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Russian Authorities Reportedly Raid 110 Homes of Our Brothers

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BREAKING NEWS | Russian Authorities Reportedly Raid 110 Homes of Our Brothers


According to an official press release, Russian authorities armed with assault rifles raided 110 homes of our brothers in the Voronezh Region on July 13, 2020. This is the largest number of raids on our brothers in one day since the ban began in 2017. Approximately 60 Witness families have confirmed that their homes were raided. Preliminary reports indicate that at least two of our brothers were beaten during the raids. More information will be provided on JW News as we confirm the details of this ongoing situation.

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We were warned in the congress Friday program about this type of persecution. Although we suffer injustice, our brothers are happy to maintain integrity. They are touching the apple of Jehovah's eye and, at the right time, he will act on their behalf.  Perhaps this event, in the middle of a pandemic, would attract the attention of international courts and their decision will result in Jehovah's name becoming known throughout the land. (Exodus 9:16)

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I saw this story on jw-russia.org yesterday (although it only mentioned 27 addresses searched). I was so surprised to see that it was one of 11 stories that were published there that day!


Now, look at one of the stories there today!





By mid-July 2020, more than 1000 home invasions of these law-abiding citizens had already been recorded. Law enforcement raids turn the lives of innocent people into a nightmare: separating families, destroying reputation, and causing physical and emotional trauma.


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Russian authorities said they’ve carried out more than 100 raids in the homes of dozens of Jehovah’s Witnesses in a region that borders Ukraine.


They face up to 10 years in prison on charges of organizing an extremist community for holding religious meetings, preaching and recruiting new members between mid-2018 and early 2020.


Not wanting to be exposed by law enforcement, the suspects used measures of secrecy including storing electronic documentation and using video conferencing,” the regional Investigative Committee branch said.


“The security forces’ special operations are staggering in their cruelty,” the Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia said Tuesday.

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It's truly sad tha' amidst all of the terrible things going on in the world, the Russian government is focused on raiding the homes of honest, peaceful, and quiet citizens. Truly disappointed! 


My prayers go to our brothers and sisters affected by this. May Jehovah give them the strength to endure these trying times. 

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When the song “Give us Courage” was released at the 2018 Be Courageous Regional Conventions, an accompanying video depicted soldiers in full military gear closing in on entirely ordinary and manifestly harmless Jehovah’s Witnesses, who were doing no more than minding their own business. “How cult-like!” said the ridiculers. “What is it with these people and their “persecution complex?”


In fact, the video prefigures events that have come to pass, as absurdly unlikely as they might seem. After all, arresting entirely harmless people is crazy in itself. But what multiplies the craziness 100-fold is to arrest them in full military gear including assault rifles. Yet this is exactly what was done in the Voronezh Region of Russia on July 13, 2020as 110 homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses were raided—a new record. Congregation members were forced to the ground with their faces pressed into the floor. At least two were beaten.


Many of these persons are elderly. They include women and children. There is no possibility of them offering resistance and everybody knows it. They are almost the only group whose entire history demonstrates that under no circumstances will they resort to violence. Yet they are arrested as you would terrorists.


Assuming that arrests are called for (a ridiculous assumption that we will let pass so as to pursue a greater point), why would arrests be made in such a brutal manner? Two reasons present themselves,


1) Outright hate.

2) Saving face.


If you declare people “extremists” and then arrest them as you would a jaywalker, you are only making yourself look a liar. You are only proving that they are not extremists at all, and that you well know it. Better to arrest them in military style. You may look unhinged in that event, but at least you appear to be acting in accord with your convictions, plus you are creating maximum terror against gentle people. It’s a little like beating up on girls—in a rapidly escalating game of hardball.


This calls to mind how Abraham Lincoln would say that he was not smart enough to lie—for if he did, he knew he would have to adjust every subsequent statement and action to accord with that first lie if he was to retain an ounce of credibility. Having swallowed the lie that Witnesses are extremists, Russian police forces now have to act as though they are.


The Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses foresaw this. It is the most unlikely scenario in the world, and yet they foresaw it. Does this “prove” that Jehovah is with the Witness Governing Body—to transfer Brother Glock’s remarks to more readily adaptable content? Sometimes all you need do with a statement like that from Glock is to show a little flexibility. Like the boy that was spanked by his Dad and protested that he hadn’t committed the offense for which he was being punished. “Well—in that case, it’s for something that you did do for which you should have been punished but weren’t,” dear old dad said.


The world of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia is turned upside down. Even raids that do not result in their arrest result in the confiscation of belongings—typically including tablets and phones. Still, they take some satisfaction in knowing that their staying faithful under trial calls worldwide attention to the Christian course they pursue. Theirs is somewhat the response of Christians in the first century, who upon being released from punishment, “rejoiced that they had been counted worthy to be dishonored for the sake of his name.” (Acts 5:41)


I do not look forward to the experience, and living in the West as I do, it may not come. Human rights people carry much more popular sway in the West than they do in Russia, where the very concept is suspiciously regarded as a Western intrusion—so says Chivchalov. Even in Russia—“Look, the Devil will throw some of you into prison,” the apostle John warns—not all of you. Even Bart Ehrman apparently speaks for the academic communities when he states that Christian martyrs of the first century probably numbered in the hundreds—they did not include everyone.


But so often in life we cannot choose our “assignment.” The trick is to be like Paul, who knew how to live regardless of his circumstances. All reports are that the Russian brothers are facing their persecutors with enormous resolve, courage, and integrity. I pray that should it ever become my turn, I will just as readily follow their example.


Edited by Dages
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