and peace to you!
with this the current change, a whole meeting is being removed.
I did not get the impression that a whole meeting was being removed. Rather, I thought it said the meeting would be continued, but combined with the others and so shortened and, yes, in another location. Which, as you've stated, is going to be their position. I get that you think so because the previous TIME for a entire meeting is being eliminated...
"they" can say that it's having its location changed but we all know that's just window dressing.
Yes, true! LOLOL! But, isn't ALL of their explanations for ALL of their changes... just window dressing?
No, the group study is being dispensed with, as the "Society's"™ own letter apparently states, so as "not to burden the brothers" in these difficult times.
I think a re-read would show that it's not quite as you say; however, if it does say that, then okay, a meeting is being entirely dispensed with. Personally, I think "we" should be VERY careful NOT to add/take away from what IS happening with them, so as to not risk "our" own credibility... as well as not become the very thing "we" decry: those who do not state things accurately.
Back to my comparison: I remember when the DC was shortened; it was a pretty big thing where I come from because many of the "friends" just couldn't do it any longer. First, they could no longer afford the costs and second, employers were no longer granting that kind of time off. The burden on the families was just too great. And so attendance had waned. But you could hear the sigh of relief, well, probably all the way to heaven, when the length of the DC was changed: 8-9-10 days had become a BURDEN.
I stated in a previous thread that there were probably numerous reasons for this change, including lifting some of the responsibility from sisters with families, assisting the elderly who have a hard time seeing/driving at night, and having to meet in unsavory neighborhoods. These were complaint I was hearing way back when I was "in." Thus, I would not be surprised that the BURDEN that the organization places on its members by having them attend so many meetings has resulted in such an OUTCRY (evidenced by the decrease in attendance, as well as the actual coments) just as the long DC did. The fact that the GB mentioned that they no longer wanted to place a burden on the members appears to indicate this.
But... you could be right and I could be wrong. I just don't think it has a thing to do with any "sky is falling" message. Why? Because... there's nothing to indicate the sky is falling. And I don't think they'd risk repeating 1975. Not with what they lost then... and have to lose now.
Just my $0.02... and, as always, I bid you peace.
YOUR servant and a slave of Christ,