This is the thread that prompted me to join here!!!
I have the same issues. The same car. 1998 Jetta GLX VR6 5-speed
Drove car to a shop. Came out an hour later. Went to drive car and ABS and BRAKE light stayed on (they usually go off after a few minutes- ABS module??)
Wipers refused to work, blower would not work, rear defrost would not work (I was afraid to try the windows as it was pouring)
Next day I went to move car and everything worked!
Couple of days later same issue again!
All of this stuff CAN"T be linked to a simple ignition switch can it? (I've ordered a VW manual but right now I'm flying blind)
I also did a search on this board but could not find a definitive fix.
If it's easy enough, I'll do a write up with pics and all!!