How do the elders deal with a very poor brother or sister?

by JH 45 Replies latest jw friends

  • anewme

    I have always been monetarily challenged due to my lack of college degrees and being disinherited upon baptism.

    I have been the recipient of help a number of times. When I was 18 and kicked out for getting baptized the congregation took me into their homes. I went from home to home for several weeks. Many families were involved in my emergency. One family got me a job at a hospital and took me everyday until I saved enough to by a car. Another family found me a car. I then moved into a rental with two other JW girls.

    Another time my cottage burned due to arson. The congregation came together to give me money for a new apartment. And filled it with furniture and dishes and a t.v. ( two t.vs actually)

    They threw me a wedding that in retrospect was very nice considering we had no money at the time to afford any kind of reception. Neither my new JW husband nor I had parents in the org. We were orphans and very poor (he being handicapped)

    Throughout the 20 years of our marriage we were the receivers of gifts of food and money and help on our rental house. We were in an affluent congregation but we were right there next to the divorced sister with the 5 retarded kids on the list for help and handouts.

    I just got an email from the ex this morning. The congregation continues to make his eyes shine with help and love. I am grateful that a few are real Christians in that hall. I believe some are. They would be wonderful people in any religion.


  • JeffT

    In 1986 I hurt myself and was unable to work my commission job. As a result of my situation I couldn't get unemployment, and money was very tight. An elder asked me if I needed help, I said yes, he went to the other elders to see if anything could be done. He called me later and read a page from the "Organization" book dealing with such situations. I was told that it wasn't the responsibility of the congregation to help me out, and that I should talk to welfare or worldly relatives if I needed help.

    That was the beginning of the end for me. As far as I was concerned the Society demanded absolute loyalty from me, but would give nothing when I needed it. Last fall when I lost my job and had no insurance our church paid a BIG medical bill for me. We had not even asked, they got wind of the need and took care of it. So who's the "real Christians?"

  • DocBob
  • DaCheech

    truthfully speaking things were diffrent 20+ years ago.

    remember the days when congregations cleanings had 100% participation... now it's like 10%

    Nowadays they will not even shelter people in the KH during disasters for $$$$/insurance reasons

  • Alpheta

    Perhaps this is a common thread - people who were in the "in crowd" got help, everyone else got the finger of fate. In my congregation, I do not recall a single instance in the 10 years I was there where a call was made from the platform for help for a family or individual. It was all done by word of mouth through the sisters. For instance, sister so and so was laid up and needed help with cleaning and food for x number of weeks. Voila, meals were provided and cleaning was done. Another sister, a pioneer for many years who raised 2 daughters in "the truth" lost her middle aged non-believing husband to a heart attack. The whole congregation came to her rescue - although I don't recall a single instance where this was voted upon and I sure never heard it discussed. It was just something, suddenly, we all had to do. I assisted in such things via word of mouth many times.

    Personally, I was "friends" with two older sisters. I helped them out not by giving $$$ directly but by arranging outings to theaters and dinners and lunches and footing the bills. I did offer $$$ at times and it was always turned down. My congregation was one of the well-off ones, and I assumed at the time that the brothers were taking care of things for these elderly sisters. But after reading about some of your experiences here, I'm not so sure. So why would these sisters turn down $$$ from me - at the time I was in good standing and (as far as I know), not marked as bad association. Perhaps they were receiving help from the wealthier members of the congregation (wealthier than me, for sure). Several brothers owned their own businesses and drove around in flashy cars and had tailored suits (not Walmart off the rack), etc. etc.

  • Sacchiel

    I extremely pleased to hear a CO talk about this very issue. He said the best thing to do would be to help out that person, either with food or monetarily. First, take care of physical needs then, spiritual needs. :)

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