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Email from a Gay Jehovah’s Witness

Submitted by Jaymes on April 27, 2012 - 5:00 am 19 Comments

I've used the Liar Liar poster image for the Homosexuality and Jehovah's Witnesses article as some Jehovah's Witnesses have lied in their emailsThe article Ben wrote in March, Gay Jehovah’s Witness Victims, which discussed homosexuality and Jehovah’s Witnesses, has helped a couple of active Jehovah’s Witnesses to the point where they have stopped going to the meetings and have decided to leave the Organisation. This pleases us greatly guys, for it was our intention to try and open the eyes of as many active Jehovah’s Witnesses as possible.

We didn’t expect a barrage of emails from Jehovah’s Witnesses claiming to either be gay, or “gay cured”. I won’t list all the emails in this article as a lot of them are utter trash. If there’s supposed so be so much love in the Jehovah’s Witness faith, I have trouble seeing it nowadays. If we’re not being called the “devil’s play thing”, we’re being told that many hope to have front-row seats to watch the birds peck our eyes out. Hitchcock wasn’t a Jehovah’s Witness, was he?

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I decided to share with you the most decipherable and challenging email that was sent to me a couple of weeks ago by someone called Christopher Johns. This is what he wrote:

I love how people who are against Jehovah’s Witnesses, calling them a cult, don’t know what they are talking about. I am a Jehovah’s Witness who is also gay. I’ve been treated as a brother by these loving people.

You speak of how we are suppressed by the Watchtower but in the real world, men have called me fag, gay, queer and many things . I’ve been beaten up harassed and the like.

Guys in my congregation actually hug me without getting creeped out. They ask me to hang out. We are not suppressed. We go by God’s word, not what the Watchtower says.

I love reading anti-witness sites. They’re all wrong. Even ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses are those who don’t want to live by bible standards. Homosexuality is a sin and so is incest. A brother and sister could be in love but no one accepts that because it’s not natural. But neither is two men. It’s imperfection from the fall of Adam and eve.

I forwarded Christopher’s email onto JWB contributor and close friend, Lacy. If you’re an avid JWB reader, you’ll have read Lacy’s story about her struggles with the Jehovah’s Witnesses when coming out. Here’s what Lacy had to say about the above email:

I think  he [Christopher Johns] is full of it just from the comment he made about ‘we go by what the Bible says, not by what the Watchtower says’. Every single Jehovah’s Witness knows you go by what the Watchtower says first and foremost because everything printed in the Watchtower magazine comes directly from God via his holy spirit, which is directed at the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. If you are going to get instructions from an elder or hear a talk, it all comes from quotes from the publications with support from scriptures, not the other way around.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses might allow a celibate gay, but only if it is someone who does not ever discuss his/her inclinations. That would be possibly corrupting the congregation. If a person was an active, faithful Jehovah’s Witness and still had homosexual attractions, it would mean that either Satan still had hold of that person or that people are just born that way. That means gay Jehovah’s Witnesses cannot exist even if they are celibate.

The one scripture that the elders did open their Bibles for in my so-called hearing was the one Jesus spoke of when he said that even the thought of sleeping with someone was considered as adultery by God. The point the elders were making was that you just had to think inappropriate thoughts for it to be a sin.

The situation for Christopher may be as he says, but that is only because the Jehovah’s Witness around him are not following Organizational direction. The last thing that would make me question the validity of the email is that he seems to be strongly of the belief that homosexuality is unnatural and a gross sin. There are some gay people who feel this way. They are the ones who stay in the closet or commit suicide. People who feel that strongly opposed to it are not out of the closet and barely even admit it to themselves, let alone an entire congregation. None of what he says adds up.

So then, we’ve heard Christopher’s version of being a gay Jehovah’s Witness, and Lacy’s overview. I want you to decide if you think Christopher is telling the truth. After all, he belongs to a group that professes to have “The Truth™.”

Please share your comments below and also pop on over to the JWB Facebook Page. We want to get that community buzzing too!

  • Jeremy Ball

    I decided to stay a Witness despite “gay” feelings. I’m writing a blog about it: http://beyourselfjw.blogspot.ca/

  • Christopher Johns

    I would rather wait until the new system to find out I can be with a man then to assume and act on how I feel and be wrong and lose everlasting life

  • Christopher Johns

    Every religion has it’s flaws. Why is this one bear down about it

  • Christopher Johns

    It’s not a lie. I was harassed all through high school and my job. The witnesses love me.

  • Christopher Johns

    First off. I don’t practice homosexuality. Just have the feelings.

  • Christopher Johns

    It’s Christopher Johns again. Lucy states that if I am an active JW with homosexual tendencies then I am full of it because satan is still controlling me. Let’s go with that logic. So of I’m an alcoholic and I struggle to be sober and I’m am active JW and still feel the urge than I can’t be a JW? So being a true JW means I’m never tempted and am free of sin? Being a JW doesn’t cure sin and get rid of it. So she’s is full of it

  • joshua

    i would like to make a comment about my treatment as a gay person in the jehovah witness faith (of which i was disfellowshipped december 2012). i hid my sexuality from the ages of 11 to 17. from the age of 17, it became slowly known to my congregation that i was gay, or that i may have homosexual tendencies. a few of my close friends who were jehovahs witnesses knew i was gay, i could confide in them, and we joked about it. that was one side of it. the other side hurt me deeply. after my second judicial hearing (again because of homosexual conduct) i heard a report that a certain young brother, the same age as myself, had been warned to either not asscoiate with me, or at least severly limit association with me. i didnt take too much notice of this at the time, but then other young guys had also been approached and told by the elders not to have many dealings with me. it hurt because i was trying to build a name for myself, a good name, especially since i had recently ruined my name by having been reproved for the 2nd time. how could i build up a good name and reputation again, including building up social ties, when the elders of my congregation were going around telling other members that i could be a possible threat to them, making me out as some sexual devient and corrupting others? i was ashamed enough of slipping up again, but to know that many in the congreagtion was being warned about me and that then led to gossiping throughout the whole congregation, and of course the elders breaking their promise to keep my judicial matter a secret and hidden away, i just couldnt look at anyone in the kingdom hall again after that. however, back some years, when i was 17, and too had been warned by 2 different elders at 2 different times about another brother who had recently engaged in homosexual activity and that i too should stay away from him. i also heard of another report of a young brother in my former congregation who was suspected of being gay, and other youngsters being warned away from him. when you are gay and a jehovahs witnesses, you dont make it known you are gay. ive known many gay jw’s, but most of them hide it and keep it secret, and of course they lead good lives in the organization (what i mean here is that they get no trouble from it as no-one knows). however, if you are known as a gay person, or suspected of being a gay person, and definetly, if you have a known history of homosexual conduct before becoming a witness or whilst being a witness, then life is made very difficult for you and the elders dont tolerate you as much. my presiding overseer at the time, would hardly talking to me again after my first judicial. but the fact of the matter is, i have personally experienced life as a secret gay jehovahs witnesses – and it was fine – as long as it was hidden – but when known as a gay jehovahs witnesses, then the story is different. its hard. knowing that elders are warning people away from you, people you want to be friends with, it tears you apart. it did for me. i dreaded going into that kingdom hall in the end. i didnt want to speak with anyone or even look at anyone. and what right did the elders think they had over my perosnal information that they should hand it around so freely to others? in the end i became isolated. for those out there who say being a jehovahs witness and gay is fine and no problem, well, ive been there and ive experienced first hand. 2 other people from the same congregation as me also had exactly the same happen as well. my heart goes out to all gay jehovahs witnesses who are still in this religion. i know the pain they are going through. i know how difficult their lives are with trying to hide who they are and combat their feelings. i really hope that many of these will wake up from watchtower bondage and finally live their lives in the way they deserve, a happy fulfilled life, knowing the joy that comes from loving someone intimately and no longer having to live a lie. thanks for reading.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rebecca.rohr.77 Rebecca Rohr

    I just came across this interesting article. I want to thank Christopher Johns wherever he is for writing that encouraging e-mail. I’m a gay ex-jw and I didn’t and don’t have the strength to do what he does. Most people don’t. Whether you believe it’s right or wrong, he undeniably is a brave man to live and struggle like that every day indefinitely. Tysm

  • Max

    The Watchtower has had in print that they do not claim any cause for being homosexual whether they were born gay, or became gay. Furthermore what they have stated in print is that no matter what one’s inclinations may be, if someone is to be found acceptable by god then they need to live by god’s standards as found in the bible. The bible states that men that lay with men will not inherit god’s kingdom. The bible states that homosexuality is a gross mortal sin. What the FDS has put in writing is that just as some men may be more inclined to anger, they need to not act on their anger and try to be peaceable among others just as the bible says. The same goes for anyone that has urges or attractions that may be against god’s will… Even if someone has homosexual feelings or urges, what is most important is that they do not act on their inclinations and that they try their utmost to live by god’s righteous standards. As humans we are all imperfect. As Christians we all are to follow Christ’s example and be loving amongst ourselves. The brother that wrote the above letter never stated his age. Perhaps he is in his 20’s or 30’s (if age even matters), and perhaps only his immediate family and the elders have been made aware of his homosexual thoughts. However, despite this, if he does not openly discuss his inclinations with the congregation, and as long as he does not act out any sinful behavior then there is absolutely nothing to be reproved nor disfellowshiped of. The fact that the elders welcome him within the congregation id simply proof of their Christ-like spirit. The fact that this brother still attends meetings and strives not to act on his strong homosexual urges is simply proof of his love for god and his upright standards. Anyone stating anything to the contrary doesn’t truly love god. Most people in the world simply want to hear that it’s okay to do whatever they want. This is why so many churches of Christendom allow and support homosexuality and other sinful behavior that is forbidden in god’s word. It is useless to serve god if you’re not going to do it his way. Showing effort no matter how much is needed proves true love and loyalty toward god, and that is what is to be rewarded in the end.

  • http://www.JehovahsWitnessBlog.com Andrew

    @Josiah – I am not sure I follow your comment completely. Are you saying being a homosexual is ‘unrighteous’? If so, I think you’re the one who needs help.

    I am so sick of intolerant, ignorant, think they are better than other people, Christians, all based on an ancient and immoral book.

  • http://whatdoyoumean? Josiah(not the king) :)

    I think that this is horribile,he clearly needs help.I don’t know how you can be an ative Jehovah’stWitness and still be practicing such unrightiousness.He needs to be aware of the severe consequences and talked to by a n elder that may be able to help.Its a shame that there are people like this that they have accepted themselves as Jehovah’s Witnesses and others have included them in there activities without addressing the problem,I understand a talk with a friend or a liesurly activitie but something must be done.

  • http://www.JehovahsWitnessBlog.com Ben

    @Jason – I understand completely – I am 26 and very grateful that I wasn’t in my 50s or 60s and looking back on a wasted life. It’s like starting fresh when you leave the cult!



  • Jason

    I just though I would add, just from my own experience, when you’re a teenager and gay in the org things aren’t too bad socially as most of the teenagers in the different congregations I attended use to go out all the time in groups. The groups weren’t a bunch of people who were dating eachother, just single people who hung out as friends, so you didn’t feel left out socially.
    However, when you are in your twenties and older, that’s when things start to affect you a lot more, as most of your friends are now starting to look at eachother with dating and marriage in mind. This is when someone being gay now starts to cause intense feelings of isolation and depression as they either have to accept a life knowing they can never allow themselves to fall in love and settle down with someone, fake it and marry a sister and have secret hook-ups on the side, or worse start drinking or drugs to deal with your feelings, or leave the organisation and just be who you are without apology.
    That’s why whoever wrote this letter is either gay, still in their teens and embellished quite a bit, or isn’t gay and has just made to whole thing up to make the JW religion seem very accepting of people, which we all know it is far from accepting.

  • Jason

    I stopped going about 5 years ago now. After 2 years out I found I had managed to completely unindoctrinate myself. It’s true what they say…Knowledge leads to freedom, especially from baseless beliefs.
    I feel bad for the people that feel they need to remain in because of family ties. My father and all his side of the family are still in, but once I reached the end of my tolerance for the orgs dribble and rules and people’s constant remarking on every little thing you do that they think might be classed as unchristian, there was no hesitation.
    At the age of, well, 30 something, I can finally live honestly. It really does feel like you’re starting your life from the beginning again. I’m just glad I saw the light before I got really old and had no time left to begin again.

  • http://www.JehovahsWitnessBlog.com Ben

    @Jason – Thanks for your comment. You obviously dislike the Jehovah’s Witnesses – are you still trying to get out of the cult or did you manage to escape already?



  • Jason

    I think his letter is full of crap. I’m gay and a born-in. I knew I liked boys before I was even old enough to understand what this religion teaches. To say you are not supressed is a outright lie. If you are gay, you can never talk about it openly, never date someone or allow yourself to fall in love like everyone else. The moment you do, you would either be reproved for talking about it, or disfellowshiped if you ever dated someone and didn’t repent.

    His talk about being beaten up and called names by worldly people sounds like a lie as well unless of course he is very feminine in his speech and mannerisms, which he would be counselled about by the elders. Unless he behaved like a sterotypical gay guy as usually portrayed in the media, most people would never think he was gay by looking at him, so he wouldn’t be beaten up on account of that.

    The fact he says homosexuality is unnatural shows how stupid the Watchtower Corporation like to keep their followers. How about this for a shocker…..incest is also natural, it occurs in nature. It may not be beneficial as far as offspring goes in humans, but it is part of the natural world.

    I’d love to see how loving these people would be if he confessed his love for another brother. Which is highly doubtful as I think he’s a liar from the things he wrote. He might be gay, but that would be as far as it goes truth-wise in his letter.

    As a side note, maybe he should look up the definition of a cult and he would see in black and white that it fits the definition to a tea.

    I guess if you can get someone to believe that the bible is true, they’ll believe anything as long as it doesn’t contradict it.

  • Sampson amens

    Is it me, or has this Christopher simply said he is a gay Jehovah’s Witness with the intention of trying to make out his cult isn’t flawed?

  • http://www.JehovahsWitnessBlog.com Ben

    @Shaun: Though a religion based on Harry Potter might be more interesting…


  • Shaun

    First he claims to be gay and accepted in the congregation cause they follow the bible. Wonder what the flaw in that part there is… How about they’d instantly throw the ‘man must not lie with another man’ at him which is in their bible.
    Second. Doesn’t the last bit seem dodgey. He’s gay and they accept him. He says its a sin and so is incest. So if he is accepted for being gay, are they accepting incest in their congregations as well?
    And ‘god’ loves everyone so much that he said if they follow their natural feelings that are made in ‘his image’ that they’d be punished. If someone is gay, its not a disease or some curable thing like they make out. ‘stop being gay or you’ll not be in gods paradise’ yeah cause the bible magically stops someones natural feelings cause being gay is in league with the devil.
    Some people are just so close minded.
    Anyway. I think that his email is total junk and obviously fake.
    Just someone trying to denounce those denouncing jehovahs kingdom cause they blindly follow a book that claims itself to be a good book. Harry potter might be a good book but i’m not running around in a cape, waving a stick around shouting ‘stupify’ just cause its in a book