Kingdom Ministry June '94
How should matters be handled when a householder insists that Jehovah's Witnesses make no further calls at that home?
When we encounter a sign at the door that strictly prohibits calls of a religious nature and specifically mentions Jehovah's Witnesses, it may be best to respect the householder's wishes and avoid knocking.
Sometimes we come upon a sign prohibiting salesmen or solicitors. Since we are doing charitable religious work, that does not really apply to us. It would be appropriate to go ahead and knock at such doors. If the householder objects, we can tactfully explain why we feel that such signs do not apply in our case. If the householder then makes it clear that the prohibition includes Jehovah's Witnesses, we will respect his wishes.
When we are working the territory, a householder may become visibly upset and emphatically insist that we do not call again. If he refuses to reason on the matter, we should comply with this request. A dated note should be placed in the territory envelope so that publishers working the territory in the future will avoid calling at that address.
Such homes are not to be avoided indefinitely. The present occupants may move away. We may contact another family member who will respond favorably. There is also the possibility that the householder to whom we spoke will have a change of heart and become more agreeable to having us call. So after some time a tactful inquiry should be made of the occupants to determine their current feelings.
The territory file should be reviewed once a year, making a list of the homes where we have been advised not to call. Under the direction of the service overseer, some tactful, experienced publishers can be assigned to visit these homes. It could be explained that we are calling to inquire if the same householder still lives there. The publisher should be familiar with the material in the Reasoning book, pages 15-24, entitled "How You Might Respond to Potential Conversation Stoppers."
If there is a reasonable response, future calls can be made in the usual way. If the householder continues to be antagonistic, no further calls should be made until the following year. The local body of elders can decide if the circumstances in a particular case make it advisable to handle things differently.