One Woman’s Escape from the Jehovah’s Witnesses Church in South Africa

Maria managed to escape the church’s doctrines and control, but her freedom came at a price – she is shunned by her family, and can never see her mother or sister again.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses is a worldwide, Christian-based religious group that professes an unparalleled dedication to Jehovah (God). It claims to be politically neutral, racially and ethnically transcendent, and has a membership of eight million people worldwide.

Yet many former Witnesses claim that it is a fear-based doomsday cult that considers itself above all other belief systems.

This Real Estate Kingpin Maps Out the Path to Megadeals

The best view of New York City might just be in a near-windowless conference room on the 12th floor of a Midtown Manhattan office building.

Splayed across 10 folding tables, a map pieced together with paper, tape and sticky notes details every block and parcel — 27,649 properties — in Manhattan below 96th Street on the East Side and 110th Street on the West Side.

The map is the work of Bob Knakal, who created it by walking every avenue and street during the desolate early months of the pandemic.

Jehovah's Witnesses, from the inside: "People commit suicide, but they keep it all very hidden"

"I was with the Jehovah's Witnesses from the time I was born until I was 45 years old. I left twenty years ago," says Enrique Carmona, secretary of the Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses (AEVTJ). "I was a normal child, I married a girl who was a Witness, raised a family and had two daughters, but when I was about 30 years old I was told that new rules had come in and that I had to stop talking to my father because - when I was 6 years old - he was expelled."

Rebekah Vardy recalls the gloom of childhood festive ban

REBEKAH Vardy has revealed how Christmas was a dismal time for her as a youngster.

The wife of Leicester City striker Jamie said the "controlling" culture of her Jehovah's Witness upbringing meant the festive season was avoided at all costs, with her family claiming that Christmas was simply a "dressed-up pagan festival".

Things were so bad that anything remotely Christmas-themed at school saw her pulled from class, she wrote in The Spectator magazine.

I no longer care about the 'Wagatha Christie' trial

When I was growing up, there was no Christmas - at least, not one that was recognised in our household. As Jehovah's Witnesses, we were taught that it was a dressed-up pagan festival that had nothing to do with the Bible and should be avoided. At school, I'd even be hauled out of any Christmas assemblies and made to feel alienated from the other kids. When the big day came, my family just went out knocking on doors as usual, looking for souls to save. I'd skulk behind them, praying that none of my schoolfriends were on the other side of those doors.

How to not celebrate Christmas in L.A.: Make it fun - and keep quiet about Santa

If you are among the millions of people in Southern California celebrating Christmas this year, let me say that I truly love your holiday. The colorful lights strung across your yards bring me joy each winter. I love your festive foods - tamales, roasts and all those cookies - and I've been singing along to Christmas music in the car for nearly a month now.

Luke Evans struggled to survive bullying as teenager

Los Angeles, Dec 12 (IANS) The 'Beauty And The Beast' actor Luke Evans says he found it difficult to "survive" as a teenager due to bullying.
The 44-year-old actor struggled during his secondary school days because he was the target of bullies and he found it hard to find a group to feel like he "fit in", reports aceshowbiz.com
"Bullies made my life hell in my teens, and it got worse as I got older. I loved to learn, but secondary school wasn't pleasant. Surviving was a struggle. I felt I didn't fit in anywhere and suffered," he told Observer magazine.