This is a cell phone picture of blogger Rick Gonzalez‘s dad, demonstratively not sharing a meal with his son and with Lucas, his four-year-old grandson.
The elder Gonzalez is a Jehovah’s Witness. After his son expressed doubts about the movement, its Watchtower Governing Body promptly ordered the father to shun Rick and Lucas. This is how Rick tells it:
After my mother died eight months ago, my dad, being all alone, went to the elders in the congregation he attended to see if he’d be allowed to visit with me. They said that since I was his son, he could visit with me at his house. But he could not discuss religion – nor could he share a meal with me at the same table.
Two weeks ago, I called my dad and asked if his grandson and I could visit him. He said “yes” and even offered to make lunch. But shortly before serving the meal, he said that he wasn’t going to sit at the same table with us. When I asked why, his reply was, “The organization says so.”
So at lunchtime, Gonzalez père took his plate and situated himself with his back to two of the people in the world who he loves the most. Because his cult told him that this is God’s way.