Field Service Reports Count More than Showing Love - Ray Franz CF Book

by flipper 56 Replies latest jw friends

  • flipper

    I've always suspected this was the WT society's view when I was in the Jehovah's Witness organization - but never knew the head of the Writing Committee Karl Adams had written a letter to Nathan Knorr ( then WT president ) recommending a change regarding reporting field service time as it wrongly emphasized JW members being seen as mainly being approved due to field service statistics - instead of emphasizing Christian qualities of love, kindness, peace, etc.

    Karl Adams had been personally handpicked by Nathan Knorr to be the head of the Writing Department. In 1971 he wrote a letter to Knorr which he wanted shared with the entire Governing Body as well . I'll share the main parts of that letter.

    On pg. 187 in Ray Franz's book " In Search of Christian Freedom " Karl Adams states in his letter to Knorr, " At present we report books, booklets and magazines placed, also subscriptions obtained. The result is that, all too often, the publishers view their " success " in terms of placements . Publishers are frequently inclined to view the placement as their " goal ". They know that the congregation is going to keep a record of what they personally place. Also, the fact that placements are reported influences the basis on which elders in the congregation are inclined to appraise the work being done by publishers. There is NO REPORT of the love shown to other brothers, or of how a person discharges Christian responsibilities in his home, or of his manifesting the fruitage of the spirit, so the tendency is to emphasize the value of these figures on the publisher's report card beyond what they deserve. "

    It took major courage for Karl Adams to put forth this correct viepoint to WT president Knorr as it went against the long time views of the WT society emphasizing growth at all costs pushing forth WT publications and literature. Adams continued on, he wasn't done. His letter continued, " Admittedly, the entire arrangement of reporting our field service is something BEYOND what the Bible specifically requires of Christians. Paul warned against seeking to exalt oneself by the making of comparisons. Yet, the keeping of a record of placements tends to make publishers think in those terms. As is well known, circuit overseers have left hard-working elders in congregations discouraged because of pushing them on matters involving their field service reports, when they were actually trying hard to shepherd the flock - but , of course , that time does not show on the report. And , in speaking to the entire congregation, a circuit overseer often makes more of whether the congregation is placing 12 magazines per publisher than whether there is genuine Christian love in the congregation. "

    Adams continued saying that " fine works " that were approved in congregation members were assessed principally " of what shows up on a field service report " instead of publishers demonstrating love and Christian qualities.

    The thanks that the GB and Knorr gave Karl Adams for his letter to them ? Most of the governing body didn't read it except Ray Franz - and the decision by Knorr and the GB was to carry on the " reporting of time " tradition which started under Judge Rutherford's WT regime. So it made plain that the priority of the WT society was keping " outward appearances " and increasing literature placements and numbers - than promoting qualities of love, kindness, peace, and mildness in JW members.

    So when you see how calloused JW's are , how they DON'T show love for fellow humans- or even their OWN members- thank the Governing body's policies of statistics and numbers first - showing love second or none at all. When you were a witness did you notice the hardnosed view of other witnesses in emphasizing field service first and always- but love and kindness hardly at all ? This book by Franz has been quite an eye opener for me. As always I look forward to your takes and observations. Peace out to all, Mr. Flipper

  • slimboyfat
    It took major courage for Karl Adams to put forth this correct viepoint to WT president Knorr as it went against the long time views of the WT society emphasizing growth at all costs pushing forth WT publications and literature.

    The impression one gets, reading In Search of Christian Freedom, is that there was a surprising degree of frankness among the higher eschelons of the organization regarding what aspects of beliefs and practices were in need of change during the 1970s. It just seems a shame that this 'freeness of speech' was not extended further down the food chain, and that what ultimately resulted was Ray Franz's expulsion and a tightening grip rather than reform.

  • palmtree67

    Thanks for sharing this, Mr. F.

    I just read COC but haven't read CF. I will order it now.

  • OnTheWayOut

    The C.O. in one of my congregations told the elders, "You can't tell everything about a person's spirituality by their field service report, but you can tell a lot." He meant that the report was very important and that placements and hours were of utmost importance. He meant that the elders might know about the members in their cong. but the organization only knows the numbers, so encourage improvement of the numbers.

  • flipper

    SLIMBOYFAT- Yes, good point you make about there was a short period- perhaps 3 or 4 years in the mid 1970's where openmindedness was allegedly invited as the GB actually invited views temporarily of elders concerns in which they would discuss similar issues that Karl Adams discussed. However according to Ray Franz's book - once these elders concerns got to the GB in writing - these were looked at as not that important and put on the shelf by the GB . So it was just an " appearance " by the GB that they were concerned with elders views. A PR of sorts. Very disingenuos.

    PALMTREE- Your welcome ! Glad you enjoyed " Crisis of Conscience " . " Christian Freedom " is a very good read. I'm a little past pg. 200 now- and when I read about this Karl Adams debacle - it was quite an eye opener for me . But I always knew the GB doesn't listen to anybody but themselves. It shouldn't have surprised me.

    OTWO- Yeah, interesting quote by the C.O. you mentioned. The WT society TOTALLY screws up and has skewed views of what constitutes a " spiritual person". It used to bother me when I'd see regular pioneers being harsh or unfeeling towards other publishers reporting less time in field service than them. Some pioneers had such a condescending atitude towards normal publishers it was disgusting to observe . It drove me nuts that as long as sister or brother pioneer went out in service a lot they could be an a$$hole to their friends and family - yet the elders or congregation would champion them as " spritual people ". I never bought into it. I'd call out an a-hole pioneer if I thought they were hurting someone. Therefore it didn't make me popular for getting appointed as a servant - but I had a clear conscience for speaking up

  • read good books
    read good books

    Mr. Flipper have you made your quota for booklets this month, if not we may have to remove you as a publisher. The Society

  • flipper

    READ GOOD BOOKS- LOL ! THat is funny ! I guess I haven't met my quota in six and a half years ! As I removed myself as a publisher all those years ago. LOL ! Peace out, Mr. Flipper

  • Wasanelder Once
    Wasanelder Once

    I am not alone in saying that even pioneering for 9 years I came to the point where I felt I was lying when I told people at the door that "we" had the truth. The "Truth" would be known by the love they have among themselves. There was little or no love. This was emphasized by becoming an elder and seeing how two faced they were. I cringe when I think of elders meetings where people were discussed like sales reps that were either excelling or failing. Seldom was there commendation for anything else done by anyone. Placements, placements, placements! Fools.

  • WTWizard

    This is how most people that become full time ministers become pio-sneers. They are trained to get the numbers, and then act self righteously (and hound others, even to the extent of putting others down if they don't also join), and not show any compassion or sympathy for those who cannot get in the minimum time. If these field circus slips were discontinued, the term "pio-sneer" would never have a chance to develop, because people would not be able to act privileged just because they can get the magic number on a slip.

    I doubt Raymond Franz would fit "pio-sneer", even though he was a full time missionary at one time. He did it because he was trying to do the right thing, not because he wanted to hound others and make everyone that does not get the magic number feel like crap.

  • flipper

    WASANELDERONCE- Good points you make. I knew of several pioneer's who treated other regular publishers like cow dung. This one pioneer sister constantly gossipped about other sisters who wouldn't " go out " in service during the week. It's like she was pissed off SHE had to go out- but other sisters in their 20's or 30's her age wouldn't. She was rude to them as I actually observed her being rude and condescending to many in that particular congregation. Weird how Karma works. This self righteous pioneer sister eventually ended up leaving her elder husband and getting DFed for hooking up with an 80 yr.old wealthy brother . She was 40 at the time. Really weird how things come back to bite a person in the a$$ .

    And I agree - people should have been commended more for showing love and doing good for others than all the field service accolades. But it showed what the organization's priorities were and still are.

    WT WIZARD- You're right- having to turn in the field service slips really made others feel more entitled to be exalted than others who put less time in. It caused such a sneering attitude on the part of many pioneers who thought that because they turned in more field service time- it somehow made them " holier " than others ! But I agree Ray Franz was definitely in it for the right motives as he NEVER held himself up over others. A very humble and meek guy who did what he did out of love for fellow humans. A proof positive of that is look at the last 30 years of his life - though not being part of an organization - he still always helped people individually. Awesome guy he was. Peace out, Mr. Flipper

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