My ex wife has taken in a lodger who is a Jehovas Witness. My ex is not a practicing Catholic and has no strong faith views. My daughters aged 10 and 15 often stay there and will interact with the lodger (24 yr old girl). Is there anything I need to know or be expecially concerned about?
Be prepared to answer questions:
Why do we worship on Sunday and not the Sabbath?
Why do you believe Jesus is God?
They believe Jesus is Michael the ArcAngel
They believe Jesus did not die on a cross but on a stake
This thread should get you started. If you have any more questions please feel free to ask.
Focus more on your former spouse meeting your children’s religious needs, such as taking them to mass on Sundays. The tenant is really a distraction to this important point.
If any issues arise with the tenant, simply have your ex ask the tenant not to discuss religion with the children. Its just a matter of boundaries. Don’t argue doctrine with the tenant, as it is her house too now, and she should be allowed to live in peace.
assuming the boarder asks any questions, that is. I am a boarder, tenuously, and I am asked nothing of my faith, nor do I ask of theirs. And there’s far more to be asked of me, but nuthin’.
And perhaps the boarder is a JW by way of her family; there are many who grew up within a faith, and still would not be able, or even care to answer many questions regarding their family’s faith. And there are others who just aren’t curious to ask of others, either.
thank you for these comments. At least the tennant is ‘of faith’ It might be good for the kids to see a young person with belief… Hopefully theology can be avoided.
Yes, you should know that they have been extremely well trained to pick apart the Bible (even changed some words in the Bible to support their claims) and Catholic teachings in particular, so as to debunk many teachings. I wouldn’t try to have a Bible verse war with them, because they’re well trained as it is a focus of their teachings, while Catholics are not hang on every syllable of the Bible anyway and so won’t know the verses or understand them enough to spar with them. But any Catholic with a strong and solid foundation in Catholicism would not be affected. But they really do get a lot of Catholics to convert due to typcial Catholics’ lack of knowledge of the Church. JW’s don’t just try to debunk Catholic teachings, and try to use passages out of the Bible (usually their version of the Bible) as backup, but also try to debunk teachings that the Church doesn’t teach So a Catholic who doesn’t know their faith doesn’t really stand a chance.
If you’re going to counter any arguments, be prepared for a very prepared person, and try to delay the match until you can research it. It’s fair to be allow another person to research their material before discussing a subject, so they should be agreeable to it and they usually are. After all, they’re very well trained and look forward to these discussions. Insist on using a Catholic Bible, since that’s where the Bible came from anyway. Some JW’s actually think theirs was the first Bible that came to existence. They also try to divert to another subject when their arguments get weak, so try not to let them divert you, hammer out one at a time.
If I were you, and I"m not you, if at all possible, I’d absolutely try to limit exposure of your kids to this JW because yes, they will be in danger of converting if their mom doesn’t defend them and their faith. If that means them not spending time there often, then so be it. They’re too young and impressionable to tangle with JWs. The JW’s I know can be outcast if they don’t try to convert their peers, which is not the same as Catholic ex-communication. The emotional blackmail that comes with this shunning is very effective.
I don’t really care if some of ya’ll think it’s extreme, but I’d curb those visits as long as the JW is there and if my ex would give me any trouble, I’d call a lawyer to help get a legal stop to any conversion opportunities. I wouldn’t allow any religious discussion in front of my kids if I had any say in the matter, not without you present to help them sort it out. But I don’t know what your legal position is.
Very useful comments. What a shame it wsnt a commited Catholic who was staying there.
My kids struggle with Christianity in general and Mass visits are few, the 10 year old is still at Catholic school. My struggle to infuse Christian outlook is not at a good stage at the moment and any suggestion that they dont visit because of this tennant would not reflect at all well, we have shared residency and I dont think I can shake that up over theology. I will pray for them and hope that maybe in some way this yong girl might even inspire them in some way not forgetting the potential theological issues.
JW may be a faith but it isn’t a Christian faith. A previous poster stated that JWs believe the Archangel Michael is Christ. Consequently, JWs do not believe in the Trinity which is a core tennant. You need to study what it is JWs believe and its history. Their aim is to convert. Your wife doesn’t practice and your kids are not knowlegeable and you don’t understand JWs. Time to get on board before you lose your kids. If they go JW, there will no longer be any celebrations and that includes Christmas and birthdays.
=Petermn;10193931]My ex wife has taken in a lodger who is a Jehovas Witness. My ex is not a practicing Catholic and has no strong faith views. My daughters aged 10 and 15 often stay there and will interact with the lodger (24 yr old girl). Is there anything I need to know or be expecially concerned about?
Use Judicious caution:
They by intent use the same terms WE DO for’:
God : they claim he had children with a pyhsical women and two sons: Jesus [not a God] and satan
Jesus: a great prophet and ONLY fully human NOT a God
They do NOT believe in the Bible their main book is the “Book of Mormon” and the bible is just a tool to defeat christians
They do not believe in the Trinity
They do NOT believe in heaven. hell or purgatory: their after life they can avtually becomes gods themselves are married and have more children
They ARE a CULT; not a christian religion
They are very well indoctrinated and trained and do house call in teams to back each other up
Warn her NOW what she is likely going to be exposed too.
PRAY MUCH FOR HER
But theology is one of the keys here. You must understand the JW’s are different from mainstream Chistianity, both Catholic and Protestant. They have vastly different beliefs in critical matters of faith, namely that they do not believe in the Holy Trinity. By calling Christ a created being, they are not esteeming our Lord to His proper place. They teac a heresy and blasphemy that the Holy Spirit is just an impersonal force. They do not believe in hell and they believe that only 144,000 will go to heaven. These are only some of their heresies, although they are very, very significant. Frankly, one who believes them cannot be considered a Christian in the traditional use of the term. Being Christian requires believing that Christ is a member of the Godhead.
Now after saying all that, I will say that I work with several JW’s, and they are generally honest and decent people. However, they cannot leave the cult because they would be “disfellowshipped” by their family and friends. My advice to you is to become as actively involved as you can in your children’s spiritual development so that they will be able to stand in the truth of Christ and His Church.
And even if theology isn’t avoided, it might be good for the kids and the tenant to interact with a person with a different outlook. Remember that Jehovah’s Witnesses are another variant of the “Bible alone” mindset. It can easily be shown that there are many variant interpretations possible when people use the Bible alone to determine doctrinal issues, such as predestination vs. free will, infant baptism vs. believer’s baptism, real presence of Christ in the eucharist vs. pure symbolism, and so on. When you have a teaching authority that is not dependent on any one group’s idea of what a passage of scripture says, there is far less danger of getting drawn into their error.
Please, someone, respond to this with definitive documentation. Anyone else could find it more quickly than I can. There is a point or two to challenge here…
Thanks. I value these comments. I only got the news tonight that the young lady is JW. I need to tread lightly. Its a situation Im faced with whether I like it or not so will attempt to use it in some posotive way from a Catholic perspective.
I think you may be confused here. The OP is talking about JWs not Mormons.
Hi Petermn, it’s not likely to be avoided.
You see, Jehovah’s Witnesses are trained for a minimum of 5 hrs a week to convert others and if they work or attend school fulltime, they are required to spend at least 10 to 70 hours a month evangelising others with the intent to convert. If they don’t work or attend school, the requirement time to evangelize is much higher.
I recommend that you Pray very hard and be very pro-active in discussing with your children what the Catholic Church Teaches (start with the 3 Creeds of our Catholic Faith: Athanasius Creed, Nicene Creed & the Apostles Creed)& why and most especially show them where Catholic doctrine is found in the Bible.
Jesse Romero has a great CD which can be obtained free from Lighthouse Catholic Media called: Church Beliefs.
May Our Lady protect your children and keep them close to her Son Jesus, Our Lord and Our God!
The current book used by Jehovah’s Witnesses to explain their faith is called What Does the Bible Really Teach? It’s available in several formats on their website. Reading that book is a good way to know the sorts of claims and reasoning a person might be exposed to should they enter into theological discussion with a Jehovah’s Witness. However, I really don’t think that the tenant would enter into such a discussion with children without parental presence and/or approval.
I wanted to add by saying that the JW’s who I know have told me that they are not really allowed or greatly discouraged from attending university because they believe that they would be corrupted by the world. But remember that they are human beings with same need of the love of God and the friendship of others. Through prayer we will gain some of them I am sure.
Is there any way you can talk to your wife about forbidding any religious talk in the house? If there is no way to not expose the kids to this JW, I fear they will be lost. It’s either fight for their Catholism or not. Sorry…
The problem is the way the JWs are programmed to evangelize. They get disfellowshipped if they don’t, which is traumatic and painful for them. So her efforts (or lack of ) to evangelize your kids and ex-wife will depend on how honest this boarder is with her elders. She wouldn’t be allowed to reside there if her elders knew she wasn’t evangelizing. So the liklihood is very low.
If you and your ex-wife have a somewhat friendly relationship, you could try getting material together to show her, to warn her about JW’s in advance. If she’s turned off by Christianity, she won’t be as easily seduced by JWs if she knows in advance what they’re up to. She can nip it very early and quickly by telling the JW that religous conversation is strictly off limits in her home.