A Teen Who Takes Pride in His Religion

WHEN he was 13 years old, Andrew was assigned to do a school project on the topic of cultural heritage. “At first,” he says, “I thought I would write about my grandfather, but then I thought: ‘Wait a minute! I’m one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. This is a wonderful opportunity to speak up about my faith!’

“I gave my project the theme ‘Stand Firm,’ and I made a large poster that depicted the vicious persecution Jehovah’s Witnesses faced in Nazi Germany. My visual aids included a replica of a uniform with a purple triangle and various pictures and letters from the Kusserow family. * As a handout, I had copies of the letter sent by Jehovah’s Witnesses to the German government, which in a politically neutral yet firm way decried the unjust acts perpetrated against Jehovah’s Witnesses. Alongside the project, the video Jehovah’s Witnesses Stand Firm Against Nazi Assault played continuously. I also had on display Bibles, brochures, and tracts.

“First, our projects were shown in the gymnasium to all the students and staff at the school. The next evening family and friends were invited. Many asked me questions, as they had no idea that Jehovah’s Witnesses were persecuted by the Nazis.”

Andrew admits that it took courage to speak up about his faith. “I knew that some people would make fun of me,” he says, “but I would have felt terrible if I had not done it. Here were people who gave up their lives to defend their faith in Jehovah, so I figured the least I could do was put up with some criticism.”

In the end, Andrew was glad that he took advantage of this opportunity to give a witness. “I got into many conversations about why we don’t go to war, and I placed Bibles, books, and tracts with interested ones,” he says, adding: “I couldn’t think of a time when I was more proud to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

[Footnote]

^ par. 3 Jehovah’s Witnesses were identified in the camps by a purple triangle. The Kusserows stood firm in their beliefs as Jehovah’s Witnesses during the Nazi regime. See The Watchtower, September 1, 1985, pages 10-15.