Feb 3, 2023

CultNEWS101 Articles: 2/2/2023

Jehovah's Witnesses, Religious Persecution, Plymouth Brethren Christian Church, Waco, David Koresh, the Branch Dividians, Koreshan Universology
"Jehovah's Witnesses were among the very first groups persecuted by the Nazis, from 1933 until 1945. By the end of WWII, thousands had been imprisoned or sent to concentration camps. Hundreds of ernste Bibelforscher ("earnest Bible students," as they were called by many Germans at the time) died by guillotine, shooting, hanging, lethal injection, in gas chambers and medical experiments, and as a result of the harsh conditions they endured in detention.

Often Aryan and fluent German speakers, many Jehovah's Witnesses had an atypical experience in concentration camps, compared to other groups (accounts describe some working in the homes of SS officers). A 2017 article in the journal Genocide Studies theorizes that their race and language, combined with "group cohesion, mutual support, and religious faith," meant a higher-than-average survival rate for Jehovah's Witnesses compared to other groups. Like the other descendants of groups persecuted during the Holocaust, followers of the faith today continue to honor both the profound suffering and the steadfastness of their forebears who faced deprivation, torture, and death. But their fellow believers today draw particular inspiration from the way that Jehovah's Witnesses of the time were committed to communicating their faith to their fellow prisoners, and the horror they were living to the wider world.

This legacy continues, as Jehovah's Witness publications and media speak out about the persecution of their co-religionists in the oppressive regimes of the 21st century, as Jehovah's Witnesses around the world continue to experience state persecution for their beliefs."
"Lance Christie, 57, was acquitted yesterday (1/25/2023) at Leeds Magistrates' Court of one charge of harassment against eight members of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church; including two of his sons and his nephew. It was heard that Christie delivered letters to their homes in December 2020 before sending emails to family members in 2021. He then sent another email to members that included links to YouTube videos criticising the "fundamentalist" group in April 2022.

The eight church members were cross examined on Monday and Tuesday, during which they said that the messages were "an attack on what's precious" to them and had left them "distressed".

The court heard that Christie had been a member of the church, which has a congregation in Horsforth, since birth but was excommunicated in 2017 due to acts of "heresy". In the documents shared with members he accused the church of being a "cult" and said that the church had "caused him to lose his family and business".

Closing remarks were read out by the prosecution and defence on Wednesday before the not guilty verdict was given."
"Journalist Jeff Guinn says he's found new evidence that Texas cult leader David Koresh was a fake who plagiarized the prophecies of a long-forgotten Fort Myers man.

• Guinn's new book, "Waco: David Koresh, the Branch Dividians, and a Legacy of Rage," timed to release near the 30th anniversary of the notorious 1993 siege in Waco, Texas, traces the "prophecies" of the ill-fated Branch Davidian leader back to the banks of the Estero River at the turn of the last century."

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