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You can listed to our Nov 5 Webcast  which aired on Friday, November 5, 2010 – 7:00 pm CDT by clicking on the link below.


David Stein interviewed Rolando Rodriguez, a former JW and now a Bible Student elder, who has a ministry reaching out to JWs.  Born and raised a Catholic, Rolando was converted to the Jehovah’s Witnesses by a childhood friend, who just 2 weeks before his baptism was disfellowshipped.   Rolando served with the Jehovah’s Witnesses in various capacities from 1982 to 1994. It was in 1985 that he discovered Pastor Russell’s writings. However having been informed by the Society that the Bible Students no longer existed and became Jehovah’s Witnesses in 1981, he continued on with the Witnesses.  You can get more of his story here:

Here are some of the questions David Stein asked Rolando Rodriguez, as well as some of the issues discussed.

* How did you become a Jehovah’s Witness?
* Were you happy as a JW and what started your thinking the JW’s might not be right?
* How did this affect your family relationship?
* What doctrinal perspectives were most affected by your change of thinking?
How would you discuss the following  JW beliefs with a Witness:
* The Torture Stake versus Cross
* The Governing Body
*  Blood Transfusions
* The importance of Witnessing
* Door to Door work versus other witnessing methods
* Heavenly Calling Closed?
* Emphasis of Jehovah – de-emphasis of Jesus
* How can JW’s cope with fear when confronting differences?
* How do you help JW’s looking for the truth

Bible Students will host live interactive webcasts on certain Friday nights.  You are invited to join us and you can be totally anonymous.  Our purpose is not to attack JWs.  We would like to have an open and friendly two-way dialogue with Jehovah’s Witnesses and Ex-JWs in this broadcast and future ones as well.  Our Abdobe Connect technology will allow you to anonymously type questions, comments and testimonies without fear of being identified by your local Elder, Circuit Overseer or the Governing Body.  You will even be able to talk directly to us using your computer microphone.   There is no charge for this event.  If you cannot attend we will post a recording here.  You will also have the option of talking to the host and guest after the interview, which will be for at least an hour.

On Oct 1, we had a Webcast where David Stein gave his personal testimony of his life’s journey through from Catholic, to JW to Bethelite, to Bible Student.      If you missed our last Webcast, you can view it here:


  • bereanthinker7

    is there anywhere to still get this interview???

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Thaks bereanthinker7 – We appreciate it when anyone brings a broken link to our attention. I hope to have this link working in the next few days.

  • cris-lynn vannatter

    I have married into a family that are Jehovah’s Witnesses. My first child is not biologically my husbands. My other two children are his, but he was raised a witness. I came from a religious family. How can we make it and have the children follow the terms and conditions of a witness without being baptized? We are not Jehovah Witness, but I gave up the holidays, and did it for my husband. How do you make it fair for the kids. I still feel guilty that I don’t celebrate birthdays, Christmas, etc. in my home, but we go to my side of the family and they still do that. How can I tell them that I can no longer do it without insulting them?

    • Peter K. (admin)


      It is interesting that Job’s family celebrated the birthdays of his children. Yet God considered Job a righteous man. There are a couple of cases in the Bible where the Apostle Paul explains that the brethren should not eat meat offered to idols in from of any brethren that might be offended by it. (1 Cor 8 and Romans 14) However, he says there is nothing wrong with it. The pagan connections with meat offered to idols are as bad as any pagan connections with holidays. Just like there is nothing wrong with meat offered to idols if you just eat it as food and have not connection with idol worship, so there is nothing wrong with celebrating Christmas, as long as you are not making pagan connections. If your focus is the birth of Christ and giving to others, these are both wonderful things. Yes the date is wrong, but who’s to say, for example, that it would be wrong to celebrate Jesus’ baptism on an arbitrary date. We are not instructed to do this anywhere in the Bible, but if you want to celebrate events in the Bible that touch your heart, that is a wonderful thing, but totally up to you. Who’s to say it is a bad thing. The issue relates to our personal liberty in Christ to follow his will according to our conscience, not according to the dictates of men or priests. Otherwise, we would have been following the Pharisees in Jesus’ day.

      I am sorry for difficult situation. I hope you get some comments from JWs or Ex-JWs who would have more insight than I do. I don’t know of any easy answer, but I will share some thoughts. The first question that comes to mind is, when you married the JW, did you agree in advance to give up holidays and birthdays, or did you gradually discover this and give in over time? At any rate, since, for the sake of your marriage, you have given ground on this, it is difficult to turn back the clock and say you have changed your mind. However, you might be in a better position to hold your ground with visits to your side of the family. If during your marriage so far, you have had holiday and birthday celebrations with your side of the family, I would not be so quick to give up what he has allowed in the past. I wonder if this is a compromise that he might be able to live with if you hold your ground.

      The JWs are a very controlling group. The deeper you enter into this group, the more enslaved to their rules and regulations you and your family will become. The deeper your kids get into it, the more they will be pressured to be baptized. Then they will be strictly obligated to follow all the rules.

      I don’t know to what degree your marriage could be in jeopardy if you don’t submit. Hypothetically, if he were to give in to you on the holiday issue, he would be considered in rebellion and in danger of disfellowship. If possible, you might appeal to your husband to not be so forthcoming to the JW members, elders and leaders regarding family matters. The less they know, the less pressure you may be under.

      You might remind your husband that it was his decision to marry someone who is not a JW and that you have no intention of becoming a JW; however, you are willing be supportive of his religious beliefs, but not to the degree that you are forced to dramatically change everything about your own life and your kids. If I would you, I would talk with him about compromise. You give in a little and he give in a little.

      If you were to try to completely break away from the JWs with your kids and try to remain married, would he divorce you? Would you be breaking an agreement you made with him? Was the agreement not completely explained? There are lots of questions and difficult options to consider. I am sure that many of us reading of your trying circumstances are remembering you in our prayers.

    • Jacqueline

      Cris-Lynn Vannatter,
      I have definitely had you on my mind and prayed to Jehovah about your situation. Cris-Lynn having been a witness all my life mostly, I have seen your situation many times. Some husbands are strong and do not impose their or witness practices on the unbelieving mate. There is no obligation by the Witnesses that forces him to make you obey the holiday rules, if you are not baptized. Iknow from experience that children raised JW don’t miss holidays. If you are a witness or you explain to your family that you will obey the holiday rules, they might understand. Non witnesses have always respected witnesses, its the witnesses that have not respected non-witness family members.
      Ultimately tho, it comes down to you and your husband. Generally strong witnesses do not force their practices on non-believing mates. The watchtower society can’t do anything to him for what you do if you are not baptized. You are not a witness. Pray over it and tell your husband your feelings. You sound as if you want to please everyone on both sides. That’s commendable. Your husband can even go to dinner at your relative’s home on Thanksgiving day. Only strong witnesses that really know what the organization teaches will know this. Talk to your husband, ask him to do the research.
      I wish you the best and happiness with the holiday season on you. Please come back and let us know how you are doing.
      With Christian Love,

      • Jacqueline

        I did some more research on this subject.
        The Watchtower is authoritarian, it is true, but they don’t go so far as to regulate non baptized mates. They leave that to the baptized one. But if the husband wants to be an Elder, then the congregation’s perception of his presiding over his household comes into play. If you or your husband are not making it an issue in the congregation, by maybe talking to different publisher etc., the congregation is not concerned with what goes on in your household. Many persons with unbelieving mates have christmas trees in the home, and their mates gives the children presents at christmas. The grandparents sometimes will and you simply thank them. Its just a gift. The Elders will let your husband run his household and work with you according to the knowledge he has of you. They will only interfere if you make it an issue and invite them into your private family affairs. You are not a witness and your husband does not have to force witness views on you, according to the congregation. Now if you and your husband made an agreement, that’s a private family matter. As regards your relatives, if you are not a witness and you are a celebrater, generally a spiritually strong husband will not interfere.
        I sincerely hope this sheds some light on what the organization rules are, not your family rules, along with what the administrator suggested above.

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