Last year (and in the last few years, this talk has been in the last week of December)
*** km 12/04 p. 2 Service Meeting Schedule/Week Starting December 27
Obeying God’s Command to Abstain From Blood. Talk by an elder, using manuscript supplied by the branch office. Mention at outset that DPA cards are not to be filled out tonight
. While reading the manuscript, the speaker may add brief comments to emphasize key points but should not supplement the material with additional examples or scriptures. Cited scriptures may be read or quoted as time permits. At appropriate points, draw attention to statements in the box "New Provision to Assist Us to Abstain From Blood." The secretary should provide all baptized publishers with a DPA card and the "Instructions for Filling Out the DPA Card" to enable them to follow along during the part.
The secretary should also make sure that a sufficient quantity of Identity Cards
*** km 12/04 p. 7 New Provision to Assist Us to Abstain From Blood ***
The Governing Body has approved combining the essential elements of the durable power of attorney (DPA) document and the Advance Medical Directive/Release card into a single legal document, which we shall refer to generally as a DPA card. A DPA card has been prepared for each state. The actual title of the DPA card varies from state to state.
You will need to fill out the DPA card for your state of residence only. The DPA card is valid indefinitely anywhere in the United States and will serve as a statement of your wishes when you travel internationally. In the future, you should fill out a new DPA card if (1) you need to make any changes to your DPA card, such as changing your wishes, health-care agents, addresses, and telephone numbers, or (2) your DPA card has been lost or destroyed.
The DPA card should be prayerfully considered and carefully filled out at home. However, before signing the card, it is important that the legal formalities be closely followed. For example, if your card says that two witnesses are required to see you sign, they should be present when you sign it. Book study overseers may periodically check with those who have not filled out new cards to see if assistance is needed.
Before folding the DPA card, make good-quality photocopies for your health-care agent, alternate health-care agent, and doctor as well as for your own records. You may also want to provide copies for other family members and the congregation secretary. Copies should be single-sided on standard-size (8 1/2" x 11") paper, with the DPA card centered on the page. The original DPA card, not a photocopy, should be kept on your person.
The Identity Card with the print date of 3/99 for unbaptized children of Witness parents has not changed. Parents should ensure that a card for each minor child is properly filled out and signed and that the child carries it at appropriate times.
Unbaptized publishers may adapt the language of the DPA card and Identity Card in order to write out health-care instructions for themselves and their children. The secretary should provide a DPA card for all newly baptized publishers during the year.
*** km 12/03 p. 2 Service Meeting Schedule/Week Starting December 29
"A Video That Highlights an Important Medical Trend." To be handled by a qualified elder. Read Acts 15:28, 29, and briefly emphasize that the principal reason why Christians refuse blood transfusions is to honor God’s law on the sanctity of blood. Then get right into a discussion of the Patient Needs and Rights
video, using the questions that are provided in the article. Conclude by reading the last paragraph.
Facing Medical Challenges Confidently. Talk by qualified elder, using outline supplied by the branch office
. Review key points from the box "Provisions to Help Us Abstain From Blood."
*** km 12/03 p. 7 Provisions to Help Us Abstain From Blood
Baptized publishers who have previously completed an Advance Medical Directive/Release card or Identity Card with no print date or a 3/99 print date will not need to complete a new one this year. For the Service Meeting the week of December 29, the secretary should have available sufficient quantities of the cards for newly baptized publishers, their children, and those needing replacements. Congregations will not be sent a consignment of these items. If the congregation does not have enough cards on hand, the secretary may check with nearby congregations or request more cards with the congregation’s next literature request.
The cards should be carefully filled out at home but NOT signed. At the next Congregation Book Study, the cards should be signed, witnessed, and dated, with assistance as needed from the book study overseer. Witnesses should actually see the cardholder sign the card.
Publishers will not need to execute a new health-care durable power of attorney (DPA) form unless (1) their current one is dated prior to 1/2001 (12/2002 for Alabama; 8/2001 for North Dakota), (2) it does not reflect their current wishes, or (3) they have moved to another state. The secretary should also have sufficient quantities of the DPA form and the Advance Directive Guide.
Unbaptized publishers may write out directives for themselves and their children by adapting language from the Advance Medical Directive/Release card, Identity Card, and DPA form.