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“Jehovah Will Provide”: Lillian Gobitas and Freedom of Religion

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In 1935, twelve-year-old Lillian Gobitas and her siblings heard the words of Joseph Rutherford, the head of the Jehovah's Witness group the Watchtower Society, on the radio in their kitchen. He implored Witnesses to refuse to salute the American flag since it amounted to the worship of a false idol, which violated the law of God as set forth in the Bible. 1 Rutherford made reference to the courage of Witnesses in Germany who refused to salute Hitler in the face of the unbelievable oppressions of the Nazi regime and similarly called for American Witnesses to refuse to salute the flag. It was a message that struck a chord with Lillian Gobitas.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2004-07-01

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