Jehovah’s Witnesses have their own internal court system to deal with wayward members. How do elders perform these court systems? Can members have representation or are they required to attend alone? Are all elders on the body made aware of the sin?
The following two videos were created to teach congregation elders on how to perform judicial committee meetings. The video content will help you understand how these judicial committee meetings are conducted. It will also show you how many elders in the congregation are made aware of the penitent’s sin(s).
Pay close attention, not just to the questions being asked but how the questions are asked. Note the elders’ tone throughout the process.
The videos relate to a sample case of fornication (sex before marriage) but this could also be a case involving child sexual abuse. The format of the judicial committee meetings are the same, as are the line of questions. On that basis, understanding how these judicial committee meetings are conducted can give investigators and the courts a better understanding of the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ confessional. It should also help understand whether such a judicial process falls within the scope of clergy penitent privilege, especially when such sins are shared with so many individuals without the penitents knowledge or consent.