Copy of mBorn in Gadsden, Alabama. Not in a hospital, but in our home. Actually, it was a little area in the outer areas of Gadsden, called Hokes Bluff.  I was the last of four girls born to David William Brown and Margie Catherine Pitts Brown. They also had one son.  My mom was then, and still is now , a devout Jehovah’s Witness. So we were all raised in that faith. It was more a way of life. The religion (later discovered it is a cult) required attendance to several meetings per week, plus active “field” service duty. Which was house to house proselytizing.  As witnesses, we could not celebrate any Holidays, salute the flag, take part in sports in school, or give blood/receive blood in life threatening situations. We could not join the military, vote or have involvement with politics in any way.  That is to name a few major limitations. At least we didn’t have to wear long skirts and wear our hair long and twisted up in a knot on our head. (PhD) (Brenda will get that!)  It was really difficult as a child being sent to the library when your class was having their Christmas party or Valentine’s day party. Small children want to have fun and eat cake!

Growing up, I began to really see some things about this religion that I did not like. My whole belief system was in question. I knew I didn’t agree with the witnesses. But I knew if I left I would essentially lose my mother. She would have to choose the “organization” over me. But, long story short, I did leave. If the witnesses told the tale, they would say the reason they disfellowshipped me was conduct unbecoming a christian. I was pregnant out-of-wedlock. But I know in my heart I left because I had a “Crisis of Conscience” just like Raymond Franz. He wrote the book of that title. It was a great help in releasing my mind from the bondage of that religion. I could not stay in the religion with good conscience.  And the book written by Raymond Franz, a former Jehovah’s witness who was in the Governing body, actually set me free. I will forever be grateful to him for writing this book and giving me this relief. The book helped me understand that what my mother taught as a child was all wrong. I could let go of those things. It gave me a new outlook on life.

It is a sad fact that my mother has not known my kids. However, I believe she is sincerely doing what she feels is right. I am not her judge. No human is.

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