Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Jon Messenjah, Married to a Jehovah's Witness of Convenience

Contributed by Christian Sparlock Freedom
I met my wife five and a half years ago.  When I met her, she had a five-year-old son.  She had been disfellowshipped at that point for almost five years.  Her whole family, with very few exceptions, are Jehovah's Witnesses.  She was raised as one, and despite her status as being disfellowshipped in the Kingdom Hall, which meant she was being shunned, my wife was still relatively militant towards me about what she believed.

A few months after we met, I finally agreed to a Bible study with her mother and father.  That was a huge mistake and from that day on, neither of her parents liked me.  For the next few years, all my wife and I did was argue about what we believed, with her trying to convince me of her beliefs, and me trying to convince her she was wrong.  Just over three years ago, she became pregnant with our son, Caesar.  While she was pregnant, I was informed that our son would be raised as a Jehovah's Witness (JW).  I was told that he would never set foot in a church.    

During my wife's pregnancy with Caesar, she was re-instated as an active JW at the Kingdom Hall, but right after Caesar was born, she relaxed her restrictions on him.  She allowed me to take him to church sometimes, but insisted that he also attend the Kingdom Hall.  I had been trying to get her to let me take her son to church, as well.

A year after Caesar was born, my wife was, once again, disfellowshipped for getting pregnant before we were married.  For the past three years she has remained disfellowshipped, and has seemed not to care about her status as a JW anymore.  Then, several months ago, she illegally signed custody of all three of our children over to her mother, who is a dyed-in-the-wool JW.  Then she disappeared on the streets in Florida, rarely making contact with me or the children.

I left my home in California to return to where my children were living and I got a job, which enabled me to begin getting on my feet.  However, my mother-in-law would not let me take our children anywhere and told me that I had no control over them whatsoever.  Nearly a month ago, my mother-in-law began getting ready to take the children to a Watchtower Society convention in Jacksonville, Florida.  I informed her that I did not want the children to go to this convention, but she told me that I had no say in the matter at all.

At that point, things just sort of went completely downhill.  I contacted the police to see what my rights were in regards to my children.  I was informed that if I wanted to, I could take Caesar because he is my biological son, but not the other two.  I agonized over the decision for several days.  I had raised the other two children, even though they were not mine, but I could not take them with me.  I finally came to the conclusion that I needed to take control over the one that I could, so I took him and left the state.

We are both attending church now.  Caesar has received his very first children's Bible, and he is learning the truth about Jesus.  Since I took my son, my wife has miraculously showed up at her mother's house, after being out of touch for so long.  I am somewhat scared at this point that my wife will get re-instated just so that she can get help from the Kingdom Hall with legal maneuvers to get Caesar back.

I'm not sure what else there is to say in this matter.  It has been an uphill battle for the past five years, with my wife and her family.  I know that if I believed as they do, they would not hate me so much. 

NOTE:  If you would like to have your CHILD CUSTODY case reviewed, William H. Bowen also founded the Jehovah's Witnesses Child Custody website to provide information and assistance for former or Ex-Jehovah's Witnesses or for people who've been married to a Jehovah's Witness, with child custody issues.