October 7, 2014
Your honor, Judge R.,
It is a fact that custody of my beloved son has been revoked by force for a year now. What evidence of child endangerment can be used to justify such an approach? What have I done, that the Jugendamt (Youth Office) was able to arbitrarily intervene in my family? When taking into care, I had to pull my son from sleep, and he was very healthy, even according to medical opinion. He had no features of physical or mental injury or neglect—he was physically and emotionally intact.
Why was my son not returned to me after medical examination? My membership in the Twelve Tribes is the only reason I was robbed of my son.
Will the Constitution be respected with us?
I think it is not the role of judges in a constitutional state to decide on religious issues. By Article 3, paragraph 3 of the Basic Law:
“No one may be prejudiced or favored because of his sex, his parentage, his race, his language, his homeland and origin, his faith or his religious or political opinions.“
It is not given to us humans to judge the faith or religion of another people. The law says this for good reason. The reason is that they can not be competent witnesses of the faith of another.
Why, your honor, has the voice of so-called “cult experts” and anti-cult agencies that simply spread lies about us, been given so much weight? Should not the courts protect religious minorities? We’re being prosecuted and from the outset the decision seems to have been made that we should be destroyed. If the State blindly supports religious majorities, we live again in times of persecution and Inquisition. The task of the state is actually to praise people who do good, and to punish those who do evil (crime).
Is Article 4 of the Basic Law not to be respected?
(1) “Freedom of faith and of conscience, and freedom of creed religious or ideological, are inviolable.
(2) “The undisturbed practice of religion is guaranteed.”
In our case I see our fundamental rights injured in the worst way. The so-called “law to outlaw violence” is violence against God’s word and “legitimises” the greatest act of violence that you can do to a family.
The German and the Bavarian law demands that:
“Mere membership of parents in a small, not mainstream community – what some people call a sect – is not a legitimate reason to suspend their right of custody over their child…” Gerhard Robbers, “Law and Religion in Germany” (2012)
If you, Madam Judge, understand that the “State must not favor any religion or community nor assess the special features of an organization or ideology to be true,” then you know it means that the state must be neutral in matters of religion and faith. You know that this is not the case in the case of the Jugendamt (Youth Office) and the Twelve Tribes. They are not neutral.
The Jugendamt has psychological assessments already!
Why, your honor, do you want to force us to take psychological assessments? I have a right not to do so. In the parallel case in Ansbach, a psychologist said after 1 ½ hours of discussion and questionnaires with approximately 325 questions on it, whose answers were evaluated by a computer, that the parents were “incapable of educating (raising) their children”. I once studied computer science together with art therapy, and I know that I can support any opinion, for example, by computer. To deny parents the right to parenthood in this way, is, to say the least, absurd and purely arbitrary. Whose interests are represented here?
The Jugendamt has psychological assessments of our children over a period of many years. This is all being ignored!1 Why are witnesses listed in my case that do not even know my family? They left from the Community shortly after our marriage. They do not know our son and our education (upbringing). Maybe this “witness” had bad experiences in his own family that he roughly projects onto the entire community.
Why does the Jugendamt use children as “evidence”? They are manipulated by the Jugendamt to testify against their parents. This is an illegal action!
Why are our children alienated from us, and why are the foster parents from social services influenced against us by so-called cult experts? Why, your honor, are we at a disadvantage from the outset?
I can assure you, Judge, our life is a beautiful life. I would prefer all of our young people would introduce you to it—then you would have a comparison. You would have the other side to the still very one-sided representations of the so-called “witnesses“. You must not dare to make a personal picture of our life on the basis of so-called “cult experts”. Would you not have to study for years, but then what would happen to the people who live here? There are objective, scientifically concrete studies of us that were not produced through the eyes of one‘s own religious belief.
Intact families are very valuable to us. It is sad to see the many families in which children – for whatever reason – are neglected, and as a result, oppose their parents and treat their environment with disrespect, frustration, rejection, and open rebellion. When I got to know the Community, I encountered mostly happy families. These examples gave me courage and hope that it was still possible to have an intact family.
If parents love each other and are one, then this creates the best home for children.
On September 5, 2013 my two and a half year old son was forcibly separated from me as a father by a large contingent of police and social workers. The Jugendamt (Youth Office) never had contact with my family before this action, either in writing or orally. How can you judge that the prarents failed or that they had threatened to take the child threatened for other reasons?
No one ever wanted to meet my family before [the Raid] on September 5, 2013.
We have no so-called “Spokesman” appointed who would negotiate with the authorities in our favor. Any “concern” about us we should have been informed of prior to the Raid.
The negotiations of the authorities with the Community in Klosterzimmern have always revolved around school matters.
I see the article 6 of the Constitution (Basic Law) violated:
(1) Marriage and family enjoy the special protection of the state.
(2) Care and upbringing of children are the natural right of the parents and a duty primarily incumbent on them. The state watches over the performance of this duty.
(3) Separation of children from the family against the will of the persons entitled to bring them up may take place only pursuant to a law, if those so entitled fail in their duty or if the children are otherwise threatened with neglect.
The medical examination at the district office, on the day of the raid (09.05.2013), showed no trace of ill-treatment in our child. In the following week we visited a doctor in a nearby town, which examined our son and was pleased with his good condition in all aspects.
Deliberate, Cruel Alienation of Parents and Child
On December 9, 2013, again by a large police and social workers force, my son, who was at this time still exclusively breastfed, was wrested by force against his will from his mother! Mother and child had been held, since the action of 5 September, and lived in the mother–child ward of a youth center in Dürrlauingen. My wife’s arm was twisted, while the screaming child was ripped from her arm.
According to statements of an equally concerned father who phoned you immediately, you, the Judge, knew nothing of this action of the Jugendamt. Apparently there was no court order!
Mrs. H., guardian ad litem of our son, declared before the District Court Nördlingen, that the specialist in mother-child relationships confirmed a loving relationship between mother and child – the mother was very attentive, with good maternal qualities. Separation of mother and child is currently not in the interest of the child.
Why, your honor, from the mother a 2 1/2 year old, breastfeeding child, was her son snatched away by force, even though the so-called “risk of detriment to the child’s welfare” was already prevented (by living in the youth center)? Why does the Jugendamt not listen to the advice of the Children’s Advocate, that separation of mother and child is currently not in the interest of the child? Why have all the employees of the parent-child establishment (where my wife and my son were living) been muzzled? According to an employee, none of the staff could comment on the incidents.
Why then this harsh measure against my family? Was it in the interests of our son? Was it for his sake? Or was it just a financially or politically motivated action?
Four and a half weeks after the violent separation of mother and child, was the first time we were allowed to have a telephone contact with Jesaya. He was unable to speak with us. The foster mother described the first week after the separation as “hard”, but that he had then settled. After six weeks, we were allowed to see him for the first time, for one hour only, and accompanied by two youth office (Jugendamt) employees. The foster mother brought our son, he clung to her. We talk with confidence with him and shyly he dares to look around. The nurse, Mr. Z., mentioned: “To me he is not likely to speak so well.”
My wife wondered, “Was he the one who tore him from my arms and carried him away? I do not know, because they flipped my arm, so I was leaning forward, while the child was snatched away from me.”
After a long painful while Jesaya draws confidence and begins to show us the various games in the room. The hour is over quickly and the goodbye is for us, as for him, very hard. The foster mother of our son, called him “a loving guy” at one of our first phone calls. The contact with our son is increasingly painful now.
He is experiencing estrangement from us, his parents. He also suffers from a conflict of loyalties. He lacks the life he knew at the side of his father and mother. He is always happy to see us. At the beginning of our last contact, he ran full force right through a large puddle to come into my arms.
His statements suggest that he understands that something could go bad again, as when he was separated from his mother: “The evil men have taken me.”
Another time he said, “I actually live with Abba and Imma.”
Our son Jesaya has a father (abba) and mother (imma) who love each other and stand together.
We know that we have been treated with prejudice and that the Jugendamt has not treated us normally! We hear, for example, statements such as this from the Jugendamt, “If we do not distance ourselves from the Twelve Tribes, we will not get our child back.” Furthermore, the Jugendamt would seek the return of children in a normal case.
In other cases, the interaction between parents and children with foster parents or the foster home is normal. Our contacts are always monitored as though we were criminals.
Why, your Honor, were we dealt immediately the toughest of all measures? To separate a child from his parents is the most painful thing for the child.
There is no less restrictive means, then, especially where there is no concrete evidence of child endangerment? Where is the proportionality? Has it even been considered before, or at the latest after the examination in the district office, that our son was perfectly healthy while in our family?
Again I say, we have taken care of our beloved son day and night. The dignity of our son is now touched to the utmost by libel.
Article 1 of the Basic Law, however, states:
(1) “The dignity of man inviolable. To respect and protect it is the duty of all state authority.
(2) “The German people therefore acknowledge inviolable and inalienable human rights as the basis of every community, of peace and of justice in the world.”
Your Honor, Judge R., I hope you understand in which direction you are called. Do you listen to your conscience? If you do, you will not act out of fear of man or of the public according to political pressure.
Pilate was under the fear of man. He decided knowingly to violate an innocent person, even though he had been told by the Son of God: “He who has delivered me to you has greater sin.”
I am not “against you”, Dear Judge, but my soul cries out for justice and I will not stop crying out until I can take my beloved son again into my arms. Can my son be kept away from us just because we are part of the Twelve Tribes?
Peter & Christiane Wetjen