Kingdom Proclaimers Report
He Followed His Bible-Trained Conscience
ISRAEL’S king David prayed for Jehovah’s help when he said: “As for me, in my integrity I shall walk. O redeem me and show me favor.” (Psalm 26:11) God did favor him for maintaining his integrity. Jehovah also blessed Jesus because he did the will of his heavenly Father, and He blessed a youth in Colombia who followed his Bible-trained conscience and determined to do God’s will. This young man relates:
“When I began to study the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses, I was a student in a Catholic school. However, my conscience bothered me when I attended the Mass, so I went to the school principal (who was a priest), the guidance counselor, and the monitor of my group and asked to be excused from attending the Mass. Although I was excused, some tried to force me to attend. The pressure increased right after my baptism as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. My dad threatened to send me away from home if I was expelled from school. He had in mind a university education and a professional career for me.
“The principal gave repeated warnings about anyone who failed to observe the Catholic obligations. When it came time for the first Mass of the year, I hid until it ended. Then I gave the teacher (a priest) a copy of the brochure School and Jehovah’s Witnesses and told him that as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I could not attend Mass. He said: ‘You had better start looking for another school.’ I knew that being expelled from school would mean being thrown out of my house by my father. Nevertheless, I prayed to Jehovah and kept on giving a thorough witness to my schoolmates.
“Vacation time came. Then, back in school after vacation, it was again time for the Mass. The rector and the other priests were in front of the chapel, ready to hear confessions. I was almost overcome by fear. I went in and sat down, but my conscience troubled me. When the singing began, I thought, ‘What am I doing here? Jehovah is my God. I cannot be a coward and betray him. I cannot let him down. He will not desert me.’ I prayed for courage. Then, I walked out of the chapel and stood in the confession line. When I got to the principal, I told him: ‘Teacher, I am not coming to confess.’ He said: ‘I imagined as much.’ I told him that I was willing to suffer the consequences but that my conscience did not allow me to share in the Mass. I could not go against the things I had learned from the Bible.
“He stared at me, smiled, and said: ‘I admire you. All of you Witnesses are worthy of admiration. For you, God comes first, and you are ready to obey his laws come what may. Keep it up. You are doing very well. I wish all Catholics were like you, displaying such zeal, such love for God. From now on, you are exempt from participating in our religious services.’ How joyful I was! Jehovah had blessed my determination to obey my Bible-trained conscience.
“The next day the principal said to the students: ‘Other religions are ahead of us. Why are we not like them, zealous, with a deep love for God and the desire to serve him above all else? This is something that has to be in our hearts.’
“Finally the rector was transferred to Rome, and the new rector just ignored my nonparticipation. My father moved out of the house, leaving me free to achieve my goal of the full-time ministry upon graduation.”
Jehovah blessed this young person who followed his Bible-trained conscience. He will similarly bless all those who seek to do his will.—Proverbs 3:5, 6.