW / USE THERE NAME. VERY SOON NOW JAH IS GOING TO PUT IT IN THE MIND OF MAN TO BRING DOWN RELIGION[FALSE THAT IS] TAKE THERE CHURCHES AND MONEY, AND IT WONT BE STOPPED AS GOD IS BEHIND IT ALL. ONE THING TO LISTEN OUT FOR IS THAT MAN WILL GIVE A GREAT SHOUT OF PEACE AND SECURITY,WHEN THIS HAPPENS ,GOD WILL TACK ACTION AND SAVE HIS TRUE FOLLOWS,WHILE MEN TRY TO KILL THE WITNESSES. THEN SUDDENLY GODS WAR [ARMAGEDDON] WILL TAKE PLACE,A WAR THAT THE ARMY’S OF THE WORLD CAN DO NOTHING ABOUT,THERE WILL BE SIGNS IN THE HEAVENS AND ALL WILL KNOW AT THIS POINT JEHOVAH IS THE ONLY TRUE GOD,AND THAT YOU ARE ALL ABOUT TO DIE. MMM U MAY THINK WELL I NEVER HAD A CHANCE TO SURVIVE,WELL PLEASE REMEMBER THAT SINCE THE LATE 1800s UP TO THIS DAY AND ON TILL THE WORK IS OVER, YOU HAVE ALL HAD THE CHANCE,BUT YOU JUST MOCKED AND THOUGHT THEY WERE CRACKERS,WHEN THEY KNOCKED ON YOUR DOOR,STOPPED YOU IN THE STREET,THEN YOU WILL REMEMBER OOPPPSSS WE DID HAVE A CHANCE TO GET TO KNOW JEHOVAH THROE HIS FREE WITNESS STUDY PROGRAM THAT IS GOING ON IN MORE THAN 280 COUNTRY’S AT PRESENT, SO REMEMBER NEXT TIME THEY SEEK YOU OUT LISTEN AND SEE AND TASTE THAT JEHOVAH IS GOOD.

    • You do realize you are only speaking what they program you to speak… remember growing up JW you are not allow to question nor are you allow to speak against anything they tell you to do, that is not from God that is from Mankind! When Jesus was on earth he did not judge people but I was judged on a regular basis being a JW.

      We are always told stories and many of them are also made up lies, that is the real reason Brother Franz who actually wrote the blue Aid Book left because he learned they are not a religion at all.

      Wake up my brother wake up before its too late!

  4. Bang on the money. I was born into the Jehovah’s Witnesses 3rd generation and spent the first 28 years of my life in the Watchtower organisation including volunteering at the bethel in the United Kingdom. BTW I’m now a refugee volunteer and and well known refugee human rights activist and of course I’m disfellowshipped and in their view a ‘mentally diseased’ apostate, a lover of Satan who feeds at the table of the demons. Gee thanks guys!

    Lastr winter I was volunteering on the island of Lesvos working (without pay) in the refugee camps on Lesvos and also helping to bring the refugee boats safely into shore at night – incredibly stressful work to say the very least and very physically, mentally and emotionally demanding.

    In one of the refugee camps I was at for a considerable amount of time we did not receive any offers of help whatsoever from the local Jehovah’s Witnesses who do indeed refer to themselves as a charity (for tax evasion purposes it has to be said). Yes the Jehovah’s Witnesses turned up but only to preach at the refugees with their magazines The Watchtower and Awake! and other pamphlets and brochures.

    Preying on the most vulnerable like this sickened me. Some of the refugees had only just arrived a few hours before from Turkey after fleeing war and extreme persecution in their home countries. Targeting this very vulnerable group in this manner I found it to be extremely distasteful to say the very least. These Jehovah’s Witnesses didn’t try to give the refugees any clean, dry warm clothes or a hot meal or offer them any practical help at all, no they just thrust their pamphlets and magazines at the refugees as if that was going to help them! It was quite revolting to see this preaching at the refugees in this manner directly right in their faces.

    On one occasion the Jehovah’s Witnesses overstepped the boundary stepping onto private land which we were renting to continue their preaching activity. At this point I had seen enough and I physically removed them from the property telling them if they did not leave the private property immediately I would call the police on them to have them arrested for trespassing. It took all of my self control not to rip their magazines out of their hands right in front of them.

    Changing the subject now, the sale of the WT bethel buildings in Brooklyn for the princely sum of $340 million I wonder how many people are aware including the rank and file JW’s that the property was sold to Donald Trump’s son-in-law? Fact. So let me get this straight for a second…

    The JW’s believed this was in effect sacred ground, Jehovah’s own spiritual temple yet they sold it in effect to a representative of Satan himself to Donald Trump’s son-in-law – you seriously could not make this up if you tried. And now Donald Trump at the time of writing this is the president elect of the United States of America. Question is, would God approve of this action? Something tells me it would leave a very bad taste in his mouth (a mild understatement to say the very least). If they (the Jehovah’s Witnesses) believe the president of the United States is the very incarnation of everything that is wrong with this world and is absolutely evil to the core then why are they entering into business deals and contracts with this representative of Satan? Maybe a Jehovah’s Witness elder or a representative of the lega corporation of the Watchtower organisation would like to step up to the plate to answer this question? (Somehow I doubt they will want to furnish anyone with an answer to this important point)!

  5. The bible has numerous verses about giving to the poor. The church I attend does so regularly and is involved with the community worldwide.

    But when the giving is for worldly recognition (such as a Guinness record) then it becomes bragging.

    Matthew 6:1-4 “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

  6. Disgusting, in the New Testament alone, Jesus and his apostles admonish the disciples to aid the poor with money, clothes, and food, 153 times. I’m not involved with any religion, more of an unattached Christian free to donate to any cause I wish to. Among friends there are people who freely donate substantial funds to church programs that assist the poor directly, no matter what faith they belong to. Some friends spend many free hours on a church farm that uses all they produce, and then can, to help their poor and supply food banks. A busy mother of 4 comes by 3-4 times a years asking me to go through my closets and set aside good clothes to be sent to a thrift store that employs primarily disabled folks. Donated clothes are sold out of the store and the funds used to support humanitarian efforts or given to the needy. There is a lot going on to help the poor and needy, the JWs stick out like a sore thumb for their policy of ignoring the 153 admonishions in the inspired text.

  7. I remember hearing some witnesses lamenting the loss of life during a natural disaster (tsunami in which “worldly”organizations were fundraising to help survivors) however they were only lamenting the loss of witnesses who may or may not have been in the area!! So the idea is its not tragic that human and animal life was lost, families separated or orphaned and livelihood and homes devastated. It was only tragic that witnesses may have been affected!!! Disgusting attitude – and not at all Christian either. Did Jehovah and Jesus lament over the loss of witnesses and implications for them or was it everyone involved. Considering there is a scripture that says God does not delight in the destruction of the wicked never mind anyone faithful to him this attitude displayed is very wrong!!! No wonder people get stumbled and put off witnesses when they display such non-emotion for their fellow man

  8. I agree with you 100%. I told a JW friend that I wanted to go to any foreign country and just help out, like with the Red Cross and other organizations. The first thing out of her mouth was that the people I would be trying to help would be ungrateful and that I would be wasting my time. It was also the first time I told anyone I wanted to do this.

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