According to Paul Blizzard, there were a lot of drunken parties and a lot of drinking at Bethel back when he was a Bethelite around the 1970's or 1980's (http://www.watchthetower.com/). Out of curiosity, does this stuff still go on today? For any of the more recent bethelites, can you describe what your experience was like serving in bethel?
Question for Bethelites and former Bethelites
What, nothing? Oh well, Bethel must be pretty boring after all or pretty secretive.
It happened when I was there. 1994-2000. I recall some of my peers getting asked leave Bethel and/or disfellowshipped for such things.
This issue probably affects less than 15% of the family. It's mostly 19-22 year-old young men. No big surprise here, IMHO.
Plenty of alcohol is consumed by older Bethelites, but they're rarely stupid enough to get drunk in public. Most Bethelites can tell you about the alchohol that gets consumed every six months, right before the "Gilead Meal". Bethelites are allowed to leave work early on this morning, and they traditionally go to someones room for alcohol and light snacks. Everyone essentially has an empty stomach and they're in a hurry. So, fifteen minutes later, at the lunch table, everyone is feeling really good. A sampling of blood alchohol levels at this lunch would be most entertaining, IMHO.
Will some other Bethelites chime in with their favorite Gilead Meal alcohol stories?
Hi, have a look on the Freeminds website, there are quite a few testimonies from former Bethalites on there that are really eye-opening. I recall one in particular that mentioned the amount of drinking that goes on, it was very funny.
I was is Aust bethel in the early 1990s. The Bethelites were pretty boring, but the Constructionites were of a different breed. They were a lot more fun and very much into music and drinking. A few were making homebrew at Bethel, hiding the kits in some of the maintenance tunnels. We had a number of lectures on bad music. One day in 1994 one of the Bethel overseers arranged for the cleaners to go through everyones music and list anything inappropriate for Bethel. It resulted in a few being asked to leave bethel.
Sorry Gary, I go back a ways into the 70's.
And yes, drinking was a serious problem then. I knew personally several that went to far while drunk and were dismissed from Bethel.
Some of it started with a lack of understanding from the new young ones. 18 was the legal age then in NY. While 21 for the most of the USA.
So an 18 year old new to NY could get into trouble. Also, the new entrants school talks encouraged us to have a small glass of wine late at night to help us unwind and sleep. Some took that counsel way too seriously and learned to rely on wine to unwind.
Does anyone remember the garbage collection containers for beer cans, off the tunnel near the 107 building? They would be completely full after a weekend. Stumbled many a Bethel tours.
"What! That's from ONE WEEKEND!!!" They would say.
I had friends who were there in Canada and in Brooklyn. Both places were known for the free flowing of booze.
One time while in New York, there was some tax increase either on Alcohol or consumer goods in general (circa 1982) and I could not believe what I saw coming the front door of one of the residences. Bethelites where carting in Cases of hard alcohol stacked up on Hand carts.
I think it was the only escape for them, and along with Prozac is the only legit escape for most dubs
I was there 91-94 and yes a lot of drinking and this was from the ones who were in their 30's, 40's and 50's. I saw some get really loaded. I think Frank75 hit the nail on the head when he said "it was their only escape along with Prozac."
Although I have never been a Bethelite , I have often been surprised by the amount they (and COs / DOs) drink when I have seen them at weddings or congregation get togethers. There were a CO & his wife and family absolutely pi$$ed at a large recent family anniversary party here. Many of the local JWs were quite shocked as they expected them to be "quite spiritual" & moderate their drinking. I think much of it is because of the very restricted institutionalised life they have - it must be lead to some just going off the rails & letting off steam from time to time.
When I was there, in the last couple of years, every young chap seems to get drunk as they can get away with - I think it was a reaction to the very strict regime