Have you ever been to FAMILY NIGHT at BETHEL?

by BonaFide 16 Replies latest jw friends

  • BonaFide

    Family Night is held once a year at Bethel and all the Branches. When I was a missionary, every year both missionary homes in that country were invited to the Branch Office, and we had a dinner with the Bethelites, and Family Night. The Bethelites did some singing and skits, and each missionary home was invited to submit something. It was pretty ridiculous. A couple of the European missionaries had talent and sang or played an instrument, the rest of us did dumb skits, related to preaching or the missionary home.

    I never went to Family Night at Brooklyn, I was too tired to go after work. I heard some are good, and some not that good. All of them have to pass a "committee" of brothers to weed out anything risque.

    I heard about some of the performances on Family Night, singing, waiters on roller skates, swing dancing, piano playing. I heard that some Bethelites have real talent.

    Anyone here been, or participated?


  • Albert Einstein
    Albert Einstein

    No, I was just at a Bethel breakfast ... it was great ...

    Out of the 30 minutes we were 25 minutes sitting and watching the food and listening Daily text, comment on daily text, comment on the comment of the daily text and then comment on the comment on the comment on the daily text. After that was short reading from the new yearbook, and after that there was some interesting experience by a brother who was in Brooklyn Bethel lately ... In the meantime some prayers ... and than it happenned!!!! we were allowed to eat for 3,5 minutes, than everybody was rushing to work ...

    I never ate so fast in my life....


  • Narkissos

    Oh that brings back memories...

    I remember one "drama" especially that was very good (not like the official convention dramas), about the "pioneer" who started the WT mission in France out of nothing and was later set aside by the Swiss branch officials (veiled criticism here). It was directed by a very talented "brother" who was later sent away from Bethel (not for the drama ;). He made a remarkably efficient script, stage setting, and use of music (Dvorak's New World Symphony!).

    Incidentally a couple of years ago I had two JWs knocking at my door, one of them (whom I did not recognise immediately, but she did recognise me, although I had grown a beard since and she hadn't ;) being the wife of the SD guy who played the main character in that drama. When she told me her name (they had left Bethel and her husband was now a CO in my area) the first mental image I remembered from him was in this drama role...

    There was nice music too. The only time I participated was in a folk arrangement on a "Kingdom song" made by a cellist friend, who did get something good out of it.

    Some good jokes, even "questionable" ones in spite of the pre-censorship (blame improvisation ;). There was a sketch picturing a scene in the "new system" with a dialogue like:
    "Do you remember brother X (a not-much-liked Bethel guy)?
    -- No, who was that...
    -- *funny description*
    -- Oh yes, he didn't make it at Armaggedon, did he?"
    Mix of chuckles and embarrassment... I heard the players were mildly scolded after that but nothing serious.

  • leftbelow

    The first time I attended it was a little bit weird. But then again I am a little bit weird myself so I guess I should have felt at home.

  • leavingwt

    Yes. It was incredibly lame.

    People who enjoy Family Night really need to "get out more". Seriously.

    To be more specific, Family Night routinely consisted of 10 minutes of genuinely entertaining talent and more than 60 minutes of people embarrasing themselves. I suppose one could attend and enjoy it in the same way as enjoying the first few episodes of American Idol each new season. But make no mistake, we're laughing AT the performers, not WITH them.

    -LWT (of the skipped Family Night at all costs class)

  • Shepherd Book
    Shepherd Book

    I attended one. The only memorable segment was of a short film someone made showing the hectic schedule the shuttle bus driver had. It started with him walking out into the garage, sliding on his leather gloves, then getting into the driver's seat. Then there was Star Trek music and the van took off hurtling through space. Cheaply done, but amusing.

    Some brother played a kingdom melody on his guitar, too, I think.

  • joelingeorgia

    i just remember we had steak.

  • Billy the Ex-Bethelite
    Billy the Ex-Bethelite

    I went to many. Only saw one in Brooklyn that was "good". Wallkill and Patterson were usually much better. Then they unified the ordeal so that Family Night was a combination effort of all three. Of course, it went downhill after that. Many talented contributors stopped participating or left Bethel.

    The end.

  • leavingwt
    i just remember we had steak.

    Please explain your statement, above.

    The only steak Bethel served me was during the week of the Gilead Graduation (twice per year) and during the Patterson dedication program.

    Have I forgotten something about Family Night?

  • Billy the Ex-Bethelite
    Billy the Ex-Bethelite


    Other branches made them into a huge event. Up at Canada, it was a big, all day event all over the complex, with great food, bands, games. As you know, Brooklyn was a couple brothers with kazoos singing about creamed beef.

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