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Articles & Posts

Bethel Sister Reveals Truth about Russell, Rutherford and Bible Students

Listen to a recording of Sister Cora Sumdbom telling her story of experiences at the Bethel in the days of Pastor Charles T Russell and the early days of the Watchtower Society.  She talks about the brethren’s meals, discussions, studies, work and interactions with each other and  with a kind, gentle, funny, engaging, warm and loving Pastor Russell.  Did you know that Pastor Russell would sometimes carve the meat for dinner at the Bethel?  He would often joke around with the brethren, always trying to create a loving, friendly, encouraging and spiritual atmosphere.

Sr. Cora then goes on to explain how J.F. Rutherford was so easily able to take over the Society due to his swiftness of action and the TRUST the brethren all had for each other.  Nobody believed it possible that a fellow brother would act in deceit and treachery to seize control of the Society.  She explains how Pastor Russell bequeathed his controlling interest in the stock of the Watchtower Society to three sisters and how J.F. Rutherford prevented them from voting.  She explains how Bro. Richie, the Vice President, was prevented from taking control of the business meeting electing the next president and why he did not take the matter to court.

She then goes on to discuss how she and her family were disfellowshipped  by J.F. Rutherford and how the brethren regrouped and reorganized into today’s Bible Student movement.

Sister Cora Sumdbom, Brother Baker and others testified that Brother Russell had quietly dismissed J.F. Rutherford from the Watchtower in 1915 for indiscretions unbecoming of a Christian.  Brother Russell was a compassionate gentleman who did not want to destroy Brother Rutherford’s reputation, so very few were aware that he had been expelled.

Enjoy hearing Sr. Cora Sumdbom’s personal recounting of Watchtower history.

LISTEN TO RECORDING OF SISTER CORA SUMDBOM BY CLICKING HERE:

After clicking on the above link, allow a few seconds for audio to begin.

6 comments to Bethel Sister Reveals Truth about Russell, Rutherford and Bible Students

  • Jim

    Good job anoymous

  • Anonymous

    To Peter K.;

    In showing how struggles happened in Bible times. I pose the question. With the four in the group, Hoskins,Wright,Hirch and Ritchie. They along with P.S.L. Johnson decided to do the work in carrying on the message. They would soon have a falling out. And Wright was up in age and passed in 1920, while the other three went their separate ways and all passed in the 1940′s. So who did Jehovah suport? Well Jws continue going almost 100 years later. But again the question. Those four in CTR’s will. They had a falling out the work stopped. So if God was involved the work Rutherford took is still going, and yes he passed in the fortys also.

    If one saysGod didn’t use Rutherford but used CTR that is one possiblity. But it is obvious he did not use the four in the will. So then we have , the work stopped at the Pastor’s death. And God is gone.
    What do you think?

    Henry

  • Frank

    Thanks Peter, I found a complete copy of Ken Rawson’s booklet – very informative. I’m still digging, will let you know if I find anything new.

  • Anonymous

    A JW publication reads,”Charles Taz Russell personally took that counsel to heart. He sold his propering haderdashery business, graduaal reduced other business interest, and then used all his earthly possessions to help people in a spiritual way. (Compare Matthew 6:19-21.) It was not something that he did for merely a few years. Right down till his death, he used all of his resources-his mental ability, his physical health, his material possessions-to teach others the great message of Messiah’s Kingdom. At Russell’s funeral an associate, Joseph F. Rutherford, stated:”Charles Taze Russelll was loyal to God, loyal to Christ Jesus, loyal to the cause of Messiah’s Kingdom.” JW,s Proclaimers of God’s Kingdom. Page 284

    Will let all readers dicide if Russell ousted Rutherford.

  • Frank

    Thanks for making this available. Nothing like hearing eyewitness accounts!

    However, there is no mention on the audio of Russell dismissing Rutherford in 1915 for any reason whatever?

    I downloaded the file, and the last 4 minutes are ‘empty’ Is the file perhaps damaged?

    Also, is there a transcript available?

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Frank – I do remember her talking about JF Rutherford being dismissed. Also, Brother Ken Rawson, still alive, had discussion this with early brethren, like Brother Baker, who new Brother Russell. They indicated that Brother Russell had dismissed JF Rutherford for indescresions, but kept it quiet so as not to publicly embarrass him or ruin his reputation, giving him time to reform. So when Rutherford came to Bethel after Brother Russell died, most brethren figured he was coming to take care of legal matters, never imagining that a fellow brother would be conspiring against brother Russell and the Bible Student movement in a hostile takeover move.

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