A ZENIT DAILY DISPATCH

JESUIT DENOUNCES JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES


Fr. De Rosa Says They Are Not Christians

ROME, 30 JUL 1999 (ZENIT).

In an article to be published in the forthcoming issue of the Jesuit magazine, "Civiltā Cattolica," Fr. Giuseppe De Rosa contends that Jehovah's Witnesses are not Christians because they have falsified Sacred Scripture. According to the article, they do not have a proper religious life and, what is perhaps worse, suffer in the organization from a kind of mental plagiarism, which leads them to break all human relations with anyone who is not part of their organization.

The author gives a number of proofs to support his statements. For example, the Witnesses cannot be classified as Christians, because they deny two dogmas without which Christianity would not exist: the Holy Trinity and Jesus' divinity, as the incarnate Son of God.

In spite of the fact that Jehovah's Witnesses call themselves the "only true Christians," for them "Jesus is not God but the first creature of God and they identify him with Michael, the Archangel," writes Fr. De Rosa.

Moreover, "they have their own Bible, which is not the Hebrew-Christian one," notes the article, and it is translated "in a way that confirms the Witnesses' doctrine," falsifying "essential things, making it say things it does not say or even say the contrary of what it says."

Moreover, the Jehovah's Witnesses do not have "religious practices or a sacramental life." Fr. De Rosa specifically notes the case of Baptism, which for the Witnesses is only an outward sign of a decision to follow Jehovah. Once a year a meeting is held to commemorate Jesus' death. The ceremony includes a solemn prayer, a hymn, a memorial of Jesus' Last Supper, and the "passing of the symbols," that is, the bread and wine, which, however, not all consume, but only those who feel they are part of the 144,000 'anointed' destined to be in heaven with Jesus, while all the other Jehovah's Witnesses will live in a kind of terrestrial paradise.

The fact that the end of the world did not come in 1874, or 1914, or 1925, or 1975 as predicted by the Witnesses, and that at present all that is said is that the date is "imminent but not specified," does not cause a crisis in the followers, is due to the "psychological hammering" to which they are subjected, according to the theologian. "This causes the destruction of what is most human in man: his ability to think autonomously, to reason and to exercise his critical capacity, his liberty."

According to Fr. De Rosa, the Jehovah of the Witnesses "is not the Father and the Friend of all men. He recognizes only the Witnesses as his own, and he has prepared the terrestrial paradise only for them. What awaits all other men is destruction and extermination." In other words, he is "a God-Exterminator of millions of people," the article concludes. ZE99073006
 

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