Jehovah's Witnesses Weirdness

jandzmom

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Hi All,
Yesterday morning, two ladies who eventually identified themselves as Jehovah's Witnesses, came calling at my home. The weird part about it is that they came specifically to see my 12 year old son "Z" (who is Deaf and has a rare genetic syndrome. ) I refused to let them see him.

I asked them why they wanted to see him, and the leader of the two said that they specifically seek out the Deaf and other "special" people to bring into their kingdom houses because they believe they can be healed on this earth. She also wanted to show him a DVD and get his response.

I asked her how she had heard about "Z" and she gave me two different answers -- the first time she said that someone had told them about him and that they made a specific trip from 40 miles away to see him. The second time I asked why she was so specific about seeing "Z", she said she was driving down the street and saw the "Deaf Child" street sign (these signs are a way to get drivers to watch out for handicapped children) and asked a neighbor where the "Deaf Child" was, and that's why she came calling. However, she did know his name and asked specifically for him.

This was so weird and off-putting to me. Anyone care to give me some insight on this?

Thanks,
JandZmom
 
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jandzmom said:
I asked them why they wanted to see him, and the leader of the two said that they specifically seek out the Deaf and other "special" people to bring into their kingdom houses because they believe they can be healed on this earth. She also wanted to show him a DVD and get his response.

Does Z consider himself to be Deaf (capital D) or deaf (lower case D)? Most of the Deaf people I know would be very offended by the idea of being healed/cured/ etc., etc.. Several people I know with cochlear implants have been practically shunned by Deaf community so I can imagine the response to a 'miracle healing' pretty unfavourable too.

On a related topic, I remember about 15 years ago, members of my community were being aggressively preyed on (pun intended) by some church or other. I don't think it was in a 'healing' sense or even 'madness equals demons' sense either, more they were considered easy converts.
 

PeniG

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Although this sort of thing is well within the tactlessness range of the JW's I've known (and I've never met one I didn't want to pat on the head), I'd call the cops about this. This could easily be a cover story for someone specifically preying on nonstandard children, and the fact that she told you two mutually exclusive stories and knows your child's name is a legitimate creepout. Even if this is only a real JW witnessing project, it's one that pushes the edge enough that you needn't feel bad about scaring your local Witnesses off from doing it.

I feel bad for Witnesses. They have to do this, and it's the worst way in the world to get converts. It'd be like selling band candy, without any chocolate on offer.
 

Leaferne

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I wonder what their "hit rate" is with regard to converts made from these door-to-door calls. It can't be very high at all; if only they'd realize it's not worth the bother. :?
 

Hospitaller

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I wonder if they are even JWs! We've had bogus social workers, so why not bogus JWs? I think that PeniG is dead right, call the Squad!
 

jandzmom

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Does Z consider himself to be Deaf (capital D) or deaf (lower case D)? Most of the Deaf people I know would be very offended by the idea of being healed/cured/ etc., etc.. Several people I know with cochlear implants have been practically shunned by Deaf community so I can imagine the response to a 'miracle healing' pretty unfavourable too.

Z knows he is Deaf, but is the son of hearing parents, so he really isn't so steeped in Deaf culture that he would be offended from that perspective. Z thinks of himself as being wonderfully great (which he is) and wouldn't understand someone "healing" him, because he doesn't see himself being "sick." The scary thing for me is that Z isn't afraid of anyone, and if someone came up to him and started signing or gesturing, he would go with them.

In any event, you all have convinced me that I should let the town police know about this and I will.

JandZmom
 
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jandzmom said:
Z knows he is Deaf, but is the son of hearing parents, so he really isn't so steeped in Deaf culture that he would be offended from that perspective. Z thinks of himself as being wonderfully great (which he is) and wouldn't understand someone "healing" him, because he doesn't see himself being "sick." The scary thing for me is that Z isn't afraid of anyone, and if someone came up to him and started signing or gesturing, he would go with them.

In any event, you all have convinced me that I should let the town police know about this and I will.

JandZmom

I know parents of a few D/deaf teenagers who have the same worries. Perhaps naive or gullible are the wrong words, but for otherwise intelligent youths, they seem to have an almost reckless attitude towards their own safety.

You're doing the right thing contacting the police. If you have no joy with them directly, get in touch with Deaf Services unit in the Social Services as they may have heard of similar stories in your neighbourhood. They'll probably be quite happy to badger the police about it, and the police are more likely to respond to them.
 

TheQuixote

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I'm under the impression that JW's don't actually believe in faith healing so I would hazard a guess they may have meant healing as in perhaps *finding Jehovah* by joining in prayers down at the Kingdom Hall. That being said if the same person gave two quite different stories to you then I would definitely be very wary.

I'd echo previous suggestions already made and I would contact your local police station or perhaps even, if you feel up to it- or perhaps it may be inviting more JW's to come calling but you could try phoning your local Kingdom Hall and explain that this woman made you uncomfortable and concerned for your son's safety and basically gave you a load of crap about how she came to call at your door, you might be able to find out if they were on the level or not. I'm sure they themselves would be concerned to hear that you have been scared by such methods if it was indeed a visit by legitimate JW's.

jandzmom- I hope that you can keep us updated on this.
 

jandzmom

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UPDATE

Hi All,
As always you are so kind and have given me more to think about. There is another family in our neighborhood, where the wife has been Deaf from birth, and I walked down to their house today to talk with them and see if they'd been contacted as well by the JW ladies yesterday -- and they had!

The husband -- who is hearing -- said that he was working in the yard and headed off the ladies before they could bother his wife. They told him they wanted to talk with his wife, asked for her by name, and he told them no. Then they asked him where we lived because they were going to visit Z, and he pointed out our house. He apologized for pointing out our house to them, but he said he got the feeling that they knew where we lived anyway.

So now I'm thinking that the JW's have a list of the Deaf people in the area (and I'm not sure where they would get that info) and are making the rounds trying to recruit them for whatever they do at their Kingdom halls.

So, so creepy. And I am still going to report it to the police.
 

Mighty_Emperor

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jandzmom

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Geeze Emps, I wish I hadn't clicked on the links you posted!

I had no idea there were such weirdos as those Bogus Social Workers, etc. This whole thing has played into one of my biggest fears -- someone taking one of my children. I don't think I'll sleep tonight. This momma is freaked!
:shock:
 
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Re: UPDATE

jandzmom said:
So now I'm thinking that the JW's have a list of the Deaf people in the area (and I'm not sure where they would get that info) and are making the rounds trying to recruit them for whatever they do at their Kingdom halls.

The only place I can imagine they get such a list from is, worryingly, the Social Services. They'd have lists of deaf people supported by health visitors and people that need interpreters, note takers and communicators. They'd have lists of children in particular schools. They'd have lists of people that required visual aids and vibrating alarms etc., etc.. They'd possibly have details about any local clubs supported by the Social Services, like my local Deaf Club.

One thing I find puzzling though is given the overwhelming majority of deaf people are elderly people that are deafened/hard of hearing they aren't contacting these too. Although, from a religious viewpoint, there's nothing like getting them whilst they're young.* Old people don't seem to offer much in the way of return.



*no Catholic priest jokes, please.
 

Mighty_Emperor

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jandzmom said:
Geeze Emps, I wish I hadn't clicked on the links you posted!

I had no idea there were such weirdos as those Bogus Social Workers, etc. This whole thing has played into one of my biggest fears -- someone taking one of my children. I don't think I'll sleep tonight. This momma is freaked!
:shock:

Sorry :(

They are more than likely JWs and you have done exactly the right thing so everything will be just fine.
 
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Pietro_Mercurios said:
A Thread about this very subject on DeafForum UK:

http://www.deafforum.co.uk/index.php?showtopic=717&st=0

Apparently, JW's are going out of their way to target deaf people, in order to learn sign language.

Very curious.

Hmmmm. Why can't they do what I did and go to college for three years to learn BSL? I own two dictionaries of religious vocabularly which supplement what I have learned in the past and I can happily sign my way through a religious service, carol service etc., etc.. Also, my local Deaf clubs have visiting priests from different denominations who have learned the same route as myself and everyone else.

The Jehovah's Witnesses are going a really bad way about this if they are just trying to train-up 'missionaries' or door-knockers. If they really want to ingratiate themselves within the D/deaf community and garner some followers on the way, then they need to do what everyone else does: involve yourself at a local Deaf club and get to know people as people first before they start proselytising. :roll:
 

jandzmom

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Update 2- notifying the authorities

Hi All,
Thank you so much for the information you have shared with me -- and while some of it is concerning, I would rather know than not know. (Emps, you're off the hook, I did get some sleep last night!)

I called the local Deaf services center, and they told me that they don't sell their membership list, and will let other Deaf know about the JWs seeking out Deaf children and adults.

I went to the police station and filed a report, and they said that what the JWs did wasn't illegal, but certainly strange, and they will keep an eye on what is going on, especially since we have a dozen Deaf children in town.

I have done more web research and have found out that JWs have a long history of trying to recruit the Deaf. How strange that target a specific group of differently-abled people.

That's it for now,
JandZmom
 

Mighty_Emperor

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Re: Update 2- notifying the authorities

jandzmom said:
Hi All,
Thank you so much for the information you have shared with me -- and while some of it is concerning, I would rather know than not know. (Emps, you're off the hook, I did get some sleep last night!)

Phew ;)

jandzmom said:
I have done more web research and have found out that JWs have a long history of trying to recruit the Deaf. How strange that target a specific group of differently-abled people.

Perhaps they know something we don't? I have visions of some kind of Day of the Triffids-like scenario where it is the deaf and not the sighted who somehow have some kind of advantage in the upcoming disaster which I will copright now as The Deafening © or something.
 

again6

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Perhaps they know something we don't?

I thought the same thing, for a moment.

It would appear from above posts that rather than targeting children, the JWs may have an interest in 'healing' hearing-impaired people of all ages, as evidenced by the fact they called at the house of the woman whose husband shooed them away. So this would be reassuring to 'Z's' mother.

Maybe the JWs believe that the voice of God or Christ will be the rallying call in the event of an end-of-world scenario ? If so, the JWs may genuinely believe their souls will receive extra reward-stickers if they ensure the hearing-impaired will not be disadvantaged at the final-countdown ?

Maybe they genuinely believe they're able to 'heal' those with a hearing impediment? Or maybe they hope to teach the hearing-impaired how to 'feel' the vibrations of god/jesus' voice?
 

krobone

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again6 said:
Perhaps they know something we don't?

I thought the same thing, for a moment.

It would appear from above posts that rather than targeting children, the JWs may have an interest in 'healing' hearing-impaired people of all ages, as evidenced by the fact they called at the house of the woman whose husband shooed them away. So this would be reassuring to 'Z's' mother.

Maybe the JWs believe that the voice of God or Christ will be the rallying call in the event of an end-of-world scenario ? If so, the JWs may genuinely believe their souls will receive extra reward-stickers if they ensure the hearing-impaired will not be disadvantaged at the final-countdown ?

Maybe they genuinely believe they're able to 'heal' those with a hearing impediment? Or maybe they hope to teach the hearing-impaired how to 'feel' the vibrations of god/jesus' voice?

Or maybe they're just religious nuts. ;)
 

Aqualiv

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This is not how Jehovah’s Witnesses would act. First of all they would not make a specific visit on a child , they may talk to a parent or guardian about a child and invite them with the child to a meeting but never solely the child.

They said they want to take the child to one of their Kingdom House’s (Kingdom Halls) where the child could be healed. This would be a false teaching as far as Jehovah’s Witnesses are concerned, they do not believe that any physical healing can take place on earth today. There is no room for private interpretation of procedure and especially of Theology among the JW’s , so the people you had at your door were lying about who they were.

I was a JW for Twenty years.
 

Bistoinferno

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Ive never had a lot of sympathy with JW's since the day i actually accepted some of their literature and read it. If you are going to go to the time, effort and expense to produce magzines promoting your faith you should first check that the facts you include cant be easily disproved by an ill and off school for the day teenager with access to Google . . . . .
 

jandzmom

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JW Weirdness Update #3

The JWs came back this evening -- Halloween evening -- and asked to see my son, "Z." I told them that I would not allow them to communicate with him, and that I am very uncomfortable with them trying to contact him and not to try to contact him again. I told them that whatever list he was on to take him off of it.

I was so glad that our ill-mannered and slobbery black lab was there barking like a hound of hell at them. He is huge - 120 lbs -- and I had ahold of his collar standing there at the door, and he was jerking me around. Then I told them that our dog was quite attached to Z and always with him. That I thought he'd really hurt anyone who came near Z.

They backed way, way away down the sidewalk steps leading to our house, and practically ran away from our house!

JandZmom
 

gerardwilkie

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Haha ! That's one way to get rid of them .

I used toget plagued with them for some odd reason . At least once a month they would turn up at my door . Want to know another good way to get rid of them ?- accept their literature and read it . They come back a few days later and you bombard them with questions about it that they cannot answer (they dont came back) e.g . I picked up that they believe that there is only space in heaven for 144000 - when I asked them if it was true , they said yes , so I asked how many JWs there are . They told me a figue (2million ,say) , so I asked them how they would all squeeze in , they answered that they hadn't really thought about that , and trundled off .

Another time they turned up and asked me my religion. I lied and said I was Muslim and preached to them the benefits of Islam . They went away rather quickly .

But the best time was when they came into my house talking about religion and I said that I had some books to show them . I came back with books on demonology and devil worship (just the tame sort that most forteans might have in their library) . I spoke about the Church of Satan . You should have seen their faces .

Needless to say , they dont come round here no more.
 

Aqualiv

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Although Jehovah’s Witnesses believe only 144000 go to heaven the fact that there are 6-7 million members in no way conflicts with this. This is because Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW’s) believe there are Two classes of people and that the majority of members will actually live on Earth after it has been restored to paradise following the battle of Armageddon.

In all honesty the best way to rid yourself from JW visits is to declare yourself as an EX-JW who has been disfellowshiped and now as an apostate you would like to show them the error or their ways. This will have them running from your door with their hands over their ears screaming to block out anything you may say…honestly.
 

jandzmom

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JW visitation update

Hi All,
Well, the attempts of JWs to talk my son have continued on a monthly basis since I first posted. Sometimes it's the same people, sometimes it's different folks. Always, it's women.

They showed up again today -- weirdly, this time, when my son "Z" is in school. They always act surprised when I remind them that I told them to take him off their list. I've asked them again and again not to come back. I tell them that it's very upsetting that they are asking about my child (Z is 12, Deaf and developmentally delayed).

I've reported it to the police every time, and they keep telling me that there's nothing they can do.

I'm at a loss for what to do, and it feels so weird. Anyone who is/was a JW, can you please help me?

Thanks,
JandZmom
 

TheQuixote

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If you haven't already, I really would try and contact your local Kingdom Hall and speak to someone there. Tell them that they are upsetting you and your family and that you are concerned about the overzealous nature of the callers (explain that the callers acted in a sinister way that made you question their original motives) and that you are also in contact with your local police department about the situation.

Don't let on that the police have told you that they are unable to do anything for you, just hint that they are 'monitoring your situation'.

If that gets you nowhere you could always try the local press and see if they'll run an article on what's been happening. This could bring about further unwanted attention to your door but I'm sure they (the JWs) would soon begin to listen to you and take in your wishes if a piece of negative publicity hit the newsstands.

I really do hope it gets resolved soon, it must be so frustrating having them targetting your son in this way.
 

rynner2

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TheQuixote said:
If that gets you nowhere you could always try the local press and see if they'll run an article on what's been happening.
Depends on the local press! I had a letter published in our local rag this week.

Only they had edited it.

And cut out the really interesting (and amusing) point I was trying to make.

Now it reads like some prissy nit-picking complaint about something very trivial. Hundreds of readers (I doubt they get more :D ) must be wondering :wtf:
 

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Re: JW visitation update

jandzmom said:
I'm at a loss for what to do, and it feels so weird.
If they're really as persistent as that, they obviously can't take a hint. Even if it's not in your nature, I'd try to be as rude as possible to them next time. It sounds terrible, but if subtlety isn't their thing, a "f*** off" might actually do the trick.

Or ask for their names, and keep a note of the answers. Have a camera by the door, and take their photos as well. Then take your ammunition to their meeting hall. If the callers are known to the church, you may embarrass them out of returning. If they're not (unlikely), go to the police again and make a real nuisance of yourself.

Or... engage them in conversation and ask them to justify their positions on birthdays and blood transfusion. They're not too hot on either, though frankly their reasoning on both is ludicrous. St John's head on a plate, anyone?

No, on balance, the rude option sounds best, if you feel comfortable. Scream, shout, put them on the back foot.
 

ProfessorF

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Billy Connelly had a joke - he'd shout at them through the door that not only was he naked, but he was also in a state of 'arousal'. He'd be opening the door in ten seconds and suggested that they may care to leave.
Your mileage may vary.

My father was a Church of Scotland elder for a few years - on one occasion he almost turned the younger of the 2 JW's. The older handler didn't like where the conversation was going and they left.
 

Dingo667

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I don't like their pestering ways. My mother in law is the polite sort and told them that she didn't have time to see them, hoping they would stay away only for them to keep turning up.
The next time I was there, all done up [for going out], including my black hair and black clothes and especially my lovely silver inverted pentagram around my neck and opened the door.
It was so funny the way they looked up and down at me and this is roughly the conversation that happened:

JW: Can we see Mrs W?
Me: No.
JW: But she told us to come back.
Me: No she didn't.
JW: Yes she did.
Me: No she didn't.

At that point they tried to look over my shoulder into the house in order to find my MIL but to no avail.

JW: Can we speak to Mrs W in person?
Me: No.
JW: We would feel more comfortable if she told us in person.
Me: So what?
JW: We really need to speak to Mrs W.
Me: No way.
JW: Where is she?
Me: None of your business, now if you don't mind could you please leave and never come back?
JW: Mrs W would want to see us.
Me: No she won't, trust me.

Then I looked intensely at them with an eerie smile [could have looked more mad maybe but I think it gave them the heebies because they looked really uncomfortable].

Me: Bye!

Closing the door.
They never came back, its been over a year now. What I found funny was that I've got the impression they thought I "did" something to my MIL. However if all else fails I always get the old: "No thanks I believe in the other side" crap out. I think they are well annoying and when I'm in the right mood I will actually swear at them. Who cares, they are not invited to come to my door and if they are persistent they need to know they are so NOT welcome!

:twisted:
 
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