"Local Needs" Talks: The people who should really hear them are never there.

by Open mind 40 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Open mind
    Open mind

    My whole life as a JW I've heard this refrain. "Too bad so-and-so wasn't here for that Local Needs talk."

    As an Elder I would have a hard time putting my heart into writing up a Local Needs talk that was targeting one or two congregation members, knowing full well they probably wouldn't be there to hear it.

    Now it comes full circle. This week we were multi-tasking as usual watching American Idol on TV while the phone was tied in to the meetings. Usually we just listen to the Local Announcements, but since there was a Local Needs talk, we listened to a few minutes of it as well. We definitely fit the target demographic of the talk. The irony was not lost on me that I too had wasted many hours preparing these talks and in the end they were just so much wasted breath.

    How about you?

    Ever have a Local Needs talk with your name on it?


  • OnTheWayOut

    No, I never had a talk aimed at me, unless they did so after I faded and I didn't know about it. They could have had a few since then.

    On your title, nobody should really hear the talks. NOBODY. I think they are most effective with the congregation when they stir gossip about "those ones" who were not there. I remember being in the audience, fully dubbed, thinking how so-and-so should really be here for this.

  • willyloman

    open mind: good point, I noticed that too for many years.

    I've come to realize it's just another example of the poor communication skills exemplified by the WTS. They've created communications channels that are ineffective (door to door work is exhibit A) and continue to use them because they're uniquely theirs. If they were serious about communicating people's perceived "faults," they'd do what works: sit down with them face to face and have a frank talk.

    Everything they do is designed to create the impression they are "communicating" but in fact their methods are designed to put the responsibility for getting the message solely on the hearer, the intended target of their message. It's no skin off their nose if no one listens. An organization that was truly motivated by love and the desire to engaged in "a life-saving work" would be on top of this.

  • charlie brown jr.
    charlie brown jr.
    Ever have a Local Needs talk with your name on it?

    Yes I did and didn't everyone in the Hall turn to look at me...

    It wasn't paranoia I was humiliated but like a Brainwashed Idiot...

    I thought it was from Jehovah but boy was I embarrassed!!!

  • watersprout

    Yep! I was 19 and had my belly button pierced! *gasp*... I went to Carrot cong and an elders daughter overheard me talking about it to my friend. We were in the ladies. She wanted to see it so i showed her. Anyway this elders daughter went back and told her dad she was getting her's done, because i have had mine done. The following thursday, Carrot phones me when he gets back from the meeting and tells me they had a local needs about a ''sister'' who has her belly button pierced and she is leading young ones astray. Having my belly button pierced also stumbled quite a few. I found it really funny, felt rather priviledged to been spoken of off the platform! Lol

    The elders in my cong didn't say anything to me, so perhaps they weren't told. I don't know.


  • Anony Mous
    Anony Mous

    What was your local needs about? There are only 3 subject for those:

    - You need to go more in service

    - You need to reach out for privileges

    - You need to be more in the KH

    (- You can't accept blood) - that's a special one the GB actually commands the 'local' needs to be about once a year.

  • Jadeen

    Yup- about "marrying only in the Lord" blah blah, a couple of months before my "worldly" honey and I got married. And you're right! I wasn't there, only heard about it later, hee hee. I don't know why they bothered, at that point I hadn't attended meetings for several years.

  • LostGeneration

    Local needs was always the ultimate read between the lines exercise.

    It was always like a jigsaw puzzle trying to figure out who they are talking about, what they were/are doing, and how they were being naughty on some level by what they were doing.

    Rumor has it I was the subject of a fairly intense local needs, but I was out the door so I can't verify for sure.

  • Found Sheep
    Found Sheep

    Oh ya I think I was the local needs for about a year. "How did our prized JW turn into Found Sheep?"

  • WontLeave

    "Local needs" talks that target a few or one are not intended for them, but to give a sense of pious disgust to the rest of the congregation. I've never been the topic of one (that I know of, since I don't attend many meetings) but I know people who have and it's bloody shameful. These talks are a means to whip the congregation into a frothy lather against someone so they'll do the dirty work of guilt-tripping the "wrongdoer" (granted, often they are actually doing wrong) into falling in line with everybody else.

    I have been talked about (although not by name) at an assembly, though. Since I'm not a boot-licker, they won't allow me to be seen on the platform as a representative, but they couldn't deny my results in the ministry. So, rather than sully their image by having me recount my successes with my preaching methods, they had one of their golden children talk about me as some nameless member of their car group.

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