Well, 2005 is drawing to a close, and that means its time for another edition of SNG's annual report.
I have quite arbitrarily decided that our JWD year ends on December 15, and using the member directory, I have extracted a few statistics. This past year, 4973 new members signed up for a new total of 21081 members, or a 30.9% increase. Our increase of 4973 breaks down to about 414 new members per month, or (using the Society's published average of 65 publishers per congregation) approximately 6.4 congregations a month!
It is also interesting to look at our increase in context:
Year ending 12/15/2003: 3203 new members
Year ending 12/15/2004: 4896 new members
Year ending 12/15/2005: 4973 new members
As we can see, not only are we gaining new members from year to year, but the actual rate of increase in absolute numbers is itself increasing.
It is true that this number does not directly reflect the actual number of people who leave the organization. It is only loosely bound to that unknowable number because it includes people who have been out for some time and only recently discovered this board; those who are still in physically but are making their escape mentally; Witness apologists or observers who have not yet (or will not ever) leave; and a small minority which signs up by accident, believing we are a different type of board.
However, the steady increase leads me to believe that we are helping to facilitate healing at a greater and greater pace. I believe that as the growth of the organization continues to cool off in the coming years, we will find only greater and greater increases on this and other boards. I'm glad to be able to contribute my thoughts to the community as many others move through the difficult but necessary step of leaving the organization.
As before, my cat sends his warm feline greetings.