I am a 28 year-old male, and yes i am from Africa, South Africa to be precise.
I was brought up in the 'truth', got baptised at 17 in 1998
DF'd at 22 in 2003 for fornication.
Reinstated at a different Cong. in 2007 for the sake of my relationship with my family, especially mom.
After my reinstatement I was active in FS as well as attending meetings even though I could'nt comment. A few months down the line I found out about this forum while searching the net, I continued going to meetings and FS but as time went by I started feeling like it was'nt really that important to me. My eyes opened and I did'nt feel so guilty if I missed 1 meeting in a week.
From December 2008 I stopped going door to door, but I continued putting bogus time slip through until May last year. I have'nt reported anything ever since. I still go to meetings even though I am not regular.
The Elders have'nt spoken to me as yet about my semi-inactive state, and I know why...I am going to elaborate in the next paragraphs.
I am an Auto Mechanic by trade, not surprising as born-ins are encouraged to rather get a trade than higher education. Ever since I was reinstated, my COBE has been asking me to work on his fleet of auto-mobiles on weekends, he has 4 cars. As to be expected, he only pays me about 30 % of the market price. Sometimes i don't even charge him a cent. Through out last year he has'nt said anything to me about my meeting attendance or FS time, and he keeps JW topics to a minimum everytime he talks to me, he rather talks to me about auto-mobiles.
Last summer during our CO visit, Bro CO who was staying at Bro COBE's house had a breakdown. I had to tow his car and repair it for FREE, he only bought spare parts that were needed. It took me the whole 'special week' to fix the CO's car, so i had a valid reason not to attend FS that week, i also made sure i worked until late in order to miss the TMS/Biblestudy and Service meetings as well, the only meeting i attended was Sunday talk. I did'nt even sit through WT study and the last Co talk as i had to go finish up before he left for the next Cong.
For this above-mentioned reasons i have managed to avoid the wrath of the Elders, and I am planning to move to another Cong. soon. I am now worrying about the type of reference I am likely to get from this BOE. Is it perhaps possible that I can negotiate it with my COBE? I think that's exactly what I am going to try and do. The reason why i still need good reference from them is because i am planning to get married in the Kingdom Hall before I fade out slowly.
I will continue with my plan to get married in Part 2....