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Crisis of Conscience presents the story of a struggle to prevent the erosion of a God-given freedom of conscience and the ensuing dilemma of choosing between loyalty to God and loyalty to one's religion.
Former member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, Raymond Franz delivers a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the Watch Tower Society. In response to extraordinary events, Franz tells a unique account of the decision-making sessions of this religion's inner council and the powerful, sometimes dramatic, impact their decisions have on Jehovah's Witnesses. Crisis of Conscience offers a penetrating view of the supreme council of this organization, the Governing Body and their life altering power over human lives.
While the events of Raymond Franz's departure from the Governing Body occurred in 1980, the organizational foundation and structure remains the same today, making this account relevant to a whole new generation.
Content: Raymond Franz, formerly a Governing Body member of Jehovah's Witnesses, shares an account that reveals the inner workings and the decision-making processes of that Body, offering a penetrating view of the life altering power they have over human lives. The final nine of his sixty years as one of Jehovah's Witnesses were spent on this central executive council. Those years led to his crisis of conscience, which is the theme of this book.
Based on the entire manuscript of Franz's 2008 printing of Crisis of Conscience, this fifth edition 2018, also includes:
- Foreword by David Henke, author of Spiritual Abuse Recovery Workbook, and founder of Watchmen Fellowship, Inc. -- David Henke is a Christian apologist that specializes in the field of Jehovah's Witnesses, issues of mind control, spiritual abuse, and legalism. In addition to the above workbook, Henke has authored evangelistic and educational tracts, and articles.
- Excerpts from Franz's In Search of Christian Freedom -- Crisis of Conscience references 30 pages from In Search of Christian Freedom in the footnotes; for the convenience of the reader, these pages have been added to Appendix B.
- Where is the "Great Crowd" Serving God? by Jon A. Mitchell, a former secretary to the Governing Body -- As a secretary to the Governing Body, and member of the Service Department, Mitchell observed events during and immediately after Raymond Franz' resignation from the Governing Body and numerous people were moved, demoted or disfellowshipped. As a result Jon Mitchell authored a booklet called Where is The "Great Crowd" Serving God? This is an account of Jon's observations and his personal research from 1980 to 1981 while serving at Brooklyn Bethel. This booklet has been included in its entirety in Appendix C.
- Epilogue, The Copyright Owner's Story by Deborah Dykstra -- Former regular pioneer and temporary special pioneer, Deborah Dykstra tells her journey of discovering that Jehovah's Witnesses were not the sound foundation that she thought they were, realizing instead that it is Jesus Christ himself that is the real "truth" and foundation to life as a Christian. Thereafter, she shares how she embarked on a 25 year friendship with Raymond and Cynthia Franz along with anecdotal stories about the Franz' lives.
Raymond Franz died in 2010, however in this re-publishing of Crisis of Conscience based on it's very last printing in 2008, the authors story, heart and expressions of his love for God and his fellow man remain with us.