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Jehovah's Witness and Catholic Priest Fight

Updated on May 28, 2012

In Fort Worth, Texas, a Jehovah’s Witness accused a Catholic Priest of assaulting him after he knocked on his door, but the priest says it was the other way around.

Father John Parnell, a priest at the St. Augustine Mexican Catholic Church says he was attacked by Jehovah’s Witnesses, whom he said dragged him out of his house and down the street where they beat him.

According to Father Parnell Jehovah’s Witnesses have been frequenting his church passing out religious literature. The priest said that a group of Jehovah’s Witnesses entered the St. Augustine Mexican Catholic church during Mass on Easter and started handing out literature to people attending the Mass.

When Jehovah’s Witnesses visited his home recently, Father Parnell said a man entered his home and began to tell his daughter that she was going to be burned into the eternal fires of Gahanna if she didn’t listen to what he had to say. Father Parnell said when he attempted to escort the men out of his house, one of the men knocked his Bible to the floor, telling the priest, “This place is teaching lies and I am here to bring you the truth.”

The priest said he was tired of Jehovah’s Witnesses coming into his church, and said the incident at his home was the match that lit the fuse. Father Parnell said that during his encounter at home the two men pulled him out of his home and dragged him down the street where they beat him.

But according to a neighbor who claims he saw the whole incident, it was the other way around. The witness, whose name is Harry Dwinell, says he saw the Catholic Priest hit the Jehovah’s Witness. “The next thing you know, there was a haymaker that came out of left field there and went down the side of his face.”

The priest was taken to the hospital in an ambulance and says he has witnesses that would agree with his story.

Almost everyone who lives in a city in America has had at least one encounter with a Jehovah’s Witness. I am neither Catholic nor Jehovah’s Witness but I will say that in my personal experiences with Jehovah’s Witnesses this story does not depict the character of a Jehovah’s Witness. Although they will defend their faith with scriptures from their own Bible, and can sometimes be on the offensive, I have never had a Jehovah’s Witness tell me that I would burn in hell because I disagreed with their doctrine or argue with me to the point of physical blows concerning what they believe or do not believe.

It is a disgrace that anyone who professes to believe in a supreme being, like an almighty god, would form the opinion that such a being is unable to be in control. Such behavior is the result of an individual’s personal agenda and not that of the god whom they profess to serve.

This is America people, and according to the law of the land, which is the Constitution of the United States, everyone is entitled to their own opinion and are granted the freedom to worship as they please. In case we forgot, that is why the Pilgrims came to America.

We should understand that this freedom of speech will not protect us when we provoke violence. I believe it would be offensive for any Christian to enter a Mosque, disrupting a Muslim worship procedure and pass out Christian literature. Likewise I believe it to be offensive for a Jehovah’s Witness or any other religious group to disrupt a Catholic Mass.

By the same token, the Catholic Priest, being provoked by the Jehovah’s Witness had no right to punch the Jehovah’s Witness, or if it were the other way around, the Jehovah’s Witness had no right to punch the priest.

I certainly would not be a part of any religion that teaches violence. We are already violent within ourselves and our religion is supposed to make us all the better. One who practices such action is worthy of being called a ‘Religious Taliban’.

When are we going to learn that we cannot terrorize or force another to take on our personal beliefs? Will we become Bible carrying suicide bombers in the name of our faith? The false wisdom of religion says to an individual, ‘My way is the right way.’

But here is true wisdom: ‘When it is all said and done, only the God of gods will judge and rule.’


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    • profile image

      david 4 years ago

      st. augustine is in dallas and it's not a mexican church, but has a spanish mass. Going by the bible, the Lord was falsely accused and persecuted when he was innocent. so going by what most of you think and who you blame, i'd have to say, it sounds like the priest is the innocent one. when i was a child, i was a bad kid, in fact i broke into a car which belonged to a jehova witness and it had a suitcase filled with jehova witness literature, gay pornography and a large dildo.

    • profile image

      Gareth 6 years ago

      The priest could have become a priest after having the child.

      Great article, one point to bring out, doubt the JW was the aggressor as they do not believe in "burning in Gehenna or hell" so just makes no sense they would say that.

      Seacondly I asked a friend who's a JW and he said they not allowed to go into church's, especially to preach.

    • profile image

      Scott 6 years ago

      FWIW, there is no "St. Augustine" church (Mexican or otherwise) in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Ft. Worth.

    • profile image

      jay 7 years ago

      The priest lied and was caught by a neighbor

    • profile image

      Beesigye Ogden 7 years ago

      The facts in this story don't add up. First of all I've never known a Catholic priest to have children. Maybe the priest in this story is a Presbyterian minister. However, no one is perfect, Christians, Jews, Muslims, etc. There are many, many awesome priest that are devouted to the fulfillment of their religious obligations and dedicated in their mission to do God's work. Let us not be deceived! There are wolfes in sheep clothing everywhere!!!

    • ericdunbar profile image

      Eric Dunbar 7 years ago from New Orleans

      Yes Jane, they are overly polite, but as a blogger, I have to remain neutral with my comments. But I will say that I have never met a Jehovah's Witness that wanted to fight.

    • Jane Bovary profile image

      Jane Bovary 7 years ago from The Fatal Shore

      Hi Eric,

      What a bizarre story and very well written. Unfortunately for them, Catholic priests have a bit of a credibility problem in general these day!

      I get Jehova's witnesses at my door on a regular basis..if anything they're overly polite...[I think it's part of the training]. I can't imagine one being aggressive like that.


    • ericdunbar profile image

      Eric Dunbar 7 years ago from New Orleans

      You are very good at blogging and I know you will be a big success. Thanks for visiting my hub.

    • ahostagesituation profile image

      SJ 7 years ago

      thanks eric, i'm SJ or Shannon. I used to write before and during college, quit, worked as nurse for a while--still am, and now i'm back to writing a little now. I was writing notes on FB and people told me to blog. so here I am!

    • ericdunbar profile image

      Eric Dunbar 7 years ago from New Orleans

      Hello ahostagesituation,

      I am so glad you stopped by. I checked out your hub, and I must say that you are a really good writer. Over the next day or so I will read all of your posts. I'm sure I will really enjoy the time spent on your hub.

    • ahostagesituation profile image

      SJ 7 years ago

      nice hub.

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      Eric Dunbar 7 years ago

      I wholeheartedly agree with you Dave. If I had to choose between the two, I would go with the Jehovah's Witness side of the story.

      I know quite a few Jehovah's Witnesses and I must say that they are very well disiplined.

    • profile image

      Dave 7 years ago

      While I am neither one of those faiths and it seems to be pretty much a "he said, he said" kind of story, I think if I had to choose a side to believe it would be the Jehovah's Witness side. I have a neighbor who is one and have had numerous bible discussions with him, all very friendly. Never have any beliefs been pushed on me at any time. I know for a fact that they don't even believe in a burning fiery place of torment (I don't believe it either). I know for a fact that they would never walk into another church to pass out any literature, or even to talk to the members there. Someone is lying, and I don't believe it is the Jehovah's Witness. My neighbor is an exemplary neighbor and I am sure that it is that way with nearly all of them. Shame on the one who is lying here!