How has the leadership of the WT Society been determined? Apparently the guidance of the Society is by a power outside of the Society and this is secret. However, even those men who carry the titles of leadership are cloaked by the Society in the deepest secrecy. During a tour of the Brooklyn Headquarters, while associated with the Society, this Author found his questions concerning such items as the writing staff were given "answers" that avoided giving information.
Various stories exist about Rutherford's death. It is said that Rutherford, an alcoholic, while drunk, fell down some stairs at his California mansion.30 The official story in the WT publication Let Your Name Be Sanctified (1961), pp. 335-336 describes Rutherford on his deathbed passing the mantle of authority like the prophet Elijah did to Elisha. The WT publication describes the mantle of Elijah falling to a composite three-man Elisah. According to Ray Franz, ex-Governing Body member, Rutherford told these three men to carry on after his death and to "stick together" as a team. These three men were Nathan Knorr, Fred Franz, and Hayden Coveinton.31 Ray Franz has gotten of course his information on what happened from others, these others having a vested interest in what story would be told. Ray Franz trusting his WT brothers bought their story about Rutherford. The WT leaders maintained that Rutherford only left an oral will. A lawyer and author left only an oral will when he knew he was in ill health for some time?? Sure. What is reliably clear though is that these three men took over the rulership of the Jehovah's Witnesses, but when their group dissolved, the mantle was transferred to certain other men on the Governing Body who were also recepients for the One-World-State's directives.
Hayden Cooper Covington is also an interesting WT leader. He took the stand during the Douglas Walsh Trial in Scotland. Covington was a Jewish lawyer who earned his law degree at San Antonio School of Law in San Antonio, Tx. He began passing out Watchtower literature in 1934,32 and was baptized in 1935.33 He succeeded Judge Rutherford as the Jehovah's Witnesses' legal counsel in 1942. He won many cases for the Jehovah's Witnesses, sometimes with the help of the ACLU. He also took on clients like heavy-weight boxer Muhammed Ali. He personally argued 41 major cases before the U.S. Supreme court for Jehovah's Witnesses.34
Interestingly, Hayden became part of the Governing Body and was made Vice-President of the Watchtower Society from Jan. 13, 1942 until Sept. 24, 1945 without being part of the annointed class.
According to WT Theology the JWs are divided into two major classes, the annointed and the great crowd.35 Supposedly the recruiting by God for the annointed class was completed by God in the early 1930s, but occasionaly when one of the annointed apostasize, they are replaced to keep the magic number of 144,000. The annointed are to be the governing ones. It may have been this blatant conflict with this official doctrine that caused Hayden Cooper Covington to step down from his positions. That is what the Nov. 1, 1955 WX p. 650 indicates.
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