District Convention in Hampton, Virginia

by garyneal 30 Replies latest jw experiences

  • garyneal

    Saturday Morning Symposium: Help People

    Talks: Becoming Reconciled to God and Alienation and Hopeless

    I did not take too many notes here but here's what I have with some comments.

    Scripture Reference: Ephesians 4:7-9, Hebrews 11:6, and Psalms 25:14

    They made mention of false religion which I suppose they apply to all religions except them. One notable comment they made on this talk was that Atheists as not born that way. I could not help but to think, "So what are people born to believe in then?" As if they were saying all people are born believers. I suppose it is a matter of opinion but it is notable how they made it out to be truth.

  • ziddina

    Thanks, Gary!!! Can we look forward to more synopses of the convention from you - er, are you getting this directly from your wife??? 'Cause, if I understand your earlier posts correctly, you didn't actually attend the convention???

    Looking forward to more updates, anyway!! Zid

  • garyneal

    Next Talk: "He Put the Question to Them"

    This talk spoke of Jesus drawing out people by questioning them and listening to their answers. This really hit home for me because this is how we are to talk to witnesses without erecting their cult personalities.

    Some Notes:

    He spoke of a doctor making a diagnosis on a patient without asking any questions about the patient's medical history. Should we trust the diagnosis. Now, think about how witnesses recruit householders into the religion without speaking too candidly about the Society's history. It makes me wonder how many witnesses truly investigate the history of their religion. I mean shouldn't they ask?

    During the talk, a reenactment was made with a witness and a householder who was an atheist. The witness was using questions to draw out the atheist and posed this one question to the atheist, "Would you consider reading material that offered a different (opposing) viewpoint than yours concerning the creation of life?" The atheist responds, "Yeah, that would be fair to consider all viewpoints."

    That floored me to say the least. I mean, how many witnesses would read material that offers a different viewpoint than theirs on matters of belief? Talk about a double standard.

    The speaker said that to give an effective witness, the best way is to ask questions. I noted that this is also effective at witnessing to a witness.

    Then the speaker concluded the talk by boldly command the audience to "Put the question to them!!!"

    In like manner, I will conclude this post by boldly commanding the vast apostate army to, "Put the question to them!!!"

  • garyneal
    'Cause, if I understand your earlier posts correctly, you didn't actually attend the convention???

    I was there.

  • ziddina

    "In like manner, I will conclude this post by boldly commanding the vast apostate army to, "Put the question to them!!!"

    Hah, hah!!! Sic 'em, Gary Neal!!!

    Don't know where I got the idea that you weren't going to be there - must have read someone else's posts and mistook them for yours... That's what comes of speed-reading... Zid

  • garyneal

    The next talk that I took notes on was "Win Them Over by Fine Conduct."

    I did not take too many notes here as my daughter and I were both getting restless, but here's what I have.

    The speaker spoke of the fine conduct witnesses portray and commented on how outsiders always have good things to say about their conduct. I thought, "Really? What of the people I see posting the dark side of them?"

    The speaker also said that the witnesses perform fine works and have wholesome speech and that people have often observed their fine conduct and referenced a WT September 15, 1990 article about an employer who sent a letter to a congregation elder asking for 9 witnesses to fill open positions. This employer really wanted witnesses and even asked that if none are looking for work at the time to keep the employer in mind in case the circumstances should change. (That last part of the sentence I am recalling from memory). All this because the employer had no serious problems with witnesses (as opposed to worldly people I am assuming).

    The scripture reference I noted was 1 Corinthians 5:18.

  • garyneal

    The next talk I took slight notes on was For Those Loving Jehovah, "There Is No Stumbling Block."

    Honestly, I was very restless at this point and had already walked the halls for a little while with my daughter. So all I got was 5 of the 6 (or 7?) stumbling blocks a very little notes.

    • Personal Weakness
      An illustration was made of Peter denying Jesus three times because of his weakness. However, Peter was there while Jesus was being tortured while the rest of the disciples fled. Evidently, Peter must have had more bold faith or love for Christ (something like that). I can't help but note how the speaker was able to assume what Peter reasons were for being there.
    • Desires of the flesh
      Scripture reference Matthew 5:29,30 and Col 3:5
    • Tribulation of Persecution
      Yeah, all I kept thinking of is the cult trained persecution complex that all witnesses seem to have.
      Scripture reference: Matthew 13:21 and Luke 6:37
    • Imperfection of Others
    • Mishandling (don't have the rest, maybe I should get my wife's notes).
  • sherah

    Thanks for these updates, reading it made me ill. Same ole stuff...the cult programming is evident.

  • garyneal

    Finally the Baptismal talk:

    First off, the pool leaked water and a lot of the brothers were mopping around it. So the speaker started with by addressing the issue and saying that it was taken care of so now you can all "Ignore the men mopping around the pool." I immediately thought of the scene in the Wizard of Oz where he said, "Ignore the man behind the curtain."

    He began the talk by asking the candidates, "Why are you here? Really? Why are you here?" Then proceeded with a scripture reference in Gal 4:9 stating that "Now he knows God, he wants to be baptized."

    He went over the 9 steps that lead to baptism, I was only able to note 5 (he talks too fast). Taking in Knowledge (a gnostic view), Increasing Faith by Knowledge, Associating with other believers by attending meetings, Repent of sins, and turn around from them.

    He went on to talk about tattoos (why tattoos???) and stated to those considering them to first talk to Jehovah God about it, then let Jehovah God talk to you by doing research on tattoos. RESEARCH??? That floored me as this was how I was able to discern that these people did not have the truth when I prayed about what I should do concerning my faith. The speaker said that research is a method of lingering in prayer. So I wonder how many of those baptismal candidates knew the truth about the 'truth?'

    He went on to say that Satan is seeking to taint us (the baptismal candidates) and the he uses tools like the Internet, Video Games, and even driving our car. DRIVING OUR CAR??? Now that's paranoia, I thought.

    He proclaimed them to be a witness of Jehovah and admonished them to keep proving and asking. Hmmmm, I guess that does not apply to anyone in the congregation who wants to prove and ask about the religion itself.

    Finally he concluded by warning them that Satan wants them to forget about Jehovah. Which I guess to them is synonomous with the organization.

    He asked the same two questions where I commented that they are now baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Spirit-directed organization. He proclaimed them ordained ministers (so a 10 yr old candidate is now an ordained minister, yayyy, he can now marry people).

  • garyneal

    After that, wife, daughter, and I went out to eat at the nearby Taco Bell. Returned where she got seats on the floor section due to her pregnancy. I sat through the first afternoon talk but daughter got restless quickly. I wanted to take notes on the afternoon symposium but I promised my daughter I'd let her get water after the first talk.

    Wound up missing the symposium. We left after the symposium.

    While in the hallways, I noted a number of single ladies with children and one single gent. Obviously a man shortage.

    I can see how a dub would want to peruse the hallways looking for mates. HA! As I saw some teenage dubs meeting in circles in the hallways.

    There were 4,995 people in the morning session which is not a lot considering that Hampton Roads has over a million people in its population.

    Will be at the afternoon session Sunday as I wanted to see the drama and the final talk to confirm the buzz about it here.

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