An official magazine for Jehovah’s Witnesses that described those who leave the church as “mentally diseased” is at the centre of a police inquiry, it has emerged.
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The official magazine for Jehovah’s Witnesses has described those who leave the church as “mentally diseased”, prompting an outcry from former members and insiders concerned about the shunning of those who question official doctrine.
An article published in July’s edition of The Watchtower warns followers to stay clear of “false teachers” who are condemned as being “mentally diseased” apostates who should be avoided at all costs. “Suppose that a doctor told you to avoid contact with someone who is infected with a contagious, deadly disease,” the article reads. “You would know what the doctor means, and you would strictly heed his warning. Well, apostates are ‘mentally diseased’, and they seek to infect others with their disloyal teachings.”
A copy of the magazine, distributed by Jehovah’s Witnesses around the world, was given to The Independent by a current member of the church who has become unhappy with official teaching but is afraid to leave for fear of losing his family.